Turncoat: My Latest Audiobook Sheds New Light On Infamous Traitor Benedict Arnold

I’m thrilled to share that my latest title for Recorded Books, Turncoat, is now available, and it’s a cracking good tale. It’s also true.  Award-winning historian Stephen Brumwell turns his expert eye on infamous American traitor Benedict Arnold; he offers new evidence and a compelling argument as to the real reasons behind Arnold’s betrayal of the American independence movement. If you thought it was all about money, Brumwell will make you think again. In the process, Brumwell makes a strong case for Arnold’s time bearing a sobering resemblance to our own.

This is a thoroughly-researched and entirely engrossing account of the birth pains of America, and of what it takes for an avowed American patriot and war hero to turn his coat from blue to red. His recounting of the entirely accidental way in which the planned treason was uncovered, and what happened next, reads like a top-drawer Hollywood screenplay; it’s a true cinematic nail-biter.

If you’re a fan of American History, this book is an absolute “don’t miss”–and if you like listening to your American History, my audiobook version will give you about 17 hours of immersion in a remarkable true story.

You can order Turncoat on Amazon,

or you can buy the recording from Audible.

Either way, you’re in for a fresh and fascinating look at a critical moment in American History.  If you listen and enjoy, please be sure to leave a positive review on Audible and/or Amazon.  Thanks!

You can also learn more about historian Stephen Brumwell and his other works here.

My Last Appearance in Gotham Season 4 was Memorable

In case you haven’t followed my Gotham saga, it’s been an incredible and wonderful ride.  Last summer, I auditioned for and was cast as Mr. Cobblepot’s (aka The Penguin) craven and fussy bookkeeper Mr. Penn for three scenes in last fall’s Season Premiere.

That first episode magically led to a total of seven episodes across Season 4. And every single one of them was a joy to do. From the very first read-through, the cast welcomed me and helped me fit right in.  The entire company, including producers, writers, cast, and crew, including hair, makeup, and design, and their stable of super directors, are all the most talented and lovely people imaginable.  After working together for three years before this season, they have created a genuine family, and it’s a pretty wonderful group. Add to that an amazingly sweet and supportive fan base, and you have a recipe for something truly special.

When last viewers saw me in Ep411, the half-season finale, I had been surprised by the ruthless Sofia Falcone and the Sirens, and tortured by Tabitha. But I did not divulge Mr. Cobblepot’s whereabouts. It was not clear whether I was left alive or not.

When I got the script for Ep415, I was astonished to learn those insanely clever writers in the Gotham room had found a way to weave my character into the main plot–and to make me a wanted man! As I read the script, I realized everyone in the Gotham underworld–including Sofia and Mr. Cobblepot–wanted me very much dead. Thankfully, Jim Gordon and Harvey Bullock wanted me alive.  The episode also revealed something crazy and fabulous about Mr. Penn: I was hiding out at a posh resort offering its clients anonymity while undergoing a particularly bizarre and hilarious form of Regression Therapy.  The attached photo should give you some idea.

As I read the script, I could barely breathe–I was certain this was the episode where I would finally buy the farm, or kick the bucket, as they say. Incredibly, despite many bullets fired in my direction, and most of Gotham wanting me six feet under, Mr. Penn survived and escaped.  Someone “in the know” told me that in fact the writers had killed me off a couple of times in early drafts of earlier episodes this season–but happily, they decided to keep me alive. I did not appear in the rest of the season after Ep415–but Mr. Penn is still very much alive.  And last seen in a onesie.

To celebrate my return in Ep415, the fan-run virtual sticker company Telfie even issued a limited edition Mr. Penn sticker.  How neat is that?  Maybe one of these days Mr. Penn will show up in some fan art.  That would be insanely cool. Or get invited to a ComicCon.  That would be another dream come true.

What’s next for Mr. Penn? I literally have no idea. Stay tuned…!

New Audiobook “The Kevin Show” Revisits an Incredible True Story

Back in 2016, I was honored when Olympic athlete Kevin Hall chose me to narrate his remarkable autobiography, Black Sails, White Rabbits.  If you haven’t already listened to it, Kevin is a terrific, honest writer, and his story sounds like something Hollywood might have made up–but it’s all real.

While I was down at Riverside Theatre performing in The Mystery of Edwin Drood this winter, my agent’s office called with an audiobook offer from the lovely folks at Recorded Books: The Kevin Show, by NY Times best-selling author and noted journalist Mary Pilon.  As it turns out, this is Mary’s objective take on Kevin Hall’s story.  I was thrilled at the chance to revisit Kevin’s remarkable life through a journalist’s eye.  And The Kevin Show is fascinating, start to finish.

The Kevin Show was released in March, and at the launch party, I was delighted to meet Mary, and to see Kevin again.  It was a wonderful evening, in celebration of a wonderful piece of writing–and an incredible man.

You can listen to a sample of both books on my Voiceovers page. Or:

You can purchase The Kevin Show here.

And you can purchase Black Sails, White Rabbits here.

Both are well worth a listen, and all the more illuminating if you listen to both!  If you listen and enjoy, please be sure to leave a positive review on Audible and/or Amazon.  Thanks!

The Mystery of Edwin Drood at Riverside Theatre Was a Hit and a Blast

Sorry I haven’t posted in a while–I have a lot of catching up to do now. If you’re not already following me on Instagram and/or Twitter, those are the places for late-breaking news. It tends to take me longer to sit down and craft blog posts.

That said, The Mystery of Edwin Drood at Riverside Theatre was a joy from the table read through the final bow. Director D.J. Salisbury set a tone of community and kindness that greatly enriched the entire experience. The cast, crew, and musicians were singly and collectively terrific.  And we were a big hit!

Riverside Theatre had never tried such a large cast show in their black box theatre, the Waxlax Stage.  But it was the perfect space for our huge barroom/musical hall set, and for the intimacy of our production. We were out there chatting up the audience before the show (in character, of course), and many of us ventured out among the patron tables in the course of the show, as well.  It was truly immersive, and a total delight.  The audiences ate it all up.

I first played the role of Bazzard a shocking number of years ago, just after the original production had closed on Broadway. To be able to revisit Bazzard after all these years, and at a theatre I love so much, was truly a gift.  I don’t get to do musicals often, so I am thrilled when they come along.  And a Dickens-inspired musical with multiple endings?  It doesn’t get any more fun than that!

While Bazzard is usually voted the Detective, Dick Datchery, in this new, streamlined version of the show, I was also selected as the male Lover many times–and at a couple of performances, I was chosen for both roles!  And, happily, at one performance (with my family present, as Fate would have it), I was chosen as Murderer!

This was one of those productions where we whispered backstage that we wished we were doing an open-ended Off-Broadway run, rather than a 3-week engagement.  But I’m grateful for every moment of the entire experience.

Join Me in Solving “The Mystery of Edwin Drood” at Riverside Theatre January 16-February 4!

I’m thrilled to announce I’m playing the fabulous role of hapless theatre geek Bazzard in Rupert Holmes’ remarkable musical comedy whodunnit, The Mystery of Edwin Drood at the beautiful Riverside Theatre in Vero Beach, Florida.

 

If you’re not familiar with the show, it’s based on the mystery novel Charles Dickens left unfinished at his untimely death. Dickens left no hints as to where the plot strands would end up, so the multi-talented composer-librettist-lyricist Mr. Holmes decided to play detective himself, and created the first interactive show on Broadway. The original production was nominated for 11 Tony Awards, and won 5–with 3 of them going deservedly to Mr. Holmes.

 

The show takes place at the mythical Victorian theatre, the Music Hall Royale. In the course of the evening, the audience gets to vote on the real identity of the mysterious detective Dick Datchery, as well as of the murderer, and even which two characters (however unlikely!) end up as lovers by the final curtain. This means those of us in the show have to learn all the possible endings the audience might select, and be ready to perform any of them at a moment’s notice, based on the audience’s voting. It’s insanely fun. This is fantastic show for audience and performers alike–a true gift to theatre lovers (and mystery and Dickens lovers).

 

We play January 16-February 4 only, at the intimate WaxLax stage of Riverside Theatre. The cast is simply terrific–beautiful voices, and great comic timing. There are only about 150 seats per performance, so if you’re going to be in the area, buy your tickets now. In fact, if you want a chance at seeing more than one ending, plan to come to a couple of different performances! We literally never know how the show will end until the audience tells us.

 

The Mystery of Edwin Drood is witty, mysterious, bawdy, romantic, melodramatic, insane, and all around good fun. There’s even a bar onstage for patrons wishing to enhance the merriment with beer or wine! Truly, this is a don’t miss.  And Vero Beach is a pretty awesome place to be during the winter!

 

And if you’re a Gotham fan, this is a chance to see a whole new singing and dancing side of the man behind Mr. Penn!  😉

 

See you there!

Reminder: Join Me Live for the Everything Geek Podcast on Saturday, December 9th at 4pm EST!

Just a quick reminder: If you’re a Gotham fan, you won’t want to miss the Everything Geek Podcast this Saturday, December 9th at 4pm EST.  The podcast will be live, and I’ll be their guest for a freewheeling chat about Gotham, and who knows what else!

Here again is the link for Saturday’s live broadcast:

http://mixlr.com/channel-1138/

Join us live this Saturday for a fun and freewheeling chat!  And if you have any questions for me, make sure you send them along ahead of time to Ruari Williamson at the Everything Geek Podcast Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/EverythingGeekPodcast/

Gotham Fans: I Am the Guest for the Live Everything Geek Podcast on Saturday 12/9 at 4pm EST!

If you’re enjoying my work as Mr. Penn on the fabulous fourth season of Gotham, tune in this Saturday 12/9 at 4pm Eastern when I will be the special guest on the Everything Geek Podcast!  The discussion will touch on my plot line in Gotham, including the shocking fall season finale, and also on other areas of my interests and activities.

Here’s the link for Saturday’s live broadcast:

http://mixlr.com/channel-1138/

Join us live this Saturday for a fun and freewheeling chat!  And if you have any questions for me, make sure you send them along ahead of time to Ruari Williamson at the Everything Geek Podcast Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/EverythingGeekPodcast/

PS: If you miss the live podcast, I’ll share a link for the recording whenever it becomes available.  But join us live, if you can.  This will be my first live fan podcast, and anything could happen!  😉

More Fan Mail for Mr. Penn on Gotham Season 4!

Wow, this is cool.  My agent’s office called the other day to say I received another piece of fan mail at their office for my work as Mr. Penn on Gotham.  And the enclosed note included another extremely organized (and laminated!) autograph kit.  I’m really impressed by the care Gotham fans put into their collections–but maybe I shouldn’t be, given all the care that goes into making every episode of Gotham.  The attention to detail in both cases is really impressive.

So I need to fill this one out and pop it in the mail–I do appreciate that autograph seekers are including self-addressed, stamped envelopes.  Otherwise, following up wouldn’t be possible.

And you know what?  While I was typing this post, I heard from my agent’s office again–I need to stop by tomorrow to pick up another piece of fan mail!

I’m truly grateful, and so happy Gotham fans are enjoying Mr. Penn.  I’m having the time of my life with the entire Gotham gang.

Gotham Mid-Season Finale on December 7th is a True Shocker!

Oh, my.  Where to begin?  Poor Mr. Penn appears briefly in the opening scenes of Gothan’s spectacular mid-season finale on December 7th, and things just aren’t going his way….

Any number of characters are in peril in this amazing episode.  Including Mr. Penn.  And at least one character meets a shocking end.  Who will it be??

The only way to find out is to watch Thursday night on Fox.  And keep your fingers crossed that Mr. Penn makes it out alive…!