Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Scotland and Twain Shall Meet

As a boy in Kirkaldy, in the county of Fife, Scotland, Thomas Hubbard once bought a comic book version of Mark Twain's "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court" at the local railway station bookstall. Hubbard, today a highly regarded literary scholar, novelist and poet, wondered what that strange word "Connecticut" meant. Now he knows it well. Currently the Lynn Wood Neag Distinguished Visiting Professor in the Department of English at the University of Connecticut, he notes that one of Twain's last essays was on the child poet Marjorie Fleming, also a Kirkcaldy native: Her grave is just a few minutes' walk from that station bookstall. Hubbard will share his lifelong passion for Mark Twain and his Scottish connections in a free talk on Tuesday, April 19, at The Mark Twain House & Museum. A reception with wine and hors d'oeuvres will open the event at 5 pm, with the talk at 5:30. The event follows the format of the museum's popular "The Trouble Begins at 5:30" series, which offers free after-work talks each spring and fall. The house and museum at 351 Farmington Ave., Hartford are open Monday through Saturday, 9:30 am to 5:30 pm, and Sunday, noon to 5:30 pm. For more information, call 860-247-0998 or visit www.marktwainhouse.org.

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Lauren Yarger with playwright Alfred Uhry at the Mark Twain House. Photo: Jacques Lamarre)

My Bio

Lauren Yarger has written, directed and produced
numerous shows and special events for both secular and Christian audiences. She co-wrote a Christian musical version of “A Christmas Carol” which played to sold-out audiences of over 3,000 in Vermont and was awarded the 2000 Vermont
Bessie (theater and film awards) for “People’s Choice for Theatre.”

Yarger trained for three years in the Broadway
League’s Producer Development Program, completed the Commercial Theater Institute's Producing Three-Day Training and produced a one-woman musical about Mary Magdalene that toured nationally and closed with an off-Broadway
run.

She was a Fellow at the National Critics Institute at the O'Neill
Theater Center in Waterford, CT. She writes reviews of Broadway and off-Broadway theater (the only ones you can find in the US with an added Christian perspective) at http://reflectionsinthelight.blogspot.com/. She
is editor of The award-winning Connecticut Arts Connection (http://ctarts.blogspot.com),

She is a theater reviewer for the Manchester Journal-Inquirer. She previously served as Contributing Editor for BroadwayWorld.com, Connecticut theater editor
for CurtainUp.com and as Connecticut and New York reviewer for American Theater Web. Yarger is a book reviewer and writer for Publishers Weekly and freelances for other sites. She is a member of the National Book Critics Circle.

She is a freelance writer and playwright and member of The Drama Desk, The Outer Critics Circle, The American Theater Critics Association and The League of Professional Theatre Women. She served as a judge for the SDX Awards presented
by the Society of Professional Journalists. She also is a member of the Connecticut Critics Circle (awards committee).

A former newspaper editor and graduate of the University of Missouri’s School of Journalism, Yarger also worked in arts management for the Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts,
the Hartford Symphony Orchestra and served for nine years as the Executive Director of Masterwork Productions, Inc. She lives with her husband in West Granby, CT. They have two adult children.

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