The award-winning Equity professional East Lynne Theater Company has its usual theater season filled with classic gems, a world premiere, and a radio show.
From June 13 to July 21, it's "Ruth Draper's Company of Characters." Before the solo shows of Lily Tomlin and Whoopi Goldberg, there was the originator of the "character monologue," Ruth Draper. For 40 years, throughout the world, she performed humorous and touching scenes, filled with characters from charwomen to divas. Now, these rarely seen scenes are in the skillful hands of Karen Case Cook and SuzAnne Dawson under the direction of Gayle Stahlhuth.
Next up is "The Poe Mysteries," from July 25 to September 1, a World Premiere, adapted by James Rana,based on the first modern detective stories ever written. C. Auguste Dupin is a recluse living in Paris, when an American journalist comes to interview him. As the great detective recalls his cases, the characters spring to life on stage. Six actors portray 50 roles in Edgar Allan Poe's "Murders in the Rue Morgue," "The Murder of Marie Roget," and "The Purloined Letter." This production moves to Ocean Professional Theatre Company in Barnegat, NJ from Oct. 24-28. Cast: Mark Edward Lang, Shelley McPherson, James Rana, Thomas Raniszewski, Grace Wright, and Fred Velde.
"It Pays to Advertise," running from September 19 to October 13, is a "farcical fact" by Roi Cooper Megrue and Walter C. Hackett. It was a Broadway hit in 1914 and made into a 1931 film with Carole Lombard. The premise – and promise – that anything can be sold in America is at its core, but it also examines the very nature and romance of advertising. Decades before AMC's "Mad Men," this screwball comedy demonstrates that an ad campaign might be better than the product. All it takes is one young man to announce, "Advertising is responsible for everything!" and he and his friends are off and running in this mad romp, with a cast of 10 that includes Tom Byrn, Glen Corlin, Brian Graziani, Matt Luceno, Kate Shine, Maria Silverman, John Cameron Weber, and Gayle Stahlhuth, who also directs.
On Nov. 2 and 3 is "Sherlock Holmes Adventure of the Norwood Builder," ELTC's exciting 1930 radio-style adventure complete with live sound effects and commercials. Inspector Lestrade is convinced that a young lawyer committed murder. But did he, or is he being set up? Another adventure for Holmes and Watson! Cast: Rob LeMaire, Lee O'Connor, James Rana, Thomas Raniszewski, Gayle Stahlhuth, and Fred Velde.
For the holidays, from November 23 through December 14, it's "Louisa May Alcott's Christmas." Three of Alcott's tales, including the opening of "Little Women" are presented in storytelling fashion by Artistic Director Gayle Stahlhuth, who has been praised by reviewers and audience alike for her portrayals of 30-plus roles in the telling of one tale.