Steve Furline (played by Bill Worsfold) and Valene Depardie (played by LaDawn Druce) polish their dancing skills on a high school reunion cruise while cruise director Mallory (Sarah Shoemaker) watches. The scene is from "Murder Ahoy," a murder-mystery play presented Saturday.
Photo by Jenny Neyman
“I shot the shar-pei, but I did not shoot the Depardie.”
This is Mary Bailey’s favorite line as the Broken Rattan High School librarian in the upcoming murder-mystery, “Murder Ahoy,” written and directed by Mike Druce at the Kenai Senior Citizens Center.
A shar-pei is a nonsporting dog breed (read: lap dog) with very short hair and loose skin. A Depardie could be Valene Depardie, played by LaDawn Druce, who, according to the production’s playbill, is the “Queen of everything. Stuck-up, hated by all, married to Charles, her fifth husband.” Or it could be Dr. Charles Depardie, played by Dan Kaasa, described in the same playbill as “Rich, educated, not the least bit happy about this cruise that is taking the place on his honeymoon with Valene.” Mike Druce would prefer it not be revealed in this article, which Depardie is the one shot.
The Depardies are joined on this cruise, Broken Rattan High Manatees’s 30th reunion, by a host of broadly portrayed characters such as the ultra-competitive cheerleading sisters Bernaise and Hollandaise Soss, played by Lisa Kent and Peggy Jones, and Detective Frank Ripley who is, in the playbill, “A little too serious to be taken seriously,” played by Bill Gronvold. Druce has modeled some of his characters on past audience favorites, this murder-mystery fundraiser now in its fourth year.
Carol Ford, on the board directors of the Kenai Performers, said the project started as a partnership between the theater group and the Kenai Senior Citizens Center out of mutual need.
“We had done a couple of projects there (the senior center) before we had a space of our own. We were on the verge of getting into a permanent home, and they said, ‘You need some fundraising, and we’re fundraising for the extension on the senior center.’”
They had originally considered ordering a kit that would enable them to host a murder-mystery dinner, but Mike Druce had just written the first of the scripts, which became the core of this annual fundraiser for both groups.
“Mike’s writing is so wacky and zany. People look forward to going and laughing,” Ford said.
Who, what, where & when ...
“Murder Ahoy,” the annual fundraiser for the Kenai Senior Citizens Center and Kenai Performers, will begin at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the senior center. It is a dinner theater performance with an extended dinner menu and no-host bar. Tickets are available at River City Books in Soldotna and the senior center. Only 150 tickets will be sold for each night, at $30 a ticket.
Peninsula Clarion ©2013. All Rights Reserved.