‘Blithe Spirit’ appears in Rockland
ROCKLAND — “Blithe Spirit,” the premiere production of GEM Theatre, will conclude this weekend at Lincoln Street Center for Arts & Education, 24 Lincoln St.
GEM Theatre is one of several production troupes in Lincoln Street’s Umbrella Theater Project, the others being the ActNow! children’s theater and a troupe focused on avant garde or original stage works.
GEM Theatre’s aim is small, classic works, and Coward’s “Blithe Spirit” fits that to a T. Coward claimed to have written the play in five days. Written and produced at the height of World War II, “Blithe Spirit” was a huge hit and is one of Coward’s most revived works.
Socialite and novelist Charles Condomine invites an eccentric medium (Madame Arcarti) into his home in order to learn the "tricks of the trade" for a book he is writing. The séance Madame Arcati holds inadvertently summons Charles' first wife, Elvira, a mischievous and charming spirit, back into his life. As Charles becomes more and more intrigued with his role as an astral bigamist, it falls to Charles' second wife, Ruth, to begin looking for a solution.
Adding to the fun in this delightful farce are the Condomine's new maid, Edith; the skeptical Dr. Bradman and his gullible wife, Violet.
The Umbrella Theater production is directed by Sally MacVane of Port Clyde and stage managed by Lee Heffner of Rockland. The cast features Stephen Billiat of Appleton as Charles, Dagney Ernest of Thomaston as Madame Arcati, Lisa Lundgren of Rockport as Elvira, Jennifer Lammert Giustra of Cushing as Ruth, Paul Aron Weintraub of Camden as Dr. Bradman, Stephanie Gleason of Appleton as Violet and Camden Hills Regional High School Britanny Harrison-Billiat of Appleton as Edith.
Final performances of “Blithe Spirit” will be presented 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 9, and 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 11. Ticket prices are $10 or $8 for senior citizens and students younger than 18.
Advance tickets are available at Lincoln Street Center between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. weekdays or online at www.lincolnstreetcenter.org; at Rock City Books, Breakwater Bookland and Reading Corner in Rockland; and HAVII, Zoot Coffee and Owl & Turtle in Camden. Tickets also are available at the door before each performance.