Edgar Allen Poe to scare up audience at Big Read

From The Register-Mail:

The Big Read kicks off with “An Evening with Edgar Allan Poe” at The Orpheum Theatre on Saturday.

“The Stories and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe” has been selected for the 2011 Big  Read.

Karly Steele, reference librarian at the Galesburg Public Library who oversees Big Read, said Poe was selected because “we had a lot of response with paranormal activities and thought it would be fun that all ages could be involved in. Everyone loves a good scary story.”

At the 7 p.m. event on Saturday, which is free, Poe will be portrayed by David Keltz, who gave his first performance at Edgar Allan Poe on Halloween night 1991 at Poe’s grave.

He will be reciting “Eldorado,” “The Tell-Tale Heart,” “The Black Cat,” “The Raven,” and “The Bells,” according to Steele.

Keltz has performed in Prague, Czech Republic, for the International Poe Festival, opening the festival at the Rudolfinum Concert Hall with “The Bells.” Stateside, he brings Edgar Poe to life throughout the United States for elementary and high schools, universities and private organizations…

Upcoming Edgar Allan Poe Events

– March 8, 1 p.m. — Book discussion of “The Beautiful Cigar Girl” by Daniel Stashower, a book about the true history behind Poe’s tale “The Mystery of Marie Roget.” The author will join in on the conversation by phone. 2 p.m. — “Edgar Allan Poe: Biography.” Learn more about this complex and versatile writer in a free viewing of the A&E Biography of Edgar Allan Poe, upstairs at the Galesburg Public Library.

– March 24, 6:30 p.m. — Decoding Poe. Knox College professor John Dooley will lead a discussion about the use of cryptography in Poe’s short story “The Gold Bug” and other works of fiction. Free and open to all, upstairs at the Galesburg Public Library.

– March 28, 6:30 p.m. — The Ghosts of Edgar Allan Poe. Come to the Charger Center, 1200 Buchanan St., Carthage, to spend a spine-tingling evening in the parlor of Edgar Allan Poe. Actor and educator Brian “Fox” Ellis will recount the tormented true tales of Poe’s life and how they led to his classic tales of terror. For more information, call the Carthage Public Library at (217) 357-3232.

– April 7, 7 p.m. — Paranormal investigator Sylvia Shults will present a bone-chilling program about ghosts in Illinois at the Galesburg Public Library. The first 20 attendees will receive a free copy of her book, “Ghosts of the Illinois River.” Teens and older children are invited to join.