Classy Classic Murder at Sunset
Agatha Christie’s 1939 mystery And Then There Were None is a delightfully episodic little crime drama. Sunset Playhouse revisits the classic tale in three acts with two intermissions. At the beginning of the show, the 10 characters arrive at a spacious island estate tastefully rendered for the stage by scenic designer Nick Korneski. In the course of the drama, members of the ensemble are killed off one by one until the big climactic ending. Director Carol Dolphin has found a nice pacing for the show, allowing various members of the ensemble some rather sharp moments.
Of particular note in the cast is Michael Pocaro as retired judge Sir Lawrence Wargrave. A piercing intellect in a traditional murder mystery can feel tedious in the wrong hands. Pocaro deftly navigates the role in a calmly charismatic performance. It’s also nice to see a couple of new faces in a Sunset cast. James Boylan makes his debut as a roguish soldier of fortune who seems quite comfortable at the estate. Boylan’s leading male charm is matched by Caitlin Elftman in her Sunset debut as secretary Vera Claythorne. Claythorne may be one of the more levelheaded intellects in the cast, but Christie doesn’t give her much to do in the twists of the plot. Thankfully Elftman is able to keep the character quite interesting without upstaging the rest of the ensemble.
Through Jun. 18 at Sunset Playhouse’s Furlan Auditorium, 800 Elm Grove Road, Elm Grove. For tickets call 262-782-4430 or visit sunsetplayhouse.com.