Ocracoke Island will have a chance to see some live theater in a post Valentine’s Day treat with a free production of “Love Letters,” at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 15, in the Ocracoke Community Center.

“Love Letters,” by A. R. Gurney, which opened off-Broadway in 1989, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for drama. The play centers on two characters, Melissa Gardner and Andrew Makepeace Ladd III. Using the epistolary form, they sit side by side at tables and read the notes, letters and cards. Spanning almost 50 years, beginning in the early 1930s, they discuss their hopes and ambitions, dreams and disappointments, victories and defeats that have passed between them throughout their separated lives.

A performance favorite for busy name actors, the play requires little preparation, and lines need not be memorized.

Presented by Hotline of Hyde County, there is no charge for tickets, but seating is limited, and tickets are required.

Donations are being accepted to benefit residents affected by Hurricane Dorian. 

Performers Wally and Maria Hurst of Raleigh have been involved in theater for more than 50 years.

Maria has directed, choreographed, costumed, stage managed and performed in over 200 productions. In her 15 years as administrative manager at Lakeland Cultural Arts Center, Littleton, Halifax County, she received 18 awards. She has performed in several theatres throughout the state of California and most recently was one of the original cast work-shopping “An Extra Penny” as it prepared for its journey to Broadway.

Wally is the former Managing Director at Lakeland Theatre and the former director of the Norris Theatre at Louisburg College. He has performed on stage, done film work, and appeared in one (UK) television series as well.

Wally has produced more than 400 shows in California and North Carolina in academic, professional, and community theatre, and directed about 175 0f those productions, including several productions of Shakespeare’s plays.

He studied with the late Cecily Berry, voice director of the Royal Shakespeare Company, and earned a master’s degree in Shakespeare Authorship Studies from Brunel University in London.

The play may not be engaging for children under age 16.   

More about the play can be found online and clips of several productions can be seen online on YouTube. 


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