Bury The Hatchet – The Hope Theatre
“Lizzie Borden took an axe
And gave her mother forty whacks
When she saw what she had done
She gave her father forty one”
What it’s all about?
Andrew and Abby Borden are found dead in Fall River, Massachusetts on August 4th, 1892.
Their daughter Lizzie is the main suspect.
Tried but acquitted of the crime, the story goes that she wielded the axe that killed them.
Overnight, she became America’s original “mad, bad and dangerous to know” icon of tabloid and rumour.
Returning from a tour in the US, Bury the Hatchet is true crime podcast meets bluegrass musical; a fun feminist reimagining of the Lizzie Borden story.
People’s Choice Award Winners – VAULT Festival 2018
★★★★ An incredible fast-moving reimagining of Lizzie Borden’s story through innovative storytelling and music – Broke Girl in the City
Play written by Sasha Wilson
Produced by: Joseph Cullen, Sarah Divell and Claire Gilbert for Out of The Forest Theatre
When I accepted an invitation to see Bury The Hatchet, I did not imagine I would be attending on the hottest day of the year. A very talented cast of three – David Leopold, Joseph Prowen and writer Sasha Wilson – somehow managed to ignore sauna-like temperatures to give an upbeat performance, complete with excellent musical numbers and quirky dialogue. The audience was gripped throughout, with the actors entertaining and bouncing off one another incredibly well. It was a racy, fun and clever show, keeping me enthralled throughout the evening.
The set, designed by David Spence, was rather intimate due to the confines of the theatre space: we were all sat very close to one another within a small, darkened room, almost like spectators in a tiny courtroom. Visual representations of the story – blood splattered over the floor, newspaper cuttings, a noose and a hatchet hanging from the ceiling – all brought the case to life. As an audience member, I felt elated being so close to the drama. The only downfall (aside from Mother Nature’s unwelcome heatwave) was that there was a lot of information to digest. The narrative was overloaded with facts, and the speed of the information conveyed meant that I occasionally found myself intrigued and then suddenly lost because there was no respite to absorb all the detail. That, however, did not detract from what was an incredibly enjoyable performance by a wonderfully inventive team.
Produced by Out of The Forest Theatre, an ensemble based company with a reputation for chronicling tales in unexpected ways, the play is an incredible, fast-moving reimagining of Lizzie Borden’s story through innovative storytelling and music. The cast used accents and humour to portray key characters and offered three potential motives for the murders. It was so thought-provoking, I walked away thinking of one more, inspired by the evidence to consider every possibility. With beautiful prairie songs, creative narration and charismatic characters, it’s no wonder Bury The Hatchet is an award-winning show.
I was really intrigued by Sacha, who is an incredible actress. So I asked if she would answer a few questions, which she kindly did…
What other critics have said:
Out Of The Forest Theatre is an ensemble-based company that attempts to redefine traditional narrative structure with an eye to blending music, movement and storytelling.
★★★★ ‘An imaginatively crafted, quirkily funny show’ – London Pub Theatres
★★★★ ‘The epitome of meta-theatre!’ – LondonTheatre1
★★★★ ‘[Leaves you] wishing school history lessons had been as enthralling as this’ – Theatre Weekly
★★★★ ‘Truly innovative storytelling… beautifully executed’ – West End Wilma
‘Fun, fast and witty…’ – Talk In Broadway
‘A thoroughly clever, wildly imaginative, and engaging romp’ – Broadway World Arizona
The Hope Theatre
207 Upper Street
London N1 1RL
24th July – 11th Aug
Tues – Sat 7.45pm
Tickets £15 & £12 concs
Box Office: 0333 666 3366
Author: Marie Ellis
People say write about what you know. So I did. I founded Broke Girl in the City – a smart girl’s guide to leading a fabulous lifestyle on a budget! A career spanning entertainment, bars & nightclubs (and frequenting them), film, music and TV, there isn’t much I don’t know about how to have fun in the city when completely broke.