Sherlock Holmes & the Speckled Band: a live action radio drama at Ventfort Hall

speckled-band

Remember when “The Lone Ranger,” “Grand Central Station!” and “The Green Hornet” kept us riveted to the radio with the actors’ expressive voices and, of course, the sound effects? Artistic Director Kandie Carle returns to Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum with members of her East Haddam Stage Company presenting “Sherlock Holmes and the Adventure of the Speckled Band.” The presentation takes place on Friday, October 14, 2016 at 7:00 pm. Cake and coffee will be served afterwards.

The live-action “radio” drama features Victorian superstar actor William Gillette’s actual 1930 radio script, complete with sound effects, audience participation and four actors portraying seven characters. Gillette, a native of Connecticut, was a prominent American actor-manager, playwright and stage manager in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

He is best remembered for portraying Sherlock Holmes on stage (1,300 times over 30 years) and in a 1916 silent film. His portrayal helped create the modern image of the fictional detective. Gillette’s use of the deerstalker cap and curved pipe became enduring symbols of the character. He is also known for introducing realism to the theater with new types of sets, costumes, props, sound effects and a new form of acting.

The East Haddam Stage Company was founded in 2002 as a professional theater company for producing new works by Connecticut playwrights, established plays and other spoken word art forms such as poetry and staged readings. Carle has appeared several times at Ventfort Hall, including such one-woman shows as “Dressing the Victorian Lady” and “Fashion in Fiction: Dressing Jane Austen.” Carle also wrote and directed the play “They Call Me Lizzy…from Slavery to the White House” based on the life of Elizabeth Keckly, Mary Todd Lincoln’s dressmaker and confidante.

Tickets for the program are $20 for adults and $8 day for children under 12. Reservations are highly recommended as seating is limited. For information or reservations call Ventfort Hall at 413-637-3206 or visit info@gildedage.org. The historical mansion is located at 104 Walker Street in Lenox.

An Official Project of the Save America’s Treasures program sponsored by The White House, Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum, built in 1893, offers tours of the historic mansion, as well as tea & talks, such exhibitions as the Bellefontaine Collection, concerts, theater, and other programs. This elegant Jacobean-Revival Berkshire “cottage,” listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is open to the public year round and is available for private rental. Built in 1893 for George and Sarah Morgan, sister of the financier, J. P. Morgan, Ventfort Hall has undergone substantial restoration, which continues.

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