‘Mousetrap’ first outdoor production of the season for Alley Theater


June 10—ANDERSON—The Alley Theater Company kicks off its outdoor season with an upcoming production of “The Mousetrap” at Gray’s Park, 2901 N. Madison Ave.

Described by first-time director Zarah Shejule as the ‘classic murder mystery’, ‘The Mousetrap’ is the world’s longest running play, debuting in 1952. Shejule, who is normally an actor, is thrilled to sit and watch the characters come to life and see the reaction of the crowd. She said she was incredibly lucky with the performers she got for her directorial debut.

“I got to cast people that I’ve worked with before. Some of them are veterans, but I also have people who are new to Alley Theater and new to me,” Shejule said.

Laurel Clark is one of the newest actors to come to the Alley Theater and to Indiana in general. Initially spending the majority of her life in Seattle, Clark fell in love with theater in high school. She notes a large number of theaters in the area, both in Anderson and in nearby towns such as Muncie.

“The arts are definitely alive in the Midwest,” she said. “I’m thrilled to put the show together and have an audience. It’s a great way to spend the afternoon with your family.”

Shejule said the show would be enjoyable for those who enjoy true crime documentaries on services like Netflix. For her, the thriller aspect is what kept the show going over the years, as well as what she described as a “collective social agreement” not to spoil the ending.

“For 70 years people have gone to this show and wondered who the killer was, and we know people are not good at keeping secrets, but it’s still a mystery to people in 2022,” she said.

The show is set in Monkswell Manor, a bed and breakfast, where a murder has occurred and everyone quickly fits the description. Actor Anthony Johnson, who is set to play Mr Paravicini, said his experience had been “a tightrope between clarity and authenticity” as he picked up an Italian accent for the first time.

“Customers should be on the lookout for all the shady things Mr. Paravicini does,” he said.

For Johnson, the magic of theater builds community.

“Live theater cannot be replicated,” he said. “If we can get many different people to sit together in a room and laugh or cry together, then we have created a special connection.”

The show will have three performances during the weekend of June 10. Friday and Saturday shows are scheduled to start at 7 p.m. The Sunday show will start at 3 p.m.

Customers are encouraged to come early and can bring food, drinks, chairs and blankets. In case of bad weather, the show will be moved inside the central Christian church. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased by calling the Alley Theater Box Office Message Center at 765-643-0701 or visiting the Christian Church Central Office Tuesday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. at 923 Jackson St.

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