Harry Monday is on the case for Crocus 80 Christmas play

The famed detective Harry Monday is investigating a double-mystery in the Crocus 80 dinner theatre being presented for Christmas at the Weyburn Legion Hall.

Director Carol Reeve said the 11-member cast is hard at work in rehearsals for the show, “If It’s Monday, This Must Be Christmas”. She promises there will be lots of plot twists and audience interaction for the mystery, as those who are watching will be asked for their thoughts about who the culprit is.

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The play will be presented as a dinner theatre on Thursday, Dec. 12 and Friday, Dec. 13, and then as a luncheon and matinee on Saturday, Dec. 14, with the full turkey dinner provided at all three shows. Advance tickets are available only at the Legion, and will cost $40 each or a table of eight for $280.

This is the fifth in a series of “Harry Monday” comedies written by Pat Cook, and will include appearances of characters who were in previous “Monday” plays.

The mystery, which is laid out for the audience in the first five minutes of the play, is set on Christmas Eve in the department store, and involves the disappearance of a box of money and of Santa Claus himself.

“It’s the biggest cast, with 11 members, and is one of the most complicated plot lines that Cook has put together. There are lots of subplots, sight gags and characters entering and exiting,” said Reeve.

At the end of the first act, there will be an evidence file provided to each table with the clues as presented in the play to that point, to help the audience try and solve the mystery. “So in the second half, they’ll have the same information Harry has to figure out which cast member is the culprit, so it’s a different way to involve the audience,” said Reeve.

The large cast is headed by Chris Gillespie as Harry Monday; department store owner Titus Harrigan is played by Bob Linnell; the level-headed store manager Loretta Mondello is played by Freda Lautner, and the friendly gift-wrapper Scarlet Kloontz is played by Jessica Jack.

There are three youth cast members who have been involved in the Crocus 80 youth theatre program. They include Emma Sorowski, who plays Trixie O’Brien; Olivia Verhaeghe as the talkative nine-year-old Polly Brogan, and Sargent McGowan, who plays the Harry character in a flashback scene.

Other cast members include con artist Louie Grandville, played by Dave Frayn; a naïve store clerk, Carson Cage, played by Jesse Prefontaine; Penny Harrigan, the naïve daughter of the store owner, played by Connie Nightingale; rival store owner Milton Wolensky, played by Doug Loden; Titus’ secretary Opaline Lampert, played by Sabrina Kraft, and police lieutenant Brogan, played by Pete Broccolo.