One of Agatha Christie’s best-loved characters – Miss Marple – comes to Curtain Call in the delightfully deceitful mystery, A Murder is Announced, playing in The Dressing Room Theatre, Stamford, January 12 through 29.
Set in the 1940s, “A Murder is Announced” is about a group of English villagers summoned by a newspaper notice to someone’s home for a murder game. But when a couple people are actually killed it takes Miss Marple to solve the mystery.
An announcement in the local paper states the time and place when a murder is to occur in Miss Blacklock’s Victorian house. The victim is not one of the house’s several occupants, but an unexpected and unknown visitor. What follows is a classic Christie puzzle of mixed motives, concealed identities, a second death and a determined inspector grimly following the case’s twists and turns. Fortunately, Miss Marple is on hand to provide the solution – at some risk to herself – in a dramatic final confrontation.
“I love a good mystery and have always been a big fan of Christie’s works,” said Lou Ursone, Curtain Call executive director and producer for this show. “I’ve read almost all of her stories – Poirot and Marple especially,” he added. ( The characters of Miss Marple and Hercule Poirot are featured in many of Christie’s 66 detective novels.) Curtain Call began its 2022 series last January with Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express.
Directing A Murder is Announced is Joel Fenster, who has directed nearly a dozen Christie plays, including last season’s Orient Express and several others here at Curtain Call. Fenster has been a big Christie fan for nearly 50 years. He explained, “The 1974 film version of Murder on the Orient Express was my intro to Dame Agatha. I remember watching it when I was seven or eight. It both enthralled me and scared me. It eventually led me to picking up the book…which led to another Christie book…and another….and another…I had read most of the Poirot novels by the time I was twelve.”
Murder mysteries by Christie and others have been a popular staple at Curtain Call for many years, so advance reservations are recommended. At press time, more than half of the performances each have less than 12 seats remaining.
Due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, Curtain Call has continued the practice of double-casting their productions as a means to make sure that the show does indeed go on. “We operate with such a lean budget, that cancelling even one performance can really hurt us, so having the back-up of two full casts is really important,” Ursone said. The exact performance schedule of who is performing which night is on the Curtain Call website: www.curtaincallinc.com.
In addition to Fenster, the rest of the production team includes set design by Martin Scott Marchitto, lighting design by Jamie LaJoie, costumes by Natasha Fenster and stage management by Michael Kraus and Kevin Tangney. The cast includes: Ann Alford, Kristin Aug, Seth Barkan, Matthew Blank, Kendall Callaghan, Annalisa DiNucci, Erica Evelti, Carin Freidag, Phil Garfinkel, Danielle Gartner, Elayne Gordon, Cindy Hartog, Karen Heck, Leslie Jones, Eric Marquez, Humza Mian, Josh Pickel, Charlotte Poth, Lauren Sherwood, Gail Yudain, Ted Yudain and Bill Yurkas.
Performances will be held Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings at 8:00pm and Sunday afternoons at 2:00PM, from January 12 to 29. The Dressing Room Theatre is located at The Sterling Farms Theatre Complex, 1349 Newfield Avenue, Stamford, CT. Doors open one hour before show time. Seating is cabaret style with a BYOEverything format. Tickets are $38 for adults, $28 for senior citizens and $20 for children under 21. (Discounted Flex Pass subscriptions offer savings of 25% and more.) Box Office: 203-461-6358 or on the web at www.curtaincallinc.com.
A Murder is Announced, adapted for the stage by Leslie Darbon, is produced through special arrangement with Concord Theatricals in cooperation with The City of Stamford with support from the CT Office of the Arts / Department of Economic Development.
Curtain Call was voted Fairfield County’s BEST LOCAL THEATRE GROUP ten years running in the Annual Readers’ Poll of the Fairfield County Weekly and has received similar BEST OF awards from Stamford Magazine and StamfordPlus magazine for 2008 through 2018. Curtain Call received The Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts in 2011 and the ACE Award for Excellence in Arts & Culture from the Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County in 2016.