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Port Neches-Groves theater bringing real who-done-it to stage

PORT NECHES — The names, weapons and rooms are as familiar as the board game that was made into a movie.

And now Clue, the high school edition, will play out on stage at Port Neches-Groves High School, beginning Sunday and running Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.

Not much has changed from the movie version — it’s still a murder mystery, a thriller and a comedy all rolled into one.

But instead of different locations, all of the rooms of the mansion are represented on stage at once, theater director Melissa Eyles said.

“It’s the same characters as the movie,” Eyles said, adding in this version professor Plum is female. The idea came from looking at different versions of the board game in which some instances Plum was male, and others a female. “They have the rooms all on stage; the conservatory, billiards room, lounge, study.”

 

Carter Collins as Col. Mustard speaks with Carson Lewis, as Mr. Green during rehearsal. Mary Meaux/The News

 

The actors

Kennedi Doiron’s Professor Plum is very studious.

“So studious she becomes narcissistic; probably thinks she’s better than everyone else because she’s smarter,” senior Doiron said.

Carson Lewis’ Mr. Green is very skittish, jumpy and questions a lot while Juliana McManus’ Miss Scarlett is far from shy.

Elizabeth DeCluitt, a senior, said Mrs. White is a skeptical, very desensitized widow, whereas Daisy Obregon’s Mrs. Peacock is a religious woman but also secretive, corrupt and neurotic.

Col. Mustard, portrayed by Carter Collins, is the jokester of the group and though authoritative is scared on the inside.

And let’s not forget Yvette, the maid played by Maura Gibson, D.J. Ganger as the cook and the sadistic, narcissistic, short-tempered Wadsworth portrayed by Jake Rhodes.

 

Port Neches-Groves High School Theater rehearses for Clue, the high school edition. Mary Meaux/The News

 

Hurricane, safety & more

The cast hasn’t had much time to work together on this production.

“The hurricane slowed us down. We have only been practicing together for about three weeks,” Eyles said from a seat in the audience as the cast practices on stage. “We’re very fortunate none of the kids had to miss rehearsal for any reasons except for sharing them with band and sports.”

The group has also maintained all COVID-19 restrictions in school and out. This group, she said, studies together and stays with the same circle.

During practice earlier this week cast members were either masked up or wore face shields.

They will be mask/shield free during the shows.

Eyles said they are following University Interscholastic League and Texas Educational Theater Association policies.

The theater will be at 50 percent capacity, will be skipping rows and masks are required.

The air conditioning will be blowing but cast members will be equipped with sound reinforcement.

Scarlett/Juliana McManus, Mustard/Collins and Peacock/Obregon gave reasons for people to come see the show: “it’s funny and wacky,” “live action murder,” and “dead bodies.”

DeCluitt summed it up.

“We’ve worked so hard with hurricanes and COVID and are extremely proud,” she said.

 

Showtimes

Sunday, Oct. 25 — 3 p.m.

Monday, Oct. 26 — 8 p.m. (after Trunk R Treat)

Tuesday, Oct. 27 — 7 p.m.

Thursday, Oct. 29 — 7 p.m.

Tickets are $5 for students and seniors and $10 for adults. The theater does accept the PNG purple card for senior citizens in the district.

Port Neches-Groves High School is located at 1401 Merriman St., Port Neches.