As a monsoon raged outside the Broadway St. Columbus Theatre, inside the historic edifice, actress Jill Dalton was also taking the city by storm. Playing to a sold-out house Saturday night, Ms. Dalton delivered a performance which brought down the house. The intimate venue was ideal for establishing a direct rapport with the actress on stage as she wove a tapestry of memories from the mind and soul of the notorious accused murderess. At times, as she stepped out from behind the footlights to address the audience personally, it was as if we were all transported back in time to the garden of Maplecroft, her Fall River mansion after the acquittal.
It was a tour de force encapsulation of the major events in the life of Lizzie Borden, from her relationship with her older sister Emma, her friendship with actress Nance O’Neil, to life on Second Street, her Grand Tour trip, trial and acquittal- and of course- the day of the homicides. With a masterful, sometimes humorous, and always compelling portrayal, Miss Dalton has taken the two-dimensional picture most of us have of Lizzie Borden and fleshed her out into a living, breathing, complex human being- sometimes frightening- sometimes sympathetic. The audience was spellbound – and all too soon it was over. This is one not to miss.
Fall River, take note– Lizzie Borden Live should be “coming home”! For upcoming dates check the web site at http://www.lizziebordenlive.com/