The Traverse Area District Library (TADL) in collaboration with the Old Town Playhouse is pleased to present, “The Belle of Amherst” starring Michigan native, Sinda Nichols, May 17-19 at the intimate Old Town Playhouse Studio Theatre at the Depot. Tickets are on sale now and all proceeds from this special performance weekend to benefit Grow the Gardens, a library landscaping project supported in part by the Friendly Garden Club of Traverse City.
Nichols plays the incredible part of Emily Dickinson in this award winning play written by William Luce and directed by Ron Kurtz. Based on the poems, letters and first-hand accounts of Dickinson, “The Belle of Amherst” offers the audience a glimpse into the life of the iconic poet and gardener. Through the artful use of flashbacks and narrative, this is a story told like never before.
A Black Cake Production, “The Belle of Amherst” will run Friday, May 17 and Saturday, May 18 at 7:30 p.m. with a matinee performance on Sunday, May 19 at 3 p.m. All performances will take place at the Studio Theatre located at 620 Railroad Place on the corner of E. 8th Street and Woodmere Avenue, near the Main Branch of TADL.
Ticket sales will be generously donated to develop landscaping and gardens near the front entrance to the Main (Woodmere) Branch Library. TADL received a planning grant on behalf of the Friendly Garden Club of Traverse City for this project designed by award winning local landscape architect Dean Conners.
“We appreciate the support and generosity from the Friendly Garden Club of Traverse City and the Old Town Playhouse,” said Metta T. Lansdale, Jr. TADL director. “The goal is for the front entrance garden to be a natural extension of the already beautiful and flourishing Children’s Garden that so many library patrons enjoy on a daily basis,” said Lansdale.
The library garden will feature easy to care for native plants as well as a rain garden and sensory garden for Talking Book Library patrons to enjoy.
“Teaming up with the Old Town Playhouse to present this fundraising production of ‘The Belle of Amherst’ seemed like a natural fit,” said Lansdale. “After all, some may argue that Dickinson was a gardener first and a poet second.”
Luce brilliantly weaves Dickinson’s poetry and writings from the time she was 15 in 1845 to her death at age 55 in 1886 into a two act play that leaves the audience spellbound. Set in the parlor of the Dickinson home in Amherst, Massachusetts, she relives the greatest joys and deepest despairs of her life, all with humor, insight and most notably with her unique and mysterious perspectives on love and death.
General tickets are on sale now for $30. All tickets can be purchased online at www.tadl.org/belle