Blithe Spirit

 In “Blithe Spirit” an author and his wife invite a psychic medium to their house for a dinner party. Madame Arcati, the medium, conducts a seance where they expect it will be merely parlor tricks, but someone from the author’s past gets conjured up. 

 

The ArtBarn’s ambitious 2019 season continues this month with Noel Coward’s “Blithe Spirit.” The show revolves around Charles Condomine, an author writing a book about a medium who is supposed to be a charlatan. As part of his research, he and his wife Ruth invite a “real” medium to their house for a dinner party. Madame Arcati, the medium, conducts a seance which they expect will be merely parlor tricks, only something, or rather someone, from Charles’ past gets conjured up. 

Linda Iwaszko, an ArtBarn veteran, directs the play she has been a fan of since high school. Though “Blithe Spirit” presents its own challenges, both technically and regarding the wordy dialogue, Linda says the most rewarding part of the entire experience has been her cast. 

“I love the cast...and just watching it all come together.” Margaret Mills, who plays Madame Arcati, is having a blast playing the eccentric medium. Previously making her ArtBarn debut as Lily St. Regis in “Annie,” Margaret is back and very glad to be. Margaret explains that Madame Arcati believes she is being invited to conduct a seance for true believers to contact the other side. “This goes horribly wrong, in that it goes right as it were. She does contact a spirit who happens to now be stuck in the house permanently.” The spirit in question is played by Jessica Cormican. Previously seen as Shelby in last summer’s “Steel Magnolias,” and Karlene in “Ole and Lena’s Wedding,” Cormican says the most challenging and rewarding thing about playing this part is how different she is from the character. “It’s pushed me outside of my comfort zone.” Jane Campbell plays Mrs. Bradman, one of the dinner guests invited to the seance. She’s the only guest who actually believes in mediums and fortunes...”she thinks something very exciting is going to happen.” The audience can come see for themselves what exciting things do occur in “Blithe Spirit” this weekend.

Rounding out the cast are familiar faces Lou and Kathy Williamson who play Charles and Ruth, John Gearin (Dr. Bradman), and Joie Brannon (Edith).

Performances are Thursday, Friday, Saturday, September 12-14 at 7 p.m., and Sunday, September 15 at 2 p.m. Tickets are available online at www.stcroixartbarn.org or at the door. The ArtBarn is located at 1040 Oakridge Drive, east of the Osceola Middle School. For more information visit twww.stcroixartbarn.org.

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