“The Game’s Afoot or Holmes for the Holidays” is a very funny, drawing-room mystery (the playwright Ken Ludwig bills it as “a comedy thriller”), and you can (and should) catch it at the Vero Beach Theatre Guild starting Tuesday, Nov. 6.
Ludwig, known for his period farces, also penned “Lend Me A Tenor” and “Moon Over Buffalo.” “The Game’s Afoot or Holmes for the Holiday” action takes place during the Christmas Season, 1936.
According to the Guild’s synopsis, William Gillette, a world-famous Broadway star known for his starring role in the play “Sherlock Holmes,” is convalescing at his home following an attempt on his life, and decides to cheer himself up by inviting his fellow cast members over for a festive holiday weekend of good cheer and revelry as he recovers.
As it happened, according to dcmetrotheatrearts.com, Gillette, with the blessing of Arthur Conan Doyle, wrote the Sherlock Holmes play in which he has starred for decades, resulting in his amassing quite a fortune, which he used to build an actual castle on the Connecticut River, “complete with secret passages, hidden rooms, and state-of-the-art gadgets like an intercom and a remote control.”
When one of the guests is inconveniently stabbed to death, the frivolity turns to danger. But Gillette is up to the task. He assumes the persona of his beloved alter ego, Holmes, and the game’s afoot in this “isolated house of tricks and mirrors,” racing to track down the killer before there’s another death. The danger and hilarity never stop in this stylish whodunit.
It’s a “hilarious, quirky and thrilling alternative to your standard holiday entertainment!” And couldn’t we all benefit from some lighthearted laughs about now? “The Game’s Afoot or Holmes for the Holidays” runs through Nov. 18. It’s my guess that this one could sell quickly, so I’d secure those tickets sooner rather than later.
Curtain: Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, 7:30 p.m.; Saturdays and Sundays, 2 p.m. Tickets: $15 to $30. 772-562-8300.
A pair of powerful pieces: This Sunday, the Space Coast Symphony Wind Orchestra will present a dynamic, two-part concert at the Vero Beach High School Performing Arts Center.
“Many Hearts, One Pulse” is a moving work composed by Joshua Hobbs as a requiem for the victims of the tragic Pulse nightclub mass shooting in Orlando on June 12, 2016, when 49 people died and 53 were wounded. Hobbs will be guest conductor.
He explains that the title refers to the “huge, spontaneous upwelling of love for the victims and their families.” Dallas Brass virtuoso horn player Juan Berrios joins the orchestra for this work. The second half of the concert will include Dutch composer Johan de Meij’s epic 1st Symphony, “The Lord of the Rings.” (No, not the movie score.)
De Meij wrote his captivating J.R.R. Tolkien-inspired symphony way back in 1988. According to Wikipedia, the work made de Meij “world-renowned as a top composer for wind orchestra, a rank he retains to this day.” The piece consists of “Gandolf,” “Lothlorien,” “Gollum,” “Journey in the Dark” and “Hobbits.”
Also on the program are Frank Ticheli’s “Angels in the Architecture” and Hobbs’ “Into the Blue.” Time: 3 p.m. Tickets: adults $25 in advance at www.SpaceCoastSymphony.org or at Marine Bank beachside and mainland; at the door, $30; 18 and under or with student ID, free. 855-252-7276.
It’s Comedy Zone weekend at Riverside Theatre, this Friday and Saturday, Nov. 2- 3. Burning the funny this weekend will be Juanita Lolita, (a very rare breed – the Native Floridian); and comedian/magician/juggler Kevin Lee.
According to her bio, Lolita started her comedy career in 2008 when a co-worker signed her up for a local comedy club’s open mic night contest. She won, and advanced all the way to “Florida’s Funniest Person” finals where she came in fourth overall, and she’s been performing in clubs across the state.
You’ll find her clean comedic style refreshing and, with her Hispanic-hillbilly background, you’ll also find her everyday life comedy relatable and very funny. Lee’s unique performance combo will get you not only laughing but also wondering how the heck he does all that stuff. His bio says he’s appeared on “Showtime at the Apollo,” HBO’s “Def Comedy Jam” and Jamie Foxx’s “Uptown Comedy Club,” and was voted “Washington’s Funniest Comedian” by Washingtonian Magazine.
But, come on … juggling bowling balls, frying pans, machetes? Oh, and then there’s the fire- and sword-swallowing. All those crazy skills have landed Lee on stage with such glitterati as Gladys Knight, Chris Rock, Whitney Houston, Chris Tucker and Sinbad, and he’s performed for the troops in Saudi Arabia during Desert Storm and still entertains at military bases around the world.
Before the laughs begin, and all through the evening, you can always count on Live in the Loop, free live music under the oaks on the outdoor stage. Friday, DooWop City will keep the beat brisk with Oldies Rock ’n’ Roll. On Saturday, Collins and Company will bring their classic rock stylings to the Loop.
Of course, there’s always a full outdoor bar and grill, as well. Also, don’t B.Y.O. food or beverages. Comedy Zone times: 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Live in the Loop: 6:30 p.m. Comedy Zone tickets: $12 to $18. Live in the Loop: free, no ticket required. 772-231-6990.