Arcola Theatre, Atticist Productions and Ellie Keel Productions present

Anna Bella Eema

by Lisa D'Amour

Directed by Jessica Lazar

Pulitzer Prize finalist Lisa D’Amour (Detroit, National Theatre) conjures a twisted fable about courage, resistance and change.

“Something is coming. It’s either the interstate or the end of the world.” 

Precocious child Annabella lives in a deserted trailer park. Schooled by her eccentric mother Irene, she learns to co-exist with the vampires, werewolves and monsters that lurk in the world outside.

Desperate to ward off the new highway that threatens the demolition of their home, Annabella steps outside to build a girl out of mud. The girl comes to life. The girl is Anna Bella Eema.

Part ghost story, part fairytale, part coming-of-age fantasy, Anna Bella Eema is a dazzling burst of storytelling from the dark heart of American Gothic.

Lisa D’Amour’s wildly inventive, spoken-and-sung odyssey makes its UK premiere in a new and updated version.


★★★★ “A strong cast and innovative direction creates a magical and captivating fairy tale that feels like a solitary beacon on the trailer park of London theatre.”Theatre Weekly

★★★★ “Bizarre and beautifully poetic – a must-see show”Fairy Powered Productions

“What really hit me was the sonic variety of Lazar’s production [...] The actors are also striking.”The Guardian

“D’Amour’s work has got a rich style of its own, full of dense and powerful imagery”Time Out

“A heady, earthy spell [...] roar of Mother-Earth rage”The Evening Standard

“The use of music, of harmonising between the three performers, is strikingly beautiful and a sense of wildness, magic and the turbulence of adolescence permeates the piece”The Stage

“An incredible piece of storytelling that leaves you open-mouthed”Spy In The Stalls

“Jessica Lazar’s production brings real inventiveness [...] and the performances are mightily appealing”Lyn Gardner (Stagedoor)

“Fantastical and surreal”The Artiscape

“D’Amour’s blithely poetic script transforms its literary and pop-culture gothic elements into unexpectedly moving dramatic gold … a stunning act of theatrical alchemy”San Francisco Chronicle

“Its beauty and its depth are almost beyond language other than its own”The Austin Chronicle