"The Bargain and The Butterfly" - Inspired by a Short Story

The Ghost Road Company’s “The Bargain and The Butterfly” has recently concluded their performances at the Artworks Theatre in Hollywood. This play was inspired by American novelist Nathaniel Hawthorne’s short story “The Artist of the Beautiful” and was conceived and directed by Katharine Noon.


This is a haunting drama about a young woman named Annie (Christel Joy Johnson), who is infatuated with inventing a “synthetic soul” for her twin brother, Owen (Brian Weir). Her brother has been in a coma since their birth but she is able to communicate with his spirit. Annie can also communicate with her mother’s (Jen Kays) spirit as well who died bearing them in childbirth. 


To accomplish the “synthetic soul” for her brother, Annie devises a blueprint and seeks the help of a local glassblower (Doug Sutherland) to execute the central piece required for her imperative project. Unfortunately, things don’t go as planned when she finally confides in her new companion.


The play can be quite difficult to understand initially but as the story goes on the details of the characters eventually become spelled out to paint a clearer picture of the circumstances Annie and her father (Ronnie Clark) go through. The use of lights gives the play great character as there was often scenes in the complete dark and only lit with a single flashlight.


Artworks Theatre

6569 Santa Monica Boulevard

Los Angeles CA 90038



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