Three Ladies of Orpington

This Charleston premiere of the new play Three Ladies of Orpington by Daniel Guyton has been nominated for more than 13 theatre awards, including Best Original Work. 


The women—a mother, grandmother and daughter, respectively—are recovering from the death of the family patriarch and facing financial ruin. While the grandmother, Maude, seems to float between sorrow, dementia and abrupt wit, Henrietta, the mother, schemes to recover the family fortune by romancing the local undertaker, Mr. Fennimore. Meanwhile, Henrietta’s daughter, Elenore, mourns her poor complexion and envisions a world where men actually desire her. 


Once Henrietta finally gets her daughter and mother on her side, the women’s incompetence is interrupted by a devious stranger, Marvin Babcock. At one moment, Babcock is romancing Elenore. At the next, he’s telling tales of supreme power and making demands unbecoming of a guest. Before the three women realize it, Babcock is forcing his wishes and running the estate.


Three Ladies of Orpington is a perfect treat for the arrival of Halloween, mixing laughs, wit, heart, axe murder and betrayal, while capturing the gothic, the Victorian, the family tragedy and cynical comedy of the era. It’s both laugh-out-loud funny and tissue-worthy tragic.


Caution: The play contains partial nudity and depiction of full frontal male nudity. It is not suitable for audiences under 18.

By Daniel Guyton