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Investigating The Murders in the Rue Morgue: Perspectives on Poe and the Play

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​​​​​​​​​

Octobe​​​r 30, 2021, 10 a.m. – noon

Online via Zoom

Free and open to the public

Join the College of Arts & Sciences for a Saturday Symposium program exploring various aspects of the UD REP's production of Edgar Alan Poe's The Murders in the Rue Morgue—from literary aspects, to myths and legends about Poe's local history, to how a piece of fiction makes its way to a spine-tingling audio presentation.

  • Tom Leitch, professor, English, The Undead Poe
  • Mary Torbey, curator, Newark History Museum, Poe in Newark: Fact or Legend?
  • UD REP Panel: Michael Gotch, adapter and director, Eileen Smitheimer, sound designer, From Page to Sound Stage

The program will provide ample opportunity for questions and answers with the panel after the presentations.

REGISTER NOW

QUESTIONS ABOUT SATURDAY SYMPOSIUM?
EMAIL: saturday-symposium@udel.edu
CALL: 302-831-6075​

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​Thomas Leitch

Tom Leitch

Thomas Leitch, trained as a literary scholar at Columbia and Yale, drifted into cinema studies when he discovered a love of storytelling that transcended literature. Even before he came to Delaware to teach film studies, he had already begun to explore this love in his first book, What Stories Are: Narrative Theory and Interpretation. Since then he has taught undergraduate courses in film, specializing in popular Hollywood genres from romantic comedy to film noir, and graduate courses in literary and cultural theory. In addition to Perry Mason and Crime Films, which was nominated for an Edgar Allan Poe Award in 2003, he has written two books on Alfred Hitchcock and coedited a third. For the past ten years, most of his work, especially Film Adaptation and Its Discontents: From Gone with the Wind to The Passion of the Christ, has focused on the process of textual adaptation and its broader implications for the teaching of English. He regularly reviews mystery and suspense fiction for Kirkus Reviews, where he is Mystery Editor.​

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Michael Gotch

Michael Gotch

Michael Gotch is a 2003 graduate of UD's Professional Theatre Training Program (PTTP). He has been seen at the REP as Jesus in the World Premiere of Theresa Rebeck's O Beautiful, Tom in The Glass Menagerie, Elyot in Private Lives, Lenny in The Homecoming, Biff in Death of a Salesman and Marlow in She Stoops to Conquer, among others. He co-directed Dancing at Lughnasa, as well as played Michael, and also opened the REP's 2009-2010 season in the one-person show, I Am My Own Wife.

Before joining the REP, Michael worked at many of the country's leading theatres. Past productions include Milwaukee Repertory Theatre's World Premiere of Jeffrey Hatcher's Armadale and I Am My Own Wife. Off-Broadway credits include the U.S. Premiere of Sjvek (Theatre for a New Audience), Richard III, Murder By Poe (The Acting Company), Mercadet (Culture Project).

His regional credits include Algernon in The Importance of Being Earnest (South Coast Repertory); Salieri in Amadeus (Actors Theatre of Louisville); Jeff Nomination and After Dark Award for Chicago Premiere of Shakespeare's R&J (Chicago Shakespeare Theatre); at American Player's Theatre: Julius Caesar, Timon of Athens, The Merchant of Venice, and Much Ado About Nothing (for which he received a Falstaff Award Nomination); The Taming of the Shrew, Richard II (Milwaukee Shakespeare), Henry V(Delaware Theatre Company) and Measure for Measure and Much Ado About Nothing (Lake Tahoe Shakespeare).​

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Eileen Smitheimer

Eileen Smitheimer

Eileen Smitheimer has provided lighting and sound designs for theatre productions in regional, university, and civic organizations. Her design credits include The Walnut Street Theatre, The Arden Theatre Company, The Huntington Theatre Company, Delaware Theatre Company, Surflight Theatre, Queens Theatre in the Park, The Russian Ballet, Drexel Institute, Allentown College, Tennessee Williams Fine Arts Center, The Miniature Theatre of Chester, Hope Summer Repertory, Music Theatre North, City Theatre, First Stage, Southern Methodist University, Enchantment Theatre Company's world-touring magic show A Magical Fantasy, and the American tour of the Bolshoi Ballet. She worked for four years as Sound Designer/Engineer and Master Electrician at Southern Methodist University teaching courses in sound design/engineering and as a freelance engineer/designer at McFarlin Auditorium.

Ms. Smitheimer received her B.A. and E.E.T. degrees from Purdue University. She serves as a Vice–commissioner of the Sound Commission of the United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT), is a member of the International Organization of Scenographers, Theatre Architects and Technicians (OISTAT) working group on Sound Design, and was a participant in the OISTAT Colloquium on Theater Sound Design, Royal National Theatre, London, England, the first international conference of theatrical sound designers. She was also part of the planning and staffing committee for the Sound and Lighting Design Exposition at the 2003 and 2007 Prague Quadrennial.​

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Mary Torbey

Mary Torbey

Mary Torbey is a native of Newark, Delaware. She graduated from Newark High School, earned a BA in History Education from the University of Delaware, and a post-graduate certificate in Paralegal Studies from the Widener University School of Law. She began volunteering at the Newark History Museum in 2010, and was named curator in January of 2021. She is also curator of textiles at the Delaware Military Museum. Additionally, she has been involved with fife and drum corps, Civil War reenacting, and Revolutionary War reenacting for over 40 years, underscoring her lifelong interest in American history.​

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