Chautauqua Living History Performance at Harford Community College


Image credit: Tom Chalkley

Harford Community College will host a Chautauqua living history performance on Monday, July 15 at 7 PM in the Chesapeake Theater. The family-friendly performance, which is free and open to the general public, will feature a portrayal of Jacques Cousteau by Doug Mishler, an independent scholar and veteran Chautauquan. Mishler has performed as P. T. Barnum, Theodore Roosevelt, William Lloyd Garrison, Henry Ford, Jefferson Davis, George Wallace, Upton Sinclair, Major General Robert Ross, and General Joseph Pershing at past Maryland Humanities Chautauquas. He also portrays Ernie Pyle, Billy Sunday, William Clark, and others at Chautauqua programs throughout the country.

History comes alive with Maryland Humanities’ free Chautauqua living history performance series each July. Audience members meet historical figures, then participate in a thoughtful dialogue with each character. The theme of Chautauqua 2019 is “Making Waves,” celebrating those who have navigated ice, waves, and the depths below by bringing three historical adventurers to life: Matthew Henson, Jacques Cousteau, and Grace O’Malley.

This year the three-part series opens in the Upper Chesapeake region on Saturday, July 13, at 6 PM at the Elkton Central Library (301 Newark Avenue, Elkton, MD) with a portrayal of Maryland native Matthew Henson. Henson, a polar explorer, craftsman, author and said to be the first African-American to reach the North Pole, will be portrayed by Keith Henley, a historic interpreter and actor.

On Monday, July 15, oceanographer, filmmaker, and scientist Jacques Cousteau will be brought to life at Harford Community College, Chesapeake Theater (401 Thomas Run Road, Bel Air, MD 21015).

The final presentation takes place on Tuesday, July 16, at 7 PM at Elkton Station Performing Arts Hall at Cecil College, Elkton Station (107 Railroad Avenue, Elkton, MD 21921). The living history performance will feature Grace O’Malley, a 16th century Irish Pirate Queen, who commanded ships, men, and the respect of Queen Elizabeth I. She will be portrayed by Mary Ann Jung, an award-winning actress who specializes in interactive history.

Chautauqua 2019 is coming to the Upper Chesapeake region thanks to a partnership of Harford Community College, the Harford County Public Library, the Cecil County Public Library, Cecil College, and Maryland Humanities. If you need disability-related accommodations to participate, please contact HCC Library at 443-412-2316 at least 10 calendar days in advance.
For more information about the Chautauqua program, visit

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