Carnesky’s Ghost Train

Created and directed by Marisa Carnesky.

The seminal standalone work that is Carnesky’s Ghost Train haunted the borders of art and entertainment for ten years, occupying a unique space that blended artful theatrical installation with a stunning, magical fairground ride.

Carnesky’s Ghost Train spent 2004-2009 touring the UK and Europe. Incorporating high-end illusions, aerial flying, moving performance sets, a cast of eight and 50 metres of specially-built track, it was an expensive show to tour. Blackpool Council’s suggestion in 2009 that they could to take on the art piece as a permanent tourist attraction on the Golden Mile was, therefore, met with great delight. For five years the ride opened throughout the season in all winds and all weathers. Carnesky’s Ghost Train went on the receive over 18,000 visitors a year proving to be a big hit not only with the thousands of holidaymakers who stumbled across it but also with those whose traveled to Blackpool especially. As well as being a popular tourist destination it provided the historic entertainment town with its only alternative performance venue.

My time on the project: Blackpool Promenade (2010 – 2014).

“Even in its brevity it manages to touch on the haunting pain of real experiences in which grotesque fairytale meets 19th- and 20th-century history head on.” – Lyn Gardner, The Guardian

“Combining a cultural classy edge with a lot of enjoyable screaming, Carnesky’s Ghost Train is a passionate tribute to war scattered refugee ghosts. It was a success in London and is now even better, both more serious and more fun.” – Libby Purves, The Times

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