At Court, Kate Fry brings a phosphorescent glow to Emily Dickinson

Wednesday, 15 November 2017, 01:49:14 AM. WEISS: The actress, a Chicago favorite, brings emotional fire and sparkling intelligence to the poet in the one-woman show.
Many years ago, on a visit to Amherst, Massachusetts, I visited the Emily Dickinson Museum — the meticulously preserved family home where the poet spent her entire life. And I still remember the immaculate white dress that hung on the door in her notably spare bedroom, conjuring the petite, pristine ghost of the poet herself. Just such a white dress is now being worn by actress Kate Fry in her gloriously phosphorescent performance in Court Theatre’s production of “The Belle of Amherst,” William Luce’s one-woman play (premiered by Julie Harris in 1976) that might just be the most enduring and revelatory portrait of the artist we have aside from the plain, prim daguerrotype taken of her in 1847, when she was 17. ‘THE BELLE OF AMHERST’ Highly recommended When: Through Dec. 3 Where: Court Theatre, 5535 S. Ellis Tickets: $50 – $68 Info: (773) 753-4472; www.courttheatre.org Run time: 2 hours with one intermission Kate Fry as poet Emily Dickinson in the Court Theatre production of “The Belle of Amherst.” (Photo: Michael Brosilow) As Dickinson herself wrote: “Phosphorescence. Now there’s a word to lift your hat … to find that phosphorescence, that light within, that’s the genius behind poetry.” Fry, too, possesses a magical inner light. Her emotional fire, sparkling intelligence, knowing wit, subdued beauty and modest yet blazing certitude is widely admired by Chicago audiences. And in Dickinson — the eccentric Victorian spinster whose enigmatic, precision-tooled work was barely...Read more
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