Horror for Hendry Hall-oween
One of the world’s longest consecutively running dramas is preparing to haunt the stage of North Vancouver’s Hendry Hall just in time for Halloween.
The Woman in Black is an epic ghost story written by Susan Hill and adapted for the stage by Stephen Mallatratt in 1987. It has since been drawing crowds to London’s West End theatre district where today more than 7 million people have seen it and lived to tell the tale.
It was there that Vancouver stage director Randy Poulis fell in love with The Woman in Black.
“I went and saw it in London and thought it would be just perfect to do here,” Poulis told The Outlook. “The audience is so immediate to the production because Hendry Hall seats about 70 people and you’re right on top of the stage.”
That closeness lends a huge boost to the play’s spook factor, magnifying the role of the audience’s imagination in the otherwise stripped down dual-actor performance of Kurtis Maguire and Robert Sidley. And so does the history of the Victorian-styled Hendry Hall, built in 1942, and home to the North Vancouver Community Players.
“This is the ideal space for this ghost story to be told because you’re up close and personal with any spirit that chooses to make an appearance,” Poulis said.
Fans of the Harry Potter films may also want to get in to see this local production as Hill’s novel has also been adapted for a feature film starring Daniel Radcliffe of Potter fame set to open in February 2012.
The Woman in Black runs Oct. 21-22, Oct. 26-29, and Nov. 2-5 at Hendry Hall, 815 East 11th St., North Vancouver. Tickets are $18 for adults, $16 for youths and seniors, and are available online at northvanplayers.ca or by phone at 604-983-2683.