On Friday, Oct. 26 and Saturday, Oct. 27, Ensemble Stage will be hosting a staged radio play of Frankenstein beginning at 7 p.m. in the Hahn Auditorium (185 Azalea Cir SE, Banner Elk).
The play is based off Mary Shelley’s novel, Frankenstein, where an unconventional scientist, Dr. Victor Frankenstein, creates life and abandons it. The story follows his creation’s plan for vengeance.
The event will be a staged radio play, insinuating a focus on dialogue, sound effects and music.
Before televised drama and movies, entertainment heavily relied on the radio and other audio sources. It was up to the audience’s imagination to vividly conjure and understand a story. Through popularity of the internet, radio plays and dramas have become more common and sought after.
The cast will articulate dialogue as well as provide authentic sound effects rather than relying on other recordings, making the performance feel genuine.
“We have a wind machine that sounds like a real, brisk wind,” Gary Smith, artistic director of Ensemble Stage, said about the audio elements. “We have everything from that to the sound of footsteps walking on gravel and chains being dragged and doors being opened, all that fun stuff.”
Along with sound effects, music will also be implemented.
“We’ll have a pianist there,” Smith said. “We’ll be providing background, mood music from the piano.”
Visuals will also be implemented through different theatrical lighting techniques as well as projections, convoluting the aspects of old-time radio shows with aspects of modern theatre.
“It’s like a 30’s and 40’s show, but amped up with theatrical flare,” Smith said.
The show has nine actors portraying 30 different characters with a mix of professional actors and theatre students.
“It’s not just people standing at microphones reading a script,” Smith said. “We’ve had rehearsal for it for four weeks. Professional actors are so used to using their physicality to help force what their attitude is, what their mood is, things like that.”
The staged radio play of Frankenstein will offer audiences an experience that promises genuine emotion, moods and entertainment.
Tickets can be purchased online, at the box office (185 Azalea Cir SE, Banner Elk) or via phone at (828) 414-1844.