CAN you work out whodunit?
A game of Clue is afoot at Melville Theatre this September as six strangers are invited to a mysterious mansion.
Written by Sandy Rustin, adapted from Jonathan Lynn’s screenplay of the cult 1985 movie, Miss Scarlet, Mrs White, Mrs Peacock, Professor Plum, Colonel Mustard and Mr Green all discover they are being blackmailed.
But when their host and blackmailer turns up dead, they have to join the butler and maid to figure out who the killer is while the body count continues to climb.
“I’ve always been a big fan of the movie because it’s such a fun and witty script and a wonderful ensemble piece,” director Carmen Dohle said.
“I’d wanted to be involved in a stage adaptation for years but it’s only recently the stage rights have been permitted.
“I’m grateful to have been given the opportunity to perform the show so soon after this adaptation was written.”
The stage version of Clue is not like the board game (known as Cluedo in Australia and the UK), aside from the setting.
“From the outset, we establish the characters’ names are pseudonyms and the personas are very different to those associated with the board game,” Carmen said.
“Mrs White is a morbid widow rather than a maid and we use the US board game character of Mr Green, rather than Reverend Green in other versions.
“But the beauty of it being quite different to the game is that we’re not really going off any preconceived notions.
“Instead, it gives the actors a chance to create their own interpretations of these larger-than-life characters.”
Performing from age 16, Carmen has appeared in numerous musicals with Roleystone Theatre and several plays at the Old Mill, Melville, Phoenix, KADS and Harbour Theatres.
She has also been a character performer at Florida’s Walt Disney World, as part of Disney's International College program, and has received several acting awards and nominations.
With Clue, Carmen describes it as an evolving work, given the show is so new.
“Since we started, the script has been updated which solved a lot of logistical issues that were in the original adaption but it’s meant we’ve had to be quite flexible and open in our staging and character interpretation,” she said.
“Clue is also a very fast show with a lot of quick changes, so working out ways to quickly evoke many different rooms in a large mansion while keeping set changes to a minimum has also been challenging.
“It’s an ensemble piece, so I really had to pick a group of talented actors who were able to give strong individual performances while working well as a group and giving each other plenty to bounce off.”
Clue plays at 8pm September 10, 11, 16, 17, 18, 23, 24 and 25 with a 2pm matinee September 19. Tickets are $25, $20 concession – book at www.TAZTix.com.au.
Melville Theatre is at 393A Canning Highway (corner of Stock Road), Palmyra.
clue1: Colonel Mustard (Jason Dohle), Mr Green (Alex Banham), Professor Plum (Eddie Stowers), at back, Miss Scarlet (Grace Edwards), Mrs White (Nikki Di Camillo) and Mrs Peacock (Ellie Cutbush), at front.
clue2: Butler Wadsworth (Stephen Platt, right) welcomes Professor Plum (Eddie Stowers), Colonel Mustard (Jason Dohle), Mr Green (Alex Banham), Mrs Peacock (Ellie Cutbush), Mrs White (Nikki Di Camillo) and Miss Scarlet (Grace Edwards).
clue-cast-maid: Maid Yvette (Marie-Eve Cigna, lying down) makes waves with Colonel Mustard (Jason Dohle), Mr Green (Alex Banham), Professor Plum (Eddie Stowers), much to the consternation of Miss Scarlet (Grace Edwards), Mrs White (Nikki Di Camillo) and Mrs Peacock (Ellie Cutbush).
clue-mrboddy: The curious host Mr Boddy (Matt Lister, right) addresses Professor Plum (Eddie Stowers), Colonel Mustard (Jason Dohle), Mr Green (Alex Banham), Mrs Peacock (Ellie Cutbush), Mrs White (Nikki Di Camillo) and Miss Scarlet (Grace Edwards).
The Melville Theatre Company was the brainchild of David J. Burton who, in 1982, called a meeting for interested people in the community to form a theatre company in the Melville area.
As a result, the Melville Theatre Company was born. The newly formed company's first production was the farce, Not Now Darling. With its second production, The Sound of Music, the young company won the Finley Award for best production of the year. Since then, actors and directors have consistently featured in the list of awards at the annual State Drama Festival, now known as Dramafest.
Initially, performances were in the Melville Civic Centre but, since 1987, the venue has been the Roy Edinger Centre, on the corner of Stock Road and Canning Highway, Palmyra.