The only theatre company in the world to bring you horror, puppets, and magic in one astounding theatrical performance…

Eldritch Theatre was formed in 1886 after an impertinent Ouija board informed Randolph Pomeranski that his soul would be devoured by The Great Old Ones That Were And Shall Be Again unless he produced a series of puppets plays exploring the dark and foreboding mysteries of the Dread Necronomicon of Abdul-Alhazred. Unfortunately, none of these plays were ever performed, because when it came time to write grant applications, the Ouija Board would only spell gibberish.

One hundred years after Pomeranski’s blood-sopped demise in the knotting room of an unlicensed wig factory, Eldritch Theatre reformed to create, develop and produce plays that deal in themes of the horrific, supernatural and uncanny, often with a darkly comedic bent, which seek to scare, entertain and enlighten audiences in equal measure. These plays explore innovations in staging, including extensive incorporation of puppetry, mask, and a post-Brechtian approach to staging the fantastic.

‘Here There Be Monsters’: Eldritch Theatre has provided old-timey, low-fi thrills and chills for almost 25 years

This month, Eric Woolfe resurrects his best-known character, Doc Wuthergloom, for a new show about so-called “real” monster sightings.

By Glenn Sumi Special to the Toronto Star written Wednesday, October 25, 2023

Read the article online

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Nominations and Awards

2023 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Costume Design
Melanie McNeill
Requiem for a Gumshoe

 

2017 Dora Nomination

Outstanding New Play
The Harrowing of
Brimstone McReedy

 

2012 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Performance 
Eric Woolfe

Doc Wuthergloom’s Haunted
Medicine Show

 

2011 Dora Nomination

Outstanding New Play
Madhouse Variations

 

2007 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Production
The Babysitter

 

2004 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Performance
Rebecca Northan

Dear Boss

 

2023 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Lighting Design
Gareth Crew
Requiem for a Gumshoe

 

2014 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Direction
Lynda Hill

Buster Canfield and his Amazing Fleas

 

2011 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Performance 
Eric Woolfe

Madhouse Variations

 

2011 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Sound Design/Composition
Mike Filippov
Madhouse Variations

 

2005 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Performance 
Eric Woolfe

The Strange & Eerie Memoirs
of Billy Wuthergloom

 

2004 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Costume Design
Joanne Dente
Dear Boss

 

2003 Dora Nomination

Outstanding New Play
Grendelmaus

 

2019 Dora Award

Outstanding Costume Design
Melanie McNeill
Space Opera Zero!

 

2014 Dora Nomination

Outstanding New Play
Buster Canfield and his Amazing Fleas

 

2011 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Lighting Design
Gareth Crew

Madhouse Variations

 

2011 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Production
Madhouse Variations

 

2005 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Production
The Strange & Eerie Memoirs of Billy Wuthergloom

 

2004 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Direction
Michael Waller

Dear Boss 

 

2003 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Performance
Eric Woolfe

Grendelmaus

2017 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Performance
Eric Woolfe

The Harrowing of Brimstone McReedy

 

2012 Dora Nomination

Outstanding New Play
DOC WUTHERGLOOM’S HAUNTED MEDICINE SHOW

2011 Dora Award

Outstanding Costume Design
Melanie McNeill

Madhouse Variations

 

2007 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Performance
Christine Brubaker

The Babysitter

2005 Dora Nomination

Outstanding Sound Design/Composition
Marc Downing
The Strange & Eerie Memoirs
of Billy Wuthergloom

 

2004 Dora Nomination

Outstanding New Play
Dear Boss

 

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Eric Woolfe is one of the city’s genuine, gloriously obsessive originals. No other local theatre company has as completely-defined an aesthetic as his Eldritch Theatre, which specializes in imaginative, lo-fi, old-school horror and mystery stories, with puppetry and a bit of magic thrown into the mix. - Glenn Sumi, NOW Magazine

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"A space-time journey fuelled by love and imagination offers an intense and intimate experience you won’t want to miss." - NOW Magazine on Space Opera Zero!

"Outrageously fun, horrific good times"  - Life With More Cowbell

"Woolfe improved on Wagner, actually, using more species, more tentacles a little sleight of hand and more songs about coitus."  - Leslie Barcza on Space Opera Zero!

★★★☆

"Eldritch’s artistry in puppets and physical effects punches above its weight —  Take a chance on this space odyssey." - Toronto Star on Space Opera Zero!

"Doc Wuthergloom, is a charlatan of the first degree, with all sorts of entertaining stories up his sleeve—and many different tricks as well" - Torontoist
"In the world of punk-tinged, Victorian-gothic puppeteering, Eric Woolfe must rank near the very top." - The Globe and Mail
"A spooky brew of Winnie-the-Pooh and Edgar Allan Poe haunts Toronto theatre audiences​" -Mooney on Theatre
"Woolfe was fantastic, seamlessly transitioning from sequence to sequence and showing some very impressive voice work." - Mooney on Theatre
"Woolfe and co-conspirator Perehinec create a horde of creatures with varying degrees of humanity, a multitude of voices, body-shapes, and impersonations.​" -Barcza Blog on Frankenstein's Boy

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"Eric Woolfe’s magic-infused puppet show about a Klondike Gold Rush-era con man is a sure bet." - NOW Magazine on The Harrowing of Brimstone McReedy

"A great way to continue the Halloween spirit, especially if you’re a fan of Poe or Milne" -NOW Magazine on The House at Poe Corner

"Woolfe’s usage of his weird little puppets...it really managed to subvert my expectations for a “puppet show”. - Mooney on Theatre
"virtuoso solo performance by Eric Woolfe.... The stunning card work is front and centre, and the post-show performance is even more up close, and equally gob-smacking tricks." -Mind Reels on The Harrowing of Brimstone McReedy
"Two Weird Tales is a fun, freaky, fascinating night out at the theatre! With an intimate space and creative storytelling methods, it’s a truly unique experience!" -  A View From The Box
"Weaving the tale with magic, puppetry and a gruesome version of the shell game, Woolfe is a deft and entertaining storyteller." -Life With More Cowbell on The Harrowing of Brimstone McReedy
"Woolfe has a credibility and emotional resonance that gives him particular power on stage.​" -Indie Critic

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"Woolfe draws on deal with possession, demons, mechanical dolls and sex, sometimes all mixed together in an always-clever staging that includes brains, entrails and various forms of dismemberment." -NOW Magazine on Madhouse Variations
"Fantastic sleight of hand tricks...captivate the audience and pull them into the  Lovecraftian world of Brimstone McReedy."​ -Mooney on Theatre
"Highly creative, superbly written, and brilliantly performed, puppet theatre has taken on a whole new meaning!​" -Mooney on Theatre
Woolfe can wring laughs from horror stories as ingeniously as Nightmare On Elm Street's Freddy Krueger can pile up corpses." -NOW Magazine ('Making a Madhouse' feature)
"Seriously bone-chilling... engaging theatrical experience: it was oddly thrilling" - Lights Up Toronto

"A whimsical, campy celebration of Kafka and H.P. Lovecraft. Intimate, eerie, goofy spectacle. And surprisingly faithful, even with the puppets & magic!" - Istvan Reviews on TWO WEIRD TALES!

"Profoundly creative. We’re watching virtuoso performances. I didn’t want the show to end." - Leslie Barcza on Requiem for a Gumshoe

Board of Directors
Samara Nicholds, President

Mark Downing          Tammi Hensch
Keldon Drudge          Beth Brown

Eric Woolfe

Eric Woolfe

Artistic Director of the Uncanny

Eric Woolfe was born the bastard child of an itinerant sideshow contortionist, and a door-to-door alienist. He began his career at the age of eight and three quarters, when a national famine forced him to follow his mother’s twisted feet into show business. Following failed careers as a learned pig tamer, flea circus promoter, and gaffed armless calligrapher, he formed Eldritch Theatre after losing a bar bet. He is now an actor, writer and puppeteer, as well as being a noted spiritualist huckster. He is often visited by the ghost of his beloved miniature schnauzer, Schubert, who offers Mister Woolfe valuable career advice, such as “You should chase more squirrels,” and “You better hide in the basement when there is thunder outside.” Mr Woolfe has my credits, projects and award nominations, but his favourite by far is George A Romero’s maritime western zombie masterpiece, Survival of the Dead. @EricWoolfe

Listen to his Stageworthy Podcast Interview
Read his interview with J. Gordon Shillingford Publishing
Read his interview with Our Theatre Voice

Adrianna Prosser

Adrianna Prosser

Artistic Producer of the Canny

Adrianna is a dead, red-headed girl who lurks in the bottom of an old, dry well. And if you throw a penny in, and whisper a little wish, she scoops your words up, in her cracked, grey hands, and swallows them, chewing your dreams into tiny, broken little pieces, so they can never come true. That’s why, some nights, when you can’t sleep and you are all alone in the darkness, you almost hear the empty sussurrus of distant cackling. That is Dead Adrianna, at the bottom of the well, giggling maniacally over your masticated dreams. @adriannap  www.adrianna-prosser.com
Emma Mackenzie Hillier

Emma Mackenzie Hillier

Director of the Liminal Zones

There are dark, dusty rooms lined with cobweb covered shelves, that hold row upon row of dry, ancient tomes, whose pages are filled with abominated blasphemies and arcane, forbidden secrets that no human mind was ever meant to know. The words in these books were never meant to be uttered by the human tongue, and the glyphs, runic markings, and strange symbols scrawled on their worm chewed pages should never be seen, let alone studied. Yet, Emma Mackenzie Hillier knows them all. She has folded dog ears to mark her favourite passages of the Al Assif. She’s doodled in the margins of Unaussprechlichen Kulten and underlined the dirty bits of Die Wurmis Mysterious in light blue ink. You wanna talk about necromantic incantations? Oh, she knows necromantic incantations. And she knows every dark star they need to be uttered under to make them come true.

Melanie McNeill

Melanie McNeill

Designer of Evil

Melanie is a set and costume designer who created the non-Euclidian, mad-blasted, architecturally anomalous, temple of unholy abomination, known to the students at Miskatonic University as the Pit with a Thousand Steps. Her efforts on this project won her two Dora Mavor Moore Awards, a pickled Siamese twin in a mayonnaise jar, and a thirty-year stint in a padded room at Ravenscrag Asylum for the Mentally Deranged. It is said that her fingernails are made of needles, and to look into her eyes is to see one’s darkest, most secret fears writ large across the sky, in words penned in streaks of lightning. I have feared many dark things in my life. But I fear Melanie most of all.

Sandi Becker

Sandi Becker

Stage Manager

Sandi Becker strikes fear into the hearts of the weak and foolish. She has retractable fangs. And, due to a recurring battle with Early Onslaught Lycanthropy, has become a passionate advocate for promoting tolerance to Werewolfism in school age children. She can kill you with a look, and if you are not in bed by 9 o’clock, she’ll come to you in the darkness, slip you into a bag made from cat skin, and take you to her moldy, mildewed lair. What will happen there? No one has lived to tell the tale.

Listen to her Stageworthy Podcast Interview

Mairi Babb

Mairi Babb

Director (Two Weird Tales) Actor (Space Opera Zero!, Requiem for a Gumshoe, House at Poe Corner)

Mairi became the Head Witch of the Dread Coven of Danforth Avenue at the tender age of 13 when she shoved Prickled Gertie Rumplehump into a wood burning stove, baked her into a tortiere,and stole her broomstick and crown. Mairi’s voice can hit notes so high, that only creatures of the night can hear them. She has danced with the Mi-Go on Signal Hill, had tea with the Black Goat of the Forest, and painted her own kitchen with the Colours out of Space. Small children fear her. It is said that on nights when the moon is gibbous, she sneaks through your bedroom window as you sleep, and sits on your chest, and when your nightmares begin, she smiles and inhales the life from your body as your panicked, yet slumbering, breath ebbs from your dying body. As you drift into death, her red, red eyes are the last things you see. And you yearn for them. Dear gods! You yearn for them!

Dylan Trowbridge

Dylan Trowbridge

Director (Brimstone McReedy, Space Opera Zero!, Requiem for a Gumshoe, MacBeth)

Dylan Trowbridge is the Seventh Son of a Seventh Son, and so his guardian knew he would never come to no good. When he turned 13, his guardian saw that the change was a gunna come, and locked Dylan deep down in the earthen cellar of the family domicile to prevent the boy from a doing harm to the other kith and kin. Well, that young Dylan, he cried piteously for the first night or two, but once that gibbous moon turned to full, all that weeping and a wailing started to sound more like a growling and a howling, and that’s when the Trowbridge family knew the youngest of their clan could never be let out of the hole. 

PAST HAUNTS

KIMWUN PEREHINEC

LISA NORTON

MARJORIE CHAN

CHRISTINE BRUBAKER

COLIN DOYLE

RENNA REDDIE

REBECCA NORTHAN

GILLIAN LEWIS

MICHAEL O’BRIEN

JUDE HAINES

KENNETH WELSH

MICHAEL RIPLEY

KAITLIN HICKEY

MIKE PETERSEN

DOC WUTHERGLOOM

MICHAEL BRUNET

MICHAEL McCLENNAN

LINDSAY ANNE BLACK

BEATRICE FREEDMAN

GARETH CREW

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