Fringe favorite ‘An Adele Horror Story’ returns to Orlando stage

“Absurd, goofy, wacky, silly.” That’s how writer/director/producer Ciara Hannon describes their show “An Adele Horror Story.”

The jukebox horror musical, presented by 11th Hour Productions, made its debut at the 2021 Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival receiving lots of love for its unconventional and improvised nature, says Hannon, selling out nine shows and going on to receive the “Fringiest of the Fringe” award at that year’s festival.

During the show’s initial run, it received positive reviews from several publications including from the Orlando Weekly, which wrote “’An Adele Horror Story’ power-sprays a metric ton of slapstick bullshit at the walls, and a surprising amount of it sticks,” and from this publication, which wrote that the show “flips the script on a couple of the old slasher flick troupes” and praised the show’s light-hearted and zany plot.

An updated version of the show is making its return to Central Florida at the Fringe Artspace in downtown Orlando April 26-27, starting at 7:30 p.m.

Described as a campy comedy/horror, “An Adele Horror Story” follows a group of six college students deep in the woods of Florida where they encounter the “soul-sucking demon” named Adele, who feeds on heartbreak and who is “ready to say ‘Hello’ … from the other side.”

A show full of “Adele’s greatest hits. Lesbians. Horror. Mommy issues. $9 blonde bob wigs. Black claw nails. Blood. Amelia Earhart. Two lesbians in a car listening to ‘Lucky’ by Britney Spears. Big stompy stomp boots. Did I mention lesbians?” Hannon assures audiences that the show will be an exciting experience.

When writing “An Adele Horror Story,” Hannon says it was important to not include a lot of what has been going on in Florida regarding the ongoing attacks on the LGBTQ+ community in the musical itself. With so much time and energy from the LGBTQ+ community being focused on everything going wrong and how to fix it, the show was made so people could stop and have a moment to not think about all of that.

“Oftentimes with LGBTQ shows I feel like we have to stop and talk about Ron DeSantis or something like that. This is just queer joy,” Hannon says. “I wanted it to be kind of an escape.”

Hannon says another important focus of “An Adele Horror Story” was presenting a horror story that didn’t trounce all over queer people.

“It was about reclaiming the genre and putting queer people in a very campy, very scary situation, really fighting against the ‘bury your gays’ trope,” Hannon says.

As the cast and crew prepare for their upcoming shows, Hannon says there’s going to be a lot to look forward to in “An Adele Horror Story’s” second run, even for people who have already seen it the first time.

In 2021, the show was held on the lawn outside the Orlando Art Museum using battery powered lights, Bluetooth speakers and “lots of yelling over passing helicopters and cars,” says Hannon, but with “a new venue, new cast and speakers that actually help, this time around the show will be much more polished.”

Another noticeable difference from the show’s Fringe debut to this year’s production is the show’s length. “An Adele Horror Story” will be bumping its 75-minute runtime up to 105 minutes with a 15-minute intermission.

“This is also brand-new cast doing it … and man oh man it is lightning,” Hannon says. “It’s going to be more fleshed out than the first one, this is a full two act version … so if you loved the outside version, I promise the goofiness is still there, but it’s definitely more refined.”

The new cast includes Jessica H. Williams as the show’s host, Saylor Moon Lake as Gracie, Felicia Thornsbury as Sue, Breanna Wells as Lee, Lexie Ann Cole as Laura, Joe Fabian as Phil and Hayley Sanz as Sarah. And, of course, you can’t have “An Adele Horror Story” without an Adele. This production will see Beth Ann Stripling stepping into the songstress’ shoes.

“The woman who plays our Adele, Beth Ann Stripling, gosh she is good,” Hannon says. “That’s something that was hard about the casting process because if you don’t have an Adele, you don’t have a show and I promise you we have an Adele, and she is horrifically, devastatingly amazing.”

Another aspect of the show that has Hannon excited is the show’s soundtrack. Despite being a jukebox musical, Hannon reassures audiences they’re not simply going to just hear karaoke tracks of Adele’s biggest hits.

“Our amazing music director rearranged all of Adele’s music,” says Hannon. “Like for our opening number she mixed the ‘Halloween’ theme and ‘Rumor Has It,’ and it works so well.”

Another change to the show that Hannon is excited about is this run will also be a fundraiser for the LGBT+ Center Orlando, with 20% of tickets sales being donated to the LGBTQ+ organization.

The Center Orlando has been promoting the intellectual, physical, social, emotional and spiritual well-being of Central Florida’s LGBTQ+ community through access to quality programs and services for decades. With locations in Orange and Osceola Counties, The Center Orlando offers health services, scholarships and programs for seniors, youth, trans folks, Latinx and more.

“This is so close to my heart, being able to provide to the queer community in any way that I can even if its just $100,” says Hannon. “It matters now more than ever.”

“An Adele Horror Story” will be performed at the Fringe Artspace, located at 54 W Church St. in downtown Orlando, on April 26 and 27, starting at 7:30 p.m.

This show is 18+ only and features Adult Language, Mature Themes, Sexual Content and Violence. A strobe will be used in this production. Tickets are $25 each and are available at

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