Friday, October 09, 2009

"The eye was open! ... And I grew furious to gaze upon it."

"I resolved to open a little -- a very, very little crevice in the lantern. So I opened it -- you cannot imagine how stealthily, stealthily -- until at length a single dim ray like the thread of the spider shot out from the crevice and fell upon the vulture eye.

It was open, wide, wide open, and I grew furious as I gazed upon it. I saw it with perfect distinctness -- all a dull blue with a hideous veil over it that chilled the very marrow in my bones, but I could see nothing else of the old man's face or person, for I had directed the ray as if by instinct precisely upon the damned spot. "

That's me performing as the famous narrator of Poe's Tell-Tale Tale Heart.

I tell ghost stories every October up in Salem, MA during Chilling Tales, which is produced by Salem Theatre Company.

The three other tales in the evening are Poe's Manuscript Found in a Bottle, (told that story two years ago,) and Hawthorne's Wives of the Dead.

The shows run on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights. More information here. I am one of four different performers who tell the story in rotation throughout the month.

(NOTE: If you would like to see me perform, you can send me an e-mail and I will let you know the nights/times I am on.)


Ian Thal said...

Break a leg, Art!

The Tell-Tale Heart is one of those classic pieces of prose that adapts well to performance. I remember a late night recitation in a small walled-in-cemetary in lower Manhattan at the Peoples' Poetry Festival in 2001.

silent nic@knight said...

Chilling Tales in Salem. Did you rehearse on site? Sounds fun.

I always found the etymon for "rehearsal" evocative. From french latin, same root as the word “hearse.” To “harrow again” as in Christ’s Harrowing of Hell. So rehearsal, or bringing up the dead in Salem. Sounds like a Halloween story for real, or a treatment for some Hollywood horror movie.

Art said...

Actually, we are telling the stories in the bonded warehouse attached to the Custom House - as in the Custom House of Hawthorne fame.

Usually we tell the stories on the Friendship, a large replica of a 1792 sailing vessel.

Lindsay Eagle said...

This looks awesome! We were thinking of getting out to Salem sometime this October; will have to check this out if we do. Break a leg in future performances!