July 19, 20, 25, 26, 27 at 7:30 PM
July 21 and 28 at 2:00 PM
By Howard Voland, Keith McGregor
The Playhouse at McConnellstown Presents Spirited Whodunit
By Meghan Whitesel
Ghost hunting takes a dangerously amusing turn this July as “Murder Inn” opens on July 19th at The Playhouse at McConnellstown. A solid combination of thriller and comedic timing, this play is sure to keep you on your toes and leave you in stitches.
The eighteenth century Barnsley Inn, located in New England, is supposedly haunted by a knife-throwing poltergeist named Marco. A group of tourists from the Ghosts and Ghouls of New England tour are forced to make an unscheduled stop at the Barnsley in order to escape an impending storm.
What looks to be an unpleasant and uncomfortable detour soon turns into a night of mayhem and madness as knives begin to pop up…in the most unexpected places. As the storm builds and the body count rises, the survivors try to figure out who done it. And even more important- who’s likely to have it done to them next?
From left to right, back row: Jennifer Catanese, Hunter McVey, Joseph Soloski, Clay Glenny, Liv Mitchell, and Jason Solomon. From left to right, front row: Karen Kuntz, Anita Bowers, Stephanie Swan, Deb Shank, Mikayla Harrington, and Neal Smith.
Written by Howard Voland and Keith McGregor, this delightful production features a cast of zany characters including a near-sighted knife-throwing poltergeist, a Ouija board of doubtful veracity, thunder and lightning, screams in the dark, and a satisfying body count.
Jenn Cantanese is Martha Talbot, the owner of the Barnsley Inn. Her son Jake is played by Hunter McVey. Deb Shank is the meddlesome Agnes Tate, and her niece Carolyn Pickett is played by Mikayla Harrington. Jason Solomon is Alan Halsey, the tour guide.
Anita Bowers plays ethereal Muriel Lampmann, and Liv Mitchell is Patricia Simpson. Todd Currier is played by newcomer Neal Smith. Joe Soloski is Professor Lawrence Currier, and Stephanie Swan Is Grace Sharp. Doris Brooks is played by Karen Kuntz, and Donald Shultz is played by Clay Glenny.
“This show is full of twists and turns that will keep you guessing ‘whodunit’ right up to the end. I’m thrilled to be on stage with such a large cast of talent—some returning and some new—all bringing life to the colorful characters who are trapped together as mayhem ensues,” commented Swan.
“With an amazing set and fully-loaded cast, this show is such a joy. I think the audience will enjoy figuring out what happens next,” commented McVey.
Don Dietz directs this production, and George Baumer is the assistant director. Kyle Williams is the stage manager. Lighting is designed by Keith Sutton with costumes by Bradley Renninger. Set design is by Don Dietz with sound design by Rick Brown and technical assistance by Barb Hughes. The production’s acting coach is Jeanne Allen.
“The set has perfectly captured the spirit of a run-down inn, one that would be inhabited by a ghost…or two. You won’t want to miss this enjoyable murder mystery comedy!” Swan added.
“Murder Inn” will continue on July 20th, 25th, 26th, and 27th at 7:30 p.m. Sunday matinee showings are July 21st and 28th at 2:00 p.m. Ticket prices are $15 for regular admission and $13 for seniors (age 60 and older) and students (age 6 and older). For reservations call 814-627.0311.