Historical Play Reading Series Tuesday, January 20!!!!!!
The Father, or Family Feuds by Denis Diderot and Raymond and Agness, or The Bleeding Nun by Matthew Gregory Lewis. On December 26th, 1811, an excited crowd of theatergoers had packed themselves into the Richmond Theatre to see a double bill of a play and a pantomime. The play was The Father, or Family Feuds, a translation from French comedy by Diderot, about a young nobleman who falls in love with a poor girl. His family threatens to send her to a convent-and much hilarity ensues. The pantomime that followed it was Raymond and Agness, or The Bleeding Nun-a Gothic story of the Bleeding Nun who haunts the castle of Lindberg.
On that fateful night, 518 adults and 80 children were enjoying the performance in the Richmond Theatre on Broad Street, when a chandelier in the theatre started a fire. The flames were fed by the hanging drops on the stage and soon roared out of control. The audience panicked and stampeded the doors. 72 died in the fire: 54 women and 18 men, including Governor George William Smith, and former Senator Abraham Venable. It was the worst urban disaster of all time in the country. We will present our reading at the Monumental Church, which was built on the grounds of the theatre as a memorial to commemorate the 72 people who died on the site.
Join us for a talk-back after the reading with Meredith Henne Baker - author of the award winning book: The Richmond Theatre Fire, Gregg Kimball - Director of Public Services and Outreach at the Library of Virginia, Emily Davis - Director of Marketing and Communications at Historic Richmond, Olivier Delers - Associate Professor of French at UofR, director Melissa Rayford, and the cast.
Directed by Melissa Rayford
With Jonathan Conyers, Chris Dunn, Lucas Hall, David Janosik, David Maier,
Laurel Maughan, Donna Marie Miller, Rebecca Muhleman, Mollie Ort, Aly Wepplo,
Liz Blake White, Alex Wiles and Bo Wilson.
Tuesday, January 20 at 7pm at Monumental Church
1224 East Broad Street
*FREE Parking is available in the Parking Lot of Virginia Dept. of Transportation located at 1401 East Broad Street (across from Monumental Church).