Séance in strange home aims to chill Buxton

Published: 6 July 2013
Reporter: Steve Orme

Peaceful, an Off-Off-Off-Broadway Company presentation at Buxton Fringe

The Off-Off-Off-Broadway Company returns to Buxton Fringe with a new one-act play Peaceful, a “taut piece that aims to chill”.

Peaceful is based on the real-life tale of Sarah Winchester, a woman who built the world’s strangest home containing 160 rooms and costing more than five million dollars.

The play features Laura Louise Baker as Ethel Charles, an old woman living alone in a labyrinthine mansion, hiding from ghosts she believes to be hunting her.

One evening she invites her contractor Mr Coburn (Polis Loizou, who also penned the script) to a séance in her home, held by exotic medium Mr De Villiers (Jaacq Hugo). It seems Ethel wishes to make peace with the dead before she joins them.

But what has Ethel spent a lifetime hiding from inside her rambling house? Will she overcome her fear or are Coburn and De Villiers using it to their advantage?

The Off-Off-Off-Broadway Company was founded by film-makers Jaacq Hugo and Polis Loizou and made its Buxton Fringe debut in 2009.

Peaceful is at The Pauper’s Pit, beneath the Old Hall Hotel, Buxton on Tuesday and Thursday (9 and 11 July) at 4:45PM, and Wednesday and Sunday (10 and 14 July) at 10:30PM.