Dinner Theatre meets Dance Party — Wildwood Little Theatre
PHOTO: An unexpected witness “turns up” in court in The Mystery of Giles Nerfff. Judge Judy Judderwitz (Pam Bazzani) and D.A. Archer Trueshaft (Paul Hauck) look on as Coronor Cliff Steiff (Elmer Fairbanks) begins his examination.
“The Mystery of Giles Nerfff”:
Dinner Theatre Meets Dance Party
in LWLT’s ‘60s Jukebox Musical Mystery
in Performance April 11 – 13
“Tell us, in your own words, exactly what happened that night.”
And good luck with that if you’re called as a witness in “The Mystery of Giles Nerfff,” Lake Wildwood Little Theatre’s musical mystery extravaganza opening April 11 for a very limited run.
When the U.C. Berkeley Class of 1968 came together for their 50th reunion last fall, it seems that murder was done. Now, in a chaotic courtroom comedy laced with live performances of the ‘60s pop and rock hits we all know by heart, the addled alums gather again to figure out whodunnit.
The night’s cabaret-style entertainment includes a buffet dinner with cash bar and a DJ’d dance party after the show. Audience members are urged to come in their favorite ‘60s-style garb.
The cast includes veteran Wildwood singer and actor Cap Wallington as Johnny Rocker, fallen music idol and sometime boyfriend of the accused. Grass Valley’s Robert Rossman, well-known to local theatregoers for his work with Sierra Stages and other groups, appears as memory-challenged space-cadet Bobby Stoner. Vicki Young (last seen in last year’s “Rumors”) positively purrs as “marital aids” millionairess Candy Fairchild, while Judy Armstrong (“A Taste of Wine and Murder”) mixes up plenty of trouble as radical feminist-chemist Emily Beaker.
The accused is alluring, mysterious Sondra Bouffant, portrayed by local musical comedy diva Laurie Jo Guastavino (“Rumors”). Representing her is the sweet but smart Merry Payson, played by Chris Megenity. Longtime Wildwood stage favorite Paul Hauck (“Rumors”) plays D.A. Archer Trueshaft, the straight arrow who falls apart just as quickly as his case. Theatre club elder statesman Elmer Fairbanks returns to the stage as Dr. Cliff Stiff – er, Steiff – the County Coroner with a unique view of his “patients.” And the victim? That would be tech billionaire and unlikely lover Giles Nerfff (yes, that’s with three eff’s), played by Jeff Davis (“Rumors”).
When this gaggle of wackos convenes in the courtroom of the bibulous, bossy Judge Judy Judderwitz played by Pam Bazzani (“Love, Loss, and What I Wore”) and Button, the frazzled clerk of the court played by the Lake Wildwood live wire Cathy Jones, they’re as likely to burst into song (and dance) as they are to sort out the facts. And the ending is guaranteed to floor one and all.
Steven Young wrote the script and directs, with musical direction by Carolyn Winters, choreography by Jacquie Katsones, and sound design by Vicki Cambron. Claire and Ken Schroeder are producing the show.
“The Mystery of Giles Nerfff” plays for three performances only, April 11, 12, and 13, in the Cedar Room at The Oaks Clubhouse in Lake Wildwood. Doors, and the bar, open at 5:30 p.m., with dinner at 6:30, followed by the show and dance party.
Seating for dinner and the show is at tables of four. Tickets are $50 per person, and are available online only at https://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/4095866. With just three performances scheduled and only 21 tables available for each show, tickets are expected to sell out fast.
For more details on the show, Lake Wildwood residents may visit the theatre club’s web page at lwwa.org.
ADVISORY: This show includes adult humor with references to sex, drugs, and rock’n’roll.
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