ISBN: 978-1-61588-028-7
Type: Full Length
Genres: Comedy, Mystery
Themes: Play Noir, Detectives/Sherlock Holmes, Death
Duration: 90 minutes
Speaking Cast: 7 females, 3 males (10 total cast)
SYNOPSIS: Nick Noir, private eye, has fallen on hard times. His botched last case has cost him whatever jobs may have come his way. Now he's at the end of his rope and is forced to fire his devoted secretary Selma. That is, until a call from Coco Purvis offers a tantalizing case that just might pay off for Nick.
Coco and her sister, Bonbon, run Precious Perks Coffee Shoppe, which is known for its signature drink, Death by Chocolate. Unfortunately, the name came all too true for a fellow named Vinnie the Leech who died while drinking it one month earlier. Now, business has fallen off and the shop might have to close unless somebody figures out what happened to Vinnie.
Nick is immediately confronted by some pretty strange characters. Bobbie Sue, the waitress, warbles like a country singer who can't carry a tune in a bucket. Bonbon is a sour, bitter woman who doesn't like to stir things up. Her “twin” sister, Coco, is the exact opposite, a bubbly, homespun treasure. Henry, an old man who wears cross-trainers and hasn't a wrinkle on his face, sits and watches all the action. Francois, more French than a bottle of Bordeaux, hides behind his newspaper. And who's the woman dressed in black, including a veil that hides her face? A dowdy bag-lady type turns out to be a restaurant critic and a perky twenty-something suddenly starts paying attention to the old man. All these characters were sitting in these exact spots the night Vinnie the Leech fell over dead.
Though he fired her, Selma keeps showing up at opportune moments with tidbits of background information that help him piece together the puzzle, though he often gets the pieces in the wrong way. After a second death under the same circumstances as Vinnie's (which had been caused by poison), and the disappearance of Bobbie Sue, Selma plays a psychic who—with the help of her ever-present Blackberry—reveals some deep secrets.
Armed with motives and opportunity for each suspect, Nick weaves his way through a lot of false deductions, but it all clicks just as a third murder is about to be committed. The motive for the murders? Money, of course—a lot of it, left to the twin Purvis sisters by an uncle they never knew they had. Nick earns kudos, and now maybe he can afford an office—and Selma.
Cornerstone Theatres Inc
Kennedy, SK, Canada
Illinois Lutheran High School
Crete, IL
Fishing Creek Players Inc.
Benton, PA
Crossrock ACC Youth Group
Royalton, MN
Appomattox County High School
Appomattox, VA
Carroll High School
Dayton, OH
"This was a lot of fun! It appealed to an somewhat older audience in that it was similar to older detective shows such as Columbo, Pink Panther, etc."
By Donna Elliott - Producer - Wagnalls Community Theater
"This was one of our most successful plays presented this year. We had the largest turnout than any of our other productions to date. Many people commented that it was funny and well done. Our only challenge was making room on stage for the number of characters in this play. We perform on a small stage."
By Les Bartlett - Treasurer - ACT Theatre Company
"The crowd thoroughly enjoyed the cast entrances through the audience and allowed for innovative improv by the cast. We utitilized 'freezes' where main characters gave a monologue and the other cast members stand still with their characters oblivious to the monologue. This allowed the audience to pay attention to the speaker and not on anything else in the background. The play was easy to understand, and audience members of all ages were able to understand what was going on on stage. It helped there were no small characters - each were full of a distinct personality. It became a show the actors enjoyed doing As an organization, this is our third play, and our audience grew during each showing. This was, by far, our most successful play we have put on."
By Judy Jacobson - Producer - Friends of the East Troy Lions
by Craig Sodaro, Guymon Community Theatre (OK)
by Craig Sodaro, Guymon Community Theatre (OK)
by Craig Sodaro, Guymon Community Theatre (OK)
ACT Theatre Company
ACT Theatre Company
Wagnalls Community Theater, Nick Noir and Selma in their alley office.
Wagnalls Community Theater
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