by Joanna Baillie
Tue 7 Dec, 19:00 via Zoom
Joanna Baillie was born in Glasgow in 1762, moved to England in her twenties and died in London in 1851. She wrote poetry and many successful plays and was considered one of the best playwrights in her lifetime. Her friend Sir Walter Scott rated her on a level with Shakespeare.
Witchcraft is set in Renfrewshire at a time when witches were condemned to the stake. Both witchcraft and love are at the heart of its overlapping plots and the whole community – local gentry, minister, domestics and peasantry – is involved. The rapidly moving story takes us from a wealthy house to a filthy hovel, a thunderous moor at night to the county court, a deep dungeon and beyond. After scenes of unrequited love, bitter jealousy and devil worship, the climax comes when the condemned women meet their fate.
Eight men and seven women in the cast with accents ranging from educated Scots to the sometimes obscure Clydesdale dialect of 200 years ago (but EGTG members are up for that challenge). A perfect play to read on a winter’s evening with the wind howling outside, the candles sputtering, the fire blazing and a dram – or two or three – to hand.
NB: This event is starting slightly earlier than our usual table-reads at 19:00. Spaces for the virtual table-read will be limited so please be sure to register online before 6pm on Monday 6 December to ensure your spot.