The House on Cold Hill – Press release photo

The House on Cold Hill is based on the 2015 bestselling novel of the same name by Peter James and has been adapted for the stage by Shaun McKenna. Now, I love a good ghost story so I was excited to see what this production had to offer.

Set in the present, The House on Cold Hill is a ghostly mystery story of the Harcourt family, who move to their dream home; a large house with connections to an old abbey that has been empty for 40 years. Their dream home soon becomes their worst nightmare as they discover they are not the only ones residing at Cold Hill.

Set design by Michael Holt, light design by Jason Taylor, sound design by Martin Hodgson, Video and projection design by Nina Dunn all combine perfectly to add to the drama and frights in this ghost story. Whilst music by Nick Lloyd Webber is chilling and helps to create the atmosphere of the piece.

Joe McFadden (Ollie), Rita Simons (Caro), and Persephone Swales-Dawson as their daughter (Jade), under the direction of Ian Talbot, work well together as they all give convincing strong performances, creating a believable family unit who were united at tackling the unknown.

What I particularly loved about this production was the use of modern technology and how it interacts with the traditional ghost stories that we all know and love. The use of the Alexa device gave the production an edge of modernity whilst also terrifying anyone who has an Alexa in their home. I do have an Alexa at home and yes, I have asked her to clarify if she know’s the grey lady since watching this production!

This is a classic ghost story that is packed full of humour and wonderfully told. The production captures the audience from start to finish. It combines the secrets of the past with the present day and builds suspense right from the start. I for one will not be visiting The House on Cold Hill anytime soon and not with my Alexa!

The House on Cold Hill runs at the Alex Birmingham from 7th – 11th of May when it continues its national tour.


Theatretastic 4/5:

We say: “A classic ghost story with the perfect modern twist that builds suspense and chills the audience from start to finish!”