by Stephen Gillard & Laura Turner
A new play about the female experience of persecution,
prejudice and privilege in the Salem Witch Trials
ABIGAIL was the first live theatre show presented by Fury Theatre. After receiving initial development support from Leeds Playhouse Furnace Festival in November 2021, ABIGAIL was performed at The Space London in May 2022 to sell-out audiences and great industry, audience and critical response. Find out more about the show here and view our production gallery of images taken by the brilliant photographer, Richard Hall.
What's the play about?
Boston, Massachusetts, 1692. Abigail is a young woman who condemned others to death during the Salem Witch Trials. She flees to Boston, where we imagine what happened next. Abigail is determined to start afresh and tell her story, refusing to be defined by the past. But the past won't be so easily left behind...
A modern history play about prejudice, power, privilege and persecution, ABIGAIL is a retelling of the Salem Witch Trials from the imagined perspective of a young woman discovering her sexuality at a time when being different can mean a death sentence.
Why the Salem Witch Trials?
Between 1692 and 1693 in the puritanical American town of Salem, more than 200 people were accused of witchcraft, and many were executed as a result. ABIGAIL is a story about the inadequacies of the justice system, particularly towards women, in the past and the present. It explores white privilege, bigotry in all its forms, the experience of coercive control and abuse, and the vilification of women who dare to be different. A theme we can very much identify with today as we witness the callous media treatment of women who break the mould. How much has changed since 1692? Not as much as we might hope.
We are currently redeveloping the play based on the discoveries we made during the rehearsal and performance process, and the great, constructive feedback we received from audiences and the wider industry. We are focusing in on the themes of prejudice and privilege, as well as the weaponization of women that occurs so frequently in patriarchal societies - where women start turning against other women.
We are currently looking for new partners to help us take ABIGAIL on the next steps of its journey of development, so if you are a theatre, company or artist who would like more information or to get involved, please do contact us.
Solvi - Sophie Jane Corner
Abigail - Laura Turner
Mercy - Lucy Sheree Cooper
Milly - Sarah Isbell
Mrs Constance - Sophie Kamal
Jack - James Green
The Marshal - Nathan Haymer-Bates
Fight and Movement Choreography by
James Green, Shaarai Spriggs and
members of the company.
The Creative Team
Co-Writers - Stephen Gillard & Laura Turner
Director - Stephen Gillard
Assistant Director - Shaarai Spriggs
Intimacy Co-Ordinator - Haley Muraleedharan
Dramaturg - Elisha Pearce
Original Music - Jonny Gillard
Original Artwork - Jonny Gillard
Lighting Design - Kitty van den Hoven
Marketing & Social Media - Stevie Merrick
Photography - Richard Hall
Producer - Laura Turner
With thanks to the brilliant creatives who helped us develop the show in its early stages - actors Hannah Douglas, Sarah Whitehouse, Natalie Reed and Philip Stevens,
and choreographer Ruth Perry.
ABIGAIL was made possible thanks to the support of these brilliant organisations: