Drop Dead! promises to be drop dead hilarious

IROQUOIS – Rehearsals are well underway for the latest comical theatrical offering featuring that intrepid group of actors, the Iroquois-Matilda Lions.

Drop Dead! a fast-paced, hysterical Billy Van Zandt and Jane Milmore farce, will open at Upper Canada Playhouse on Thursday, April 23, and run for four performances. The cast is made up of members of the Lions Club and friends.

The “plot” of Drop Dead! involves the efforts of has-been director, Victor Le Pewe, to stage his big comeback. While he “may” have directed productions like Dracula in Dixie and Bottoms Up!, years ago, lately LePewe has been notable only for his stream of classic stage flops.

However it’s now 1959, and Victor’s moved into that hot, new, black and white medium, television. He plans to live film his latest theatrical attempt – something about snow and the degenerate British Barrington clan – and attract the attention of Hollywood.

This won’t be easy.

His financial backer is a shady, overbearing character. The playwright just got out of the “looneybin” and refuses to return. The entire stage crew consists of Phillip. And, on a budget of $37.50, Victor hasn’t exactly got A list actors for his show. Most of them haven’t been cast in even an off-off-Broadway show in years. The audience will definitely understand why shortly after meeting them at the ‘television studio.’

Should you happen to toss a couple of shocking and very unexpected murders into this mix, well, you definitely have the makings of a night filled with wild hi-jinks to delight audiences.

The Lions cast includes Jim Mustard, Margaret Johnston, Glenn Swerdfeger, Bill Rumble, Reina DeJong, Rick Mackenzie, Barry Fawcett, Margaret Swerdfeger, Steve Wilson and Brian Speer. Barry and Brian are producing Drop Dead! while Wendy Gibb is directing.

Drop Dead! is a 20 year milestone in the Iroquois-Matilda Lions efforts to serve their community.

Since 1984, every other year, Lions have put on plays for local audiences. Their very first production, staged at Seaway District High School, was The Haunted House. 2018 brought Madam’s Been Murdered.

The funds raised by these bi-annual productions have all been turned back into local projects that have helped many charitable organizations, special projects, area schools and neighbours in need over the last 20 years.

The cast has been putting in long hours at the Playhouse in rehearsals, dedicated to bringing audiences a great show, and a lot of laughs.

With a set designed by John Thompson, and music and technical effects under the direction of Sean Free, this latest Iroquois-Matilda Lions Club production is definitely taking comic shape.

Tickets for all four productions of Drop Dead! are now available.

While tickets are available from any Iroquois-Matilda Lion, this year Scotiabank is matching funds for tickets purchased at a participating Scotiabank branch.

Scotiabank South Mountain is the sponsor branch for this event.

“We are pleased to support the Iroquois-Matilda Lions Club fundraising efforts by offering tickets for sale at our four branch locations: South Mountain, Morrisburg, Chesterville and Kemptville,” said Lynsey Eikelboom, Branch Manager.

“Buying at one of our branches is a great way to maximize your contribution,” said Morrisburg branch manager Matthew DeJong. For every $25 ticket purchased, Scotiabank will match that with a $25 donation.

“I grew up in the Lions Club, and seeing all the good work that they do,” said DeJong adding that it’s really nice to be part of helping an organization that works so hard to help the community.

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