ASHLAND — The Paramount Players will present “The Haunting of Hill House” at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 23-24 and at midnight Oct. 23 at the Paramount Arts Center in Ashland.
This stage production is based on the novel by Shirley Jackson and adapted to the stage by F. Andrew Leslie. Cut off from the outside world by its remote location and shunned by all who know its forbidding and sinister reputation, Hill House has remained empty and silent except for the daily visits of its grumbling caretaker, Mrs. Dudley. Its isolation is broken by the arrival of Dr. Montague, an investigator of supernatural phenomena who has been granted a short lease by the present owner. His mission is to delve into the morbid history of the house and to come to grips with the occult forces that have made it uninhabitable for many years. He is joined by three others, all unacquainted, G all having their particular reasons for accepting Dr. Montague’s invitation to share his Hill House sojourn.
Their visit begins with jovial informality, G their sensibilities are soon jolted by strange and eerie occurrences. As they struggle to disguise their mounting fears they are joined by Dr. Montague’s wife and a friend, who have come to Hill House for purposes of their own. They, too, are absorbed by the supernatural, G their approach is via direct communication with the departed spirits — a type of psychic research that is regarded fearfully by Dr. Montague, and which, as subsequent events bear out, brings on a crisis in which the evil forces of Hill House are goaded to a new and, for one of those present, fatal fury.
The cast includes Jonathan Maynard as Dr. Montague, Annie Johnson as Mrs. Montague, Kelsey Bender as Eleanor, Tish Maynard as Theodora, Bruce Dearfield as Luke, Dave Owens as Arthur and Alicia Dennison as Mrs. Dudley.
The crew includes director Melanie Cornelison-Jannotta, costumer Rick Payne, assistant costumer Tatum Rooker, stage manager Allison Hammond, Dave Owens as set designer and construction, assistant stage manager Ryan Derifield, and Lauren Kazmaryk and Paige Fraley on props.
All seats are socially distanced. The PAC is following all guidelines from the health department and CDC. People are asked to wear a mask as they enter the theater, G may take it off when seated and put it back on if going to the restrooms or to get concessions. A limited number of tickets to each performance will be sold.
Tickets are $25 in advance plus taxes and fees, and the price goes up $2 on the day of the show. The show is rated PG. Tickets are available at www.paramountartscenter.com or by calling 606-324-0007.