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‘Mystery of Edwin Drood’ comes to Melon Patch

By Linda Florea

Correspondent

LEESBURG – A comedy, a musical and an interactive mystery for the audience to solve, “The Mystery of Edwin Drood” opens Friday at the Melon Patch Theatre for a three-week run ending on Nov. 11.

The Tony Award-winning show is based on Charles Dickens’ unfinished novel. Rupert Holmes wrote the play, and since no one knows how Dickens would have finished the mystery, he leaves it up to the audience to decide.

The cast plays a band of colorful Victorian music hall performers at the Music Hall Royale in the two-act play, with the first act setting the stage for the audience vote, which determines the outcome of the second act.

“Rupert Holmes, who wrote the piece, was able to play upon the time frame and immerse the audience in the Victorian music hall, a full riotous atmosphere of slapstick humor, bad punch lines and lovely ladies in corsets and bustles,” said director Beau Mahurin. “There is a lot of direct audience interaction both pre-show and during the voting process itself. The fact that the audience does literally have a stake in the outcome of every performance is what makes it special. Because mathematically you could come back here and see the show over and over again and never get the same experience.”

Mahurin added that he encourages audiences to arrive early to join in the preshow activities.

“Learning all the different See MYSTERY, A4

“The Mystery of Edwin Drood” opens Friday at the Melon Patch Theatre in Leesburg and continues until Nov. 11. The play is based on an unfinished Charles Dickens novel where the audience gets to determine the ending. [SUBMITTED]

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