Original date 26/9/11
The Courtyard and Theatre of the Damned present: The London Horror Festival
A brand new festival of theatrical horror and the macabre
25 October – 27 November 2011, The Courtyard
As the nights draw in this autumn, the Courtyard Theatre will play host to all things grisly and gruesome as it welcomes a brand new festival of live theatrical horror and the macabre. For over five weeks the festival will take over the Shoreditch venue, showcasing the UK’s finest proponents of dark and challenging performing arts.
At the heart of the festival is Theatre of the Damned‘s Revenge of the Grand Guignol – the follow-up to their 2010 production Grand Guignol, which was described by the Evening Standard as “London’s scariest show” and was nominated for three Off West End Awards. Supported by an original soundtrack by noise artist Corpse Lights and accompanied by a ‘smell-track’ developed with a state-of-the-art aroma system, their latest work comprises four short horror plays, adapted from the repertoire of the original Théâtre du Grand Guignol in Paris.
The festival also welcomes an extended appearance by Noveau Guignol, the UK’s only permanent repertory horror theatre company, alongside a rich collection of new works by contemporary writers. Featuring ghosts, gore and many, many grizzly ends, these works include an all-new adaptation of H.P Lovecraft’s classic tale of ancient evil The Dunwich Horror, a local twist with Phantasmagoria Productions’ Camden’s Most Horrid and The Woods Are Lovely by T G Jimm.
Cult horror film director Lloyd Kaufman will present a special late-night showing of his new film Poultrygeist. The president of Troma Entertainment and The Toxic Avenger’s outrageous new film promises blood, guts, Islamic Extremists, lesbians and deep-fried, finger-licking carnage.
Audiences can also delve into the funnier side of the macabre with Possession is Nine Tenths, a new black comedy by Kathryn McConnell and Zombie Science 1Z, a spoof lecture examining the science of the undead, led by Theoretical Zombiologist Doctor Austin.
Theatre of the Damned is a London based performance group dedicated to horror and the macabre. Their goal is to produce a range of forgotten classics from the repertoire of the Grand Guignol, together with innovative new writing and adaptations of classic horror literature.
Through the festival, the company hope to highlight the theatrical potential of horror when performed live. Directors Stewart Pringle & Tom Richards said of the production, “We believe that in many ways the theatre is in fact a far more potent medium for developing fear, intrigue and outrage, and that for audiences increasingly desensitized by mindless Hollywood horror, our productions offer a far more affecting and visceral experience“.
Venue: Courtyard Theatre
Address: Bowling Green Walk, 40 Pitfield Street, London. N1 6EU
Dates: 25 October – 27 November 2011 (No performances Mondays except special events)
Box Office: www.thecourtyard.org.uk / 0844 477 1000
Transport: Train: Liverpool St,
Tube: Old Street, Shoreditch High St or Hoxton stations
Bus: 21, 43, 55, 76, 141, 205, 214, 271, N35, N55 or N76
Show information and details
Revenge of the Grand Guignol
Theatre of the Damned
By Andre de Lorde/Tom Richards/Stewart Pringle
25 Oct – 27 Nov, 7.30pm (except 27 Oct, 7pm)
An insane scientist inflicts cruel experiments on his unsuspecting patients. Night falls on a care home where an old man is terrorised by ghosts from the past. A kinky game ends in heartbreak and murder. A beautiful young woman is trapped in a munitions factory which swims with blood. Four short dramas inspired by Paris’s notorious theatre of the macabre.
£16 / £12 concs
By Laura Steel and Arden Redgrave
25 – 30 Oct, 7.30pm
Leonard Walker is a US acting coach who pushes his students to murky psychological recesses in the hope of improving their acting skills. Yet he doesn’t ever seem to teach them anything about acting. When Claire, a British actress, sees through him, Leonard does all he can to humiliate her and destroy her presence within the group. Disturbing, and darkly funny, Breathing Space is a new play from a new writer, Dallace Jones.
£12 / £10 concs
The Dunwich Horror
By David Dawkins (based on the short story by H P Lovecraft)
25 Oct – 6 Nov, 9.30pm
In Dunwich – a furtive, remote village whose annals reek of overt viciousness; of half-hidden murders and incest; a bitter old wizard performs the strange rituals and unhallowed rites that will call forth the doom of all mankind. An all-new adaptation of H.P Lovecraft’s classic tale of ancient horror.
£15 / £10 concs
Night of the Damned
London Horror Festival
31 Oct – 1 Nov, 7.30pm
Halloween at the London Horror Festival. On the evening of October 31st the Courtyard opens its doors to the creatures of the night in an evening of pitch-black comedy, gothic rock, electro-carnage and undead hordes. Headlined by Release the Bats.
Possession is 9/10ths
What? What? Theatre
By Kathryn McConnell
1 – 6 Nov, 7.30pm
Neighbours from hell and Lotto winners, Dolly and Clint Wood are having the time of their lives. Suddenly, they find themselves sitting on their sofa with a hazy memory of the previous nights’ antics. Just then, in walks, a new young couple, Helen and John, who start to re-decorate. Realising they are in fact now deceased and not wanting to let death get the better of them, the Woods’ decide try to force the couple out. The nosey neighbour, Betty Box gets involved and things take a really bizarre turn.
£12 / £10 concs
Poultrygeist (w/ special guest Lloyd Kaufman)
1 Nov, 10.30pm
The London Horror Festival is proud to present a special late-night showing of Troma Entertainment’s acclaimed Poultrygeist – Night of the Chicken Dead followed by a Q&A with the legendary Lloyd Kaufman, president of Troma Entertainment, fearless champions of independent horror cinema.
When American Chicken Bunker choose the Ancient Tromahawk Tribe Indian Burial Ground for the site of their latest restaurant, it unleashes forces of total clucking darkness that tear a bloody hole in the lives of two high-school sweethearts. With blood, guts, Islamic Extremists, lesbians and deep-fried, finger-licking carnage, it’s Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead.
Camden’s Most Horrid
By Ian John Shillito and company
8-10 Nov, 7.30pm
You are cordially invited to a historical meeting by Professor Gary Cranks who will enthral us with the details from his latest discovery found hidden in the depths of the Camden Catacombs. A performance of formidable endings.
£12 / £10 concs
The Woods Are Lovely
By TG Jimm
8 – 20 Nov, 9.30pm
A young British couple are enjoying a relaxing holiday, camping out in the mountains. The arrival of a strange man whose past makes no sense drives them into a night of guilt, recrimination and mounting horror… A new play of pitch black humour and brutal psychological violence.
£12 / £10 Concs
The Monster Hunters
By Matt Woodcock and Peter Davies
11 – 13 Nov, 7.30pm
London. 1971. The forces of evil, so long lying dormant, are about to emerge to bring chaos and fear to the swinging streets of the Big Smoke. Who can stand in their way? Roy Steel, professional alcoholic, unprofessional womaniser & ex-big game hunter, and Lorrimer Chesterfield, Professor of occult studies at London University and owner of the 2nd largest brain in Britain.
£10 / £8 concs
Zombie Science 1Z
Zombie Institute for Theoretical Studies
15 – 17 Nov, 7.30pm
Enrol now for a spoof lecture on the real science behind the undead. Featuring a multi-media presentation, live demonstrations and an online exam certified by the Zombie Institute for Theoretical Studies (ZITS) Theoretical Zombiologist, Doctor Austin teaches how a zombie outbreak might occur, its effect on humans and importantly how to stop it.
£12 / £10 concs
Fresh, Live- and Dead…
18 – 20 Nov, 7.30pm
This highly-skilled company of actors take your suggestions and improvise a brand new horror every evening – all made up on the night. Now established as one of London’s top improvisation groups, they have performed at venues across the UK, including The Lyric Studio in Hammersmith, The Old Vic Tunnels, Exeter Phoenix Black Box (at the Exeter Fringe Festival) and most recently at the Theatre503.
£12 / £10 concs
The White House
In the Gutter Productions
Written by Angie Fullman, Charlotte Ive and Anna Söderblom, based on characters created by the company
Directed by Charlotte Ive
22 – 27 Nov, 7.30pm
In the twilight years of the 18th century, the notorious White House brothel catered to the specialised tastes of London’s more adventurous and discerning clientele. Now The White House opens its doors once more, inviting you in to experience the most infamous of illicit pleasures, to explore the most scandalous of secrets, and to share in the darkest of fantasies. In The Gutter Productions will take you on an immersive sensual journey through this seductive, dangerous world where anything can be yours – for a price.
£12 / £10 concs
The Orgy in the Lighthouse & Other Dark Tales
Le Nouveau Guignol
Written by Ed Allenby, Eugene Heros, Leon Abric, Lee Ravitz, Michael Wilson, Richard Hand, Alfred Machard, Neil Greenblatt
Directed by Peter Brammer Smith, Rupert Holloway, James Clifford
22 – 27 Nov, 9.30pm
Le Nouveau Guignol presents three brutally stark plays for the London Horror Festival, bringing together two classic Grand-Guignol plays whilst showcasing new writing in the genre. Ed Allenby’s new script Penalty shows the gruesome price a young woman is forced to pay for a perceived insult, whilst in the classic Guignol comedy Chop-Chop! a man finds himself stuck in a guillotine with his lover’s husband in charge of the controls! The Orgy in the Lighthouse – until now considered too shocking for the British stage – charts the descent of a light-hearted party into torture and murder…
£12 / £10 concs