This category contains 12 posts

Listen at your leisure to Audience with the Ghost Finder

The radio version of my Carnacki play, Audience with the Ghost Finder, is up on my Soundcloud page in its entirety. Listen to it there to your heart’s content.

It first aired as part of the Blackshaw Arts Hour on Wandsworth Radio in March. Blackshaw, who also produced the radio play, not to mention both the stage runs, put it up on their own Soundcloud as a Listen Again for a little while, but I wanted a more permanent archive. I’m not planning to take it off my stream any time in the foreseeable future, so feel free to link, embed, and so on.

Thanks to everyone at Blackshaw for turning over the files to me to do with as I please – and for creating the thing in the first place. I’m still really proud of Ghost Finder, and I hope this way plenty of people get to hear it.

I’ve reserved all rights on the upload, but if you’re interested in broadcasting, podcasting or otherwise -casting the play, email mj@mjstarling.com and let’s see what we can work out.

Now, without further ado…


Listen to Audience with the Ghost Finder for free until 29 March

The radio version of my Carnacki play, Audience with the Ghost Finder, is available to stream for free on Blackshaw Theatre’s Soundcloud page.

So if you missed the broadcasts on Wandsworth Radio over the last couple of weeks, you still have time to catch the production. But hurry! It won’t be online forever…

Part one (available until 29 March)

Part two (available until 5 April)


Alexander Pankhurst as Carnacki
Richard Stratton as Dodgson
Ceridwen Smith as Florence
Ellie Pitkin as Mrs Allenby

Production team

Directed by Ellie Pitkin
Sound engineering by Andrew Crane, based on original sound design by David Turnbull
Produced by Helen Johnson
Special thanks to Iasha Chapman and Vikki Weston

Audience with the Ghost Finder revived on radio

I’ve adapted Audience with the Ghost Finder, my stage play based on William Hope Hodgson’s tales of Carnacki the ghost finder, for the radio. Part one of the play will air on Wandsworth Radio at 6pm GMT on Sunday 8 March 2015. Part two will air at the same time the following Sunday.

You can listen live to Wandsworth Radio at wandsworthradio.com or using the TuneIn app. If you were out of reach of London when we staged the play in 2013, this is your opportunity to experience it!

Blackshaw Theatre, the company that produced the stage versions at Wandsworth Arts Festival and the London Horror Festival 2013, are also producing the radio version – and broadcasting it as part of the company’s weekly Wandsworth Radio show, the Blackshaw Arts Hour.

We’ve reassembled the original cast, with Alexander Pankhurst as Carnacki and Ceridwen Smith as Florence Allenby. In both stage versions Ceridwen also played Judith Allenby and Dodgson, but tripling up parts makes a lot less sense on the radio, so this new version introduces Ellie Pitkin as Judith Allenby and Richard Stratton as Dodgson.

Ellie also directs, with assistance from Vikki Weston. The producer is Helen Johnson, and Blackshaw’s Radio Producer and Content Manager is Iasha Chapman.

This Hallowe’en, let me read you a story

I’m doing a one-off, one-night-only candle-lit reading of William Hope Hodgson’s The Whistling Room in south London this Hallowe’en. Get your tickets here!

It’s on Thursday 30 October at The Selkirk, a nice roomy Tooting pub with real ale, Northern Line access and a nice spooky upstairs performance space. The same upstairs performance space, incidentally, where we staged the world premiere of Audience with the Ghost Finder last year.

Audience is based on William Hope Hodgson’s tales of Carnacki, the ghost finder. The Whistling Room is one of those. In fact, it’s the first one I ever came across, and a strong contender for my favourite of the nine (it’s got stiff competition in the form of The Hog).

So you can bet that I will spend this reading enthusiastically overplaying all my favourite bits and generally trying to make you, the audience, feel every bit of the ‘creep’ I felt on my first encounter with whatever the thing is that haunts Iastrae Castle. Or I would be overplaying if I wasn’t getting expert directorial assistance from Ellie Pitkin, she of Blackshaw Theatre, who also directed Audience.

That’s right! This won’t just be a bod in a room reading you a story. This is going to be theatre. Honestly, I thought the most I might get in terms of set dressing would be a big armchair (and as a lifelong fan of Masterpiece Monsterpiece Theatre, I would have been a-okay with that), but I got an email this week from Blackshaw’s costume designer asking for my measurements, and folks, I’m pretty sure that means I get a costume for this! And I have it on good authority there might be sound effects as well. Those of you of a sensitive disposition, consider yourselves warned.

As well as me, the night includes Fetch, a brand new spooky play by Duncan Gates. If you can’t make it to see me on the 30th, you can still make it to see Fetch on 31 October and 1 November. Duncan’s reading an MR James story after the play on the 31st, and there’s a party after the play on the 1st.

Here’s a short post by Ellie that tells you everything you need to know at a glance, without all the autobiographibabble.

Here’s where you buy tickets. You buy tickets now.

The ghost finder grants another audience

Audience with the Ghost Finder e-flyerTickets are now on sale for the London Horror Festival production of Audience with the Ghost Finder.

Book now >

Dates and times: 22-24 October 2013 at 9:30pm
Venue: Etcetera Theatre, Camden (nearest underground station: Camden Town, Northern Line)
Tickets: £12 (£10 concessions)

Audience with the Ghost Finder by M. J. Starling weaves an original tale of ab-natural occurrences using characters and situations from William Hope Hodgson’s Carnacki, the ghost finder and H. P. Lovecraft’s The Dreams in the Witch-House.