The Taxidermist's Daughter

Adapted for the stage by Kate Mosse
A new play based on her novel

Festival Theatre
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This year’s 60th anniversary at the CFT demanded a striking work to kick off the celebrations – and it gets precisely that with Chichester author Kate Mosse’s thrilling adaptation of her novel The Taxidermist’s Daughter.

Chichester Observer

1912. In the isolated Blackthorn House on Sussex’s Fishbourne Marshes, Connie Gifford lives with her father. His Museum of Avian Taxidermy was once legendary, but since its closure Gifford has become a broken man, taking refuge in the bottle.

Robbed of her childhood memories by a mysterious accident, Connie is haunted by fitful glimpses of her past. A strange woman has been seen in the graveyard; and a few miles away, at Chichester’s Graylingwell Asylum, two female patients have, inexplicably, disappeared.

As a major storm hits the Sussex landscape, old wounds are about to be opened as one woman, intent on revenge, attempts to liberate another from the horrifying crimes of the past.

A story of retribution and justice, The Taxidermist’s Daughter is a thrilling Gothic mystery set in and around historic Chichester. This world premiere is written by Cicestrian Kate Mosse, based on her No 1 internationally best-selling novel.

Kate Mosse’s novels include The Languedoc Trilogy (Labyrinth, Sepulchre and Citadel), The Winter Ghosts and her new historical series, The Burning Chambers and The City of Tears; non-fiction includes An Extra Pair of Hands. She is Founder Director of the Women's Prize for Fiction, Founder of the global Woman in History campaign and Visiting Professor in Contemporary Fiction & Creative Writing at the University of Chichester.

Róisín McBrinn is Joint Artistic Director of Clean Break; elsewhere she has directed many productions for theatres including The Abbey and Gate Theatres (Dublin), West Yorkshire Playhouse, Sheffield Theatres, Donmar Warehouse, Bush Theatre and Sherman Theatre.

This production contains themes that some people may find distressing: please visit Content and Themes for further information.

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Purchase a digital copy of the programme

Our programmes are designed to be the perfect insightful companion to the production. The beautifully illustrated Taxidermist’s Daughter’s programme features an article by Kate Mosse on the Sussex landscape which inspired the play, as well as other background features, rehearsal photos, biographies and news from the Theatre.

By clicking on BUY you will be re-directed to Issuu's website. The purchased programme will be available to read on their website and app. 

Purchasing a digital programme does not include the purchase of a printed programme.

Cast & Creatives


  • Robyn Ellan Ashwood

    Young Cassie
  • Geoff Aymer

    Lewis / Clerk
  • Pearl Chanda

    Cassie Pine
  • William Chubb

    Charles Crowther
  • Tim Frances

    Frederick Brook / Levi Nutbeem
  • Haddymai John

    Young Connie
  • Forbes Masson

    Crowley Gifford
  • Taheen Modak

    Harry Woolston
  • Akai Osei

    Davey Reedman
  • Alastair Parker

    Sergeant Pennicott / Gregory Joseph
  • Daisy Prosper

    Connie Gifford
  • Raad Rawi

    Dr Jack Woolston
  • Howard Saddler

    Gerald White
  • Posy Sterling

    Mary Christie
  • Lauren Van Wyk

    Young Connie
  • Connie Walker

    Jennie Christie
  • Mwenya Chisanga, Susie Gibbs, Robert Hall, Kevin Hawkes, Colette Holmes, Andy Trust, Chris Yeldham


Creative team

Cast List

Róisín McBrinn


Paul Wills


Prema Mehta

Lighting Designer

Sinéad Diskin

Music, Sound & Musical Direction

Andrzej Goulding

Video Designer

Chi-San Howard

Movement Director


Fight Directors

Charlotte Sutton CDG

Casting Director

Charmian Hoare

Voice & Dialect Coach

Aaliyah Mckay

Assistant Director

Ben Arkell

Production Manager

Laura Hunt

Costume Supervisor

Marcus Hall Props

Props Supervisor

Betty Marini

Wigs, Hair & Make-Up

Suzy Bourke

Company Stage Manager

Lorna Earl

Deputy Stage Manager

Chris Carr

Assistant Stage Manager

Jamie Craker

Assistant Stage Manager




Pricing Information

Price bands for an event, organised by showing
Performance description Price Bands
Previews/Press Nights£10£10£10£30£34
All other performances£10£19£31£40£44
  • Friends Priority Saver: Book the same number of tickets for four or more productions and save 20%. All Saver tickets must be booked and paid for in a single transaction. Only available during Friends Priority Booking period (12-18 March)
  • Friends Single Production Discount: £2 off non-saver tickets
  • Groups 8+ Monday and Tuesday: £30 per ticket
  • Groups 8+ Wednesday - Friday: £5 off each ticket
  • Groups 40+ Wednesday - Friday: £8 off each ticket, plus a £5 ticket for the Group Organiser
  • School and College Groups 10+ Monday - Friday: £8.50 per ticket; one free teacher ticket with every nine paid
  • Over 60s Monday - Thursday: £2 off
  • Full-time students in Higher Education, Jobseekers Allowance and Income Support claimants Monday - Thursday: Half Price
  • Full-time students in Higher Education, Jobseekers Allowance and Income Support claimants Monday - Thursday: Standby from one hour before the performance: £8.50
  • Family tickets (excludes Saturday evenings): Half Price for up to four U16s with every full price paying adult. Discounts applied at the checkout. All tickets must be booked and paid for in a single transaction.
  • Book early for the best prices Prices are guaranteed until Monday 4 April and are then subject to change
  • All venues: Only one reduction applies per ticket, and all discounts are subject to availability and at the discretion of the Box Office.
  • All venues: Discounts do not apply to Previews and Press Nights
  • Festival Theatre: Discounts apply to top three price bands only (apart from Schools and College Groups)
  • Friends: Up to four discounted tickets per production
  • Access tickets may be available for Access Members Log in to your account to see Access seats
  • £5 Prologue Tickets may be available for 16-30 year olds Log in to your account to see Prologue seats

Content and Themes

At CFT, we want everyone to feel truly welcome and comfortable. While we try not to give away plot twists and narrative surprises, we also recognise that some people may find certain themes distressing. You’ll find guidance on such content below; please be aware that by reading this, some elements of the plot may be revealed. Please note that this may be updated nearer the time of the production as staging details are confirmed.

If you have any questions or feedback, do email us at

The Taxidermist’s Daughter
Language: None
Nudity: None
Violence: Physical violence including murder, sexual violence
Themes: Taxidermy (the art of preserving dead birds and animals, involving the dissection of carcasses); violent deaths; sexual violence; references to suicide. 

This production will include smoking and flashing light/strobe effects. Please contact the Box Office if you need any further information.

Video Content

Adapting The Taxidermist's Daughter for the stage

'To put Chichester and Fishbourne on stage is an incredible prospect' | The landscape of The Taxidermist's Daughter

'At the heart of it it is a revenge thriller' | The themes of The Taxidermist's Daughter 

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Running Time
2 hours 15 minutes including an interval
This performance will include smoking and flashing light / strobe effects