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Lone Brick Theatre Company to Perform at Philadelphia Fringe Festival

Widener's Lizzy Yenser performs

Widener's Lizzy Yenser performs "Dissever My Soul."

Widener University’s Lone Brick Theatre Company opens its 2015-16 season and makes its Neighborhood Fringe debut with the original production “Dissever My Soul.”

“Dissever My Soul” is an immersive theatrical experience that explores the final days of Edgar Allan Poe’s life as the father of the detective story attempts to unravel his greatest mystery: that of life itself.  Through a draught of laudanum, Poe and audience members alike delve into a spirit world where the writer’s characters come to life to further their own agendas; but are they friends or foes?  The veil between fiction and reality thins and is finally torn asunder as Poe navigates the macabre world of his making to fulfill the promise of the love story he never put to paper.

Inspired by Poe’s life and writings, infused with a hint of dramatic conspiracy theory, “Dissever My Soul” is an original play conceptualized by Lone Brick Theatre Company Director Robert A. Reutter and collaboratively developed with an artistic team comprised of Widener University students. 

“The show is meant to explore Edgar Allan Poe in a manner to which he is rarely treated as a subject,” explained Reutter. “Somewhere amid the skewed perspectives of Poe as an alcoholic, as a drug addict, as a mentally unstable man, history and popular myth have created a rather unflattering view of a Poe who was constantly, tragically coming apart at the seams.  What is often forgotten is that even among his greatest critics, he was labeled a genius, and Poe himself had a finely tuned, logical mind.  His writing, both fiction and non-fiction, suggest a man much more rational and in control than history would have him.”theatre performers

“Dissever My Soul”will be performed at Historic Rittenhouse Town as part of the 2015 Philadelphia Fringe Festival. Doors open at 8:40 p.m. for 9 p.m. shows on Sept. 4, 5, 7, 8, 10, 14, 15, 17, 18 and 19. There will be no late entry granted.

Tickets are $15 and available for purchase through the FringArts Box Office. Visit to purchase tickets online.

“Rittenhouse Town and its proximity to Wissahickon Creek provide a perfect backdrop for ‘Dissever,’” Reutter explained.  “Poe frequented the Wissahickon Trail and perceived the locale as magical.”

Running 90 minutes and limited to an audience of 15 per performance, “Dissever My Soul”is an intimate and personal experience in which audiences will interact with Poe and the denizens of his imagination.  During the show audiences will be walking, standing and climbing stairs. Members of the audience may also be left alone, in the dark or in confined spaces for brief periods.  The show is performed both indoors and outdoors.  Audience members should dress accordingly.

Performances will run as scheduled in light rain.  Rain dates will be available for heavier weather conditions.

Food and drink will be offered to audience members periodically during the show.  Should audience members have allergy concerns, they are strongly encouraged to decline when food is offered.

For more information, contact Reutter at .

Lone Brick Theatre is Widener University’s resident theatre company dedicated to producing non-traditional theatre through innovative scripts, staging, directing, and performance. Drawing from the talent and ingenuity of Widener’s students, faculty, and staff alike, the company also seeks to give a creative voice to the rich diversity of the campus community while broadening the traditional role of theatre as a humanities discipline by actively seeking venues for cross-disciplinary collaboration.

Widener University is a private, metropolitan university that connects curricula to social issues through civic engagement. Dynamic teaching, active scholarship, personal attention, leadership development and experiential learning are key components of the Widener experience. A comprehensive doctorate-granting university, Widener comprises eight schools and colleges that offer liberal arts and sciences, professional and pre-professional curricula leading to associate, baccalaureate, master’s and doctoral degrees. The university’s campuses in Chester, Exton and Harrisburg, Pa., and Wilmington, Del., serve some 6,000 students. Widener is proud to be a tobacco-free university. Visit the university website,



The 2015 Fringe Festival, presented by FringeArts, is a 17-day-long performing arts celebration taking over Philadelphia September 3-19 and boasting hundreds of performances by local, national and international artists. The party continues every night with FringeArts' Late Night programming in its beautiful venue on the Delaware waterfront - which houses the La Peg restaurant and bar, as well as a spectacular outdoor beer garden. FringeArts amplifies the cultural vibrancy of Philadelphia year-round by presenting the most cutting-edge, world-class performances from all over the world, cultivating local arts innovators, and creating a fun atmosphere for artists and art lovers alike to socialize, converse and strengthen Philadelphia's artistic community.