Halloween is celebrated with costume parties, candy distribution and scary fields. But what if someone told you to travel down a long, dark gravel-dirt road to a 130-year-old church with no electricity and a graveyard?
This year, the theatre department is hosting for the first time , “The Cordelia Collection”, to kick off the Halloween season on Oct. 25, 26 and 27.
The production will be a collection of eight short plays — all scary stories and urban legends that have been adapted for the stage.
There are four directors for the show, each directing two of the 10 minute long plays.The show will take place at The Cordelia Church, which located in Genesee, Idaho, about a 20 minute drive from Moscow.
The church was built in 1883 and has no electricity. This was chosen as the show’s location because directors thought it would really set the mood.
“Ninety percent of the scares are going to come from the location,” said Ray Pritchard, one of the directors and the owner of the production company, Down Right Productions, which funds local productions. “Some of the scripts are cheesy and corny but they’re fun. It’s the location, in the middle of nowhere, in the middle of the night, in an 1883 church with a small graveyard behind it that is going to give everybody chills.”
One of the plays takes place outside, so the entire audience will move outdoors with the play. Because of this, and being in a church with no electricity, Pritchard said audience members should dress warm and bring blankets. Hand warmers will be provided and there will be hot chocolate, hot cider, caramel apples and other goodies for sale during the production.
“Make it an experience,” Pritchard said.
Jacque Peres, the chair of the student theatre organization, wrote and directed two of the plays. She said her scripts are about scary experiences she has had in her life and were written into short stories and adapted for the stage.
“The first one is about that bump in the night kind of feel,” she said. “There’s a sound that’s heard that can’t be explained, so it’s that psychological fear that goes through you when something happens in the dark and you don’t know what to do to cross over there.”
Peres said the second one is about the guilt you feel about an action that you did in your life that has trapped you in your own living hell in your mind. The play also takes place in a mental asylum.
“There’s going to be a lot of manufactured scares out there,” Peres said. “If you enjoy being scared, this is definitely a way to kick-start your Halloween season.”
Alexia Neal can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org