A ‘gorey storey’ heralds Halloween



by Kendall Smith

With fall in full swing and Halloween just around the corner, the UK Department of Theatre is adding a touch of dark humor to the holiday with its production of Gorey Stories.

Written by UK alumnus Stephen Currens and based on the work of Edward Gorey, the play features a collection of short stories that work as a black comedy. The audience seemed to enjoy the premiere Thursday night.

“It was funny, and I wasn’t expecting that,” said UK student Lindsey Yates. “It was different from other plays I’ve seen. It keeps you interested throughout. You’re always wondering what the next story is going to be.”

Nerves occasionally play a part in the opening night of a play, but everything went off without a hitch for the cast.

“Overall, being able to feed off the audience’s energy helped us be better actors,” said Lucy Hargett, a junior theatre and pre-med student and an actress in the play. “It went exceptionally well for opening night.”

Director Russell Henderson, who saw the original production of Gorey Stories as a student at UK in the 1970s, was satisfied with the premiere as well.

“I was pleased with the play, the response from the audience and the work of the students,” Henderson said. “I’m happy.”

Henderson said this production is not exactly the same as Stephen Currens’ original version.

“It has different strengths,” Henderson said. “There are some similarities, but this is a different thing.”

Nancy Jones, chair of the Department of Theatre, was also impressed with the show.

“I thought the audience bought in as soon as the curtains went up,” Jones said. “They knew they were in a Tim Burton-esque world. They could appreciate the subtleties.”

The students’ acting particularly impressed Jones.

“I like the way they interact with each other,” Jones said. “I saw the students do things I didn’t know they could do. I love what that says in terms of the future.”

Gorey Stories continues Oct. 14-16 at 7:30 p.m., and Oct. 16 at 2 p.m. at the Guignol Theatre.