For those few who may not be aware, DramaTech will be closing the world premiere production of What Happened to Mr. Sugarlumpkins? by Sunday, July 13. But do not despair because the comedy’s final two shows will be preformed once tonight and again tomorrow night at 8 p.m. at the DramaTech theater (located on the right side of the Ferst Center for the Arts and across from Yellow Jacket Park).
I would encourage all who enjoy a great laugh or an analytical mystery to definitely gaze upon Mr. Sugarlumpkins and make their acquaintance with DramaTech.
The play dictates the very sad occurrence of an unfortunate and devastating fall for one poor cat, Mr. Sugarlumpkins, from the second story balcony of his owner’s home during a party.
The owner, Chris (played by Matthew LeVine), suspects foul play after returning from the veterinarian with the heavily-injured Mr. Sugarlumpkins and seeks to learn what transpired that night by interrogating his guests.
He eventually gets down to the last three to investigate: Brittney (Kit Ledford), a haughty little lady; Phil (Aditya Madhavan), an analytical mind buried with bad puns; and Nick (Brandon Lewis), the self-styled life of the party. The purpose of their characters is to recall their dealings at the party and what might have lead to Mr. Sugarlumpkins’ tragic accident.
Of course, as with any recollection of past events, there are bound to be errors, misunderstandings and just plain delusional fantasy as Brittney, Phil and Nick each share their testimony of what happened to them throughout the evening and introduce the other revelers: Carol (Nikky Saint-Aubin), Thomas (Vincent Chan) and Jerry (Tamil Pariasamy).
All in all, the comedy escapes in waves as characters try to adjust their parts in others’ stories or remember exactly when the crazed pizza delivery man, Sal (Russel Brooks), attacked that night.
Mr. Sugarlumpkins includes a musical number, and the acting is great throughout. Written by Olufemi Sowemimo, a Tech and DramaTech alumnus, Mr. Sugarlumpkins taxed the actors to perform the same character in three different, yet similar, event recounts for the “scene of the crime.”
Under the direction of Jordan Bethea, the scene found leadership to harness the skill needed to perform well these slightly shifting parts. Bethea, having known the writer, mentioned the high standards and fun involved with this production.
I feel this type of energy transfers into the audience as you watch these magnificent players perform this scene.
So be excited to watch DramaTech match this world premiere to their already great repertoire of performances with their upcoming shows, and, as always, remember to give a big round of applause.