Village of Orland Park Theatre Troupe Presents "Murder's In the Heir"

Village of Orland Park Theatre Troupe Presents "Murder's In the Heir"
Posted on 03/02/2016

Comedy, mystery, and suspense will be all around as the Village of Orland Park Theatre Troupe presents “Murder’s In The Heir,” March 11 and 12 at the Orland Park Civic Center.

The troupe's winter show brings a similar version of the game Clue to life, with over a dozen suspects, motives and possible murder weapons humorously presented for audience participation.

“It’s up to the audience to decide who they think the murderer is,” said Orland Park Theatre Troupe Producer/Director Frann Carnivele. “During intermission, the audience will choose their suspect and based on the popular vote, that is the character that will present as the murderer in the second act.”

This who-done-it play, written by Billy St. John, centers on the tyrannical billionaire, Simon Starkweather and his many heirs. Starkweather gathers his family and employees to announce the contents of his will, with lawyer, Lois van Zandt, revealing that vast fortunes will go to niece Fiona, her playboy son Jordan, his great-niece Paula (a Southern belle) and his grandson Simon III, as well as to his many servants. Each heir has the motive and opportunity to commit the murder, but only the audience can choose the murderer and decide how the show will end.

“I'm always excited to see the reaction of the audience, once the real killer is revealed. I love hearing them say, "Oh! I knew it was him or her!” "Didn't I tell you it was going to be them?" or, "No! I never even thought it was him or her!" The reactions are always the best part,” Carnivele said. “Then I know I've done my job and the audience is happy.”

The cast of 16 adults includes Orland Park residents Munira Boxwalla as Nancy Pollard, Gary Felicetti as Simon Starkweather, Amy Henricks as A. D. to Gene, Bill Kubiak as Mike Davis, Joanna Leafblad as Minerva Walker, Molly Ricker as Kathy Collins, and Mary Tuminello as Fiona Starkweather.
Dan McMillan appears as the narrator, Gene Culpepper.

Other local actors include Jacqueline Ashcroft from Shorewood, Michael Barr-Schinizel from Chicago, Matt Bedell from Frankfort, Rudy Chavez from Midlothian, Krystle Cousins from Palos Park, Denise Goad from Homer Glen, Jenny Hogan from Crestwood and Jim Mazeika from Burbank, who serves as the show’s assistant director.

Created more than 20 years ago, the village's theatre program is one of the oldest in the region. The cast of this community production includes two attorneys, one county clerk, four teachers - one of whom is a PhD, one salon owner, three is sales and management, one pharmacy assistant, two from auto sales including one CFO and a sales manager, one homemaker, one shipping manager and an administrative assistant.

The light-hearted mystery is open to guests of all ages and runs two hours. Tickets are $25 and include hors d'oeuvres and desserts provided by Papa Joe’s Restaurant and non-alcoholic beverages.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the show starts at 7:30 p.m. Cash bar and hors d'oeuvres begin at 7 p.m. Act One runs an hour, with a half-hour intermission for desserts and audience voting. Act Two begins at 9 p.m. 
The Orland Park Civic Center is located at 14750 Ravinia Avenue.

Tickets may be purchased at the Recreation Administration Office, 14600 Ravinia Avenue.

For more information, contact the Orland Park Recreation Department at 708/403-7275.