Wadsworth (James Covarrubias) discovers the suspects
eavesdropping in the study.
Review by Emily Mercia, Ursuline Academy Critic Team
It's a dark and stormy night at Boddy Manor. Murder, blackmail, and delicious shark fin soup are all in store for these six unsuspecting guests, and they don't have a Clue!
Colerain High School's endition of Clue: High School Edition certainty reanimated the light-hearted sense of impending doom of this well-loved whodunit tale. Our six dinner guests-turned-murder suspects are in for one wild ride as they're thrust into an evening filled with secrets, intrigue, and of course, death. It's like everyone's favorite board game come to life, but with a comically sinister twist.
Colerain's amazing cast had great chemistry, and it was evident to the audience. They brought chaotic energy to the stage, giving a wonderful whirlwind performance that perfectly captured the antics of the doomed dinner party. It wouldn't be a true production of Clue without paying homage to its predecessor. It felt like the audience was truly watching a live board game, as the actors' movements were made with perfect angles and abrupt turns, walking across the stage as if it was a real board and they were the game pieces. The set did much to aid this; the double-storied stage with curving banisters and detailed walls made it seem like the characters were moving through the real Boddy Manor.
No murder mystery is complete without its mysterious butler, guiding the guests along their treacherous path. In this case, that role is filled by James Covarrubias as the prim and proper Wadsworth. Wadsworth is a rather serious character in an anything-but-serious show. It can sometimes be difficult to balance his stoicism with his witty remarks and irony. Yet Covarrubias managed to capture his essence perfectly, keeping the audience on their toes with his impeccable comedic timing. He left the crowd cackling over small things, like mahogany floors, and left them wondering, "Can you canoe?"
Of course, one cannot forget about the fantastic ensemble consisting of the six suspects. Two of the more notable performances were delivered by Michael Kongos as Colonel Mustard and Chanel Sanchez as Mrs. Peacock. This was Kongos' first appearance on stage and, needless to say, it was certainly a memorable one. He gifted Colonel Mustard with an amazing gruff voice, making the character seem like a true seasoned general. And Sanchez's portrayal brought the real terror of the night to life through her panicked speech and ear-splitting screams. It felt as though the killer would jump into the audience at any moment.
This production would not have been possible without Colerain's fantastic crew. The audience can see, even from the back of the theater, the attention to detail throughout the entire set. From each book on the shelves to the rotary phones on the tables, everything was meticulously thought out to create a more immersive experience. The murder weapons were also 3D printed by the students, made to look like real game pieces - yet another piece of the puzzle for the captivating night.
Colerain High School's performance of Clue was certainly one to remember, bringing the well-loved-light-hearted murder to life and making the audience feel like a part of the ill-fated dinner party.
The Cook (Hana Busken), killed by a dagger in the back, falls out off the
refrigerator onto the unsuspecting Mr. Green (Ethan Stoelt).
Review by Katie Berich, Walnut Hills High School Critic Team
Trick bookcases, trapdoors, and a body in the lounge! Colerain High School's Clue: High School Edition was a spectacular display of talent from cast and crew alike.
A farcical telling of a well-known "whodunit" story seen in both the board game Clue and the 1985 movie of the same name, follows an ensemble of six suspects as they convene for a dinner party. Their night quickly goes awry as bodies begin to appear, leaving them to decide amongst themselves who the killer is. Led in their charge by Wadsworth, the butler, the six look for clues and make accusations in a fast-paced, action-packed comedy.
Colerain High School's production was a creative mix of the board game and movie, using a realistic set, but heavily referencing concepts from the game. Not only were props modeled to look like game pieces, but actors also walked between rooms in straight, direct paths, as though they were game pieces. Minor issues with diction and rate of speech were made up for by spectacular comedic moments, and the cast recovered gracefully from struggles with mics and set pieces.
It can be difficult to find and differentiate your character in an ensemble piece, but the cast of Clue excelled in individuality. Mr. Green, played by Ethan Stoelt, delivered comedic lines with masterful timing and had a clear understanding of how his role fits into the group. Michael Kongos truly embodied Colonel Mustard in his physical acting, commanding attention with his authoritative stance and voice.
Performances from featured actors brought the show to life, heavily aiding the plot in pivotal moments and adding charm to the production as a whole. Clad in tap shoes, Hana Busken provided necessary foreshadowing and lightened the mood with a brief song and dance as Cook/Singing Telegram Girl. Similarly, Joey Smith served as a major plot point in his role as the Motorist, but later had the audience in stitches as Chief of Police.
The high production quality of Clue was due in large part to technical aspects, especially an immersive set designed and built by Catherine Coleman and crew. Utilizing multiple levels to create a divide between the rooms, the set was cohesive in color and style. Deck changes were made quickly with the use of modular pieces to create the kitchen, dining room, and hallway. The set was further highlighted by the use of practical fixtures in Jaelin Parker's lighting design, including a stunning chandelier.
From stellar performances to flashy tech, the hard work of the cast and crew was evident in Colerain's Clue: High School Edition.
The suspects are startled by an unexpected visitor with a murderer
on the loose. Is he the killer?
Review by Ava VanBuskirk, Loveland High School Critic Team
Murder; intrigue; mayhem. A game is afoot at Colerain High School! In their production of the play Clue, which is based on the popular Parker Brothers board game as well as the 1985 movie, a talented group of cast and crew students took the stage to create an unforgettable show. Set in the 1950s, six seemingly random people are called to the home of Mr. Boddy, Brandon Saylor, on a stormy evening. When Boddy is mysteriously murdered, chaos ensues, and trust is abandoned. The six random guests, who are under pseudonyms, become six suspects; a classic murder mystery is afoot.
As Yvette, Kailie Gould brought a special presence to the stage with her French accent and unique position as the maid. She showcased her range as an actor as her character jumped from joy to anger, from boldness to fear. Gould was entertaining while keeping her character interesting and at times mysterious.
The set and props crews, led by Catherine Coleman and Cadence Lynn, truly set the bar high with their attention to detail. Clue is a show with many rooms and lots of chaos, and that includes secret passageways. Miss Scarlet and Colonel Mustard, a hilarious duo, stumble across a secret passageway from the conservatory to the lounge, which was complete with a hidden door and a moving fireplace. The set's dedication to the most humorous bits in the show was especially proven when a giant board of "EVIDENCE" was shown to the audience while no characters noticed. It was clear that this piece took a lot of time, and it was a shining part of the set, even though it played a comparatively small role.
To expound more upon the characters of Miss Scarlet and Colonel Mustard, played by Charlotte McVay and Michael Kongos respectively, it would be remiss not to mention how humorously they complimented each other. The two bounced off of one other in an appropriately jocular fashion, with perfect comedic timing. It was clear that McVay and Kongos understood their characters well, making their scenes supremely enjoyable and intriguing.
All in all, Colerain High School's production of Clue was an extremely funny crowd-pleaser, and both the cast and crew pulled it off to create an impressive show. They kept the audience on the edges of their seats and with smiles on their faces, despite the. . . murder.
Professor Plum (Hank Jablonski) and Mrs. Peacock (Chanel
Sanchez search the library for the evidence that couldn’t possibly be plastered against
Excerpts From Other Top Reviews
"The corrupt politician's wife, Mrs. Peacock, played by Chanel Sanchez, proved her understanding of the character with commendable delivery during her long babbling monologues. Equally, as note-worthy was the slow-witted, yet endearing Colonel Mustard, performed by Michael Kongos, whose comedic timing and hilarious one-liners were nothing short of exemplary. Janet Kelly as Mrs. White handled the macabre humor with aplomb, and her chemistry with her fellow suspects was undeniable."
-Loretta Rubin, Walnut Hills High School Critic Team
"James Covarrubias skillfully showcased Wadsworth's poise and seemingly unbothered state throughout the chaos that ensued around him. From his serious tone, as he greeted the newest guests to his comedic sprinting through the audience and canoeing on the ground, Covarrubias never failed to shine through his ecstatic stage presence and larger-than-life personality."
-Ashlyn Fuhrmann, William Henry Harrison High School Critic Team
"Throughout the performance, the sound team, headed by Karli Smith, ran through numerous sound effects as well as many backing tracks while having zero issues with mics. Accompanying many sound cues the lighting team had cues to match sound effects such as thunder and lightning. Headed by Jaelin Parker, the lighting team executed many cues flawlessly and used the lighting to help accommodate the set as well as further the plot."
-Ella Clemons, Loveland High School Critic Team
"These stunts and transitions wouldn't be possible without the work of choreographer Karli Smith. Her work focused on synchronized movements that underscored transitions, and some stage combat. Through her skillful work with moments such as the tango sequence, chases, and smooth transitions between scenes and sequences, Smith's work added to the suspense and kept the audience engaged."
-Lizzy Rebber, Walnut Hills High School Critic Team
"The set of this show was one to be remembered. The set crew, led by Catherine Coleman, Samantha Cooper, and Olivia Sunderman, utilized the entire space and cleverly represented the board game. With the use of platforms and movable sets; the library, pool room, lounge, and study were visible during the full production, while movable sets such as the kitchen and conservatory came on and off stage. This created an incredible look to the scenes across the board. The props crew, led by Cadence Lynn, used 3D printing to construct props such as the candlestick, dagger, and revolver. These were printed in a cool gray tone to give the effect of a metal playing piece from the board game, further immersing the characters and the audience into the original game of Clue."
-Alexandra Hess, Campbell County High School Critic Team
" Michael Kongos and Ethan Stoelt gave especially strong performances as Colonel Mustard and Mr. Green, respectively, and stood out among the cast. Michael Kongos showed an impressive commitment to the role, using a gravelly voice to distinguish his character from the others, and always carrying himself with a not-so-subtle overconfidence appropriate for his character. Through the character's moments of awkward ignorance and his interactions with other characters, it was clear that Kongos had a good understanding of the character. Alongside Kongos, Ethan Stoelt was equally as entertaining, embracing every aspect of Mr. Green. The contrast between the quirky, clumsy dinner guest and the suave FBI agent that Mr. Green turns out to be is a hilarious one that can make the audience appreciate both sides of the character. Together, Kongos and Stoelt were successful in finding the comedic essence of their characters and effectively delivered their performances with comedic skill."
-Jessica Roell, Mercy McAuley High School Critic Team
"This show was stellar from both an acting and technical perspective. Congratulations to the cast and crew of Colerain High School Drama Club for a fantastic performance."
-Anne-Marie Lusk, Randall K. Cooper High School Critic Team