Manchester Arts Center brings popular movie and board game to life

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The TAG performance was a hit for many who attended the performance of “Clue: On Stage.”

Alexa Morse, Opinions-Editorial Editor

Manchester Arts Center opened their 2021 season with its annual TAG (Teen Actors Guild) show. The show of choice to kick off the new year is a favorite of many: “Clue: On Stage”.

“Clue: On Stage” is a stage adaptation of the 1985 film “Clue.” 

The play is the classic whodunnit. During the show, audience members follow the seven characters on the hunt to find the killer of their host, Mr. Boddy. This inevitably leads to more deaths, questions, and late-in-the-game twists. 

Coffee County Central High School alum, Travis Lawson, starred as Mr. Wadsworth, the butler to Mr. Boddy who simply “buttles.”

In an interview with Lawson, he stated that watching Tim Curry as Mr. Wadsworth in the original film adaption the night before auditioning interested him in the role.

He continued that his favorite part of the show was when he performed a fast pace, fully informative recap of the show in the latter part of the play. 

The show was directed by first-time director Rick Ruiz. Ruiz was already a fan of performing and theater when he decided to take on the role of director. 

He was drawn to directing because he felt he had similar humor to what the show had and the teens performing. 

He applauds all the cast members for their fantastic jobs. He feels as if every person that was cast in their parts fit perfectly, which made the show as good as it was.

However, the production of this show was not all sunshine and rainbows. 

The show was set to hit the stage back in January. Unfortunately, due to the crazy world that we are in, circumstances changed and the show was postponed until February.

In their final week of rehearsals, Manchester experienced an unexpected winter storm. 

Because of inclement weather, rehearsals had to transition online.

Ruiz described the comedy of the show as very physical. So when they had to transition online, a lot of what they had to work with was gone.

The show must go on, they say. 

In true theater fashion, everything came together on opening night and the show was able to run for two successful weekends. 

Although live theater has changed since Covid, the Manchester Arts Center has found a system that works for them.

Tickets were sold in pods so that audience members could separate from one another.

Even with changes, people were still eager to get to the theater to see the show. Though seating was changed, four shows still sold out. 

The show ran from February 19 through February 28.

Although the cast and crew of “Clue: On Stage” faced many obstacles in this ever-changing world, they came out strong with a great opening season show.