A new anthology play adapted by Oliver Giggins & Ash Pryce
Edith Nesbit is probably best known as the writer of The Railway Children. What gets less attention, is her extensive collection of horror and ghost stories to rival her male contemporaries. The Shadow in the Dark adapts two of her tales of terror - The Shadow and In The Dark.
This new adaptation features Magic Lanterns, imaginative soundscapes, and a masterfully crafted style drawing on elements of stylized theatre popular during Nesbit's later years as Mistress of the Macabre.
Edith Nesbit (R.H. Hale) will welcome you to her sitting room, as she narrates a series of unsettling tales, brought to life by Skye Morrison and Annie Cook, in an adaptation by Oliver Giggins and Ash Pryce.
The play will premiere at the Edinburgh Horror Festival 2023, running Thursday October 26th to Sunday October 29th at 19:40. Tickets are Pay What You Can on the door, or £12/£10 online.
Who was Edith Nesbit?
Though primarily remembered now as a children's writer, a vast amount of Edith Nesbit's works were in other areas, including poetry, adult novels and articles dealing with her work as a social activist.
These include several collections of short horror stories (including 1893's Grim Tales and 1910's Fear) and gothic novels, the last of which was 1911's Dormant which has been described as "a feminist horror retelling of Sleeping Beauty crossed with Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein." (Kat, Mirabele Dictu, 2015)
Though there have been over 40 adaptations, sequels, and re-imaginings of her work, only 10% of them have been of her adult fiction, with almost half the remainder being of a single story, her first ever horror one.
HOW YOUR SUPPORT HELPS
Supporting Grass-Roots Theatre
Grass roots theatre doesn't have the funding or finances associated with, and more easily available to, larger theatres and companies. Most theatre created in Britain is by grass-roots artists who are likely working on very low budgets, frequently voluntary, without the support and resources they need. They do it because if they don't it reduces the work out there, the opportunities to develop as creatives, and reduces the amount of accessible, low cost theatre and arts for the public to engage with.
Supporting Ongoing Work
The plans for staging the event at the Edinburgh Horror Festival represent the first step in a larger project, a goal to bring the production to wider audiences at other Festivals across the country, including the Edinburgh Fringe. The more we raise, the more we can look to a future stage of the project allowing more people to engage with it, and to be able to fairly pay performers.
Supporting Disabled Artists
Our production team is comprised of 50% disabled, Chronically ill, and/or Neurodiverse creatives. Frequently these types of artists face challenges that limit their ability to take part in the arts. Supporting the production supports them by allowing us to cover additional expenses and support.
Supporting Female Artists
Our production team is mostly women-led - all of the performers and the stage manager. Even though the project was begun by two men, the goal has always been to ensure that women centre in the production, as it represents work from a female author, frequently overlooked for her contributions to the horror genre in favour of her more family-friendly work. It is important that these voices are heard, and seen, and that the work isn't forgotten.
Supporting LGBTQ+ Artists
Aside from being largely female and disabled led, the team also involves members of the LGBTQ+ community. There has always been a strong connection between horror and queer identity - not always positive sadly. By supporting this project you help support queer-identified artists working in the horror genre.
Supporting New Work
Finally, your support helps to encourage and produce new work. It allows a chance for experimentation, for flexibility and freedom. Your support means we can bring work to the stage that has either not been seen before, or existed in limited quantities. New work allows for new ideas, new voices, and new entertainment for the public at large.
REWARDS FOR SUPPORT
Level 1 - UNLIMITED £5 Donation
Thank you on our social media
Level 2 - UNLIMITED £10 Donation
Thank you on our social media and in the programme
Level 3 - LIMITED TO 50 £25 Donation
Thank you on our social media and in the programme, signed promo promo-artwork and badge
Level 4 - LIMITED TO 25 £50 Donation
Thank you on our social media and in the programme, badge, signed promo-artwork and programme and digital copy of the show
Level 5 - LIMITED TO 10 £75 Donation
Associate producer credit in programme, imdb and film credits [Digital Show] plus thank you on our social media and in the programme, badge, signed promo-artwork and programme and digital copy of the show
Level 6 - LIMITED TO 5 £100 Donation
Executive producer credit in programme, imdb and film credits, [Digital Show], video thank you from select team members, 2 tickets to the in-person show, thank you on our social media and in the programme, badge, signed promo-artwork and programme and digital copy of the show
Level 7 - LIMITED TO 2 £500 Donation
Co-producer credit in programme, imdb and film credits [Digital Show], 4 tickets to the in-person show, Zoom Q&A with select team members, thank you on our social media and in the programme, badge, signed promo-artwork and programme and digital copy of the show
Physical items shipped free within the UK. Outside the UK a shipping and handling fee will be applied at checkout.
If opting for tickets to the in-person show, you are responsible for all of your own costs in attending the event including travel, accommodation and food.
Meet The Team
Actor, Edith Nesbit
Rebecca Hale is a performer, author, and once-time-Underground Tour Guide from Edinburgh. She began her performance career taking tourists into the haunted Underground of Edinburgh’s South Bridge Vaults, gaining a reputation as a strong performer and unsettling teller of terror tales.
Since 2007 she has performed as Mephistopheles in Dr. Faustus (2008), The Explorer in an original adaptation of Kafka’s “In the Penal Colony”, and numerous ensemble roles in productions by Noisy Ghost director Ash Pryce (See below).
Under her pen name “R.H. Hale” she has published two Gothic literary horror novels, Church Mouse, books 1 and 2, and a short ghost story on her website, as well as writing numerous episodes of popular web series “Spooky History”. Aside from acting and writing, Rebecca holds a BSc Honours from Kingston University, and is about to begin another science degree.
Annie is an actor, director, and producer based in Edinburgh. She graduated in Film & Media at the University of Stirling BA (Hons) before going on to work in improving participatory democracy for governments. She completed a diploma in Acting and Voice graduating with distinction from Trinity London College, Edinburgh Acting School in 2020.
Annie recently co-founded her own theatre & film company called Warped Productions LTD and is part of the Frighthouse Productions troupe having done a few stints at the Fringe and Horror Festivals.
Some of Annie’s recent credits include playing a giant child-catching rat, a gun slinging hillbilly, a film noir detective, an alien-like-child, a killer-clown and several damsel-like-victims in The Wheel of Misfortune, Joy and Maxine in Sauce and Hot Sauce, Princess Wanda in Wawel Dragon and Grace in Solar Urticaria. You can sometimes see her as a witch known as Blair Witch flying around town witch-touring.
Ash Pryce is an award winning director, magician, and co-founder of the Edinburgh Horror Festival. He has directed and produced live theatre for over 20 years, starting in Leicester shortly after completing an HND in Performing Arts. In 2016 he completed a B.A (Hons) in Drama and Performance.
He now mostly works as a magician focused on horror themed seance illusions and hosts the popular occult YouTube series "Spooky History". In 2017 he fused his love of theatre, ghosts, and magic together for his original play "First Time Buyers" which was performed at two Edinburgh Festival Fringes.
He regularly performs magic in castles, palaces, underground vaults, and plain old regular stages in Edinburgh and across the U.K.
Actor, Miss. Eastwich
Skye Morrison is thrilled to be working with Erstwhile Media again after a very successful run as Cinderella in Glass Slippers and Silver Bullets in last years Edinburgh Fringe Festival and Edinburgh Horror Festival. She is excited for the opportunity to be collaborating with Noisy Ghost Entertainment alongside Erstwhile Media this year to bring The Shadow in the Dark to life.
Skye graduated from the University of the West of Scotland this year with a First Class Honours degree in Performance. She has spent this last year developing her dramaturgy as well as her acting, so being able to delve into an adaptation of a prolific authors work has been a delight.
Skye intends to bring an evocative and compelling performance to the Edinburgh Horror Festival this year and hopes that audiences enjoy the performance.
Oliver Giggins is a European writer/director for film and theatre interested in history, literature, comedy and drama.
Active in the industry since 2010, his writing and directing work include horror-pantomime Frankomime's Monster (the most attended event of the Edinburgh Horror Festival 2018, as well as a sell-out show at EHF 2018 and 2020), absurdist comedy play Chekhov Got His Gun (long-listed for the 2019 Bruntwood Award for Playwriting and shortlisted for 2021 Through The Mill Playwriting Award), family-friendly comedy Glass Slippers and Silver Bullets (which sold out in the Edinburgh Fringe 2022) and the short film script Permission (one of the winners of Qalbi Productions Unsolicited Scripts callout in 2023).
As well as his less-traditional versions of Frankenstein and Cinderella, he has also written a more orthodox one-person adaption of Oscar Wilde's The Canterville Ghost, which did several successful runs at the Edinburgh Horror Festival and Feast of Gothic Horror between 2018 and 2021.
Producer for Noisy Ghost Ents.
Theresa Dewa is a theatre producer, and events manager, based in Edinburgh. Originally from the United States, Theresa began producing work as part of Arcadia University’s annual Hallowe’en charity events, crafting original interactive, haunted house shows.
After moving to Scotland in 2017 she volunteered with the Edinburgh Horror Festival, and quickly began working in a more producer based capacity helping to run and organise not just the annual event, but the round the year events as well.
She has produced original, site specific work at Lauriston Castle, as well as programming events at the Banshee Labyrinth with the EHF. She has also co produced, and/or stage managed multiple shows with the company Noisy Ghost Entertainment which she founded with Ash and Rebecca in 2020.