Frederick Knott's suspense thriller, "Wait Until Dark" opened last Friday to a capacity audience in the Studio Theatre here on campus.
Appearing in the drama are Veda Poindexter, Thomas Grubbs, Mary Slagh, Tim Petritz, Bob Noonan and Rick Franklin.
A heroin-stuffed doll innocently ends up in the apartment of a photographer and his blind wife.Three criminals knowing the worth of the package, devi-e an elaborate plan to gain entrance into the apartment and find the doll, even if it means murdering the sightless girl.
As the twisted, insidious plot unwinds, the girl, realizing her desperate situation, strives to outwit and foil her deadly assailants by forcing them into her world, a world of darkness.
Portraying a blind character on a well-lighted and prop covered stage is difficult to achieve successfully, especially when someone isn't paying attention to the light cues. But Veda Poindexter does more than a convincing job and her all too realistic tumbles adds a genuine substance to the drama as she fights off the sadistic leader of the thugs, Roat, played by Thomas Grubbs.
Outstanding is Grubbs' portrayal of Roat, the merciless killer who handles a switchblade like a conductor wielding a baton.
Even the way he says Susy (Suuziee) rattles the spine. Noonan, Petritz, and Franklin must also be commended on fine performances, and Mary Slagh's representation of the temperamental Gloria rates above par.
Director George Stoughton set the spine-tingler in the intimacy of the Studio Theatre where the audience feels more like a part of the act than just onlookers. So Wait Until the second act before making any decisions about the play.
Although the first act is more of an exposition with little physical exertion, the second act literally ripped Friday night's audience out of their seats a midst screams of terror and excitement during the electrifying climax of the chiller.
Next performances are Dec. 6, 7, 8 and 9 at 8 p.m. Admission is $1.75 for adults and $1 for students.