“‘Do you believe in ghosts?’ is the pointless question often addressed by those who are incapable of feeling ghostly influences…” – Edith Wharton

“Wharton explores in these narratives a repressed story about women who become unquiet ghosts because they cannot have a voice.” – Candace Waid

As fall arrives so will Ghosts, a new audio book compilation of Edith Wharton’s most frightening tales. Produced by BMA Studios and The Mount Press, Ghosts is the result of talented Berkshire narrators lending their craft, all of whom have felt the influence of Edith Wharton’s grand estate – The Mount.

Set on 49 acres, The Mount is the very definition of turn of the century elegance and style. Yet there lurks a dark side. And if one visits The Mount on Friday evenings, the dark side can be discovered by taking an entertaining ghost tour hosted by The Mount staff. For those who have lived at The Mount during its function as a residence for Shakespeare & Company the house could exhibit a chilling character. Actors have reported footsteps at night when no one was around. One occupant, alone one night in the empty mansion heard the clamor of a soiree on the lower floor. This was confirmed by other members of the company who had evidently experienced the phenomena as well.

There have also been reports of ghosts as visible as the ones in Wharton’s stories even ghosts who had questions of their own for the living occupants. Whether or not one believes in these accounts Wharton’s “feeling of ghostly influences” stems from an intense and difficult past.

R.W.B. Lewis describes Edith’s symptoms of a “haunting fear” of “some dark indefinable menace” that stemmed from an attack of typhoid fever. He writes in his biography of Edith Wharton “It was worse when she came at the end of her daily walk through the afternoon dusk; there, on the threshold of the house, she was sure, the horror was preparing to spring upon her, and no one, not even her father, could protect her. She could not sleep at night unless a light was on and a nursemaid in the room with her. Her conscious mind seems never to have grasped the cause of what she would describe as a ‘choking agony of terror.’” (from Edith Wharton: A Biography.)

PRODUCTION

Not being an enthusiast of the macabre myself Ms. Wharton has turned me around. Editing an audio requires that one listens to the story at least six times and I wasn’t looking forward to dwelling too long in that shady realm. I discovered the same charm that went into the construction of The Mount also went into the construction of the tales and I began to look forward to walking the ancient dark halls, secret passageways and moonlit gardens that fill her ghost tales.

The thrill was amplified by the exceptional talent of the narrators whose intelligence and ability made this a highly entertaining project to work on. I am honored to help put these stories on a recording to be enjoyed by Wharton fans as well as explorers of dark places.

THE MUSIC

Each story is complimented by a musical introduction by a composer that Edith herself might have listened to in her day. Performed by Sarah Edelstein for BMA Studios , the haunting melodies of Johann Sebastian Bach, Alexander Scriabin, Arnold Schoenberg, Claude Debussy and Maurice Ravel float in and out of the chapters along side the phantoms that dwell there in.




Like the narration, the music was a production unto itself. The selections took weeks to finalize and the approach and execution of even one thirty second intro could take an entire afternoon. But whose counting? Working with skilled performers rendering classical masterpieces one can lose track of the hours. In some ways I felt that was apropos. I’m guessing Ghosts lose sense of time as well.




Jason Slater Brown




The audio edition of Ghosts is available at 
“‘Do you believe in ghosts?’ is the pointless question often addressed by those who are incapable of feeling ghostly influences…” – Edith Wharton

“Wharton explores in these narratives a repressed story about women who become unquiet ghosts because they cannot have a voice.” – Candace Waid

As fall arrives so will Ghosts, a new audio book compilation of Edith Wharton’s most frightening tales. Produced by BMA Studios and The Mount Press, Ghosts is the result of talented Berkshire narrators lending their craft, all of whom have felt the influence of Edith Wharton’s grand estate – The Mount.

Set on 49 acres, The Mount is the very definition of turn of the century elegance and style. Yet there lurks a dark side. And if one visits The Mount on Friday evenings, the dark side can be discovered by taking an entertaining ghost tour hosted by The Mount staff. For those who have lived at The Mount during its function as a residence for Shakespeare & Company the house could exhibit a chilling character. Actors have reported footsteps at night when no one was around. One occupant, alone one night in the empty mansion heard the clamor of a soiree on the lower floor. This was confirmed by other members of the company who had evidently experienced the phenomena as well.

There have also been reports of ghosts as visible as the ones in Wharton’s stories even ghosts who had questions of their own for the living occupants. Whether or not one believes in these accounts Wharton’s “feeling of ghostly influences” stems from an intense and difficult past.

R.W.B. Lewis describes Edith’s symptoms of a “haunting fear” of “some dark indefinable menace” that stemmed from an attack of typhoid fever. He writes in his biography of Edith Wharton “It was worse when she came at the end of her daily walk through the afternoon dusk; there, on the threshold of the house, she was sure, the horror was preparing to spring upon her, and no one, not even her father, could protect her. She could not sleep at night unless a light was on and a nursemaid in the room with her. Her conscious mind seems never to have grasped the cause of what she would describe as a ‘choking agony of terror.’” (from Edith Wharton: A Biography.)

PRODUCTION

Not being an enthusiast of the macabre myself Ms. Wharton has turned me around. Editing an audio requires that one listens to the story at least six times and I wasn’t looking forward to dwelling too long in that shady realm. I discovered the same charm that went into the construction of The Mount also went into the construction of the tales and I began to look forward to walking the ancient dark halls, secret passageways and moonlit gardens that fill her ghost tales.

The thrill was amplified by the exceptional talent of the narrators whose intelligence and ability made this a highly entertaining project to work on. I am honored to help put these stories on a recording to be enjoyed by Wharton fans as well as explorers of dark places.

THE MUSIC

Each story is complimented by a musical introduction by a composer that Edith herself might have listened to in her day. Performed by Sarah Edelstein for BMA Studios , the haunting melodies of Johann Sebastian Bach, Alexander Scriabin, Arnold Schoenberg, Claude Debussy and Maurice Ravel float in and out of the chapters along side the phantoms that dwell there in.

Like the narration, the music was a production unto itself. The selections took weeks to finalize and the approach and execution of even one thirty second intro could take an entire afternoon. But whose counting? Working with skilled performers rendering classical masterpieces one can lose track of the hours. In some ways I felt that was apropos. I’m guessing Ghosts lose sense of time as well.

Jason Slater Brown