The Gunnery Drama Society’s presentation of its fall play, “Arsenic and Old Lace,” in the Lemcke Theater in the Emerson Performing Arts Center played to enthusiastic audiences. The familiar suspense comedy kept audiences laughing as a succession of corpses turn life upside-down for the eccentric Brewster family.
The play’s central characters, members of the nutty Brewster family, provided a wonderful vehicle for The Gunnery’s veteran comedic actors: Sabryna Coppola ’18 and Lois Bachman ’19 as the two homicidal maiden aunts whose charity started at home with the murder of lonely old men with no friends and no family. Their “concerned” family includes Christian Kummer ’18 as the face-changing, criminally insane nephew, Jonathan, looking for a place to hide with his very German plastic surgeon, Dr. Einstein played by Bella Byrne ’18. Travis Powell ’20 played the aunts’ loyal and seriously delusional nephew and henchman, Teddy, whose role as Teddy Roosevelt is to dig Panamanian locks in the basement to hide/bury the evidence of his aunts nefarious practices. Sam Johnson ’19 played the “romantic” lead introducing his new fiancée (Sylvie Edelstein ’21) to the family while wrestling with the possibility that he has inherited the family’s madness.
Sage Mines ’19 commented that he enjoyed playing the part of Mr. Hoskins, the dead guy. He truly believes “his acting prowess comes alive in that role.” He then joined Aurora Aviles ’20, Clare Costello ’18, and Ava Lee ’21 as members of Brooklyn’s finest who were trying to make sense of the screwball family scene. Ethan Cox ’18 also played dual roles as Dr. Reverend Harper and Mr. Witherspoon. Max Farrar ’21 in the role of Mr. Gibbs, a prospect for the next victim of the murderesses, was not appreciative of Mortimer’s attempts to save him from the aunts’ deadly elderberry wine.
Drama Society Director Elizabeth Dayton ’08 was ably assisted by Producer Sarah Albright and Oksana Protenic with Al Chiapetta from Sherman Playhouse providing the sets and Terry Hawley in charge of costumes. The tech manager was Acadia Johnson ’21, the stage manager was Yamna Abdi Jama ’18 and house manager was Sophie Novoa ’20.
To see photos from "Arsenic and Old Lace" please click here.
Founded in 1850 by abolitionist, educator, and outdoorsman Frederick Gunn, The Gunnery is a coeducational college preparatory boarding and day school for students in grades 9 through 12/post-graduate. Dedicated teacher-mentor-coaches challenge students to reach their full potential in a home-like setting where character and citizenship are valued as much as intellect and achievement. Individualized attention and high expectations help young learners develop not only the skills and confidence they will need in college, but also the moral compass and love of learning that will serve them well in life. The school attracts ambitious, academically curious students who will both shine as unique individuals and thrive as contributing members of a deeply connected community. By the time they graduate, Gunnery students have become well rounded, grounded young adults with a sharpened sense of who they are and who they want to become.