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Wilmington, NC 10 - Much Ado About Murder

Wilmington, NC 10 - Much Ado About Murder

Titel: Wilmington, NC 10 - Much Ado About Murder
Autoren: Ellen Elizabeth Hunter
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    Jon and I had front row seats at the Hannah Block Second Street Stage theater . My sister Melanie sat beside me with her husband Cameron Jordan on her left.
    On stage, our half-sister Scarlett Barrett sang a Cole Porter tune, Begin the Beguine . The audience swayed, finding it impossible to resist the rhythm. Scarlett is a talented and famous Broadway star. Most recently, she played the lead female role of Miss Adelaide in the revival of Guys and Dolls at the Nederlander Theater. But Scarlett had not signed on for the national tour so when the show went on the road, Scarlett remained in New York with her husband Ray. “I wouldn’t dream of leaving Ray to go on tour,” she had told our Aunt Ruby during a telephone conversation in the spring.
    And clever Aunt Ruby had suggested that as they owned a house at Wrightsville Beach, she and Ray should consider spending more time “down home with kin folks.” Scarlett and Ray stayed through the summer, loving Wilmington and Wrightsville Beach so much they decided to make the move permanent. Ray could easily direct his financial investments from here and Scarlett was ready for a break.
    Now Ray accompanied her on the piano along with a small orchestra that included an alto sax. Scarlett’s Cabaret Night was sold out with an audience of about two hundred filling the historic auditorium. In addition to members of the Thalian Association along with actors, directors, choreographers, producers, and tech crews, members of the local and national press were present. There was Marimar McNaughton representing Lumina News and Wrightsville Beach Magazine . Francis Weller from WECT-TV. A reporter from WHQR. A couple of journalists from the Star-News . And because of his friendship with Scarlett, Patrick Healy of the New York Times had flown in to cover the event.
    Scarlett sang the best of Cole Porter, including my favorite You’d Be So Nice To Come Home To . Jon and I held hands and I had to stop myself from humming along. She sang Rodgers and Hart’s Blue Moon and Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Some Enchanted Evening from South Pacific, my favorite musical ever.
    During a brief intermission, we stretched our legs and wandered out into the lobby, restored to its 1943 appearance along with furniture from the period. “This must have been the hottest place in town when it was the USO,” I said to Jon and Melanie. Cam had been dragged off by someone wanting to talk television business.
    Melanie, too, was working the crowd with her eyes. Honing in on her target, she told me, “There’s Dalton Montjoy . My sources tell me he’s putting his house on the market. I’ve got to snag him.”
    And she was gone. Off to talk to Mr. Montjoy who I knew from the neighborhood and who tonight was leaning on a cane.
    I laughed up at Jon. “He hasn’t got a prayer. Don’t you run off too. ”
    He gave me a squeeze. “Not a chance.”
    “Why do I love those old songs so much?” I’ve often wondered why the music of my parents’ day was so absolutely splendid and lyrical. Almost as if the best in music had already been written.
    “They’re classics,” he replied. “They’ll always be popular.”
    “You’re so smart,” I praised him which pleases him no end. Hey, if you’ve got a wonderful husband you’ve got to keep him happy.
    After the intermission, Scarlett moved on to the greatest songs of Irving Berlin and I was in heaven. “I love his music,” I whispered to Jon as my amazing half-sister sang They Say It’s Wonderful .
    Jon whispered back, “He is America’s greatest song writer.”
    At the end of the concert, Scarlett rose to take bow after bow as the audience cheered and gave her a standing ovation. Scarlett looks just like our mama. Favors her just as Melanie does. Creamy ivory complexion, auburn hair, yellow-green eyes. Long luxurious black eyelashes that make me ill with envy. Scarlett wore a white evening gown and on stage she appeared to glow.
    Cries of “Encore, encore,” rose from the audience. Scarlett moved closer to the piano to sing one more tune by Berlin, Always.
    Taking her final bow, Scarlett left the stage and the cheering audience to join us in the front row in the seat we had saved for her.
    Then Susan Habas , the Thalian Association’s Managing Director, came onto the stage.
    “Doesn’t she look stunning in that sequined sheath dress?” Melanie whispered to me as Susan’s dress shimmered in the spotlights.
    “That’s an impossible act to
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