Audio version of Alan Ayckbourn’s ghost story Haunting Julia, performed by the author, to be released by Scarborough’s Stephen Joseph Theatre for Christmas

A new audio recording of a classic Alan Ayckbourn play will chill audiences this Christmas.

By Sue Wilkinson
Monday, 9th November 2020, 12:37 pm
Updated Monday, 9th November 2020, 12:53 pm
Alan Ayckbourn has rewritten Haunting Julia as a radio play
Alan Ayckbourn has rewritten Haunting Julia as a radio play

The writer himself will play all three parts in Haunting Julia, an online audio version of his classic 1994 play.

It will be available exclusively from the Stephen Joseph Theatre website between Tuesday December 1 and Tuesday January 5.

It follows a hugely successful audio recording released by the theatre in May of the writer and his wife, actor Heather Stoney, performing a new play of his, Anno Domino, which was listened to worldwide and critically acclaimed.

Haunting Julia takes place 12 years after the suicide of musical prodigy Julia Lukin. Her father Joe, still struggling with her death, meets with a psychic and her boyfriend to seek out the truth. But some questions are better left unanswered…

Alan Ayckbourn said: “Over the years I have always enjoyed creating offstage characters almost as much as onstage ones. They serve to provide, at their simplest, a depth and perspective to an overall stage picture.

“I consider Julia Lukin to be among the most complex and intriguing of my characters never physically to appear. Although a male three-hander, the play definitely belongs to her.”

Haunting Julia was first seen at the Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough in its former home at Westwood in 1994. It has since gone on to have many successful productions, including two revivals at the Stephen Joseph.

The new audio version is directed by Alan, and was recorded at his home studio. It sees the writer take the parts of Julia’s father, Joe, her former boyfriend, Andy, and psychic Ken. Other voices are provided by Naomi Petersen. The final mix is by Paul Stear.

Haunting Julia can be heard via the SJT website from Tuesday December 1 to January 5.

Tickets, priced at £12, can be booked any time up to and including Tuesday January 5, either from the box office - until 2 December, by phone only from 10am till noon, Monday to Friday – opening times for December will be announced in late November or via the website:

Once a £12 ticket has been bought, the buyer can access the show as often as they like between Tuesday December 1 and Tuesday January 5 and as many people as are in their household or social bubble can listen in.

People who buy tickets during November will be sent a password to access the recording on December 1; those buying a ticket in December or January will be sent the password immediately.