Rose on Clue and Hopes for This Year

Rose+on+Clue+and+Hopes+for+This+Year

Christian Fitzpatrick , Lighter Fare Editor '22

An eccentric cast of characters, a ludicrous string of mysteries, and a deadly gambit gone totally off the rails: this year’s fall theatre production of Clue certainly promises a good laugh and a wild ride for all involved. To get some background knowledge about Clue and its selection for our play, as well as some insight into how initial preparations were going, I sat down with Mr. Nick Rose, the head of the high school’s drama program, to talk about the production.

 

On providing a summary for Clue:

“Six suspects get invited to a dinner party at an old mansion in the 1950s, only to find out they all have something in common that makes them suspects in an upcoming murder spree inside the house…It’s a very funny piece. It’s not meant to be taken seriously in any way shape or form.”

On Clue’s origins:

“The play is relatively new. It’s only been around for about a couple years, but it’s based off of a 1985 movie with Tim Curry and a bunch of other big comedy actors [from] back then. The movie had three different endings that you could see at different theatres, so wherever you went to, you saw a different ending to the movie. It was a surprise which one you saw. Nowadays if you watch the movie, it’s got all three endings together. This play is based on the movie, which is based on the board game. It follows the movie pretty closely in a lot of ways, but it also does its own things, because it’s a stage play, not a movie.”

On why he chose Clue to be our next fall production:

“Well, one, it’s the number one high school production of the past two years. So, I figured, why not choose something that everybody else is doing? But, two, when I was in high school, it was my favorite movie. I knew every line. You know, [for] my sixteenth birthday, my friends threw me a surprise birthday party where we acted out the movie inside my girlfriend’s house. That’s how much I love the movie. It’s a story that I love, you know, because it’s silly, and I love comedy, and I love murder mysteries too. But at the same time, it’s something that everyone loves doing right now, so I was like, let’s do something everyone loves doing.”

On what challenges Clue will present:

“It’s going to challenge us too. It’s going to be a big set. It’s going to have moving parts. We had a great audition. We had a lot of great guys turn out, a lot of great talent across the board. Usually, in an audition, you hold a monologue: you watch that person act by themselves. But [for] this, I had everybody read together and what was immediately amazing to me is how quick all the young actors were at picking up the pace and keeping it moving, and that’s what this play requires. You can’t slow down.”

“DiTullio seems pretty confident that he can build it, so we’re going to have a set that slowly reveals itself to have a bunch of surprises in it. The main set is the main hall of the mansion, and then, the story quickly moves to all the nine rooms, because there’s nine rooms in Clue, so they try to show you. I think you see eight of them. So, how do you quickly move from room to room? In some cases, it’s just a small adjustment, but then, as the play progresses, you realize the set’s got to do this and this and move here and show this. I mean, we have to have a moment where two characters are locked inside one room and a chandelier falls in the main hall. We got to come up with something creative, but it’s going to be a nice tall set, as well, so that you’ll feel like you’re inside a mansion.”

“I think we got the time to rehearse this? I’m not too worried about that. I think the biggest challenge is just making sure we get the word out.”

On who Clue will appeal to:

“I guarantee everybody’s parents know the movie, you know? And so far, everybody who’s watched the movie preparing for the audition has come back saying, ‘Oh my gosh, that’s so funny.’ So, you know, hopefully that carries across to our student audience as well.”

On what his aspirations for Clue are:

“I know that we did Crimes of the Heart before I came in, that was the fall play before me. I think the big difference with this is I want us to have fun with our first fall play, but at the same time, I want it to be entertainment fun. I want people to truly be entertained by what we show them. As opposed to ‘Oh! That’s funny. Hahaha,’ I want it to be like ‘Oh! Wow!’ You know?”

“[I also want to] show off all of the great talent that we have on the stage as well as the talent behind the building of it. I know, in the past, Mr. DiTullio’s sets have been rock solid, and everyone’s loved them, so that’s going to continue. So, now it’s, ‘How can I be creative and surprise the audience?’ That’s what I’m hoping to do. Surprise them a little bit.”

“I’ve got professional theatre experience, but I love being an upper school teacher. I think that we’ve got all the elements to make this a really good show, and one that would rival a professional production.”

“I want everybody here at CCDS to be proud that they’re part of a school that put on an awesome piece of work.”

On what he wants to tell CCDS students about Clue:

SEE THE SHOW.”

“Having a new drama head, you’re kind of restarting the gears a little bit, and so, we’re always looking for people who want to help and participate and so forth. So, if there’s anybody out there that maybe doesn’t want to get on stage, doesn’t know how to use a hammer, but wants to help out in some other way, there’s always something. Anybody that’s got any skill can contribute to a theatrical production. It doesn’t matter. If you’re great with numbers, we could use you. We could definitely use you. I would love for the student body to know that you don’t have to just want to act or just want to hammer a set together or hang a light to do theatre, there’s so many other things that we could use help with, and I would be more than happy to bring you on board.”

His final thoughts on the matter:

“I’ve been here for a little over a year, but I feel so welcome and so integrated so quickly that I feel like I’ve been here for a while. The family spirit and community spirit here at the school is something that makes me really proud to be part of it. I’m just excited that we get to actually celebrate and do something that we did before we couldn’t do things. That makes me really happy. And a little misty-eyed. But really happy. And I want us to laugh. That’s what I want us to do. I want us to laugh when we come back to it.”