Williamston Theatre’s Opening Night production of Murder For Two is a laugh out loud treat with a smart jaunty story full of comedic flare and a delightful musical score. The show is consistently creative offering a hilarious musical comedy farce through all the twists and turns. The audience will love that Murder for Two recognizes the importance of comedic pacing within a musical and never loses an energetic beat.
Everyone is a suspect in Murder for Two – a witty and hilarious murder mystery musical with a twist: one actor investigates the crime; the other plays all 12 of the suspects and the icing on the cake – they both play the piano. A zany blend of old fashioned murder mystery, mayhem and classic musical comedy, this whodunit is a highly theatrical duet loaded with laughter.
Rob Roznowski (The Understudy, The Big Bang & Miracle on South Division Street) directs the show and is excited to be at Williamston Theatre. Murder For Two cast features Mark Schenfisch (Sirens) and Andrea Wollenberg (Williamston Theatre Debut). Both actors have performed this show in other states and are excited to bring their work here to Williamston. Roznowski truly enjoys working with cast and crew. Roznowski discusses the casting process and the unusual choice to cast a woman in the show which usually features two men. All men actually came for the auditions too. Roznowski knew he wanted to explore casting a woman and viewed You-Tube videos of Andrea Wollenberg playing the role and knew it is what he wanted for the production.
The director and cast are enthused about the story and their first reactions to the script. Roznowski shares, “I had seen it before I started working on the script and every time I was amazed by the ingenuity of the actors because they play so many roles and they also play piano and sing well. And that is really difficult. What I was drawn to is the mystery aspect because I love murder mysteries.” Schenfisch adds, “I first listened to the soundtrack and that was my first experience with the show. I immediately fell in love with the comedy even in the opening prelude in which there is no words. Not musical comedy on stage but comedy in the music. The script—there is a lot happening and it’s a lot of fun. It’s a very crazy show but I love it dearly.”
When discussing the production and the characters, the collaboration and enthusiasm is infectious with this team. Roznowski shares his favorite thing about this production, “The concentration on telling the mystery and love of acting that is implicit in producing this show.”
Wollenberg has the challenge of playing 12 roles and loves it, “The opportunity to revel in being a character actor is an incomparable experience. People don’t know how the actor does what they do. And in this show, you get to show people what it is you do. You transform – in a heartbeat. In the blink of an eye.” Wollenberg also enjoys the chance to utilize her 15 years of classical piano lessons. Schenfisch summarizes, “What I love about coming into a new process with this is just the collaborative process between the three of us. We are finding different jokes that I’ve never seen found before and different moments of sincerity that I haven’t seen found before in the script. And that is fun as someone who is obsessed with this show—it is so much fun to explore different perspectives on the piece.”
Williamston Theatre delivers another unique set that brings the production to life despite the small footprint. This production centers around the Grand Piano that is really a third character and also features stairs reminiscent of a piano’s shape. Roznowski shares, “We are really concentrating on the murder victim who we never really see but is a famous novelist and the story of his books are told through-out the set and through-out the play.”
Audiences will enjoy the pure entertainment this show delivers that is a family friendly in general. It is full of laughter and an absurdity that is just plain fun. The production is truly memorable; you will lose yourself in the story, the crazy characters and the musical madness. Roznowski summarizes, “It is so beautiful to watch actors and performers do every possible thing they can and with honesty. That is what makes it fun and you can laugh because they are so in charge of their craft.” Don’t miss checking out the show by ordering your tickets here.