Photo by Don Kellogg

Thursday, December 13, 2012

The Mystery of Edwin Drood

OK, take a deep breath.  Ready?  This one is a mouthful.  A delightful, delicious, and audaciously entertaining mouthful.

Charles Dickens started a novel and died before it was finished.  Rupert Holmes (Book, Music, and Lyrics) thought it would be clever to write a musical that offered a cast - playing actors - who were playing actors - in a  musical where the audience would vote on the outcome of Dickens' novel in an interactive, "first-ever" theatrical experience.  Got all that?   Don't worry it's not all that complicated.  It's actually quite fun.

OK, so each of the actors plays and actor playing an actor.  For example, the stalwart, Jim Norton, plays the Chairman of the theatre company and then by proxy, Mr. William Cartwright in the musical.  Will Chase plays Mr. Clive Paget playing John Jasper in the musical.   And I could go on and on and on... This cast is one of those endless pools of talent both young and old - Stephanie J. Block, Jessie Mueller, Andy Karl, and living legend, Chita Rivera - just to start things off.

It's an entertaining, interactive, and fun Roundabout Theater Company production over at Studio 54.  Since the cast is intentionally interacting with the audience as their actor-characters, the joviality and camaraderie shines through and brings joy and delight - literally out into the audience and up in the mezzanine.  And at the end of act 2, you'll vote not only on who you think killed Edwin Drood, but a mash-up of other outcomes as well.

Well, I can't really tell you the ending.  While I haven't studied the book, i suspect there are a multitude of endings possible and ever more fun to be had rehearsing them all!