Murder might make people uneasy, but a group of drama students at Harlem High School hopes to kill with its comedy.
Fifteen students in the Advanced Acting and Musical Theatre class at Harlem High will present John Bishop's Musical Comedy Murders of 1940 Thursday through Saturday at the school.
"The premise of the whole show is a bunch of people getting together to perform a musical; however, at the same time, we have a couple of murders," said senior Jeff Pickens, who plays the condescending director, La Maize. "We're trying to figure out who killed who and it just becomes this big mystery."
Drama director Roy Lewis said he cast the show before Christmas break and the students began rehearsing about a week after classes resumed in January.
The play requires an intricate stage setting and many special effects to meet the demands of the complex script.
"There's a lot of lines that you have to read through to get your own interpretation out of and understand the jokes," said junior Megan Gilbert, who plays the female lead role of Nikki Crandall. "So we really have to play up those moments."
Lewis said that some scenes contain secret passageways, while in other scenes bookcases pivot and swords suddenly appear.
"I try to offer my students as many different styles and genre of theater as possible and we had not done a murder mystery, so I thought what better script and what better group of kids to do it with," Lewis said.
The show will be held Thursday through Saturday in the Harlem High theater at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $5 each.
"There are a lot of people appearing and disappearing, one-liners and a lot of comedic gags that will definitely keep you entertained," Lewis said. "It's a great show for all ages."
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