If you read my last post, Life, Steampunk, Edgar Allen Poe, and Nevermore, you know I was to attend an upcoming play based on the works of Edgar Allen Poe written by Matt Richey and directed by Josh Carpenter.
Last night was a special performance set to coincide with the 205th birthday of Edgar Allen Poe. Suggested attire was Steampunk or Funeral and most, if not all, of the attendees came appropriately outfitted. It was a wonder to behold and I could tell this was going to be a special night. Everyone was excited and electric as the play began and the performance did not disappoint.
This description, from the Apex – Theatre 20 website, only touches on the intensity of this play:
Nevermore is a tale of madness, murder and addiction featuring a young Edgar Allan Poe in fictional adventures based on his classic works of literature, including “The Raven” and “The Fall of the House of Usher.” In this tale, Poe visits his old friend Monty in his crumbling manor and encounters a mystery in the mysterious deaths of Monty’s parents and the disappearance of his sister Lenore. Solving the mystery requires Poe to confront his own dark past.
I have been to many plays and have seen small to semi-large productions over the years and this performance was hands down the best I’ve seen.
From the intensity of the actors to the sharpness of direction, the use of lighting to augment the mood to the beauty and accuracy of the set, the efficiency of the stage management to the tempo of the production, I was overwhelmed by the beautiful madness set forth by this wonderful group.
After the play was finished and cast and crew took their bows, the festivities continued. The audience was led outside with accompaniment by the talented Lacie Carpenter. There we were treated to a tale of the Poe Toaster who, for over seven decades, paid an annual tribute to Edgar Allan Poe by visiting the cenotaph marking his original grave in Baltimore, Maryland in the early hours of January 19, Poe’s birthday. We were each given a small flask of cognac to toast the occasion in whichever manner seemed appropriate.
This is what theater should be.