Echoes of The War:
"The Old Lady Shows her Medals" & "The New Word"
By J.M. Barrie
Directed by Eleanor Reissa
July 6th 2004 through August 29th 2004
The Mint Theater
311 West 43rd St, 5th floor
With ECHOES OF THE WAR, Mint Theater once again turned its spotlight on an author whose indelible achievement in writing for children had overshadowed his remarkable work for adults: J.M. Barrie, best known for Peter Pan.
THE OLD LADY SHOWS HER MEDALS and THE NEW WORD were published in 1919 (along with two other one-acts) under the collective title ECHOES OF THE WAR. Mint used the same title for an evening of theater that the New York Post hailed as “a resounding success.”1
Leading the cast were two of New York’s most esteemed stage actors, Richard Easton and Frances Sternhagen. Easton played the blustery patriarch of THE NEW WORD, a father who must break his lifelong reserve to find the words to say to his son before he leaves for the front. Sternhagen played the title role in THE OLD LADY SHOWS HER MEDALS, a lonely charwoman who lies about having a son at the front lines. She “steals every heart in the house, with the placid efficiency of a practiced dip lifting your wallet. The magic lies in her never seeming to do anything at all—you won’t know your heart’s gone till you feel the ache she’s left in its place.”2
For her acclaimed performance in THE OLD LADY SHOWS HER MEDALS, Frances Sternhagen received a 2005 Drama Desk nomination for Outstanding Actress in a Play.
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THE NEW WORD
- Mrs. Torrance Anne-Marie Cusson
- Mr. Torrance Richard Easton
- Roger Aaron Krohn
- Emma Jenny Strassburg
THE OLD LADY SHOWS HER MEDALS
- The Haggerty Woman Mary Ellen Ashley
- Mr. Willings Richard Easton
- Roger Aaron Krohn
- Mrs. Twymley Katherine McGrath
- Mrs. Mickleham Pat Nesbit
- Kenneth Dowey Gareth Saxe
- Sarah Ann Dowey Frances Sternhagen
- Set Design Vicki R. Davis
- Lighting Design Traci Klainer
- Costume Design Debra Stein
- Sound Design Bruce Ellman
- Properties Designer Judi Guralnick
- Dialects Amy Stoller
- Casting Sharron Bower
- Production Stage Manager Jana Llynn
- Assistant Stage Manager Donielle Lee
- Production Assistant Katherine Heberling
- Press Representative David Gersten & Associates
- Graphics Hey Jude Design, Inc.
J. ELLEN GAINOR: THE STAGE WOMEN'S WAR RELIEF FUND (1917)
Professor J. Ellen Gainor of Cornell University leads a stimulating discussion of J. M. Barrie and the last New York production of ECHOES OF THE WAR. Gainor is the author of The Plays of Susan Glaspell: A Contextual Study. She holds degrees from Harvard and Princeton Universities and the Yale School of Drama.
MARTIN MEISEL: ECHOES OF THE WAR - A DISCUSSION ON BARRIE AND WORLD WAR I-ERA DRAMA
Martin Meisel, Brander Matthews Professor of Dramatic Literature Emeritus at Columbia University, leads a discussion on the drama of J. M. Barrie and his contemporaries. Professor Meisel is the author of Shaw and 19th Century Theater and Realizations: Narrative, Pictorial and Theatrical Arts in 19th Century England.