High school production of 'Arsenic & Old Lace' will come alive this weekend

| 15 Feb 2012 | 10:32

Photo and story by Jennifer Jean Miller SPARTA — Murder and mystery are on the menu for the classic comedy, "Arsenic & Old Lace," to be performed at Sparta High School Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Dec. 8 through 10. "It's been a lot of fun," said Victoria Reed, an English and drama teacher at the school, who has worked with the double cast of students. Each cast will appear in two performances, and range from freshmen to seniors. Reed said the drama/comedy has been in rehearsal since September, and has been a challenge for the students, due to the amount of dialogue. The play was written in 1939 by Joseph Kesserlring, with the first show in New York City in 1941, with a film adaptation starring Cary Grant in 1944. Set in Brooklyn, the plot circles around Mortimer Brewster, a theater critic, ready to marry his love Elaine. At the same time, he contends with the activities of his murderous brother, Jonathan, and the antics of brother, Teddy, who believes he is Teddy Roosevelt. His spinster aunts Abby and Martha add to the mix, with the cure they provide to ease the loneliness of solitary elderly gentlemen, by serving up a concoction of elderberry wine mixed with arsenic, strychnine and cyanide. Advanced ticket sales are $5 per ticket, $7 at the door. Senior citizens are free. Shows are at 7 p.m., with a matinee performance on Saturday at 2 p.m. Tickets can be reserved by email at: victoria.reed@sparta.org. The cast includes Eric Loverro and Danny Duffy (Mortimer Brewster), Emily Hand and Kim Bollard (Abby Brewster), Christy Smetana and Lizzie Buback (Martha Brewster), Justine Collins and Lauren Murphy (Elaine Harper), Dillon Feldman and CJ Doyle (Jonathan Brewster), Jack Ryan and Jamie Lowenstein (Teddy Brewster), Spencer Law and Lukas Baumgartner (Dr. Einstein), Kayla Bolger and Angelique Donati (Officer O'Hara), Max Alben and Connor Nelms (Lieutenant Rooney), Alex Muino (Officer Brophy), Laura Silverio and Lexus Ingala (Officer Klein), Jamie Lowenstein and Dillon Feldman (Reverend Dr. Harper), Leanna Bernstein (Mrs. Witherspoon), and Haley Barna (Mrs. Gibbs).