Ghost stories dating from the mid- to late 19th century will be performed in a format popular in the early to middle 20th century for 21st century audiences throughout central Ohio.

Ghost stories dating from the mid- to late 19th century will be performed in a format popular in the early to middle 20th century for 21st century audiences throughout central Ohio.

From Clintonville to downtown, the local professional troupe A Portable Theatre will take its name to heart with performances of Tales from the Grave scheduled in four different venues Oct. 15-18 and Oct. 29-31.

Tales from the Grave, which is performed as an old-time radio broadcast, will be the fourth production for A Portable Theatre, which Artistic Director Geoffrey Nelson founded in June 2013.

Public performances of the adaptation of three classic ghost stories, an earlier version of which was produced at CATCO in 1998, are scheduled for:

* Oct. 15, at 8 p.m. at the Clintonville Woman's Club, 3951 N. High St.

* Oct. 16 and 17, at 8 p.m. at the Abbey Theater of Dublin, 5600 Post Road.

* Oct. 18, at 3 p.m. at St. Andrew Presbyterian Church, 1450 E. Dublin-Granville Road.

* Oct. 29-31, at 8 p.m. at the Columbus Dance Theatre, 592 E. Main St.

Tickets cost $20 for adults, $10 for students.

They can be purchased at the door, depending on availability, or booked online.

"This style has become very popular in the past couple of decades," Nelson said of plays performed in the manner of the radio dramas that were so popular from the 1920s to 1950s, fading out with the advent of television.

The Upper Arlington resident crafted Tales from the Grave from short stories by three classic authors of the 1800s.

They include The Signalman by Charles Dickens, which was published in 1866 and involves a mentally unsteady railroad worker who encounters a ghost; The Cask of Amontillado by Edgar Allan Poe (1846) in which a meek man seeks revenge on his pompous friend; and Robert Louis Stevenson's 1881 tale The Body Snatcher, about medical students turned grave-robbers.

"That is the spookiest of the three, I think," Nelson said.

Performing a play as a radio broadcast is especially demanding upon the actors, but it can be especially rewarding for audiences, Nelson said.

"It's not just the voices and the words," he said.

"What the actors are trying to do is evoke the images of the story in the audience's mind.

"Part of the fun of it is seeing how the sound effects are created, what was being used," Nelson said.

"For me, one of the most fun is when three of the guys create a roaring railroad going by.

"It requires that the actors are on their toes the whole time," he said.

"This is a veteran group of actors. I think there's probably 100 years of stage experience between them, probably more."

The performers in Tales from the Grave are Damian Bowerman and Ed Vaughan of Westerville, Jonathan Putnam of Harrison West and Granville resident Jon Farris.

Diana Evans Vance, who served as technical director at Hilliard Davidson High School for 38 years, is in charge of sound effects and technical direction for the production.

Following all performances of A Portable Theatre productions, cast members participate in discussions with the audience.

"That's been a very popular feature," Nelson said. "The audience likes to know what went into the production, how certain moments work.

"We've learned a lot from doing that."