“...the game will be afoot."
- ("Wadsworth") Sandy Rustin
It’s not just a game anymore!
Written by Sandy Rustin
Directed by Weylin Symes
Adapted from the Paramount Pictures film written by Jonathan Lynn and the board game from Hasbro, Inc.
Additional materials by Hunter Foster and Eric Price
Cast* Includes: Ceit M. Zweil* - "Mrs. White"; Bill Mootos* - "Colonel Mustard"; Stewart Evan Smith* - "Mr. Green"; Paul Melendy* - "Wadsworth"; Mark Linehan* - " Professor Plum"; Maureen Keiller* - "Mrs. Peacock"; Jennifer Ellis - "Miss Scarlet" ; Sara Coombs – Cook/Ensemble, U/S Mrs. Peacock, Mrs. White; Lisa Kate Joyce – U/S Miss Scarlet; Genevieve Lefevre – Yvette; Bryan Miner – Boddy/Ensemble; Fernando Barbosa – U/S Mr. Green, Professor Plum, Ensemble; Katie Pickett – U/S Yvette, Ensemble
Additional Creative Team:
Tyler Rosati - Assistant Director; Ceit Zweil - Movement Director; Katy Monthei - Scenic Designer; Jeff Adelberg^ - Lighting Designer; Amanda Fallon - Assistant Lighting Designer; Deirdre Gerrard - Costume Designer; Caroline Eng - Sound Designer; Adam Smith - Substitute Sound Designer; Emily Allinson - Properties Designer; Shauwna Dias Grillo* - Production Stage Manager; Emily Fitzgerald* - Assistant Stage Manager; Cassie Lebeau - Assistant Stage Manager; Alex White - Production Assistant; Casey Blackbird - Production Manager; Geoffrey Dolan - Scenic Builder (Ogunquit Playhouse); Che Dolan - Scenic Charge; Kira Troilo - Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Consultant
^Member of United Scenic Artists
GREATER BOSTON STAGE COMPANY, 395 Main Street Stoneham, MA 02180
June 2, 2023 through June 25, 2023
(Contact Box Office for Exact Times)
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Box Office # 781-279-2200
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It is a dark, dank and dismal evening. An ominous night, one perfect for...clues.
Also a night providing the perfect ambience for this gathering of multiple suspects, totally in need of...clues.
The Sandy Rustin stage adaptation of "CLUE" now playing at GBSC in Stoneham is faithfully based upon the John Landis 1985 movie's dialogue written by Jonathan Lynn, with additional material supplied by Hunter Foster and Eric Price and original music provided by Michael Holland.
"CLUE" is a preposterous parody of murder mysteries and the only thing really missing in this absurd comedy is the sound of rim-shots for all the incredibly sophomoric jokes.
That is why it is also incredibly funny.
Inspired by the classic Hasbro board game, the show from GBSC will no doubt bring about comparisons to the Landis film and its all-star cast that included Tim Curry and the late, legendary comedienne Madeline Kahn.
However, the GBSC staging is probably one of the most uproarious comedies happening on stage right now and absolutely should not be missed.
So, just how closely does the show follow the board game?
The game takes about an hour to play. The play runs about 90 minutes without an intermission.
The game calls for players to investigate a murder by gathering evidence. For the show, the audience must deduce the guilt or innocence of characters of the board game brought to life.
In the show, there are six suspects who have all gathered at a remote mansion managed by a sinister butler, Wadsworth (Paul Melendy).
Melendy is a true “master of ceremonies” for the comedy, fully in charge and relentlessly funny in the Tim Curry-defined role.
The physical comedy that is part and parcel of “CLUE” is timed to perfection but it is Melendy who dominates.
Wadsworth claims to manage the estate with a staff that includes Yvette (Genevieve Lefevre), a maid who, with her sardonic wit, is equal parts seductive and suspicious, and one, grim "Cook" (played at the June 3rd performance by Katie Pickett) who has more on her mind than just dinner.
Six suspects arrive at the mansion: Miss Scarlet (Jennifer Ellis), Professor Plum (Mark Linehan), Mrs. White (played at the June 3rd performance by Sara Coombs), Mr. Green (Stewart Evan Smith), Mrs. Peacock (Maureen Keiller) and Colonel Mustard (Bill Mootos).
None of the guests appear to have anything in common…at first.
So, what is the reason for this unique assemblage? Wadsworth reveals that they are all blackmail victims of one Mr. Boddy (Bryan Miner).
Boddy soon arrives at the mansion and has Wadsworth give each of the suspects a "gift" of obvious murder weapons (many players of the board game should recognize): A candle stick, a dagger, a hangman's noose rope, a wrench, a lead pipe and a revolver.
The GBSC creative team really comes through in the area of costume/prop color coordination, especially when each of the above "gifts" are presented to their color corresponding human recipient.
As the play unfolds, the audience watches the board game play out live "on the stage" where EVERYONE soon becomes a suspect.
"On the stage with a candlestick"- as Miss Scarlet - Ellis comes across equally as strong and vibrant as sultry in red.
Linehan's Professor Plum - "on the stage with a revolver" (and not the Beatles album, btw) - proves himself a danger to the medical profession and also to one's funny bone.
Coombs - "On the stage with a noose" - gives a wonderfully adept comedic performance as Mrs. White, as does Keiller who "on the stage with a dagger" brings the delightfully batty and bizarre Mrs. Peacock to life.
Smith - "On the stage with a lead pipe" - as Mr. Green, rivals Melendy in the area of physical comedy, but also excels playing up his character's multiple fears and foibles to the hilt.
Mootos -"On the stage with a wrench" as Colonel Mustard - brings to the character impeccable comedic timing, delivering many of the night's laughs with his precisely executed delivery.
Yet, with each and every ludicrous plot point - and there are many - the laughs just build and build until no one in the audience is safe...from dying of laughter.
Each member of the cast works diligently to bring their respective, ridiculously "over the top" board game character to life and everyone succeeds brilliantly, executing Rustin's droll dialogue with ease.
The plot of “CLUE” brings with it no short order of twists and turn....and those twists and turns don't just happen in the dialogue.
Often the cast must contort themselves as part of the taxing physical comedy and, thanks to the direction of Weylin Symes, it is a delightfully controlled chaos.
The show never falls into the dangerous trap (as seen in other productions of “CLUE”) of stumbling over itself in the attempt to be funny.
It IS funny.
It is also campy, silly, preposterous and thoroughly delightful.
The GBSC creative team have combined all the basic production elements required to form the perfect look for the story.
The stage crew effortlessly maneuvers the massive scenery with great precision.
Every member of the GBSC Scenic development team - including Design by Katy Monthei, Charge by Che Dolan and Build by Geoffrey Dolan (Ogunquit Playhouse) in addition to all other combined efforts - produced a wonderous, completely functional set that easily becomes its own character in the show.
Lighting and sound effects also are employed with almost surgical precision throughout the show.
As the suspects search the mansion to reveal the killer, the body count stacks up.
Some will find themselves at the wrong place at the wrong time...or the right place at the right time if they are looking to be murdered.
With some of the more eccentric characters, it is sometimes hard to tell.
With others, it is not a question of who among them is the murderer - it is how some of the more "clue-less" suspects have lived as long as they have.
In the end, "CLUE" is a superbly staged "whodunit" farce that will leave audiences in stitches as they try to figure out who done it, where they done it, why they done it and, more importantly, with what did they done do it?
Approximately 90 minutes with no intermission.
Kevin T. Baldwin is a member of the American Theatre Critics Association (ATCA)
ABOUT THE SHOW
Based on the iconic 1985 Paramount movie which was inspired by the classic Hasbro board game, "CLUE: ON STAGE" is a hilarious story of murder, madness, mayhem, and mystery.
The tale begins at a remote mansion, where six guests assemble for an unusual dinner party where murder and blackmail are on the menu.
When their host turns up dead, they all become suspects.
Led by Wadsworth – the butler, Miss Scarlett, Professor Plum, Mrs. White, Mr. Green, Mrs. Peacock and Colonel Mustard race to find the killer as the body count stacks up.
"CLUE: ON STAGE" is the madcap comedy whodunit that will leave both cult fans and newcomers in stitches as they try to figure out… WHO did it, WHERE, and with WHAT!?
We bring vibrant professional theatre and dramatic education beyond the boundaries of Boston, featuring world and regional premieres alongside fresh interpretations of familiar work. Within this setting, we uniquely foster the artists of tomorrow by providing ongoing performance and employment opportunities to our company of current and former students. Located in Stoneham, MA. GREATER BOSTON STAGE COMPANY produces five Mainstage shows, presents a series of Special Events, and runs year-round classes, lessons, and fully staged productions through The Young Company for students in grades 1–12.
395 Main Street
Stoneham, MA 02180
Box Office # 781-279-2200