The Modesto Junior College Theater Department presents the Agatha Christie mystery “Spider’s Web” on Nov. 29 and 30, and Dec. 1, 6, 7 and 8 at 7 p.m. and Dec. 9 at 2 p.m. in the Little Theatre of the Performing Arts Center on East Campus, 435 College Ave., Modesto.
In this combination comedy-mystery play, Clarissa, wife of a diplomat is adept at spinning tales of adventure. However, when a real murder takes place in her drawing room she finds it much harder to cope with live drama. Desperate to dispose of the body before her husband arrives with an important politician, she enlists the help of her guests. Hilarity ensues when they are interrupted by the arrival of a wry detective.
Spider’s Web is a conscious parody of the detective thriller for which Christie is famous. There is tension and laughter in equal parts in an intricate plot of murder, police, drug addicts, invisible ink, hidden doorways and secret drawers, and all populated with great characters only Agatha Christie could invent.
The MJC cast includes Erica DeHart as Clarissa, the tale spinner; Shane Meyers as Sir Rowland; Wes Page as Hugo; Christian Lowery as Jeremy; Emily Hudson as Pippa, a precocious 12-year-old with a keen interest in Black Magic; Emily Monson as the outrageous neighbor Mildred; Dave Storm as the mysterious butler; Roman Acosta as Clarissa’s patient husband; Darius Lovelace as the Constable, and Marciano Zapien as the aggressive Inspector.
The play is directed by MJC Professor of Theater Arts Michael Lynch, with sets designed by Ty Helton and costumes by Mary Reilly.
The play, which opened in London in 1954 and ran 744 performances, is the playwright’s second in popularity to Christie’s The Mouse Trap (which is still running).
Tickets are $11 general admission and $9 for students and seniors, and are available in advance through the MJC Box Office, (209) 676-6776, online at www.mjc.tix.com or at the Little Theatre door 90 minutes prior to show time.