by:MALLORY CARVER/News Editor
Spine-chilling ghost stories and haunted houses are just what the month of October calls for.
The theatre students at South Plains College recently performed the thrilling ghost story, “The Uninvited,” in the Helen DeVitt Jones Theatre from Oct. 15-Oct.17.
Directed by Dr. Dan Nazworth, the play was a spooky ghost story—perfect for this Halloween season.
“The Uninvited” takes place in the 1930s in Great Britain. It begins with Roddy (Dakota Crump) and his sister, Pam (Kasidee Young), buying a house that has been uninhabited for 15 years. In the very beginning of the play, they are introduced to the house by a young girl named Stella (Cori Overstreet), whose mother once governed the estate before dying in a tragic accident. Stella is in love with her late mother’s house, and is ecstatic that Roddy and Pam are purchasing it from her.
Upon moving in, Roddy and Pam are welcomed by unusual occurrences in their new home. They have random bouts of chill that freeze them to the bone, along with the overwhelming aroma of a woman’s perfume filling the room. There is also the occasional sound of a woman weeping and a music box in the former nursery. Roddy and others try to deny the terrifying truth, but eventually it becomes apparent that their new home is haunted.
They begin to take measures to see the spirit put at peace.
Throughout their trials, Roddy and Pam are assisted by friends Wendy(Mercedes Cruz), Max (Zach Judah) and Dr.Scott (Jarrott Wiggins). Mrs. Jessup (Chrissy Bass) catches Roddy and Pam up on the village gossip concerning their new home.
They find out that not only one, but two spirits, haunt their home. The two spirits are Stella’s mother and one woman who claims to be her mother. Stella’s mother is not the highly esteemed Mary Meredith. Instead, Stella’s mother was a poor Spanish woman who worked for the estate. Stella and her late mother finally find their peace in Stella knowing the truth. But the ghost of Mary Meredith is not happy that she has been found out. Roddy talks Mary down, and forces her to leave her former estate. Then, the house and its newfound inhabitants are left in peace.
Stella Meredith must overcome an overbearing grandfather, Commodore Brook (Joey Murillo), and her seemingly heartless nurse, Miss Holloway (Nikki Rodriguez). Commodore Brook goes out of his way to keep Stella from visiting her mother’s former estate, but she feels an overwhelming pull to return to the ancient house.
Kasidee Young, said she enjoyed her part in the play because it gave her a chance to step out of her comfort zone.
“My favorite thing about my character is that she’s so unlike me,” says Young. “That made it so much more challenging.”
The comedic relief mostly comes from the household maid, Lizzie Flynn (Claire Thompson).The Irish maid was said to have raised the siblings. As a motherly figure, she criticizes the pair each time she catches them trying to contact the ghost. As a superstitious Irish woman, Lizzie finds tarot cards and seances to be a particularly evil practice. The crowd laughed nearly every time Lizzie came on stage.
“The Uninvited” was a perfect pick for this season. It offered the perfect amount of spookiness with the slightest touch of humor. The director knew what he was doing when he picked the cast—each one was incredible. Each cast member was able to engross the crowd with his or her part.
I saw the show performed all four nights. I was never bored watching. Each night, a new bit of humor was added, and the cast kept up a high energy throughout the performance.
As a whole, I think this play was very well done. I would give “The Uninvited,” as performed by the SPC cast, five out of five stars.