Not All A Dream: Fringe World arrives in the Hills with play about Frankenstein’s creator


Lord Byron (Thomas Owen) taunts Mary Shelley (Grace Chapple) about her ability as a writer. Picture: Supplied
Lord Byron (Thomas Owen) taunts Mary Shelley (Grace Chapple) about her ability as a writer. Picture: Supplied

FRINGE World arrives in the Hills this weekend in a new play about the-story-behind-the-story of Frankenstein and its creator.

The Fringe World debut Not All A Dream explores how an 18-year-old woman created one of the most recognisable and horrifying figures in western culture more than 200 years ago.

The story opens in June 1816 with the romantic poet Percy Shelley and his teenage lover Mary Godwin visiting Lake Geneva while on holiday in Switzerland.

They are joined by the infamous Lord Byron during his self-imposed exile and when the weather disappoints, they entertain themselves indoors with a game to see who will write the scariest story.

Brushstroke Productions recreates the lakeside story in their production at Lake Nenia in Mundaring over two weekends in February.

Emerging playwright Grace Chapple said the show explored the inspiration behind the great work conceived by the 18-year-old Mary Godwin (later Shelley).

“The huge characters that were present at this villa in Switzerland, and the relationships between them, coupled with the incredible artistic outpouring that happened within the space of a few days, which is quite unlike anything else that has happened in history, all lend this story very easily to theatricality,” she said.

She said the story resonated with her as a new writer and while Frankenstein became Shelley’s magnum opus, the dark tale was also her first work in a male-dominated world.

“And while we have to acknowledge how far we’ve come, writing is still a male-dominated sphere, it is a daunting space to try and establish yourself in as a young woman,” she said.

Arrive early to picnic by the lake before the players recreate the story-behind-the-story of Frankenstein.

Tickets available online at fringeworld.com.au.

What: Not All A Dream
Where: Lake Nenia, Mundaring
When: 7.30pm February 10, 11, 17, 18

MORE: Police charge man after he allegedly crashed car into Inglewood business

MORE: Man fined for threatening to hit police with his penis

MORE: New Infrastructure WA board to help better develop the state