Wolf Pack Theater plays up female empowerment for impactful thriller
For anyone who is a fan of Agatha Christie, Arthur Conan Doyle or any show ever played on BBC's Masterpiece Mystery, "Wait Until Dark," now playing at Wolf Pack Theater, is your kind of entertainment.
Director Howard Bickle Jr. and cast have produced a great thriller, tying suspenseful music, great acting, ironic and perfect set design and truly harrowing timing seamlessly together.
Sharon Biermann is Susy Hendrix. She does a remarkable job of portraying a disabled but not defeated woman fighting for her life.
Though her antagonist declares "clever, arrogant girls must be punished," Susy rises to the challenge to prove him wrong, just as Biermann rose to the challenge to play her. Bickle's artistic choice to make Susy (Biermann) a more empowered character was appreciated, and very fitting for the modern age. While the 1967 film with Audrey Hepburn ends the same, Biermann's additional chance to fight back against her assailant really drives home that Susy's character is not so limited by her lack of vision.
Though Biermann does deserve particular praise, the cast was truly equal. It is difficult to produce an ensemble cast play, but Wolf Pack has. No individual actor outshone the other on stage — even when Biermann has to deploy some combat training skills in the latter half of the show.
Anthony Galleran (Mike Talman) and Sean Cowan (Sergeant Carlino) show great chemistry as former comrades in confidence, and Joel Simon (Roat) is every inch the creepy, obviously unhinged villain.
"Wait Until Dark" is the first production Wolf Pack had produced with a child actor on cast, and Kaia Devaney (Gloria) was a great choice to pioneer younger talent at the theater. She was high-spirited and dramatic, as children can be, but did a good job of not overacting.
The set was well thought out. Though Biermann didn't have quite the space Hepburn did, the cast and crew did a great job with what they had. Jump scares and suspenseful entries were still full of intensity, and the nods to famous murder mysteries and playwright Knott's relation to Hitchcock in the wall art really helped bring the piece together.
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