Gripping one-woman show, Mary Blandy’s Gallows Tree, brings its tale of love, betrayal and murder to the Brighton Fringe in May. The tale of a woman executed at Oxford Prison runs for three days only, so book now to avoid disappointment!
Written by and starring Lita Doolan, the solo show runs at The Warren from 10 to 12 May 2019, following successful stagings at Oxford Playhouse and the Edinburgh Fringe.
Mary Blandy’s Gallows Tree enacts a desperate love story that tragically ends on 6 April 1752. From a condemned cell, Mary fights for her life. She trusts lover Captain Cranstoun will save her. Her father was against their marriage, but died of poisoning. Mary is being charged with his murder, but Cranstoun never faces justice. Mary does not know what the powder was that her lover gave her to stir into her father’s porridge and now all her letters are burnt…
With just an hour to go before the gallows, Mary Blandy fights for her life; a devout protestant who demands God as her right. Her trial lasts 13 hours, with no leave for her appeal to be heard.
Blandy was just 31 when she was hung for murder. Her father was a lawyer, so, unlike most of the women who faced capital punishment at that time, she lived a comfortable life. In her defence, she claimed she thought the powder was a love potion that would help her father come round to her marriage.
Mary’s Prison cell is now a luxury hotel room. During its renovation a security man’s dog would not stop barking at the spot where her body dropped.
Lita Doolan is a poet and playwright whose previous work includes Time for Tea (Stockwell Playhouse), Churchill’s Children (Brighton Fringe) and Looking For Lineker’s (Hampstead Theatre).
When Mary Blandy’s Gallows Tree was previously staged, it was described as, “a brilliant piece of theatre” by Daily Information and “dark and gripping” **** by Whatsonstage.
Mary Blandy’s Gallows Tree plays as part of a packed Brighton Fringe, which runs from 3 May to 2 June and includes more than 1000 events. Among those events are productions including Christopher Tajah‘s acclaimed one-man play about Martin Luther King, Dream of a King, and Blue Devil Production‘s new show The Geminus, based on Joseph Conrad’s The Secret Sharer.
Mary Blandy’s Gallows Tree runs at The Warren: The Burrow, Victoria Gardens, Grand Parade, Brighton, BN1 1UB from 10 to 12 May 2019 with performances Friday to Sunday 12pm. Tickets are priced £10. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE