It may not be the royal wedding, but next Saturday's nuptials at Kirkstall Abbey, in Leeds, will be no ordinary do. Frankenstein's Wedding... Live in Leeds will be a re-imagining of scientist Victor Frankenstein's wedding to his childhood sweetheart Elizabeth, complete with a congregation of 12,000 people. The whole event will be broadcast live on BBC3.
"It's a drama with live music and the light projections will turn the abbey into a spectacular film set," explains Pat Connor, executive producer of the project. "In Mary Shelley's book, the wedding is a small part but we're making it the centrepiece to allow us to invite people as guests. We're trying to inspire mixed emotions – empathy for the creature and great fear of what he's capable of."
The idea was based on the Manchester Passion and Liverpool Nativity, both successful television mass participation events that were broadcast several years ago. This time it coincidentally ties in with Danny Boyle's current production of Frankenstein at the National Theatre. The cast includes Lacey Turner as Elizabeth, Andrew Gower as Victor and David Harewood as the Creature, plus of course the audience/ congregation as extras. "We're hoping that people will come dressed up to the nines with wedding hats, cameras and confetti, just as if they were going to a real wedding," says Connor.
'Frankenstein's Wedding... Live in Leeds' on BBC3 at 8pm on 19 March