The Fall Play: The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940

By: Katie Keyser
Staff Writer

The cast of the Musical Comedy Murders of 1940 killed the audience with laughter on Oct. 31 to Nov. 2.

“The show was so funny, I couldn’t stop laughing!” Jocelyn Anker ’15, audience member, said.

In the Musical Comedy Murders of 1940, a creative team of producers and actors meet in New York for an audition. When all the characters arrive, they realize that these are the same directors from the show that was shut down due to The Stage Door Slasher who killed three showgirls. Later on, the characters find out that the audition is really a scheme made by Elsa Von Grossenknueten, played by Andrea Ortega ’15, and Seargent Michael Kelly, played by Christopher Henderson ’14, to uncover The Stage Door Slasher.

“I liked this play because it was funny compared to the other plays I’ve seen,” Kelsie Sirak ’16, audience member, said.  “It was a murder mystery, so you could try to figure it out yourself. It was also a little confusing, which added to the suspense and mystery.”

Cast members also enjoyed performing a comedy.

“My favorite part of the Musical Comedy Murders of 1940 is the extravagant and overblown nature of the show,” Anthony Chau ’14 said, who played Ken De La Maize. “We’re free and encouraged to be as over-the-top as possible, which adds a huge element of hilarity and novelty to every show and rehearsal.”

Throughout the play there were numerous plot twists. Characters turned out to not be who they said they were and each new scene brought another trap door.

“I think the show differs from those that have previously been produced at Peddie in a lot of ways. For starters, it is a lot more complex,” Eric Stefanowicz ’15, actor, said. “The set and the secret passage ways to the plot (where we have one person playing four roles) makes it that much more complex. It also helped all of us in the cast grow as actors.”

The show ended with a budding romance between Nikki Crandali, played by Emma Watkins ’14, and Eddie McCuen, played by Stefanowicz .

“My favorite scene was when Erik came in and hit Anthony and then Zoe (Gilbard ’14) twice on the head,” Sirak said. “I liked it because this is when Erik realized he was more than just a comic and can be a hero to at least one person- Emma.”

“I loved the play,” Sophie Spears ’14 said. “It was completely different from the other plays we’ve seen. Although it was a completely different genre I thought it was one of the best plays I’ve seen at Peddie and I felt like they pulled it off really well.”