Now that the Rosendale Theatre has rebuilt its 1920s-era stage, upgraded its lighting and sound systems and made more room backstage by replacing massive old air conditioners with sleeker modern units, audiences can expect to see the beloved community cinema hosting lots more live theatrical productions. Last year’s staging of It’s a Wonderful Life as a 1940s radio broadcast, complete with period costumes, vintage commercials and fabulous Foley-table sound effects, was such a big success that the Theatre is following it up this weekend with another production in a similar vein, titled Vintage Hitchcock.
Everybody knows Alfred Hitchcock’s classic suspense movies, and some of us remember Alfred Hitchcock Presents on our black-and-white TVs. But few still living are old enough to remember the audio-only series that preceded it on the airwaves. Vintage Hitchcock takes the plots of three of the original horror master’s films – The Lodger, Sabotage and The 39 Steps – and merges them into a triple feature that recaptures the way that live sound engaged America’s popular imagination back in the Golden Age of Radio.
Edge-of-your seat suspense, cold-blooded murder, espionage, romance, danger and derring-do: It’s all here for three shows, beginning at 8 p.m. on Friday, September 9 and at 2 and 8 p.m. on Saturday, September 10. Ann Citron directs, Fre Atlast executes the sound effects and Debbie Lan will be on the piano. The cast features Virginia Ferri, Jim Granger, Brian Mathews, Molly Parker Myers and David Ringwood, all playing multiple roles; those who caught It’s a Wonderful Life know that watching a single actor have a conversation with him- or herself while simultaneously voicing two different characters is a hoot-and-a-half!
Tickets to Vintage Hitchcock cost $15 general admission, $12 for members of the Rosendale Theatre Collective, and can be ordered online at https://vintagehitchcock.bpt.me or purchased at the box office. For more information, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, call (845) 658-8989 or visit www.rosendaletheatre.org.