"Tales of the Victorians" continues 4 to 4:45 p.m. every Thursday, produced by the Equity professional East Lynne Theater Company. Usually, "Tales," now in its 31st year, would be presented on porches of B&Bs and in tea shops, but this year, these performances are in a backyard where an audience of 20 can be socially distanced, and performers are using microphones.
Every week, it’s a different reading. On July 23, the company’s artistic director Gayle Stahlhuth will read her one-act play, "Eve’s Diary," based on the writings of Mark Twain. On July 30, Summer Theater students, ages 11-15, will perform a "Pandemic Ballet," directed by Stahlhuth, after only three hours of rehearsals.
Suzanne Dawson will present several monologues by the famous writer and actor Ruth Draper on Aug. 6. Dawson first performed an evening of Draper’s one-acts with Karen Case Cook, directed by Stahlhuth, in 2012. Most recently, Dawson and Stahlhuth portrayed the Brewster sisters in East Lynne's "Arsenic and Old Lace."
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of science fiction writer, Isaac Asimov (1920-1992). To celebrate, Suzanne Longacre, a favorite "Tales" performer, will read two of his classics Aug. 13: "The Monkey's Finger" and "Each an Explorer."
Next up, on Aug. 20, will be "Meet the Harrisons," performed by Mal and Dottie Knapp. Benjamin Harrison (1833-1901) served as a colonel in the Union army and was the 23rd president of the United States. His wife, Caroline (1832-1892) helped found the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution and helped raise funds for the Johns Hopkins University Medical School on condition that it admit women.
The only way to find out the Cape May location for "Tales of the Victorians" is to make a reservation by calling 609-884-5898 or e-mailing email@example.com. The cost is a minimum donation of $5.00, paid with cash, at the door. As usual at the East Lynne Theater Company, ages 12 and under are free.
Until further notice, the company is making the following requests: please wear a mask, and sit where socially-distanced seats have been placed. They'll not be serving drinks and food, but guests may bring a beverage. No restroom facilities will be available.
Not in Cape May? East Lynne is offering "Tales of the Victorians at Home." "Tales" on their YouTube Channel include the works of Poe, Service, Stowe, Glaspell, Stockton, Chopin and Wells.
To learn more about East Lynne's "Tales of the Victorians," stories, performers and where to find the videos, see www.tinyurl.com/ELTC-tales. See eastlynnetheater.org, for updates on virtual productions, including "Not Above a Whisper," which will be available on YouTube from Aug. 18 to 21.