Edgar & Emily

Edgar & Emily

By Joseph McDonough

Oct. 12 – Nov. 4, 2018

Tickets start at: $29.50

Preview Performances: Oct. 10 – 11 | Tickets start at: $18

Shimberg Playhouse, Straz Center for the Performing Arts

On This Page

What It's About

In January 1864, reclusive poet Emily Dickinson receives a surprise guest: Edgar Allan Poe. Although Poe died 15 years prior, he arrives quite alive and just as energized by death as ever before—one could say death kindly stopped for Emily, after all. Though the evening pits the pendulum of both poets’ personalities against the other in this comic fantasia, Emily and Edgar find they have a lot in common despite their differences. The heart tells the tale, you know.

Why It’s For You

Because you love to laugh. Because you can’t wait to get out all of your Halloween decorations every year. Because you’re a lit nerd, a lover of American history, or both. Because you’ve been simply dying for a good reason to release your inner spookykid. Because you love those TV episodes where they crossover two literary or historical figures in a meeting that never really happened but is pretty darned cool to imagine in a what-if. (And, hey, it’s another 90-minute show. Y’all seem to love those! You’ll have plenty of time after to go talk about it or get on with your life.)

Why We Chose It

We’ve got a big ol’ soft spot for Halloween, it’s been the only “holiday” we’ve celebrated by producing a show for the past 20 years. We adore the playfulness of this script. We’re thrilled to bring another non-published work for Tampa audiences, this show has in fact only had one other professional staging. We also really love that this script combines these dark literary giants (played by our own Paul J. Potenza and Katrina Stevenson), both obsessed with death in their own very unique ways, and manages to make it a laugh-out-loud comedy.
Katrina Stevenson and Paul Potenza in Jobsite's Edgar & Emily. (Photo by Pritchard Photography.)
Katrina Stevenson and Paul Potenza in Jobsite's Edgar & Emily. (Photo by Pritchard Photography.)

Critic Reviews

A-game acting ... These two actors could probably make the listings on eBay entertaining ... [Potenza] gives us a Poe who’s miserable, vain, haunted and exhausted from running ... [he] is one of the Bay area’s best actors ... Stevenson, meanwhile, is a coy Emily Dickinson, shrewd and self-possessed, just a little censorious of the famously raffish Poe, and not a bit attracted to the big bad world outside her window. David M. Jenkins directs capably ... The original music of Tom Kersey and Jeremy Douglass is a kind of third character in the play, setting the mood for some scenes and quietly undergirding others. – Creative Loafing Tampa


Cast & Crew

  • David M. Jenkins – Director
  • Eric Haak – Technical Director
  • Teah Banks – Stage Manager


  • Paul J. Potenza – Edgar Allan Poe
  • Katrina Stevenson – Emily Dickinson


  • Jo Averill-Snell – Lighting Designer
  • Teah Banks – Properties
  • Salem Brophy – Assistant Stage Manager
  • Scott Cooper* – Scenic Designer
  • Jeremy Douglass – Music Composer/Performer
  • David M. Jenkins – Sound Designer
  • Tom Kersey – Music Composer/Performer
  • Katrina Stevenson – Costume Designer

Set Construction Crew

  • Robert Brashear
  • Ramiro Capano
  • Chloe Dipaola
  • Alexander Eadier
  • Mario Gonzalez
  • Siera Herber
  • Jake Landherr
  • James Race
  • Cameron Shippy
  • Jon David Stauffer
  • Teah Roberts

* Member, United Scenic Artists

Patron Reviews

Cheryl and I loved Edgar and Emily. So much fun and, at times, so much poignancy. A few things drove our conversation on the way home to Lakeland. One was Paul’s energy. This was the first time we’ve seen him on stage, and he was wonderful. And just like a great piano player, it was the timing of his comic pauses that did so much. Another was that the first time he opened the window beside Emily’s desk, we felt a chill from the wintry Amherst air. How did you do that? Really, we were sitting in the two seats closest to that desk, and we felt a chill and even a breeze. Katrina, as usual, was strong, and her coy remarks worked so well to mask her wishfulness that someone like Poe might read her poetry … we loved it and are really looking forward to Othello! – Ben Graffam

It was a great show!!! Loved it!!! – Harry Garcia

Saw it yesterday. Loved it. Paul and Katrina were great – Sharon Smallheer

Amazing performances by both Edgar and Emily! Would love to see it again. Paul Potenza as Edgar and Katrina Stevenson as Emily developed their characters beautifully, making 90 minutes just fly by! Kudos to David Jenkins and Jobsite. My friend and I try to see as many Jobsite productions as possible, and this was one of the very best. The characters were beautifully cast, and the gestures of the couple were so effective, at times you didn’t need words. Thanks for a wonderful evening. – Barbara Schnipper

So so so good. Loved it!! – @fictionalrealitycosplay

Just saw this last night… Really good show that was totally not what we expected (which is a good thing) … Really exceptional performances with very believable unbelievability. Quite a fun show! – Chris Hart

It was so good! – Tiffany Schilling

It was great! You should be proud! – Kimberly Russell

Enjoyed it! Lovely portrayals! Set, music, and costumes really helped set the atmosphere. – Rick Stutzel

Saw it last night, great production, terrific acting, amazing original music, and a funny, literary, philosophical conversation between poets. All my friends enjoyed it to and want to read the play or see it again. – Kathie A. Moon

If you haven’t seen the Jobsite show Edgar and Emily, you need to get tickets NOW! A show like Edgar and Emily is why we have season tickets. We knew nothing about the story but we love the two ensemble members who star in it and trusted Jobsite to take us on a journey we would enjoy. The show was charming, amusing and finally touchingly poignant. Days later we are still discussing the show. Mostly commenting on how amazing the performances were and quoting lines to each other as if it were an episode of Seinfeld. Seriously, this is the most enjoyable Halloween show you will see this year. – Clare Ward-Jenkins

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