Written by Carrie Beth Wallace
Images courtesy of Springer Opera House
Agatha Christie's classic novel comes to the Springer stage this month as nine individuals of varying wealth, nationalities, backgrounds, - and motives to commit murder - board the Orient Express only to find themselves trapped inside a murder mystery!
Brace yourself for a whirlwind journey on The Orient Express, a luxury passenger train with a well-appointed dining car, eloquent private rooms, and exquisite art deco decor. After the heinous crime occurs, it is up to internationally-renowned detective Hercule Poirot to solve the mystery. Will he stop the killer before another murder takes place?
This play is known for being highly-intricate and requiring a large amount of careful staging to pull off effectively. Often, this means a complicated set that can adapt to the characters' needs and requirements of the plot's development. "One of the biggest challenges for the Springer is constructing our sets from the ground up. For every production, we try to raise the bar a little more," said the play's director Keith McCoy. "With the set for 'Murder on the Orient Express' we meet that bar. The audience sees several aspects of the action in different locations of the same train in real time. As the plot unfolds, the set becomes a part of the plot twists that drive the action through hidden corners, hiding suspects and secrets."
The set was designed by Matthew Swindell who is also the Production Director for the show. Swindell's attention to detail was essential because for most of the play, the audience's perception of what's happening shouldn't be fully relied on. "With the scenic design for this show, I imagined and expanded on what impact [the characters'] entrapment [on the train] might have on memory and recall," he said. "We have to be aware that the characters find themselves trapped on a train, so we've developed a set highlighting space that takes over the stage and doesn't allow escape."
Murder on the Orient Express runs through January 28 in Emily Woodruff Hall, Springer's MainStage Theatre. Click here for tickets! Don't forget Saturday, January 20 is Columbusite Night! Use code COLUMBUSITE23 for 20% off tickets to Saturday's show. ◼️
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