Murder in the chair

Image: The thirteen chairs

The thirteen chairs (Dave South)

Sometimes high school is just murder. Especially if you are one particular Sky High Player in The Thirteenth Chair. As the last of the three plays put on by the players, the Chair isn’t a comedy like Meet Me In St. Louis although it has it’s funny moments nor is it a drama like 12 Angry Women but still has dramatic tension. Instead, it’s a good old-fashioned whodunnit.

The play opens in the Crosby home where Will Crosby (Gabe Walker) is proposing to Helen O’Neill (Kelby Partridge). Family and friends all welcome the engagement except for Mr. Wales (Grant Fuller) who said he cannot accept it and will explain why the next day. As the evening progresses a fortune teller, Madam La Grange (Melinda Potts) arrives and turns out to be O’Neill’s mother. A fact that they keep secret for the evening. Soon there is a seance where everything ends up terribly wrong and a person is murdered. The room was locked, the murder weapon is missing, and no one knows whodunnit.

Each student actor performed as true characters in the show. The nervous Mr. Trent (Brock Wilson) who just wants to get out of there. The impatient siblings of Mr. and Miss Standish (Will Sorenson and Kensie Migilori). The adversarial Mrs. Eastwood (Shellie Lusk) who completely distrusts La Grange. Detective Donohue (Max Benson) who pushes each person to their limit to see if they will crack and confess the crime.

But it’s Melinda Pott’s portrayal of La Grange that really sells the show. During the seance when the audience and cast are in the dark she gives the creepiest vocal performance. “It gave us chills,” said director Michael Bryson. “She did a good job.”

Pott goes on to play the pivotal role in dealing with Max Benson’s determined detective and the suspicions of the others.

To go on would be a crime. Find out whodunnit yourself. Attend the last showing of The Thirteenth Chair on Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. at the Sky View High School. Maybe you, too, will think twice about shutting off the lights.

The Thirteenth Chair

Mr. Crosby: Colton Iverson
Will Crosby: Gabe Walker
Mr. Wales: Grant Fuller
Mr. Trent: Brock Wilson
Mr. Mason Tyler Jones
Pollock/Butler: Shawn Taylor
Donohue: Max Benson
Sergeant Dunn: Ashley Larson
Doolan: Heather Wood
Helen O’Neill: Kelby Partridge
Mrs. Crosby: McKinzie Moore
Mrs. Eastwood: Shellie Lusk
Helen Trent: Brianne Cannon
Mrs. Erskine: Kassidi Thain
Mrs. Standish Kensie Migilori
Mr. Standish: Will Sorensen
La Grange: Melinda Potts
Policeman: Dillan Bennett