On October 31, 2014, fans of the darker literary persuasion will find a very special treat at the Somerville Theatre. At 8pm the house lights will go down, and Edgar Allan Poe will return. In “Nevermore: An Evening With Edgar Allan Poe,” Jeffrey Combs, known as Herbert West in Re-Animator, several Star Trek TV characters, and the eccentric FBI agent in The Frighteners, will fill Poe’s shoes, coat, and personage. Combs’ portrayal of the Boston-born author is so mesmerizing that attendees will forget that Poe has left us and that it is, in fact, not 1848.
For the occasion of this rare night, “Nevermore” producer and Boston filmmaker Izzy Lee has commissioned the award-winning art studio Phantom City Creative to create a rendition of Combs as Boston’s favorite wayward son. The stark, romantic image combines the image of Poe along with representations of his well-known tales The Raven, The Black Cat, and The Tell-Tale Heart. This illustration will be hand-screened on high-quality art paper, will be limited to 100 prints, and will be signed by Combs himself. The 18” x 24” “Nevermore” prints will be for presale for $50 (or $65 shipped) on www.nihilnoctem.com for pickup in the Somerville Theatre’s lobby on the evening of the Halloween show; any remaining prints will be for sale then as well.
Additionally, fans in the Boston area can have their art print signed in person at two different locations:
Scarlet Letter Press and Gallery, 102 Wharf St., Salem, MA, on October 29, 2014, from 6-8pm. Graham Humphreys will be also signing posters.
Comicazi, 407 Highland Ave., Somerville, MA, on October 30, 2014, from 12noon-1pm. Legendary artist Graham Humphreys will be signing posters from 12-2pm.
“I was honored when was asked to create a poster for Nevermore,” says illustrator Justin Erickson. “Right away, I knew I wanted to do an illustration of Jeffrey Combs as Edgar Allan Poe that touched on some of Poe’s most well-known works such as The Raven, The Tell-Tale Heart, and The Black Cat.”
“Nevermore” will be the second night of a two-night event; on Thursday, October 30, at 6pm, the Edgar Allan Poe Bronze Bust Project will be unveiling the results of the successful Kickstarter to create—you guessed it—a bronze bust of Poe, created by renowned sculptor Bryan Moore. The bust will be unveiled in America’s oldest public library, the Boston Public Library. The event is free, open to the public, and will be showcased in the majestic Abbey Room of the palatial McKim Building. The Kicksarter was funded in part by a $10,000 donation from filmmaker Guillermo del Toro (Pacific Rim, Hellboy, Pan’s Labyrinth, The Strain); authors Neil Gaiman (American Gods, Coraline, Sandman) and Peter Straub (Ghost Story, The Talisman, Shadowland); and other Poe advocates and fans. Attending will be Moore; Lee; Boston College English Professor and Poe expert Paul Lewis; and Jeffrey Combs, the talented character actor who plays Poe in “Nevermore.”
Poe—the author of the widely acclaimed stories The Raven, The Tell-Tale Heart, and The Black Cat—pioneered macabre mystery narratives and provoked heated debates among his contemporaries. He earned little money, mixed reviews, and especially cold Boston receptions in his lifetime but found widespread acclaim posthumously as generations of fans recognized his genius.
As the “Nevermore” October 31st show date approaches, Moore and Lee are optimistic because they feel the tide is finally turning in Poe’s favor in Boston but also because the greater fan community—across North America and even Europe—has already shown support for giving Poe a prominent memorial in a prestigious hall near his birthplace.
For more information on Nevermore and the Edgar Allan Poe Bronze Bust Project, visit: www.facebook.com/EdgarAllanPoeBronzeBustProject.
About “Nevermore: An Evening With Edgar Allan Poe”
Written by Denis Paoli, known as the author of the Re-Animator screenplay and the “Masters of Horror” episode “The Black Cat,” also starring Combs as Poe, the special Halloween night rendition of “Nevermore” will be its first and only New England performance. Previously directed by Stuart Gordon (Re-Animator, From Beyond, Dagon, Stuck) in cities including Los Angeles, Montreal, Austin, and New York, Boston’s performance is being produced by Lee for the historic Somerville Theater in Davis Square on October 31 at 8pm. The play is set in 1848—one year after the death of Poe’s wife and muse, Virginia, and two years before his own death—and features Combs personifying him with 90 riveting minutes ranging from comedy to horror and tragedy.
Tickets are $35 general admission and available at www.somervilletheatreonline.com.