Red Barn
A supernatural amorality play with music
March 13 - 29
Thursday - Saturday at 7:30, Sundays at 2:00
$20 - $30*

Somewhere at the intersection of Tommy and Sweeney Todd, our original play with music upends expectations about musicals.

In 1827, in a bucolic village, Maria Martin disappeared. What followed was a series of events both macabre and surreal that culminated in the largest public hanging in English history. Based on a true story, this workshop production features a live rock band, English beer, and plenty of blood. It is not for children.

*your ticket purchase supports the development of this original play.

 

Writer David Melville on the play:

My father played second trumpet in the London Symphony Orchestra, and our house was always full of classical music. At the time I was more into Jimi Hendrix and Led Zeppelin, but we found common ground with The Who. In the early ’70s the LSO did a series of concert performances of Tommy with The Who and an all-star cast. To this day, my father still regards this as one of the musical highlights of his career.  It was a great experiment in the classical world butting up against the modern (a bit like an Independent Shakespeare Co. production). I loved the album made from the show and played it over and over...
As I sped through the wintry Suffolk countryside I started revolving the idea of writing some songs with a narrative through-line that I could perform, a bit like Tommy. The Red Barn murder would be a perfect subject for my song-cycle...As I began to get more involved in the project, I became ambitious about what it could be. What if I found a way to include some dramatized moments when we perform the songs? It could be a bold new hybrid of theater that would include music, singing and acting! I ran this idea by a friend, who informed me such an art-form already existed and was, in fact, called a “musical”....
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Experience the music of Red Barn:

 
 

The Real Maria Marten

Actress Mary Goodchild & playwright/composer David Melville in the UK, exploring the Suffolk countryside where Maria Marten and Billy Corder lived and died.

mary goodchild outside Maria's cottage.

mary goodchild outside Maria's cottage.

polstead pond, where thomas Corder died.

polstead pond, where thomas Corder died.

The Suffolk countryside.

The Suffolk countryside.

David outside of Billy corder's home.

David outside of Billy corder's home.

the field where the red barn once stood.

the field where the red barn once stood.

scrawled on a fence.

scrawled on a fence.

Maria's original gravestone was chipped away until there was nothing left. By Americans, probably.

Maria's original gravestone was chipped away until there was nothing left. By Americans, probably.