A site-specific staging of The Fall of the House of Usher by Edgar Allan Poe, in which Roderick Usher entombs his still living sister, Madeline, in the vault of their decaying mansion.
To offset, and interweave with this piece, we chose a scenario suggested by David Ives in his short story, Bolero, which tells the story of a contemporary couple listening to noises in their building, where it also sounds as though a woman is being harmed.
With the form of the play we explore the boundaries between puppetry and theatre. The audience is placed in the role of the story’s “narrator”, both a witness to and, to a certain extent, participant in the events which unfold. Stylistically, there is also the juxtaposition of the romantic notion of “terror” which contains a certain element of thrill and delight, to the way the word is used in our current world to reflect, and often to foment, an overall sense of dread.
A site specific performance in an old building, produced in 2006
For older and adult audiences: minimum age 14
Audience maximum groups of 25 people
Produced in Association with Threshold Theater
Created by Ann Powell and David Powell
Directed by Mark Cassidy
Music and soundscape: Rick Sacks
Musical assistant: Nathaniel Whitfield
Paintings by Jenny Westoby
Roderick Usher: Patrick Conner
Usher/Woman’s Voice: Suzanne Hersh/Lucy Rupert
Servant, Doctor, shadow puppeteer: Ann Powell
Servant, Doctor, shadow puppeteer: David Powell
Servant, Doctor, Man’s Voice, Stage Manager: Varrick Grimes
Servant, shadow puppeteer: Brad Harley
Detective: Monique Stewart/ Sally Robinson
Detective: Rick Sacks
Woman on cell phone: Jennifer Callow/Kristan Klimczak
Indispensable running crew and helpers: Jennifer Callow, Kristan Klimczak, Sally Robinson