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Crime meets comedy when 'Lighter Shade of Noir' opens Jan. 22

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Math and Science Academy’s theater will be bringing the laughs next week.

MSA’s production of “A Lighter Shade of Noir” will open Jan. 22 at the school.

The play is being directed by MSA music director Jerry Shelton and Eric Elefson.

“This play is filled with fun and colorful characters so there are opportunities for a lot of students to be involved,” Elefson said.

“A Lighter Shade of Noir,” written by Patrick Derksen, opens with Trent Trowel, a typical gumshoe. Trowel decides to join some of the world’s most famous detectives at the International Private Detective Gala. During the gala each detective displays an artifact from their most famous cases, but when the precious pieces go missing, it’s up to the greatest detectives in the world to work together to find out who is behind the grand robbery.

“I like that the story is a hilarious spoof of many of our favorite detective stories,” Elefson said. “It’s a comedic journey through the intriguing world of private eyes and criminal masterminds. It’s easy to let your imagination go wild.”

Elefson said “A Lighter Shade of Noir” has some unique challenges when it comes to putting on a production, specifically in terms of props and costumes.

“This play is set in the early 1950s so it has been tricky to find costumes, set, and props that are within the time period,” he said. “MSA has limited resources to be able to find these things but luckily there are some great volunteers that have somehow been able to provide all we need.”

Audiences will have three opportunities to see “A Lighter Shade of Noir” throughout its run next weekend – one on Friday, and two on Saturday – and Elefson said he hopes audiences take advantage of the opportunities.

“If you come to see the show you can expect lots of laughs, detective banter, unexpected twists and turns, and some talented work from MSA students,” he said. “You won’t regret coming to see this hilarious detective parody.”

Math and Science Academy’s production of “A Lighter Shade of Noir” will have performances at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 22, and at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Jan. 23. Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for students and seniors.

Amber Kispert-Smith

Amber Kispert-Smith has been the schools and Afton reporter at the Woodbury Bulletin since 2008. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Minnesota. She previously worked as a reporter for Press Publications in White Bear Lake.

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