The final production sends the year out with a bang


By Sereena Gee

By Sereena Gee and Ella Schroth

The last production of the year, John Bishop’s “The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940s,” gathered many students and their families to the MTHS Theater every night from May 30 through June 1 at 7 p.m.

Everything from the fancy set of a mansion in Chappaqua, New York, with secret passages, to the dressy costumes reflected the title-given time period of the 1940s.

To begin the show, a German foreign exchange student, sophomore Marie Auch-Schwelk, portrayed a German maid by the name of Helsa Wenzel, and was stabbed repeatedly before being thrown into a closet by a masked figure.

Afterwards, Wenzel reappeared, and helped to cook and attend the needs of the rest of the cast, sophomores Allie Maurer as Elsa Von Grossenkueten and Danielle Hirano as Nikki Crandall; juniors Myles Stillwaugh as Michael Kelly, Evan Roberts as Patrick O’Reilly, Calvin Martin as Roger Hopewell, and Monika Young as Bernice Roth; and seniors Vincent Max as Ken De La Maize, Franklin Koenig as Eddie McCuen, and Taylor Johnson as Majorie Baverstock.

The cast gathered at Von Grossenkueten’s house, to put together a production of “White House Merry-Go-Round.”

They quickly discovered that their creative team was also the same one for the show “Manhattan Holiday,” during which some of the chorus girls were mysteriously murdered.

At Von Grossenkueten’s house, Baverstock and O’Reilly were murdered shortly after Wenzel was.

“My favorite scene was my death scene because I was most comfortable with a German accent for one, and well, I just like the idea of dying, and pretending to get killed,” third murder victim, Roberts, said.

Crandall revealed her identity as part of the United States Naval Intelligence, and then discovered that De La Maize was the murderer by decoding a chorus girl victim’s diary. De La Maize tried to kill Crandall, but was knocked out by McCuen.

As a twist, Wenzel stepped out of her identity and turned out to be Wenzel’s twin brother as well as a homicidal maniac, and then proceeded to kill the survivors, but was knocked out by McCuen before he could eliminate them all.

The show ended with Wenzel and De La Maize being taken away, and a song performance on the piano by Hopewell and Roth.

As successful as the play was, there were some aspects that didn’t go very smoothly, for every time a character died or fainted, they hit the hard stage and occasionally injured themselves.

“In my early scene with Majorie, there’s a point where she hits me and I fall on the ground and it was at a really awkward angle so I wasn’t exactly sure how to do it. So I just kind of fell to my knees and I have a bruise on my knee now and a couple on my elbow,” said Roberts.

The one who got a majority of the injuries was Young, who acted as a character that “missed all of the main events and got drunk.” She explained, “I have bruises all over my knees from falling so much, and I think that I have a stage burn on my elbow.”

Besides injury, there was a minor technical difficulty during Saturday’s show, as the sword meant to kill Johnson’s character wasn’t moving from Max’s hanger.

“I walked by [Johnson] and she told me to cover, so I just kept talking, but the lights came back on while she was very obviously alive,” said Young.

However, Stillwaugh saved the scene by telling Johnson backstage to scream, and dropped something to make the sound of a body falling.

“I’m proud of Myles, and that we had a really good cover up,” said Young.

The audience laughed until there were tears in their eyes and their hearts were pounding loudly with each scream and threat.

“I liked how we had quick parts in it and it was kind of energetic and it was a lot of fun to do,” said Young.

Plays and musicals to look forward to next year include “The Miracle Worker,” “Sympathy Jones the Musical,” and “Rumors,” all to be directed by Brz.

Brz is an awesome director, she does a whole bunch for the show,” Roberts concludes.