Inspired by Robert Louis Stevenson’s spine-tingling story and brought bang up-to-date with live performances of songs by David Bowie and The Clash, The Body Snatcher, which visits Scarborough’s Stephen Joseph Theatre on 9 November, is a dystopian thriller shot through with humour – perfect for the Hallowe’en season.
It’s 50 years after Brexit and the country is fighting a mysterious disease. In the remote town of Inglenook, a young scientist arrives to scenes of devastation – the streets are empty, the milk is sour and the dogs are howling day and night.
Haunted by his past, he knows that the future of this beleaguered country may lie in his hands. But he needs dead bodies to do his work, and he can’t work out why so many are turning up at his laboratory….
Stevenson’s tale took the notorious Burke and Hare murders of 1828 as its starting point. Multi-award winning playwright Ian Townsend says: “I’ve always wanted to write a horror/thriller type of play and I really hope that The Body Snatcher will make audiences squirm with delight. As the dark nights draw in, it’s perfect for a spooky night out. No body is safe!”
The Body Snatcher is Thunder Road’s fifth co-production with Harrogate Theatre, an association which began in 2012 and has resulted in rave reviews, box office records and multiple awards.
Emma Ashton, whose work includes The Arbor (The Crucible) and Kissing Married Women (Hull Truck) directs Claire Burns, Elizabeth Hope, Zach Lee and Alex Moran, formerly of War Horse (National Theatre, playing David Taylor). The artistic team also includes Caitlin Mawhinney (set design) and Tom Robbins (lighting design).
Thunder Road, founded by Alex Moran and Christopher Ward, focuses on new work inspired by classic stories, returning them to the stage with a contemporary edge.
The Body Snatcher can be seen in the McCarthy at the SJT on Saturday 9 November at 2.45pm and 7.45pm. Tickets, priced from £10, are available from the box office on 01723 370541 and online at www.sjt.uk.com