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Laurel Mill Playhouse And Then There Were None

By • Oct 26th, 2007 • Category: Reviews

Listen to our review of the Laurel Mill Playhouse’s production of And Then There Were None [MP3 4:40 2.1MB].

Mike: This is the ShowBizRadio.net review of And Then There Were None performed by the Laurel Mill Playhouse in Laurel, Maryland. I saw the performance on Thursday, October 18, 2007.

This was a solid production, but there really wasn’t a lot to be super enthusiastic about. There also wasn’t a lot to complain about. It was kind of an average performance. It was a really good use of space at the Laurel Mill Playhouse.

And Then There Were None is a drama by Agatha Christie, also known as Ten Little Indians. It’s a murder whodunnit. Ten people are invited to a remote island. As they arrive they are introduced to one another. Unfortunately their host has not arrived yet. After they have all arrived a recording is heard that says that they have all done a murder at some point in their lives and revenge will happen on them. Of course everyone is a little confused and concerned. Then people start dying. The guests have to start figuring out who’s the murderer, and where is the murderer hiding on the island. After a few more deaths they realize it must be one of them. Then they are all looking at each other and trying to figure out whodunnit.

This was a fairly large cast. There were 11 different people in the show. I’m only going to talk about a couple of them. You should not try to guess based on who I talk about as to who did the murder if you haven’t seen this. I think they all did a fine job.

Anthony Marston, the young reckless car driver was played by Zak Zeeks. He did a really good job. He was very convincing as the obnoxious youngster who just felt that everyone was going too slow so he would drive the way he wanted to.

I also liked the performance of the secretary, Vera Claythorne, played by Erin Stauder. She was not quite prim and proper because she was a youngster as well, probably in her early twenties. She did play the host since the host could not be there. Everybody respected her for that. I think she did a fine job.

Her boyfriend, Philip Lombard, was played by Alex Campbell. I think he did a good job, maybe seemed just a little bit too young for the role of a colonel in the army.

The set was very nice for the space at Laurel Mill. It’s very narrow and not a real deep stage area. This show was a good choice for the theater. All ten of the suspects were on stage at one time and it worked very well. They were spread out evenly across the stage at different depths on the different seats. Some of the people on the highest points of the stage I really couldn’t see. They were hidden behind people. All in all it was not a bad design. The set was designed by Jack Diehl and Tom Schneider.

There were also some special effects, mainly the gun shots that happened at a point in the show. Unfortunately when the gun shots happened it was totally unexpected. Everybody in the audience jumped and then started laughing. Whereas you’re really not going for the laugh when someone has just been shot. That was a disconnect in the actual execution (no pun intended) of the show.

One of the features of And Then There Were None is the poem The Ten Little Indians. It was mounted on the stage above the mantle above ten little indians that were stacked there. I hope I’m not going to give this away, hopefully most people have heard of this before. The people get murdered in the same order as they are murdered in the poem. Unfortunately, the writing on the poem was just a touch too small and I really couldn’t see it. I wish they would have put a copy of the poem in the playbill.

Another feature of And Then There Were None is since an indian disappears of the mantle for every murder that happens, I didn’t like the way the indians (they used soldiers and not indians) I didn’t like the way they made the soldiers disappear. They did not disappear during the show, they disappeared during the blackouts or the intermissions. That was kind of cheating I think. One of the joys of this show is training some of the actors or a crew person back stage to grab the indian with no one seeing so that all of a sudden it’s a surprise. It’s been stolen.

I think you’ll enjoy this show. This is a very popular show to do. Even if you’ve seen it before, I know I’ve seen it several times. I always forget who did it. I kept guessing throughout the show. I guessed wrong three times. I think you’ll have a good time if you go see this show.

And Then There Were None ran about two and a half hours long with two intermissions. It is playing through Saturday October 27th at the Laurel Mill Playhouse in Laurel, Maryland.

And now, on with the show.

Cast

  • William Blore: Brian Binney
  • Emily Brent: Erica Smith
  • General Mackenzie: Jack Diehl
  • Vera Claythorne: Erin Stauder
  • Fred Narracott: Jenilee Myers
  • Sir Lawrence Wargrave: Denis L. Latkowski
  • Dr. Armstrong: Lenne Sirasky
  • Anthony Marston: Zak Zeeks
  • Tom Rogers: Tom Dewberry
  • Mrs. Rogers: Maureen Rogers
  • Philip Lombard: Alex Campbell

Production Crew

  • Director: Tom Schneider
  • Assistant Director: Jack Diehl
  • Stage Manager: Janet Olsen
  • Producer: Maureen Rogers
  • Light Design: Michael Hartsfield
  • Sound Design: Alex Campbell, Jose de la Mar, Michael Hartsfield
  • Light/Sound Operators: Michael Hartsfield and Volunteers
  • Set Construction: Alex Campbell and Jack Diehl
  • Set Design and Painting: Jack Diehl and Tom Schneider
  • Props: Janet Olsen and cast
  • Firearms/Safety: Brian Dettling/Stage Armament Solutions
  • Music: Jethro Tull
  • Costumes: Sarah Kendrick
  • House Manager: Norm Gordon
  • Box Office: Norm Gordon, Patti Knazik
  • Program: R. Brett Rohrer
  • Publicity: Maureen Rogers
  • Program Coordinator: Maureen Rogers
  • Posters: Maureen Rogers
  • Head Shots: Brian Binney
  • Website Design and Maintenance: Stewart Wills
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This article can be linked to as: http://washingtondc.showbizradio.com/goto/2068.

has performed in local productions, but prefers to be behind the scenes. Mike earned a Career Studies Certificate in Theater from Northern Virginia Community College. Mike is a member of the American Theatre Critics Association and the Online News Association.

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