AN AWARD-WINNING theatre group is bringing its latest play to Forth Valley this week.

Throughout May, Glasgow-based groupwork are presenting a re-conceived version of their critically-acclaimed debut show The Affliction.

The production was commissioned by Imaginate, Scotland’s national organization that promotes, develops and celebrates theatre and dance for children and young people.

The Hope River Girls is inspired by real events and tells the story of 24 schoolgirls in upstate New York who start behaving strangely and mirroring each other’s odd behaviour for no apparent reason.

This behaviour draws the attention of parents, teachers and national news as the town becomes a hotbed of fascination, fear and mistrust.

Vicki Manderson and Finn den Hertog, co-directors of groupwork, said: “When we made The Afflicted, we were drawn to the story for its examination of the public fascination with female bodies, group dynamics in young women and what behaviours we do or don’t consider normal.

“Now, as we revisit the story of The Hope River Girls amidst the backdrop of a global pandemic and its associated mental health traumas, as well as important conversations around the treatment of women and girls, the story feels more vital than ever.

“We hope young audiences will connect with the schoolgirls’ grappling with coming of age, while being subjected to immense scrutiny and projected fear by the adult community around them.”

The Hope River Girls will tour at Stirling’s Macrobert on Thursday, April 28 with showings at 1pm and 7pm.

Visit for tickets and more information.