THE MUSICAL COMEDY MURDERS

OF 1940

Written by John Bishop • Directed by Amy Canning Love

Producer: Barbara Marshall

JUNE 12 - 28, 2020

ON OUR STUDIO STAGE

The creative team responsible for a recent Broadway flop, in which three chorus girls were murdered by the mysterious "Stage Door Slasher,” assemble for a backer's audition of their new show at the Westchester estate of a wealthy producer. The house is replete with sliding panels, secret passageways and a German maid, all of which figure diabolically in the comic mayhem that ensues when the infamous "Slasher" makes his reappearance and strikes again…and again.

CAST & CREATIVE

AUDITIONS FOR MUSICAL COMEDY MURDERS OF 1940

By John Bishop

 

Sunday, April 5

Registration begins at 12:00pm; Auditions begin promptly at 1:00pm

Where: Players by the Sea

Production Dates: June 12, 13, 18, 19, 20, 21, 25, 26, 27, 28

 

ABOUT THE SHOW

The Stage Door Slasher is at large and after the murder of one of her best friends, Elsa Von Grossenknueten is out to solve the mystery. She suspects the slasher is a member of a well-known creative team that she calls to her mansion in Chappaqua, New York for an audition. Little does the team know that it’s not your typical audition, it’s an ‘Audition for a Killer.’ They soon realize the truth and the sleuthing ensues. A snowstorm hits and the phones are dead, secret passageways are discovered and mistaken identities are revealed. Chases, hold ups, threats and clues all lead the group to some surprising discoveries. Could the Slasher be the German maid, the Irish Tenor or maybe even both? Musical Comedy Murders is not a musical, but invites the same spirit as a musical comedy in the form of a play.

 

SEEKING:

 

HELSA WENZEL – The German maid. She is murdered in the first scene and impersonated by her twin brother, Dieter for the remainder of the play. This actress will also appear at the end as “Katrina, the cook from Koblenz.”

 

ELSA VON GROSSENKNEUTEN – The eccentric host of the party and owner of the mansion where she calls the creative team together, as an attempt to unmask the Stage Door Slasher.

 

MICHAEL KELLY – An undercover cop who pretends to be Elsa’s butler. He is kidnapped by an unseen figure, vanishes in a secret passage, and is later found with his hands tied and a gag in his mouth.

 

PATRICK O’REILLY - A suspicious character who claims to be an Irish tenor. Later, he changes his story and identifies as Tony Garibaldi, an undercover cop with a Bronx accent. But his true identity is revealed as a Gestapo Agent sent to find German defectors. He is murdered by Helsa, the German maid.

 

KEN DE LA MAIZE – The “typical” theatre director with an annoying habit of name-dropping the many celebrities he’s worked with over the years. In the end, he is revealed as the Stage Door Slasher, is captured, and taken to prison.

 

NIKKI CRANDALL – The typical chorus girl but ends up revealing her true identity as Ensign Nicole Crandall of U.S. Naval Intelligence. She was on a secret mission to find the Germans who sabotaged American war efforts. She becomes interested in the Stage Door Slasher case and helps solve the mystery.  Eddie saves her life twice, prompting their falling in love at the end.

 

EDDIE MCCUEN – Based directly on Bob Hope, he’s the comedian who ties all the different storylines together. His character turns from cowardly in the beginning, to heroic. His brave actions unite him with Nikki – he ends up saving the day and getting the girl.

 

MARJORIE BAVERSTOCK – A Broadway producer who is quite obviously killed before intermission but no one seems to notice, even though there’s a giant sword through her back. She speaks with a high-society flare and flatters all those around her.

 

ROGER HOPEWELL – A famous Broadway composer who enjoys teasing Ken and makes smart remarks throughout the play. He is easily insulted by comments about his musical style. Works closely with Bernice, the lyricist, and therefore, knows how to handle all her quirks.

 

BERNICE ROTH – An odd and quirky lyricist, who frequently loses her composure and turns to liquor to get her through the nights events. She’s constantly bursting with musical ideas and comes up with a American mid-western play idea called Nebraska – a spoof on Oklahoma.

 

PREPARATION

- Please prepare a 1-minute modern monologue.
- Be prepared for cold readings from the script.
- A Headshot & Resume is not required, but extremely helpful (and very highly encouraged!) .
- Please provide all known conflicts from April 6 – June 28.

PHOTO & VIDEO

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