“The Scarlet Letter” – A Note from the Director

“There is no privacy that cannot be penetrated. No secret can be kept in the civilized world. Society is a masked ball where everyone hides his real character and reveals it by hiding.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

When I decided to direct The Scarlet Letter, I knew there would have to be something different about the way it was performed: it could not be set in the 1600’s. It is easy to take a story like Hester Prynne’s and cast it off into a distant time; making the problem one we can separate from ourselves and view as a story, not a reflection. When I made the decision to modernize the story, moving it to the early 1960’s, I knew this time period came with baggage. The white picket fence conjures up memories of comfort, peace, perfection, all things we fight to achieve in our current time. To thrust a story about adultery, revenge, and guilt into an era focused on housewives, martinis and ‘safe’ cigarettes, the audience would be forced to study the characters and see them beyond the “letters” they have been branded with. That is what I am asking of you today, to absorb the story, the people and the message wholeheartedly.
I have been so blessed by this cast and crew and their dedication to the stories and the characters they are portraying. Don’t let their hard work go unnoticed, it is not often actors are asked to step so fully into the characters they are portraying. There is no hiding with a story like this, and the actors have embraced the emotion, lines, and personalities in ways I have seldom seen. I hope you enjoy this show, and I thank each of you for coming.

– Breinne Reeder