By MARCIA LANE
PALATKA – So what do an English pirate, a woman obsessed with green and the first wife of Henry Flagler have in common?
They’re all showing up at the Bronson-Mulholland House this Saturday to tell about their lives and to do it with a theatrical flair. What else would you expect from the Double Trouble Theatre Troupe?
On Wednesday Dianne Jacoby and Maggie Thierrien were at the house at 100 Madison St. putting on the finishing touches for “Haunted Theatre: The Last Act.”
Thierrien was blocking out her moves, getting into the moans necessary for her portrayal of Elizabeth, the first European to be buried in Tolomato Cemetery. Her finery turned out to be so eye-catching grave robbers came and stripped her naked, stealing away her clothes.
“Bones. I think we have enough bones,” said Jacoby as she set up scenes in the downstairs rooms. “We really want people to focus on the ghosts.”
Jacoby, who wrote the stories, says it’s a fun-filled, scary evening of rollicking theater.
“PG rating,” agreed Thierrien. Expect a little fun, some yells and a creep or two. Younger children may not get all the references, but teens and adults should have a blast.
Visitors who take the 35 minute tour up and down stairs at the Bronson-Mulhollad House will meet:
Henry Flagler’s deranged wife Ida Alice is enraged with Henry for choosing “that bug-infested wilderness of St. Augustine” for their honeymoon. So she haunts the Hotel Ponce de Leon and to this day she chases his ghost through the halls and dares Henry to send her back to that insane asylum one more time. She can’t wait to tell you her story,
The ghostly but resplendent Haitian General Jorge Biassou adores showing off his magnificent military uniform with its feathers and ribbons and medals galore all the while regaling you with tales of his fancy dress balls celebrated after he was thrown out of Haiti. But beware his tales of leading his troops in vicious battles during the bloody revolution. It seemed to have twisted his flamboyant brain.
There’s even a dashing Pirate Captain, the murderous Buccaneer Robert Searles, expertly portrayed in all his cruelty. But this bold pirate’s fate proves grim when after cut a bloody swath through the streets of the Oldest City he makes the mistake of killing Flaviana. The innocent but pugnacious ghost of Searles’ youngest victim taunts and haunts him until he takes his own worthless, wretched life.
The ghost bride had finally found her true love. He adored her and even as she sewed her wedding gown and prepared for her wedding day, the sudden arrival of her secret burden took her life. Now she is such a sad ghost as her child and her lover visit her tomb. But rage begins to build in this lovely ghost as life takes them further and further away from her.
The beauteous Green Lady will take you breath away with her luscious green dyed clothing. Her brain knows there is arsenic in the dye but her vanity forces her to continue wearing those beautiful green clothes.
Double Trouble has put on the longer play at a variety of locations including Limehouse Theatre, the St. Augustine Lighthouse and Raintree Restaurant. It’s a first for Palatka and is sponsored by the Putnam County Historical Society.
Cost is $8 for the Haunted Theater. Tickets are available at the door or can be purchased through EventBrite.
Tours start at 6 p.m. and run about every 20 minutes. Last tour is 7:30.
Funds go for repair of the contents of the house, which is open free to the public every Saturday as well as the first Sunday of each month.
Once you take the tour, stay around for the movie “The Creature From the Black Lagoon.” Parts of the now famous horror film were filmed in Rice Creek in the early 1950s.
The movie is free and will be shown on the lawn of the Bronson-Mulholland House at 8 p.m. Bring a blanket or chair.
All in all, a comforting way to spend a Saturday with some spooky folks.