Theatrefolk - The Drama Teacher Resource Company

Theatrefolk Featured Play – Grim and Gruesome Grimm by Mrs. Evelyn Merritt

Welcome to our Featured Play Spotlight.  Tired of fairy tale adaptations that are sickly sweet? Enter Grim and Gruesome Grimm! This adaptation of Grimm’s Fairy Tales by Mrs. Evelyn Merritt is not for the faint of heart – but it’s definitely for your student performers!

The original Grimm’s Fairy Tales are far from sweet, naive, innocent, syrupy, or charming. They are not typical at all: Death. Cannibalism. Death. Burial alive. Death. Burned alive. Death. Kidnapping. Death. Beheading and body parts. Death. These tales are not for the faint of heart! Join us for a grim and gruesome stroll through dark forests and nasty characters. Don’t keep a body count.

A playful and theatrical adaptation with flexible genders, flexible cast size, and two one act lengths.

Why did we publish this play?

Grimm’s Fairy Tales are classics. But more often than not, the classic versions are not the original versions. And mostly that’s because there’s a lot of death, beheadings, cannibalism, and more in the original versions and that’s not, oh, acceptable in today’s kids stories.

But in a high school play? Absolutely! We love our Halloween and horror themed play section (especially our plays with horror/humour) and Grim and Gruesome Grimm fits right in. Just don’t ask for a watered down kid version – we’re keeping in all the cannibalism.

Let’s hear from the author!

1. Why did you write this play?

I love fairy tales, all kinds of fairy tales. Even the scary ones! I’ve always shared the PG versions of Grim and I love having the opportunity to share the not so PG versions.

2. Describe the theme in one or two sentences.

Never turn your back on your stepmother.

3. What’s the most important visual for you in this play?

There’s a couple of particularly gory story moments that are done more theatrically than straight up horror gore. That’s just not possible on stage. I think it’s important to always keep the theatre of a play in the visuals rather than try for realism.

4. If you could give one piece of advice for those producing the play, what would it be?

Everything is done on stage. All the costumes, the props, the sound effects, let the audience see it all!

5. Why is this play great for student performers?

It’s a great play for having fun with character and the fact that any student can play any character. It’s all about taking on a role. Put on a crown and you instantly become a king with the right posture and attitude. The roles do not have to be binary or limiting. Anyone can become anything in a fairy tale.


Get your copy of Grim and Gruesome Grimmright here, right now!

Not right for your group right now? Search our play catalogue to find one that your performers will love!

Products referenced in this post: Grim and Gruesome Grimm

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