The Afflicted

Theatre (dance, physical theatre)

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  • Summerhall - Demonstration Room
  • 19:30
  • Aug 25
  • 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Suitability: 14+ (Guideline)
  • Country: United Kingdom - Scotland
  • Group: Groupwork
  • Warnings and additional info: Contains Distressing Themes, Strobe Lighting, Loud Noises
  • Accessibility:
    Hearing not needed
    May not apply to all performances. You'll find more information about accessibile performances and how to book tickets in the accessibility tab below.
  • Babes in arms policy: Babies do not require a ticket
  • Policy applies to: Children under 2 years


Inspired by real events, this new dance-theatre piece tells the story of a mysterious illness that infects a group of young women in small-town America. As the girls and their families search for a diagnosis to their strange affliction, they come face to face with their personal and collective demons. Drawing on the conventions and tropes of true crime podcasts, documentary and horror movies, this thrilling show mixes dance, video and text to interrogate how a community deals with abnormality in its midst.

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General venue access

  • Captioning
    Hearing not needed
  • Accessible entry: Once in the courtyard, go behind the Royal Dick Pub, past Barney's Beer and Pickering's Gin; in the back courtyard on your right hand side is the Demonstration Room.
  • Wheelchair access type: Level Access

  • Stairs: Information not supplied

Each venue can contain several space with different accessibly information. Visit the venue page for full venue accessibility info

Captioned performances

  • Dates: 2 August, 3 August, 18 August, 11 August, 4 August, 5 August, 6 August, 13 August, 20 August, 19 August, 25 August, 31 August, 24 August, 22 August, 21 August, 14 August, 7 August, 8 August, 9 August, 10 August, 15 August, 17 August, 16 August, 23 August
  • Type: Open
  • Booking options: You can book independently online, or contact our access team to book your tickets and request any specific seating locations or if booking a unit is required.

How and when to make an access booking

Our access tickets service is available to anyone who:

  • Would like to book specific accessibility services, e.g. a hearing loop, audio description headsets, captioning units, seating in relation to the location of the BSL interpreter
  • Requires extra assistance when at a venue
  • Has specific seating requirements
  • Is a wheelchair user
  • Requires a complimentary personal assistant ticket to attend a performance

There are no audience reviews for this show.

Participants - for further details on our audience and published review policies, including how to add or opt out of reviews, please click here.

Broadway World (4/5 stars) 106 days ago

The Afflicted, from new Scottish theatre collective Groupwork, uses dance, physical theatre and multimedia to tell the story of the Hope River Girls. It's inspired by real-life events taking place in Le Roy, New York, when many girls at the same high school became suddenly afflicted with tics - twitching...

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The Independent (4/5 stars) 112 days ago

Den Hertog and Vicki Manderson’s play is a gorgeous, atmospheric cacophony of styles and genres, as four actors – Grace Gibson, Amy Kennedy, Olivia Barrowclough and Felixe Forde – embody the four most deeply affected sufferers through powerful sequences of choreographed physical movement and live video in which sinister fright...

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The Times [paywall] (4/5 stars) 114 days ago

Groupwork is a new Scottish theatre initiative led by the co-directors Finn den Hertog and Vicki Manderson, who collaborated on last year’s Fringe award-winner Square Go. On the basis of this unnerving, atmospheric dance-theatre piece, the company appears to have arrived fully formed. The show takes as its inspiration the...

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British Theatre Guide (4/5 stars) 115 days ago

There's a moment early in groupwork's The Afflicted where the play deliberately name-checks Carol Morley's 2014 film The Falling. That film, itself a re-working of The Crucible set in a 1960s school, features the same titular affliction, a spate of convulsive fainting fits amongst a group of teenage girls. What's...

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Total Theatre 116 days ago

4 women in t-shirts and skirts, little socks and trainers, standing next to each other huddled up in a shape fit for teenage girl band poster image 4 red chairs, the kind you see in schools 4 microphones on stands with red cables A video screen suspended at the back...

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The Wee Review (4/5 stars) 116 days ago

Taking advantage of the rising interest in investigative journalism and true crime podcasts, The Afflicted plays with our fascination with the inexplicable. Based on true events surrounding the ‘outbreak’ of a Tourettes-like illness among a group of American schoolgirls, groupwork theatre’s debut at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe is a thrilling...

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The Scotsman (4/5 stars) 119 days ago

THIS IMPRESSIVE FIRST show from new Scottish-based company Groupwork is loosely based on a 2011 incident in which 14 high school students in the small town of LeRoy, New York State - 13 of them girls - suddenly began to show a weird range of physical and psychological symptoms, twitching,...

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The List (4/5 stars) 122 days ago

Four girls explore a chilling mystery through the medium of dance...

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Time Out (4/5 stars) 124 days ago

There’s something hauntingly familiar about this dance-horror piece from new Scottish company Groupwork: ‘The Afflicted’ is a febrile patchwork of influences, from HP Lovecraft’s stories and Miller’s ‘The Crucible’, to creepypasta and found footage horror.But it also feels utterly singular, and genuinely unnerving. Performer-dancers Olivia Barrowclough, Felixe Forde, Grace...

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Broadway Baby (4/5 stars) 127 days ago

The Afflicted, a startling theatre-dance piece produced by Groupwork and performed at the Summerhall Demonstration Room, is a brilliant re-definition of the docu-drama format. This piece which combines elements of contemporary dance, podcasts, narration, and historical horror is as undefinable as it is magnificent.The production examines the true story of...

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Exeunt 128 days ago

When I studied Frankenstein at school, we had to learn about the difference between horror and terror. Horror – a physical experience, an actualised manifestation of emotion that follows a horrifying incident. A sense of revulsion, a sense of sickening disgust. Terror – a psychological experience, a sense of terrible...

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The Stage [paywall] (4/5 stars) 129 days ago

It seems like everyone’s a bit sick of true crime, including this true crime show. On the surface, it’s about the semi-true story of 24 US high-school girls who, in 2012, developed an inexplicable twitching disorder. But the show by new Scottish company Groupwork uses unsettling choreography, disturbing sound design...

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Fest (3/5 stars) 131 days ago

It started with a jut of the chin. Then came the tics and the convulsions. One girl at first, then two, then four more. Within a month, 24 schoolgirls were glitching in sync across town. Doctors could find no physical cause. Parents rushed theirs kids out of town. News crews...

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Participants - for further details on our audience and published review policies, including how to add or opt out of reviews, please click here.

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Participants - for further details on our audience and published review policies, including how to add or opt out of reviews, please click here.