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Play Review- Musical Comedy Murder of 1940

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Play Review- Musical Comedy Murder of 1940

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Over the weekend of November 1st, Taft Charter High School produced “The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940.” Directed by Bill Sehres, and written by John Bishop, the play was a great success and (naturally) as a comedy, had many funny moments.

The play takes place during a harsh New York winter inside the house of Elsa Von Grossenknueten (Isabella Soto) and continues throughout the student-built secret passageways of her home. A group of actors comes together within the house to recreate the original play “Manhattan Holiday” which was abruptly canceled due to the murder of ballerinas. Very soon into the play, the characters realize that the murderer is among them and attempt to figure out who it is and stop them. After many plot twists, the play hits a climax when the cast believes that Patrick O’Reilley (Emil Haddad) is the murderer and race around in the hidden passages to catch him. In the meantime director, Ken De La Maize (Gerardo Lemus) reveals himself as the true murderer to dancer/navy intelligence agent Nikki Crandall (Abigail Rutman). The play ended with there being two different killers and, for a change of pace, the women save the day!

Musical Comedy Murders completely lives up to its title and brought the audience some amazing laughs. Especially during each of the murder scenes, when actors portrayed their best deaths of the night.

One of the highlights of the show was the role of DHH actor Gerardo Lemus. The way he was able to act out his part as a lead character and sign his lines during the ASL interpreted show, and with a voice actor for the other performances,  having him in the cast was a huge step towards inclusion for all types of people within the acting community at Taft. This opportunity for him to act on stage has helped to give him a passion to pursue acting in the future even as a possible career choice! I myself was so inspired by his talent and sincerely loved his role as… The Manhattan Holiday Killer!

After the play had ended, I had the opportunity to ask some of the cast members about their favorite parts of the play, Abigail Rutman shared that her favorite part of the play was “Making new friends” with her classmates. Emil Haddad said that “being on stage and hearing people laughing” is the best!

As this is a rather unknown play, I decided to ask the director and drama teacher, Bill Sehres, why he had chosen it. “I wanted to do something light and funny, we live in such troubling times and I wanted to give the audience something not so realistic that they can laugh at and enjoy.” The show, the acting, along with the fantastically built sets, was all a tremendous success and Taft cannot wait to see what this amazing program will produce next semester!

Taft Community along with the DHH community came out to support DHH Actor Gerardo Lemus and the cast of Musical Comedy Murders of 1940

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Play Review- Musical Comedy Murder of 1940