‘Mystery of Edwin Drood’ yields cast of standout performances

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By Jennifer Garcia

Halloween is in a few weeks, so it’s the perfect time to get into the holiday spirit — and what better way to do so, than with a murder mystery.
Los Alamos Light Opera treated Los Alamos audiences to “The Mystery of Edwin Drood” at Duane Smith Auditorium over the weekend. Touted as, “a musical murder mystery in two acts,” the show, directed by Jess Cullinan and produced by Gwen Wiens, allows the audience to choose how the Charles Dickens story ends. Under the musical direction of Gretchen Amstutz, Brian Huysman and Jess Cullinan, with choreography by Patrick MacDonald, the production features a cast of characters that will not soon be forgotten.
There are some familiar faces on stage (Warren Houghteling as John Jasper; Patrick MacDonald as Bazzard; John Cullinan as Mr. William Cartwright, Chairman; and Jim Sicilian as Mr. James Throttle, the stage manager and barkeep, to name a few), as well as some not-so-familiar faces (Rita O’Connell as Edwin Drood; Christina Martos as Rosa Bud; and Kirste Plunket as Wendy, for starters).
If there are some novices in the group, it’s not evident. They all seem to be seasoned actors. Not a single one was out of place. Each played their parts well and contributed to making “The Mystery of Edwin Drood” something worth watching.

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