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Play treats audience to a few scares

BELLEVILLE, Ont. (13/01/12) - Susy, played by Robin Everhardas (left), is harassed by a trio of unsavory men portrayed by (from left) Jean-Paul Thibeau, Al Zaback, and Roli Tipper in Belleville Theatre Guild's production of Wait Until Dark, directed by Steve Forrester. The play runs from February 2 to February 18, 2012. (Photo by Topher Seguin)

By Topher Seguin

The Belleville Theatre Guild’s first production of the new year, Wait Until Dark, promises to make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up straight.

The play, written by Frederick Knott and first performed on Broadway in 1966, was later made into a movie in 1967 starring Audrey Hepburn.

It is about a blind housewife named Susy Hendrix, played by Robin Everhardus, who is harassed by three con men, played by Al Zaback, Jean-Paul Thibeau and Roli Tipper.

The trio then begins searching for heroin that was hidden in a doll and mistakenly transported from Canada to Greenwich Village in New York City by Hendrix’s husband Sam, played by Mike Leeming, as a favour for a woman who has since been murdered.

Things get a little tricky when the trio attempts to persuade Susy into thinking her husband has been smuggling drugs, and that the only way to help him is to give them the doll. Little do they know that Susy had already given the doll to Gloria, a little girl in the apartment upstairs.

Also appearing in the cast as police officers are Francine Bouma and Robert Coultis.

“We’ve been practising since mid-November, and I think it’s going pretty great so far,” said Thibeau, just after rehearsing the first act.

Like all of the other productions performed during the Belleville Theatre Guild’s 60th anniversary season, Wait Until Dark is a favourite from the guild’s archives, and promises to keep you on the edge of your seat as you find yourself cheering silently for Susy.

“It’s a remarkable piece of work, and I’m looking forward to seeing it on stage,” said director Steve Forrester, who hasn’t done many thrillers in the past. “Everyone’s been fantastic. It’s one of the nicest groups I’ve ever worked with.

“I don’t want to say I’m hoping to make the audience wet themselves, but if everyone likes it as much as I do, the hairs on the back of their necks are bound to stand on end.”

Wait Until Dark runs from Feb. 2 to Feb. 18 at The Pinnacle Playhouse, located at 256 Pinnacle St. There are 13 performances, including two Sunday matinees. Tickets are $18. Contact www.bellevilletheatreguild.ca or call the box office at 613-967-1442 to order.