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Final performances of '84, Charing Cross Road'

Helene Hanff, played by Jennifer Alton, speaks through a letter to Frank Doel, played by Andrew Troth, who is thousands of miles away in London in a “84 Charing Cross Road” at The Phipps. The play runs through Feb. 3. Rebecca Mariscal / RiverTown Multimedia

"84, Charing Cross Road," a charming, bittersweet comedy, will be performed Friday and Saturday, Feb. 1 and 2 at 7:30 p.m. as well as Sunday, Feb. 3 at 2 p.m. at The Phipps Center for the Arts.

This play is adapted by James Roose Evans from the 1970 book of the same title by Helene Hanff. In it, she details the almost 20-year friendship she developed with London bookseller Frank Doel and the other staff at Marks and Co, Booksellers. Hanff, a New York writer, began doing business by correspondence with Marks and Co. in 1949, and there followed a long and warm friendship that lasted into the 1960s.

Hanff's letters are vivacious and funny; Doel's are more formal, but gradually soften into a more familiar tone. In them, they converse about books, their lives, and topics ranging from Yorkshire pudding to the Brooklyn Dodgers. "84, Charing Cross Road" has been adapted for stage, radio, television and film.

Tickets are $26 for adults and $19 for students of any age, with a $2 discount for seniors on the Sunday matinee, for this production in the Black Box Theater. Reservations may be made by contacting The Phipps ticket office at 715-386-8409.

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