The Unravelling Fantasia of Miss H.

A Woman Struggles In An Asylum

5 Aug to 5 Sep

Full Price: £15 | Affordable: £5 | Online: £1 plus optional donation
Produced and presented by Stitched-up-theatre

Music and Words: Red Gray and Sarah Nicolls

On Stage - Live Performance: 7:30pm - 8:50pm, 5 August, £15/£5

Live Online - Interactive Broadcast: 5:00pm - 6:45pm, 8 August, £1

On Demand - Interactive Broadcast Recording: 8 August - 5 September, £1

It is 1837 and Mary has been arrested for a breach of the peace. She is an outspoken woman and the authorities of Doncaster are confounded. They sentence Mary to a lifetime confinement in Wakefield Asylum.

The Unravelling Fantasia of Miss H. is a poetic portrayal of a Victorian woman imprisoned by a society intent on control.

Mary Frances Heaton’s tale is told through her own words and her defiant protests stitched into embroidered samplers, discovered in the asylum years later.

Mary’s struggle to hold on to her identity and reach the outside world speaks across the years, her outrage at a corrupt system urging us to ask ‘How much have things have really changed?’

This contemporary opera is a new composition by soprano Red Gray and Sarah Nicolls with her inside-out piano.

The interactive broadcast includes a presentation about the community engagement connected with the show: Radical Embroidery Workshops with Women’s Community groups.

Age range: All ages, but mostly adults.
Content advisory: Depiction of mental illness.


We ask our audiences to stay home if there is any risk of infection, and to stick to one metre social distancing at all times. 

We continue to:

  • Reduce the number of people using spaces in the building
  • Maintain COVID safe cleaning regimes   
  • Make available bottles of hand sanitiser and wipes throughout the building
  • Open all the doors and windows to aid air-flow and fill the place with potted plants that cheer us all up (and calm us all down).

For this show we are keeping managed social distancing in place. 

We also request that everyone wear a mask when moving around the building, wash their hands often and practice self-distancing. Our companies and audiences will include Clinically Extremely Vulnerable people. We want everyone to feel and be safe.

  • You will be asked to queue outside in your bubbles, so wear weather-relevant clothes and let us know if you or anyone you know has a mobility or standing difficulty by emailing the Box Office.   
  • We will check you in on arrival. You may be asked for ID so please have some handy. 
  • We will show you straight into the auditorium - unless you need to use the facilities - where you will be seated in your bubbles
  • There will be one way systems in place.  Our gorgeous stewards will guide you and show you how to leave should you need to.
  •  In the auditorium, another gorgeous steward will check our seating plan and show you to your seat(s). Like in a restaurant. 


We will be running a normal bar service with extra tables for your drinking comfort.


For more information on how things work, have a look at our dedicated Covid:19 page.