Tom Richards as
the ghost hunter.
Photo John Roberts
Stewart Pringle: Writer
Jeffrey Mayhew: Director
Tom Richards: Performer
George Warren: Producer
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A ghost tour operator meditates on his profession while in the ale house.
The Ghost Hunter is the new play from the partnership of Mssrs Pringle and Richards of the Theatre of the Damned. Stewart Pringle wrote it; Tom Richards plays the ale chugging raconteur who regales the audience with the business of ghosts in the city of York. Some ghost stories are fabrications, says Barraclough (Richards). But even these stories have a sense of place, thanks to tour guides like himself and his indefatigable spiel night after night. Eventually the tales might appear in local guidebooks, reproduced anon for spook hungry tourists. The Ghost Hunter tells of one such tale, a piece of modern folklore that has invented itself. Barraclough has brought along a mountain of York guidebooks to illustrate his point.
The Ghost Hunter is a markedly different show to other offerings from the Theatre of the Damned. It is not the spectacle of last year’s glorious Lovecraft musical, The Horror! The Horror!, but a stripped down bare-bones solo performance, with few props and no singing. The fastidious trappings of Olde England that inspire the opening minutes - and indeed other talking head spook tales - are cast aside when Barraclough announces that he must go for a piss and leaves the members of the audience to talk among themselves. Thus the stage is set. Ghosts and hauntings are not necessarily of the past. Nor do we have in The Ghost Hunter spectral convention precipitated by a bloodcurdling shriek. Here the ghosts are silent, filtered through Richards’ dead-eye stare, a consummate performance that does full justice to Pringle’s clever and inspirational storytelling.
Venue: Old Red Lion Theatre, 418 St John St., London, EC1V 4NJ. Box Office: 020 7837 7816
Dates: Tuesday 30th April to Saturday 25th May 2013
Running Time: 60 mins (no interval)
Times: Tuesday – Saturday performances at 7:30pm - Matinees at 3pm on Saturday and Sunday
Prices: £14/£12.50 (concessions) Pay What You Can Tuesdays and £10 Sundays Apply