Teas in Time
A trip back to the turn of the 20th century, seen through the eyes of a middle-class housewife.
"Charming and animated, (Rita) Parisi brings her audience into the quaint and often humorous world of 1908." -Sally Applegate, N.Andover MA Citizen
This antique dress (pic left) inspired me to write my first show in a series of shows called Teas in Time. I bought this Edwardian lingerie gown at the Brimfield Mass. antique market in 2004 and though, it fit me perfectly, I had no idea where I would wear it. So I decided to create a character named Mrs. Michael Gordon, a fictional middle-class housewife from 1908. She would wear this beautiful gown, as she entertained her guests (audience), during her afternoon tea. That was the beginning of Teas in Time and over the course of six years, I wrote five different themed Teas in Time shows, where my character talks about different aspects of her life. I decided to make Mrs. Gordon an amusing and astute storyteller who through her observations and humor is able to paint a picture of what life was like at the turn of the 20th century. Her observations are historic facts which have been extensively researched using primary sources such as period magazines and well research secondary sources.
Teas in Times are interactive shows where the audience is free to ask questions of Mrs. Gordon and can share their own stories and their own "2 cents" if they wish. The audience will definitely feel as if they are speaking to a woman from the turn of the 20th century.
In 1908, the world was on the cusp of change. The traditions of the Victorians were giving way to a more modern way of thinking and living. Mrs. Gordon, a woman having lived in both the 19th and 20th century, has a lot to say about all these new changes. Her stories will highlight technology, sports, fashion, beauty and more.
Perfect for: Mother's Day!
"(Rita) Parisi, a charming and animated storyteller, skillfully drew her audience back in time and led her guests in a lively conversation, encouraging questions and comments...an entertaining afternoon with glimpses in the lives of our grandmothers." -Pelham-Windham NH News
Victorian Courtship Tea
How did young ladies and gentlemen become acquainted during the time of Queen Victoria? Why by COURTSHIP of course! Victorian Courtship was a ritual in which etiquette, romance and socializing played an essential part.
So return to a time of romance, balls, fluttering fans, gossip and scandals as Mrs. Gordon reminisces about her courtship days.
Perfect for: St. Valentine's Day, Mother/Daughter Teas, Mother's Day
Travel back to winter 1913 with Mrs. Michael Gordon as she tours Florida with her husband. She will share her experiences and impressions of railroad travel, tourist attractions, grand hotels, and shopping at the original Burdines Department Store in Miami .
"Thank you for your fantastic Victorian Courtship presentation last Tuesday...Your fans and their meanings, your attractive attire, and especially your pleasant, outgoing manner--All made for a delightful evening."
-Betty Luz, Spindle City Garden Club, Lowell MA
Beachside resorts and amusement parks were all the rage at the turn of the 20th century. People of all classes enjoyed dancing, vaudeville, moving pictures, rides, spectacular thrilling shows and more.
So join Mrs. Gordon as she tells you all about her day at the beach and an amusement park in 1908.
Available Memorial Day-Labor Day.
Ages 10 and up.
(Not Available for 2024)
All Hallows Eve Tea
Join Mrs. Gordon for a tea party perfect for the haunting season. Be chilled and thrilled as she recants some of her own uncanny experiences with the supernatural. Mrs. Gordon will also discuss 19th and early 20th century Halloween traditions as well as Harry Houdini and her recent attendance of a seance.
Great for costumed tea parties, senior and children over 6 years of age!
"Rita Parisi is such a wonderful storyteller. I attended her performance of All Hallows Eve Tea and was mesmerized...the story was cute, scary, funny, and I wish it didn't have to end. Rita's costumes are beautiful and her wit is endless. I can't wait to see more of her performances." -Joanne M. Audience Member
"Rita Parisi, as the character of an elegant fashionista from the turn of the last century, regaled her tea time guests with her observation on everything from the new (Filene's) Bargain Annex to the latest technologies of the time. The underlying theme of her performance is the subtle observations that show the more things have changed, the more they have stayed the same." -Townsend MA Trilogy