BWW Reviews: ARSENIC AND OLD LACE at Hale Centre Theatre West Valley is Sure to Please
Hale Centre Theatre in West Valley is currently presenting a solidly mounted production of the classic comedy ARSENIC AND OLD LACE that is sure to please fans and newcomers alike.
ARSENIC AND OLD LACE, by Joseph Kesselring, is a dark comedy, well known due to Frank Capra's film adaptation starring Cary Grant. The two elderly Brewster sisters, Abby and Martha, have made a habit of poisoning prospective boarders in a well-meaning attempt to save them from their lonely circumstances. But when they are visited by their two nephews--the absentminded Mortimer and the devious Jonathan--their secrets are at risk, and mayhem ensues.
Chris Brown as Abby Brewster (double cast with Linda Jean Stephenson) and Melany Wilkins as Martha Brewster (double cast with Claire Spencer) are accomplished in their quirky and lovable portrayals of their characters. Brandon Green is amply creepy as Jonathan Brewster, and Paul Cartwright is commanding (if overenthusiastic) as Mortimer Brewster (double cast with Justin Bruse).
Amy Addams Stocking is worthy of praise as Mortimer's ignored fiancée Elaine Harper (double cast with Eden Benson). Also giving notable performances are Michael Hohl as the unhinged Teddy Brewster (double cast with Kevin Cottam), Matt Kohler as Jonathan's partner Dr. Einstein (double cast with Bryan Dayley), and David Martin as Officer O'Hara (double cast with Trenton Krummenacher).
The set, designed by Kacey Udy, is a lovely representation of an old Victorian home bursting with stained glass lighting fixtures and accented by furniture and props (selected by Michelle Jensen) that infuse history and character, making the space feel comfortable and lived in. The costumes by Brooke Wilkins, along with hair and makeup by Krissa Lent, complete the grounded but slightly wacky setting.
Tickets are nearly sold out for the run, so anyone interested in seeing the show should purchase them as soon as possible.
ARSENIC AND OLD LACE plays through May 31, 2014. For tickets, call the box office at 801-984-9000 or visit www.halecentretheatre.org.
Photo Credit: L-R Chris Brown (Abby Brewster) and Melany Wilkins (Martha Brewster)