Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Next at East Lynne Theater Company ASL performance of 'Biography'

East Lynne Theater Company presents an ASL performance of “Biography”

(CAPE MAY, NJ) -- On Friday, September 30 at 8 p.m., there will be an American Sign Language Interpretation of the smart and witty comedy, “Biography,” produced by the award-winning Equity professional East Lynne Theater Company.

The theatrical ASL interpreters are Kathy Filippo and Gina Lanza, who have performed many times for ELTC. The process involves them seeing the production at least once, plus going over the script several times to figure out who will interpret which roles, and in many cases, come up with signage for unusual names and words.

At the center of S. N. Behman’s “Biography” is Marion Froude, a fascinating and generous woman with a laissez-faire attitude. She’s painted portraits of famous people including Lenin and Warren G. Harding, but by 1932, with the Depression in full-swing, commissions aren’t what they used to be and she’s finding herself a bit “hard-up.” Enter journalist Richard Kurt who gives her a $2,000 advance to write her tell-all memoirs for his magazine. At first, he’s interested in knowing about the celebrities she has encountered more than he cares to know Marion herself.

Enter Leander Nolan, the first love of her life whom she’s not seen for fifteen years. He’s now running for the United States Senate, representing their home state of Tennessee, and agrees to have her paint his portrait. It’s when Leander discovers she’s writing her memoirs that all the worlds collide in Marion’s Manhattan apartment. Her composer and actor friends drop by, and so do Leander’s future bride and her well-to-do father, also from Tennessee.

Playing the role of Marion is Erika Amato. Credits include the Witch in “Into The Woods” in Los Angeles, and roles in “Buffy The Vampire Slayer,” and Disney’s “Enchanted.” Mike Newman plays Richard Kurt. Recent NY credits include “Life is a Dream.” Tom Byrn, who recently played the 16th President in ELTC’s “Mr. Lincoln,” portrays Leander Nolan.

Taking on the role of Nolan’s fiancée and future father-in-law are Veronique Hurley and John Cameron Weber. Veronique’s credits include “Noises Off” at The Hartford Stage Company. John, who has appeared in several ELTC productions, was in a national tour of “1776” and a European tour of “Guys and Dolls.”

Also in the cast are R. Scott Williams and Mark Edward Lang. Scott has performed throughout the country including at Arena Stage, The Shakespeare Theatre Company, and the Globe Playhouse. Mark, who has acted and directed for ELTC, was in the recent NY International Fringe Festival performing in his play, “Lunt and Fontanne: The Celestials of Broadway.”

Marion’s maid, Minnie, is played by artistic director Gayle Stahlhuth, who is also helming the production.

“Biography” runs Wednesdays through Saturdays at 8:00pm from September 21 through October 15, except there is no show on Wednesday, October 5, and a show on Sunday, October 9 at 7:30 pm. There is an after-show party on opening night at Aleathea’s Restaurant; an after-show Q&A on October 7; and on October 13, $5 from every ticket sold will go to Gilda’s Club in South Jersey.

PHOTO: Erika Amato and Tom Byrn. Photo by Gayle Stahlhuth

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