New Jersey Stage

Monday, October 24, 2011

East Lynne Theater Company presents "Sherlock Holmes' Adventure of the Norwood Builder"

(CAPE MAY, NJ) -- "We're not getting all the evidence.  I feel it in my bones. Unless some lucky chance comes our way, I fear that the Norwood Disappearance Case will not figure in that chronicle of our successes." Sherlock Holmes is speaking to his loyal friend Dr. Watson. They are trying desperately to prove that a young lawyer did not commit murder, while Inspector Lestrade of Scotland Yard is convinced of it.

     Step back in time, on Friday Nov. 4 and Saturday Nov. 5 at 8:00p.m., when the award-winning Equity professional East Lynne Theater Company presents Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's "Sherlock Holmes' Adventure of the Norwood Builder" in the style of a radio broadcast, complete with live sound effects and commercials, just like the Sherlock Holmes' radio series on NBC that premiered in 1930. Artistic Director Gayle Stahlhuth, who recently adapted the works of Dorothy Parker for ELTC, wrote the script.   

     Lee O'Connor is once more portraying Holmes, and Fred Velde returns as Dr. Watson. Lee first portrayed Holmes in ELTC's William Gillette's "Sherlock Holmes" and has become one of the main storytellers for the company's "Tales of the Victorians." Fred, who was in ELTC's "Anna Christie," "Rain," and “Dulcy,” has appeared in over fifty shows in NYC, including the off-Broadway revival of Mae West's "Sex."

     Portraying several other roles are Thomas Raniszewski, James Rana and Gayle Stahlhuth. Thomas recently received critical acclaim as Warren in the Philadelphia premiere of "The Twentieth Century Way." ELTC shows include "Berkeley Square" and "Dulcy."  Actor, writer, and variety artist, James Rana, has performed throughout North America and Europe, and is making his debut with ELTC. He is the featured performer at ELTC's upcoming fundraiser on Nov. 10, and the adaptor of "The Poe Mysteries," which will be ELTC's world premiere play in the summer of 2012. Gayle recently was in "Dulcy" and directs. Rob LeMaire, who appeared in several ELTC productions including "Helpful Hints" and "The Ransom of Red Chief," with his son Bobby, is also portraying several roles, and operating the live sound effects.

     The performances are at The First Presbyterian Church of Cape May, 500 Hughes St., where the company is in residence. Tickets are $25 for general admission, $15 for full-time students, and, as always, anyone age 12 and under is free. For information and reservations, call 884-5898 or go online to "Adventure of the Norwood Builder" is part of Cape May's "Sherlock Holmes' Weekend." For other Sherlock Holmes' events, contact The Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts and Humanities at 884-5404 or online at

     East Lynne's production season would not be possible without season sponsors Curran Investment Management, Aleathea's Restaurant, and La Mer Beachfront Inn; The NJ Dept. of State, Division of Travel & Tourism; NJ State Council on the Arts/Dept. of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts; and the generosity of many patrons.  An opportunity to come out and support The East Lynne Theater Company is on Thursday Nov. 10 at ELTC's annual fundraiser at Aleathea's Restaurant.  Contact the theater for details.