When: 26th June – 13th July 2013
Where: Chester Cathedral, St Werburgh Street, Chester, Cheshire
£: 10 (Tickets are available by phoning 01244 500959 or from www.chestermysteryplays.com)
What is it?
It has been two thousand years in the making and five years since the last production but the 2013 Chester Mystery Plays will open at Chester Cathedral this Friday (28th June).
This is the first time that the medieval plays, which tell stories from the Bible with a special Chester twist, will be performed in the cathedral’s magnificent nave.
The plays were originally written by Benedictine monks at the Abbey of St Werbugh (now Chester Cathedral) in the 14th century. The early plays were performed by craftsmen and guildsmen on mounted stages that were moved around the city streets. The tradition was revived in 1951 for the Festival of Britain.
This year’s Mystery Plays will be directed by Peter Leslie Wild, with a cast of over 300 local people (including schoolchildren, a choir and musicians), all under the watchful eye of composer Matt Baker.
Chairman of the Chester Mystery Plays company Jo Sykes said: “After four and a half years of planning here we are, once again, ready to perform another cycle of the Chester Mystery Plays.
“This time, however, a very different production with a new script by Stephanie Dale condensing the plays into one night.
“Stephanie has retained much of the medieval language, humour and quirky flavour of the original texts at the same time as creating a modern production for a 21st century audience.
“The production is spectacular, lively and yet at the same time incredibly moving and I commend it to you as evidence of what can be done by a large community cast of volunteers who have dedicated the last six months of their lives to this incredible project.
“We really do believe that what we do every five years plays an invaluable part in the heritage and cultural life of our beautiful city of Chester.”
More info: www.chestermysteryplays.com