Well they say the third time is the charm and you know I think they've got something there. I have been lucky enough to do Love Letters with three different leading men: Greg Leute, Robert Dimsey and now Peter Gutierrez. What was so fascinating to me as an actress--excuse me--as an actor, was that each and every time I performed this with a different co-star it was like doing a completely new play.

Not because I was in a different theatre...wearing different clothes...different sets...different cities, oh no, it was how the playwright's words were conveyed by my co-stars to me, as well as to the audience.

Each one put his own personal touch to it. And, in turn, my character Melissa changed each and every time I worked with someone new....

I have only wanted to reprise two acting roles in my life ...one was Billie Dawn in "Born Yesterday" and as Melissa in Gurney's "Love Letters." We were the only theatrical event for The Romanza Arts Festival in St. Augustine that went on for ten days. So I wanted to make sure this audience got its moneys worth. I put my "all" into it as did my co-star Peter Gutierrez who was just wonderful as Andy Makepeace Ladd III. Yep! That's the characters name.

Now the theater that it was held in The Gamache-Koger...well, let me put it this way, you know the musical "The Secret Garden," Well...."Love Letters" was done in "The Secret Theatre!!" I say "bravo" and "brava" to each and every audience member that found it!

The festival used many Cathedrals, Courtyards and Theatres and open venues ... it went from morning till night. This beautiful theater is in The Flagler College Student Union...and that's all you see when you get to the address--the outside of this student union. Luckily they had on a small easel "Love Letters" with an arrow, and when you got inside another sign with another arrow...and by g-d they found it!

I have had audience reaction before when I had done this but these audiences were so enthusiastic and got "everything."

Our director Anne Kraft, whom I did my first "Love Letters" with opposite Greg Leute brought out nuances in both of our parts that really made us look inside ourselves and gave us such food for thought on looking at line readings that just changed the whole perspective of how we played against each other.


In this play, the only time we stand is to enter and to leave. We never look at one another thru-out the entire show.... I have done this sharing the same desk--elbow to elbow--but this time we were set apart each with our own little environment. The lighting was very dramatic and beautifully orchestrated to highlight someone's monologue or presence of mind at the moment. And my presence of mind at the moment is "happy!" One of my friends, Maxine Smith, whom I have danced with in countless productions, wrote me and said, "Big congratulations Annie...that's wonderful...and to think you got to rest your feet!!!!

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