This year marks the 40th anniversary of the Possum Point Players and the season opens with a little mystery as "The Psychic" hits the stage next weekend. Director Patrick Erhardt took time to discuss the play this week.
2013 promises to be a year of mystery for the local theater group, Possum Point Players.
The first three productions of the year, all mysteries, offer something for everyone. There's the in-your-face physical stuff, the more subtle and dry humor and, of course, music never hurt anyone.
And, as of right now, there's the biggest mystery of all: the fall production. Contracts are still being signed, but the production is rumored to be a fan favorite because PPP has actually blocked out an extra weekend of performances.
But, right now, the curtain is rising on the first performance of the year. "The Psychic" merges both comedy and mystery and features six of southern Delaware's most adept comedic actors. At the play's helm is director Patrick Erhardt, who's been doing theater most of his life and loves the comedies. Erhardt took time this week to discuss the latest PPP production and his work as an actor and director.
Q 'The Psychic' just sounds mysterious. Can you explain the plot a bit?
A It's billed as a murder mystery of sorts. It's a comedy about a gentleman who writes murder mysteries. But, the problem is that he can't sell them to a publisher. So, he puts a sign in the window of the basement in his New York apartment that says 'psychic readings: $25.' Then, a woman shows up and he makes a prediction to her. Following that, her husband shows up and after that her husband's mistress shows up. Then, the mistress's mister shows up because she's also the mistress of a gangster. So, the gangster shows up. Then, someone dies. I won't tell you who, but someone dies. Then, a detective shows up to investigate the death. Now, all the people who died are found with the psychic's business card in their hand. So, that's the first act. But, I can't go into the second act because there's a big surprise there.
Q Why did you want to be involved with this particular production?
A I love directing comedies. I've done a number of them, actually. This is the sixth show I've directed for Possum [Point Players]. I just love directing the comedies. I find them fun and refreshing. And, I was fortunate to be able to put together just a marvelous cast for the show.
Q Any stand out performances audiences should be on the lookout for?
A Actually, they are all exceptional. All six actors are amazing in their own right. Each person plays a unique character and seeing what they've done with the characters is just wonderful.
Q Do you have any favorite moments that you think audiences will really enjoy?
A There are several. They're going to enjoy Detective Coslow and how that character is portrayed. There's also this great scene where they are trying to come up with an ending for one of the guy's murder mysteries. It's just a lot of action back and forth on the stage, and the quickness of the banter is just great. What those actors have done in that scene is really, really funny.