The game is afoot at Pima

Etienne Wegryzniak as Holmes and Ciel McNulty as Watson stare at a body in the distance.

by ANGEL CANEZ

Pima Community College Center for the Arts is putting on a production of “Baskerville,” which is based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s 1902 classic Sherlock Holmes novel “The Hounds of the Baskervilles,” along with touches of comedy in their audience-interactive murder-mystery tale. 

“Sherlock is a timeless story,” director Chris Will said. “So it’s always fun to tell a Sherlock Holmes story, and it was going to challenge the students because they have to play multiple characters.

“It’s a real challenge for them to switch really quick back and forth from one character to another,” Will added. “Sometimes the actors are having the same conversion with themselves as a different character. It’s a really challenging and fun experience.”

The role of Dr. Watson will take a slightly different direction as the typically male role will be played by female lead Ciel McNuty. McNuty is coming off playing Theo in “American Idiot” for the Arizona Theatre Company. 

“It’s really interesting for me,” McNulty said. “I usually like the eccentric really funny characters, so it’s difficult for me to be playing the straight man; the one character that’s not the ridiculous one.”

The entire production will flow as one as each set is built in a separate corners of the theater, eliminating the need to constantly change set designs. That way it can be acted out in one smooth motion. It will play out in one busy, nonstop, on-the-go play.

“I decided to design it like that because it’s so fast paced,” said set and light designer Andie Prati. “We have so many different locations to go to, and in comedy they like to work off diagonals, so I gave all that ability to the director. 

“I think the most difficult thing about the set is the actors having to go so many directions so many times with so many props,” Prati said. “So it’s all about the movement getting the rhythm of the steps and the levels and all that have probably been more difficult than other plays.”

She said that the production is going to be interactive, with the play taking place among the audience.

Sherlock Holmes, Country Farmer, Man of Mystery: Etienne Wegryzniak

Doctor Watson, Mrs Lyons, Nurse Mackeeble: Ciel McNulty

Mrs. Hudson, Dr. Mortimer, Sir Henry: Brandon Saxon

Stapleton, Miss Stapleton: Gianbari Deebam, “Debora”

Desk Clear, Lestrade, German maid: Scarlett Sky

Cartwright, Milker, Baby: Brittney Baker

Barrymore, Mrs. Barrymore, Sir Charles: Madison Peden

Wilson, Lucy, Doctor McCann, Nurse Malloy: Mary Tran

Man in Black Beard, Mrs. Clayton, Maiden, Shepherdess, Opera Singer: Regi Obie

Conductor, Trap Driver, Hugo, Bradley, Victor, Opera Singer, Falstff: Scarlett Sky

Sherlock Holmes Understudy/ Ensemble: Tyler Mire

Doctor Watson Understudy/ Ensemble: Madeline Posales

Directed by Chris Will

 

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