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by BWW News Desk
"Christmas won't be Christmas without any presents," grumbled Jo.
"It's so dreadful to be poor!" sighed Meg, looking down at her old dress.
"I don’t think it's fair for some girls to have plenty of pretty things, and other girls nothing at all," added Amy.
"We've got Father and Mother and each other," said Beth contentedly from her corner.
Many readers will recognize this as the opening of Louisa May Alcott's "Little Women," and for eight times only, the award-winning Equity professional East Lynne Theater Company will present "Louisa May Alcott's Christmas," adapted and performed by ELTC's Artistic Director, Gayle Stahlhuth. Her past solo Christmas performances of stories by L. Frank Baum, O. Henry, Mark Twain, and Mary Wilkins Freeman have been praised by reviewers and audience alike. With the flick of a wrist, the bend of the waist, the turn of the head, and a change in voice, she brings thirty different characters to life in a heartbeat.
Tales include the opening of "Little Women" as well as Alcott's short stories "How It All Happened" and "Tessa's Surprises." All involve the coming together of family, friends, and neighbors at Christmastime to give gifts of love, laughter, and hope.
Since becoming ELTC's Artistic Director in 1999, Gayle has produced 66 different shows (some returned for another season), including 17 world premieres and 8 New Jersey premieres, and directed more than half of them. She's appeared in Off-Broadway, regional and touring productions, and has been awarded commissions from The National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, the Missouri and Illinois Humanities Councils, Theatreworks/USA and other theaters, and grants from the NJ Humanities Council, the NYS Council on the Arts, and the Mid-Atlantic Foundation for the Arts. She is an Active Member of the Dramatists Guild, SAG/AFTRA, and is in her 40th year as a member of Actors' Equity Association.
"Louisa May Alcott's Christmas performs on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 23 and 24, Sunday, Dec. 2, Friday through Sunday, Dec. 7-9, Friday, Dec. 14 at 8:00 p.m., and a 2:00 p.m. matinee on Saturday, Dec. 8. There is also a special matinee on Friday, Dec. 14 for Wildwood school students. The location is The First Presbyterian Church, 500 Hughes St. in Cape May, where the company is in residence. As usual with ELTC's Christmas shows, the company reduces its regular ticket price as an early holiday gift to its audience. Tickets are $25 for general admission; $15 for full-time students, and as always with ELTC productions, those ages twelve and under are free when accompanied by parents or guardians.
The Dinner-and-an-ELTC-Show-Package still continues with Aleathea’s Restaurant and The Washington Inn. (410 Bank Street and Frescos are closed for the season.)
Season tickets for 2013 are available and make a great Christmas present! Price is still only $80 for four shows, and tickets may be used in any way at any time.
For information and reservations, call East Lynne at 884-5898 or visit the web site at
Pictured: Storyteller Gayle Stahlhuth performs East Lynne Theater Company's "Louisa May Alcott's Christmas." Photo credit: Lee O'Connor.