Westonbirt School will be preforming its popular Ghostly Tales at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe this year. The students have created a thrilling and spine chilling show consisting of short stories from Victorian tales of the supernatural. Ghostly tales was the brainchild of Westonbirt's Head of Drama, Andrew English who came up with the idea for the show back in 2016. He thought that Westonbirt House, the Victorian manor house that is the main venue of the Senior School, was the perfect venue for some 'ghostly goings-on.'
Westonbirt students will be taking two of the plays to the Edinburgh Fringe, 'The Best Room in the House' from the original performance in February 2017 and 'The Wind in the Rosebush' from Halloween 2018. The production has been updated and now includes live music, courtesy of Westonbirt's music department. Discussing the performance, Mr. English said, "The students have worked exceptionally hard bringing these performances to life and have been very receptive and open to changes during the creative process. I am sure we have a show that will create quite a stir when we are at the Edinburgh Fringe."
The students will perform the show over five days as well as spending time on the Royal Mile, which is a space where tourist and locals congregate to watch street performances from acts that have travelled from all over the globe. Westonbirt students will take part in an improvisational piece to boost ticket sales and create publicity for the show.
It is the second time in recent years that Westonbirt has performed at Edinburgh Fringe. In 2015 the school debuted its adaptation of Alice in Wonderland under the subtitle 'Children Should Be Seen and Not Heard.' The performance was sold out over five days and received rave reviews including from an Edinburgh Fringe accredited reviewer, who said: "I found this to be a very well worked and engaging show, the pace was brilliantly done, lively and with humour that allowed for both adults and children alike."
The opportunity to perform at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe is further recognition of the exceptional talent and hard work that Westonbirt students and staff put into all their performances. At the end of the summer term, the senior school put on a production of 'Les Miserables,' which sold out every night. Five hundred people from Gloucestershire and beyond visited Westonbirt to see the show! The student performances were not only top-quality, but also exceptionally emotional, and many people in the audience were moved to tears. One visitor commented, "It is incredible that young adults are able to deliver such professional, emotionally mature, and engaging acting performances, and the show is a great testimony to the quality of support students receive at the school."