“Pontine Theatre is a small miracle. This theatre has used puppets, mime and stagecraft to convey visions of the past to modern audiences for more than 35 years. Artistic Directors, Marguerite Mathews and Greg Gathers, conspire to fascinate the contemporary mind with original works based on the stories and literature of New England. There’s really nothing else like it anywhere.” New Hampshire Magazine
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Pontine’s touring programs are supported by the Jack & Dorothy Byrne Foundation, the Lincoln Financial Foundation, and the New Hampshire State Council on the Arts, with additional support from the National Endowment for the Arts.
AVAILABLE DECEMBER 2016
A NEW ENGLAND CHRISTMAS
Seasonal stories and poems by noted New England authors. This program combines old favorities with newly discovered treasures in a performance featuring storytelling, puppetry, and lyrical movement. These charming holiday tales are sure to put audiences in the holiday spirit!
AVAILABLE MAY & JUNE 2017
Thomas Bailey Aldrich's
THE STORY OF A BAD BOY
Thomas Bailey Aldrich's classic story of a boy's adventures in fictional Rivermouth (Portsmouth), NH come to life in Pontine Theatre's production of The Story of a Bad Boy.
With the innovative use of puppetry and projected images, Greg Gathers and Marguerite Mathews tell the autobiographical story of a boy and his companions in mid-19th Portsmouth, New Hampshire, where he was sent to live under the watchful eyes of his grandfather and maiden aunt. The eyes were not so watchful as to keep the boy completely out of myschief.
Unlike earlier children's stories, The Story of a Bad Boy was not an idealized narrative. Hailed as the first realistic depiction of childhood in American fiction, it was considered an inspiration for The Adventures of Tom Sawyer , by Aldrich's friend Mark Twain.
AVAILABLE Year Round
HUMANITIES TO GO PROGRAMS
"Humanities to Go" is a program of the New Hampshire Humanities Council which offers substantial fee support for presenters of public programs in New Hampshire. For information: www.nhhc.org
NEW ENGLAND UTOPIA:
Pontine’s Artistic Directors, Marguerite Mathews and Greg Gathers, present scenes from their original work exploring the literature, philosophy and legacy of the American Transcendental Movement. Drawing on works by Emerson, Hawthorne, Thoreau, and other denizens of Concord MA during the great spiritual awakening of the 1830’s and ’40’s, THE COMMON HEART evokes an enlightened era when New Englanders sought to throw off their Puritan roots in favor of a closer, more personal communion with the divine essence of the natural world.
Silver Lake Summers:
An E. E. Cummings Revue
Pontine Theatre’s Co-Artistic Directors, Marguerite Mathews and Greg Gathers, explore the life and work of American poet and painter, Edward Estlin Cummings, a lifelong summer resident of Silver Lake in New Hampshire. Making use of Cummings’ papers at Harvard University, excerpts from his published works, family photos, and the environment at Silver Lake, the presentation explores Cummings’ special connection to New Hampshire and the ways in which his New Hampshire experience shaped his artistic vision and body of work.
The Power of Community in the Work of Sarah Orne Jewett
This program by Pontine Theatre’s Co-Artistic Directors, Marguerite Mathews and Greg Gathers, is based on the life and work of 19th century New England author, Sarah Orne Jewett. The presentation explores issues of community as reflected in Jewett’s stories, and the ways in which her regional portraits speak about the essential New England character, universal experiences of geographic isolation and cultural insulation, and how individual identity is shaped and defined by community. The presentation combines excerpts from the company’s original productions, “The Country of the Pointed Firs,” and “Dunnet Landing Stories,” with contextual remarks and audience discussion.
PRETTY HALCYON DAYS:
On the Beach With Ogden Nash
Ogden Nash and his family spent their summers on Little Boar’s Head in North Hampton NH. Using examples from their original stage play, “Home is Heaven,” Pontine Theatre’s Co-Artistic Directors, Marguerite Mathews and Greg Gathers, explore the ways in which Nash’s life on the New Hampshire seashore influenced his poems, giving the reader insight into the man, his character and his ideas about family, society and nature. These themes form a rich portrait of the poet, and underscore how the intersection of literature and local history can deepen our understanding and appreciation of everyday events in our own backyard.