The Mystery of Irma Vep

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The Mystery of Irma Vep is a play in three acts by American actor, director, and playwright Charles Ludlam (1943-1987). It is a satire of several theatrical, literary and film genres, including Victorian melodrama, farce, the penny dreadful, Wuthering Heights and the Alfred Hitchcock film Rebecca (1940).

The original text

First produced by Ludlam's Ridiculous Theatrical Company, opening off-off-Broadway in New York City's Greenwich Village in September 1984 and closing in April 1986.

Translations and adaptations

Performance history in South Africa

1993: Presented by NAPAC Drama directed by Greg King starring David Dennis in 1993. The production won the Durban Theatre Awards award for Best Production in 1994.

2000: Directed by Alan Swerdlow at the Rex Garner Theatre starring Malcolm Terrey in 2000. Set by Denis Hutchinson.

2007 and 2010: Produced by KickstArt in 2007 and 2010, the latter production starring Steven Stead in multiple roles.


The Star 16 August 2000.

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