Theatre Royal Ghost Tour
- Gareth K Vile
- 5 November 2014
Explore Glasgow's old opera house after dark on this late night tour
As one of Scotland's oldest venues, The Theatre Royal has inevitably gathered strange tales of unexplained noises and ghostly smells. This late night tour serves as both an access-all-areas guide to the labyrinthine backstage passages and a collection of spooky stories.
Avoiding the melodrama of a haunted house with actors leaping out from behind curtains, the tour needs little more than the occasional – and apparently accidental – light failure and a single tragic story to ramp up the sinister suspense. Various locations are pin-pointed as places where the veil between the other world and this one is put aside: one dressing room has a reputation for mischievous hauntings, and the stage itself has experienced a few mysterious manifestations.
Wandering around the theatre in the dark is unsettling – it is surprising how many features retain their Victorian design, and the lower reaches of the orchestra pit have an atmosphere of foreboding even before the stories are told. The theatre also has a habit of joining in with the story: its rattling seems to shock the host as much as the audience.
While it is a far cry from the gorier ghost tours of Edinburgh, these stories conjure up an atmosphere of suspense and drama within a brief history of Glasgow's old opera house.
Theatre Royal, Glasgow, Tue 28 Oct–Fri 7 Nov, Tue 2–Fri 5 Dec.