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Hallee Hirsh
Hallee Hirsh
Joe Spano
Brenda Strong
David Call
Peter Orner
Concetta Tomei

See photos of this event here, on WordTheatre’s official Facebook page.

WordTheatre presented selected shorts from Peter Orner’s Esther’s Stories. A brief Q&A followed the reading and books were available for purchase and signing courtesy of Small World Books.


  • “Initials Etched on a Dining Room Table, Lockeport, Nova Scotia” read by Joe Spano (NCIS, Hill Street Blues), Concetta Tomei  (Providence, China Beach), and Hallee Hirsh (ER, You’ve Got Mail).
  • “On a Bridge Over the Homochitto” read by Joe Spano and David Call (Did You Hear About the Morgans?, Tiny Furniture).
  • “Shoe Story” read by Brenda Strong (Dallas, Desperate Housewives) and David Call.
  • “Country Road G” read by Brenda Strong.
  • “At the Motel Rainbow” read by David Call and Hallee Hirsh.
  • “At Horseneck Beach” read by Concetta Tomei
  • “The Raft” read by  Joe Spano and Concetta Tomei.
  • “Atlantic City” read by Concetta Tomei.
  • “High Priest at the Gates” read by Joe Spano.


About the Author

Peter Orner is a two time Pushcart Prize winner and has also been awarded the Guggenheim fellowship (2006) and Lannan Foundation Literary Fellowship (2007). He is the author of the novels Love and Shame and Love, which won the California Book Award, and The Second Coming of Mavala Shikongo, winner of the Bard Fiction Prize. He has also written numerous short stories which have been featured in various literary magazines and papers, including: The New York Times, Granta, the Paris Review, The Southern Review McSweeney’s, The San Francisco Chronicle and Ploughshares. Orner’s latest collection, Last Car Over the Sagamore Bridge, as well as Esther Stories and Love and Shame and Love will be available for purchase at the event, courtesy of Small World Books. Last Car Over the Sagamore Bridge was named a Top Ten Book of the year by John Williams of the New York Times, as well as Favorite Book of the Year by the Wall Street Journal’s Sam Sacks.