Gaslight: Madness or Manipulation?

Gaslight, a contemporary reimagining of the 1940s suspenseful thriller by Patrick Hamilton, is set to call Melbourne’s Comedy Theatre home in March as it embarks on a national tour.

Starring Geraldine Hakewill and Toby Schmitz, the highly-anticipated play, set in 1901 London, will be directed by Queensland Theatre’s Artistic Director Lee Lewis.

The production is a collaboration between Rodney Rigby for Newtheatricals, known for productions like Come From Away, Jersey Boys, and Good Night, Oscar starring Tony Award winner Sean Hayes, and Queensland Theatre.

The adaptation is crafted by Canadian writer/performers Patty Jamieson and Johnna Wright, having premiered at the renowned Shaw Festival in Canada in 2022.

Producer Rodney Rigby said the new adaptation is being pulled together by Australia’s finest creative team under the direction of Lee Lewis will deliver an exciting new thriller for the theatre.

“I couldn’t be more excited to be producing Gaslight across the country,” he said.

Gaslight will kick off its Australian tour as the inaugural performance in Queensland Theatre’s 2024 season before traveling to Melbourne’s Comedy Theatre (6 – 24 March), Canberra Theatre Centre, Regal Theatre in Perth, Newcastle’s Civic Centre, Riverside Theatre in Parramatta, and concluding at Roslyn Packer Theatre in Sydney.

The play revolves around Bella Manningham, a seemingly content young wife, living a comfortable upper-middle-class life. However, as the narrative unfolds, it becomes evident that something is amiss in the Manningham household.

Despite her husband Jack’s outward affection, Bella is on edge, suspecting his mysterious disappearances in the evenings and strange sounds echoing in the house.

The play delves into themes of psychological manipulation and sanity, with the term ‘gaslighting’ drawing its origins from the flickering gas lights in the Manningham household, leading Bella to question her own reality.

As the suspense builds, audiences can expect a thrilling and modern twist on this classic tale of mystery and intrigue.


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