Everyone needs an old fashioned escape into a good whodunit once in a while. Go to the theater, forget the rest of your troubles, and let a skilled cast of characters pull you into suspense and confusion. dcp theatre’s current production of GHOST TRAIN will do just that. Director Jennifer Brozenske has assembled a fine group who invite us to join them as they are stranded in an isolated, supposedly haunted train station when their train breaks down. There’s not another train until morning, no place close enough to walk to, and it’s pouring rain outside (although, through some miracle of suspension of disbelief, none of the characters appears to be the slightest bit damp when they come rushing in from the outside, hair perfectly coiffed, mink stole bone dry…)
And what a cast of characters it is! It is 1930, and first off the train are two young married couples, the Winthrops (Ray Greenley and Alexis Ross) and the Murdocks (Andrew Maldonado and Charlotte Moyer). One is newly married and anxious to begin their honeymoon; the honeymoon is obviously over for the other one. Add an archetypical British spinster (Lisa Harner) with her parrot and an oddly offbeat dapper gentleman (Teddie Deakin, played with over-the-top energy by John Weber) and you have a curious mix, indeed, to be closed up together in a small, dark, cold, haunted station in the dead of night. As if this weren’t enough, it appears that the stranding of the train was in fact caused by Teddie, when he pulled the emergency cord because his hat flew out the window. Plus, he’d always wanted to see what would happen if he pulled that cord…needless to say, no one likes him very much.
Saul Hodgkin, the station master (Matt Mazza) is anxious to leave. But first he must warn the travelers about the legend of the phantom train that passes through the station every night at 11 pm. It is the ghost of a deadly accident that happened many years before, and anyone who sees the train will die. It isn’t bad enough that they are stranded like this; now they have to contend with this frightening tale. It couldn’t possibly be true…could it?
The station master leaves but they hardly have time to comprehend all he has told them before there is a knock at the door…and the dead bodies begin to appear…along with a new cast of characters that seem to appear out of nowhere. Who are these people? Are they living beings or are they…??
What is really going on here? Go along for the ride and you won’t be disappointed. Surprised, perhaps, but isn’t that what mysteries are all about? A jolly good time, and just scary enough to make you jump at the right moment. The crew at dcp has constructed a very realistic set and dressed the actors in vintage 1930s costume. It’s a time travel trip to a place that may not really “be”, and it’s fun!
by Arnold Ridley
Directed by Jennifer Brozenske
June 4 – 20, 2010
795 Ridge Road
Telford, PA 18969