Take a bite out of 2024 with a staged public reading of Dracula: A Trilogy of Terror. Split into three separate performances (January 3, 5 & 7), this original seven-part adaptation of Bram Stoker’s classic novel is being adapted and directed by Theatre professor Brian Richmond and is produced in association with the Department of Theatre and Bounce Performance Works. All three readings take place at UVic’s Chief Dan George Theatre in the Phoenix building. Tickets are $10 each night or $25 for all three.

Among the cast are a number of Theatre and UVic alumni, including Victor Dolhai, Paul Fauteaux, Kholby Wardell, Amanda Lisman, sessional Christopher Mackie and former student Jacob Richmond, as well as current students Grace Fouracre and Brigit Stewart, with recent Writing sessional Rachel Ditor as dramaturge.

“We are thrilled to be a part of the development of this exciting new project,” says Bounce Performance Work artistic director, alumni & sessional instructor Treena Stubel. “We see this as a continuation of Bounce’s commitment to the evolution of new work in our community.”

Both an homage to and an updating of a novel considered one of the pillars of gothic horror, Richmond’s story-theatre approach utilizes nine of Canada’s most accomplished actors to portray the hundreds of characters and speak the thrilling prose contained in the original. In this “reader’s theatre” approach, audiences will have the opportunity to hear an epic play that is conceived to ultimately receive a highly physical and wildly imaginative staging.

“Wolves howl, shadows lurk, whips crack, bats fly, men and women scale walls upside down, and blood—lots of it—will flow” says Richmond. “My ambition is to unleash what I believe was Stoker’s ultimate goal, which was foretelling the birth of a new age in which women would realize their fate by stepping into societies central roles.”

Brian Richmond

Movement One: Invasion (7pm Wednesday, Jan 3)

In the first two parts, we are introduced to the apparently carefree life of Lucy Westenra and Mina Harker as they embark on their exploration of the Victorian age’s concept of the “New Woman”. Little do they know that Mina’s fiancé and solicitor Jonathan Harker has unearthed an ancient and a ruthless enemy whose blood-thirsty animus threatens to destroy all that they hold dear.

Movement Two: Exhumation (7pm Friday, Jan 5)

The next two episodes are centered on Count Dracula’s conquest of first the body and then the soul of his first victim since his invasion of Britain: Lucy Westenra. Galvanizing the efforts of the three men who love her, plus the arcane knowledge of the Dutch metaphysician and scientist Dr. Abraham Van Helsing, the movement ends in a bloody rite that raises the question of who is more barbarous: the invaded or the invader?

Movement Three: Annihilation (2pm Sunday, Jan 7)

The final three episodes witness first the persecution and then the emergence of Mina Harker as the new century’s woman warrior. Pulling us through a multi-country pursuit and attempt to permanently eradicate the heart of evil, the adaptation reaches its climax with a battle won but a war that never ends.