Friday, May 27, 2011

Story of a Bad Boy

Thomas Bailey Aldrich's classic story of a boy's adventures in fictional Rivermouth (Portsmouth), NH come to life in Pontine Theatre's production of Story of a Bad Boy. The play will be presented at the Merrimack Public Library on Wednesday, June 8, at 7 pm.

With the innovative use of puppetry, Greg Gathers and M. Marguerite Mathews tell the autobiographical story of a boy and his companions in mid-19th New Hampshire, where he was sent to prepare for college under the watchful eyes of his grandfather and maiden aunt. The eyes were not so watchful as to keep the boy completely out of myschief.

Unlike earlier children's stories, Story of a Bad Boy was not an idealized narrative. Hailed as the first realistic depiction of childhood in American fiction, it was considered an inspiration for The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, by Aldrich's friend Mark Twain. The novel was originally published as a serial in Our Young Friends magazine.

Aldrich, pictured at right, never did get to college due to the untimely death of his father. Instead, he went to work for his uncle in New York and immersed himself in the city's literary life. Ultimately, he returned to Boston where he became the editor of the prestigious Atlantic Monthly.

Seating is limited, so you are encouraged to reserve a seat here, email, or call 424-5021. Thanks to the Friends of the Library for helping to make this performace possible.

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