CONTENT WARNING: This production contains child abuse, sexual content,
strong language, blood, death and uses high-pitched ringing sounds.
DIRECTOR'S NOTE ON THE PROCESS
What we are sharing with you today is the heartfelt emblem of a deeply collaborative process and with a deeply curious group of actors, designers, and minds. What we are sharing with you today is also, admittedly, a product of a rehearsal room that dreamed far beyond this container.
Our process began with a confrontational yet loving script that propelled our team into our first stage of rehearsal: Dreaming & Excavation. As a unit (designers and actors alike); we worked with images, envisioning the textures of this world. We interacted with the breadth of readily available historical research about Edgar Allan Poe’s life and grasped to find remnants of Virginia’s voice sprinkled within historical archives. We talked about Lolita (we highly recommend The Lolita Podcast), Pretty Baby, Farrow vs. Allen, and the long history of America’s obsession with sexualizing young girls and then erasing them. This period of Dreaming & Excavation unlocked new layers and radical possibilities both for the play and for Virginia.
The second stage of our process focused on the Text & the World of this play, now working with designers and actors separately. We dove into deep text work and rehearsal with the actors while we drafted with designers. We asked questions about function and impact. How does this text function? How does this world function?
In the third and final stage of our process, we pivoted to focus on bringing this script to life via zoom. We implemented our understanding of audience relationship and the function of design in our dream production and searched for ways to effectively bring these elements into our reading. We aimed to use the restraints of this container as a means to scale back and expose the most direct renderings of the function of this play.
This team is truly incredible. I want to thank them all for their trust, courage, and curiosity throughout every stage of this process. On behalfof the whole team, I want to acknowledge the depth of radical imagination that Daria approached this writing process with. I am so excited to share this small peek into our very big process with all of you.
CAST AND CREW
Edgar Allen Poe - William Burton
Virginia Clemm - Sophia Swettenham
Written & Produced by: Daria Kent
Directed by: Kate diRienzi
Assistant Director: Jayda Jones
Scenic Designer: Helen Hylton
Costume Designer: Sloan Mulloy
Sound Designer: Lexi Spera
Production Stage Manager: Kathleen Curran
Assistant Stage Manager: Dana Devries
Production Manager: William Adams
Assistant Production Manager: Katie Curran
Props by: Laurel Mora
Video Operator: Will Rossiter
is a rising senior Theatre Performance and English double major. Fordham Studio: The Turn of the Screw, Delirium, God of Carnage. Other: The Winter’s Tale, Cyrano, As You Like It (St. Lawrence Shakespeare Festival); The Amorous Servant (Odyssey Theatre); Miss Bruce’s War (Ottawa Fringe); Fair Cruelty, Head Over Heels (Edinburgh Fringe). Virtual: Away (TACTICS); The Roots That Clutch (University of Toronto, FOOT Conference); Prescott Pandemic Tales (SLSF); Madeleine May…(Fordham Theatre). Thanks to Daria for her beautiful words, Kate for her guidance, and the whole cast and crew for the pleasure of working on this piece!
New York: Adelia (director & choreographer) at Dixon Place, The Sun Club (choreographer) at Dixon Place, The Karamazovs (assistant director) at The New Ohio Theatre, SPEECH (assistant director) at Playwrights Downtown. NYU Tisch Drama: jane eyre: an autobiography (director & associate choreographer) , (a new) blood wedding (director & associate choreographer) , Far Away (director & choreographer), Horse Girls (director & choreographer). Film: Before We Die (director), jane eyre: THE VISUAL ALBUM (director), I Miss You (associate art director). Thank you to our wonderful cast and production team!
is a Theatre Directing major, and is the Assistant Director for Virginia/Poe. She made her Fordham debut last semester as the assistant director of B.R.E.A.D. Prior to her career as a director, Jayda acted and played characters such Ariel Moore in Footloose and Daniela in In the Heights. Jayda hopes to pave a way for young black women to have both a strong voice and extensive representation in the theatre, and to make art that inspires positive change.
Assistant Stage Manager
is a sophomore stage management and lm double major. Mainstage: Uncle Vanya (Asst. Stage Manager). Studio: The Wallpaper Project (Production Stage Manager), My Papier Mâché Monster (Asst. Stage Manager), Moon And Wolf (PA), El desvarío (PA). Regional: Psychodrama at Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre (Asst. Stage Manager). Thank you to Katie, Daria, Kate, and the rest of the wonderful team. Much love to my family.
is a sophomore Visual Arts Major and a Theatre Minor. Studio: Enterprise (Asst. Set Design), Cloud Tectonics (Asst. Set Design), The Most Massive Woman Wins (Asst. Set) and Anne of a Thousand Days (Set Design). Other: The Ideal Husband (Associate Set Design). Helen would like to thank the cast and creative team for all of their hard work and commitment. And special shout out to Katie for writing this bio.
Mainstage: Water by the Spoonful (ALD), Airline Highway (Lightboard Op). Studio: Into Me See (LD), Enterprise (Props Manager), Madeline May Saves the World (LD), Moon and Wolf (Assoc. LD), Up, Up, and Away (ALD). Other: Only Time (ALD) at The Tank. Thank you to everyone who helped make this show a reality!
Edgar Allan Poe
is a Theatre Performance major at Fordham University. He would like to thank the crew, the cast, his family, and all his mentors and teachers. He was in the Fordham shows: Anne of The Thousand Days (Cardinal Wolsey), My Paper Mache Monster (Vocal Trinity), and Uncle Vanya (Telegin). Before that, he worked with Southwest Stageworks on shows such as A Midsummer Night's Dream (Puck) and Prime (Cornelius).
Writer & Producer
is a senior playwright double majoring in Theatre and English. Mainstage: Everybody (Dramaturg). Studio: Into Me See (Playwright), Delirium (Dramaturg), Dimes (Dramaturg), Bent (Dramaturg), Erotophobia (Playwright), and Ishmael (Dramaturg). She is so grateful to the cast and creative team for contributing to the development of this play. Special thanks to Kate, Katie, and Dana — you made my last show at Fordham such a treat.
Production Stage Manager/
Assistant Production Manager
Mainstage: Water By The
Spoonful (Asst. Stage Manager), Men on Boats (Asst. Sound Designer). Studio: Enterprise (Production Stage Manager), Cloud Tectonics(Stage Manager), God of Carnage (Asst. Stage Manager). Regional: Refugee at Merrimack Repertory Theatre Workshop (Assistant Stage Manager). Other: Ashley Everhart: Only Time at the Tank (Production Assistant), The Music Man at Middlesex Community College (Production Stage Manager). Many thanks to the cast and creative team, especially Dana and Daria. As always, much love to Janae.
Fordham Studio: Enterprise (Production Manager), B.R.E.A.D. (Production Manager), Nineveh (Production Manager), Madeline May Saves the World (Production Manager), Cloud Tectonics (Production Manager), The Complete Works of William Shakespeare Abridged (Production Manager) Fordham Mainstage: Water by the Spoonful (Associate Production Manager).
is a junior theatre performance major and sound designer. Mainstage: Everybody (Cousin/Beauty), Men on Boats (Hawkins), Airline Highway (SD). Select Studio: Nineveh (SD), We Are Proud...(Actor 5/Sarah), Cloud Tectonics (SD), The Most Massive Woman Wins (Carly), Up, Up, & Away! (Friend). Other: Ashley Everhart’s: Only Time (SD). Thank you so much to this awesome team! Shoutout to Kayla and Jonas Brothers’ smash hit, Lovebug.
is a freshman theatre playwright major. This is her first time working as a props designer, and she is incredibly thankful for the opportunity. Fordham Studio: Enterprise (Props assistant). Dallas: Blood Loyalties (Playwright), The Drowned (Playwright), Nuestro Voz (Playwright), Nuestra Sangre, Nuestro Cielo (Co-Playwright), A Chorus Line (Hair and Makeup) at Booker T Washington High School for Performing and Visual Arts, and Crossing the Line (Actor) at Cry Havoc Theatre in collaboration with Kitchen Dog Theatre.