Mike Ryan

Clue – Theatre L’Homme Dieu

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Clue is going to kill the audience with laughter every night of its two week run at Theatre L’Homme Dieu! As I mention in my podcast, “Backstage Access,” I wish had brought my inhaler. I could have used it from laughing so hard.

We’re all familiar with “Clue” right? The famous Hasbro board game where players deduce who a murderer is based on clues discovered during play? Many will also be familiar with the cult favorite 1985 film adaptation of the game which this play is based upon.

The play opens on a dark and stormy night, just as all great murder mysteries are contractually obligated to do. We are very quickly introduced to Wadsworth the butler (Max Wojtanowicz), the Cook (Mackenzie Ammon), Yvette the maid (Amanda Forstrom), Miss Scarlet (Kym Chambers Otto), Professor Plum (Chance Carroll), Colonel Mustard (Ross Young), Mrs. Peacock (Siobhan Bremer), Mr. Green (Brandon Herring) and Mrs. White (Kristina Mitchell). The cast of characters is very colorful – both literally and figuratively. Things quickly spin out of control as the characters realize they are being blackmailed by the mysterious Mr. Boddy (Peyton Dixon), and then the murderer strikes! We won’t reveal here who (or how many) cast members are “offed” but let’s just say the story continually tops itself throughout. Secret after sordid secret is revealed until the breathless climax of the play arrives and justice is served to the guilty party(ies)!

The actors featured in this ensemble production are delightful and remarkably adept at bringing the source material to life. Max Wojtanowicz plays the central character of Wadsworth who ties the entire cast together. Wojtanowicz excels with lightning fast delivery and a performance that embodies as much physical as it does verbal humor. His facial expressions tell a lot of the story! Each character has their certain trait that makes them memorable, and the actors make the most of the lines they are given. In truth this play allows for much physical comedy all around, and the entire cast really delivers on the panic and mania surrounding hiding a body. We also appreciate the “dead” performers who were appropriately limp and floppy and added to the humor of the situation. The blocking required by the story is specific and seemingly complicated, yet all seems effortlessly executed.

From the costume design to the unique set with revolving rooms on wheels, the show is well produced. Come to Mr. Boddy’s dinner party. It’s mystery, it’s farce, it’s funny. And the winner of the night will be you! Be game enough to buy a ticket to see this very original and cleverly funny Clue. I’m dead serious.

 -Mike Ryan

 

“Clue: On Stage” is directed by James Cada and Susanne Egli and produced by Nicole Mulder for Theatre L’Homme Dieu. It can be seen at Theatre L’ Homme Dieu until August 20th. Tickets at tlhd@tlhd.org or 320-846-3150