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Dracula Inquest opens July 12  (Download PDF)


June 21, 2014: A new play brings Bram Stoker’s iconic tale of horror to life, and promises to scare the hell out of you!

Why does Stoker’s Dracula maintain such an iron grip on our collective imagination? As playwright Gary Graves says, “I couldn’t understand what so many people see in the countless iterations of vampire stories…till I actually sat down and read Stoker’s Dracula.”   Director Jan Zvaifler claims, “We think we’ve come up with a wonderfully theatrical way to bring the book to life. We’re giving this one the full Central Works treatment–to terrifyingly delightful effect.” This summer’s offering from Berkeley’s New Play Theater coincides with the arrival of the “Full Thunder Moon” on July 12th.

“I sometimes think we must be all mad and that we shall wake to sanity in strait-waistcoats.” ― Bram Stoker

The year is 1895 (2 years after the events in Stoker’s gothic classic). Detective Avery Sly from Scotland Yard arrives in the bowels of an eerie asylum for the criminally insane. He has come to inquire into a bizarre sequence of gruesome events surrounding the disappearance of a mysterious nobleman from Transylvania–Count Dracula. The hard-bitten cockney detective interrogates four surviving characters from Stoker’s novel, all of whom are now inmates in the asylum.

As the inquest unfolds, some very unsettling questions begin to emerge: was Count Dracula really a demonic vampire, as the inmates claim? Or was he, in fact, the innocent victim of a bizarre conspiracy to murder the mysterious foreigner? Are these poor prisoners really the determined vampire-hunters they claim to be, or are they merely demented lunatics?

Dracula Inquest is Central Works World Premiere #44. Continuing its mission to develop and produce new works for the theater, the company uses its own distinctive method of collaborative play development to bring artists together as partners in creative projects.


Central Works: the New Play Theater.