The Mesmerist

by Northern Rascals

"no constructive criticism was required simply because it was pure brilliance from the very beginning, right through to the end"

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Set in the wondrously weird world of ‘The Mesmerist’, this family-friendly production takes the audience away on a magical journey of adventure, mischief and friendship. Met by two innocent, wide-eyed creatures, Alf and Annie, we witness the beginnings of a chaotic partnership that tests the pairs need for support in their lives.

Described as 'visually stunning', ‘The Mesmerist’ uses a mixture of dance, clowning and stunning optical illusions to create a ‘spellbindingly absurd’ world that tackles important issues of seeking solace in others and of reaching out to spark new light in each other’s lives.

‘The Mesmerist’ is supported by Arts Council England and SLAP in conjunction with the York and North Yorkshire Dance Hub, York Dance Space, Yorkshire Dance and York St John University.

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Co-Artistic Director & Performer Anna Holmes

Co-Artistic Director & Performer Sam Ford

Production Management Northern Rascals

Technical Management Barnaby Booth

Lighting Design Barnaby Booth

Costume Design Jessie McEwan

Original Music Jonathon Deering

Dramaturgical Mentor Geoffrey Colman

With special thanks to collaborators Elly Welford, Katy Hewison and Kathryn Spence.

Check out this review of ‘The Mesmerist’ by Unknown Mag here:

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In Summer 2019, we will be creating an outdoor version of ‘The Mesmerist’ entitled ‘Tales of The Mesmerist’. Commissioned by Didsbury Arts Festival, there will be multiple opportunities to catch this exciting rework this summer!

Tails of The Mesmerist



22 June - Didsbury Arts Festival

23rd June - Didsbury Arts Festival

29 June - Didsbury Arts Festival

30 June - Didsbury Arts Festival

27 July - Deershed Festival


6 APRIL - Collide, Leeds City Centre 11-3pm

21 APRIL - Emerge Fest, Cannock Chase, 10-4pm  


1 JULY - Street Sunday, Hebden Bridge Arts Festival,


Tails of The Mesmerist’ whisks the audience away to the spellbindingly absurd land where creatures wander. Set in the realms of their enchanted forest, the audience follow the Mesmerists as they take us on a magical journey of adventure, mischief and friendship. At times comedic, at others poignant, this family-friendly show explores the importance of support and sparking new light in each other’s lives.

The ‘Tails of The Mesmerist’ is the latest chapter in the story of Northern Rascals’ original dance theatre work ‘The Mesmerist’. This version is created for outdoor settings alongside local communities with the hope of enriching public spaces with the magic of storytelling. '

This short, low-tech version can be performed in a variety of outdoor settings. Perfect for village, town and city festivals, this duet is a comedic take on the piece as we follow three mischievous craetures as they play their secret game in and around the streets and the people that walk amongst them. For bookings please contact us on 07774324629 or

Photo Credit: Gavin Joynt, Nothern Rascals