The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Clairvoyants, mayhem run amuck in Deathtrap on NW

By Tammy Morgan-Hillard/reporter

Theatre Northwest brings the Tony Award-winning play Deathtrap to the stage next week.

Under the direction of Brent Alford, NW Campus theater director, the play runs March 4-8 in the WTLO Theater. The comedy-thriller by Ira Levin was the longest-running thriller in Broadway’s history.

Sidney Bruhl, the main character in the play, is despondent about his playwright career and the lack of recent successes. He is sent a script that he knows will rejuvenate his career, but he thinks he must commit murder to make it happen.

Sidney accepts a script written by Clifford Anderson. Once he has the script, everything goes crazy with Sidney, Clifford, Sidney’s wife, a clairvoyant neighbor and Sidney’s attorney.

Student Danney Clawson, who plays Sidney Bruhl, auditioned for the part because of the challenge the role presented and his respect for Alford.

“I love a challenging role. It broadens me,” he said. “This is a huge role for me, and I couldn’t be happier to be in it. I want to grow in this profession. My ultimate acting job … to work with Tom Hanks.”

Clawson was inspired by his high school theater teacher and performed for the first time at age 16. Since Clawson’s introduction to TCC two years ago, he has performed in To Kill a Mockingbird and Biloxi Blues.

Clifford Anderson is played by Justin Rhoads. This young actor has been with Theatre Northwest for three years and performed in 10 plays on campus.

He identified with his character in some ways.

“[My character] and I are about the same age,” he said. “He’s smart, and he knows what he wants in life.”

Acting since the seventh grade, Rhoads credits his parents for his decision to act. It helped him get over being an extremely shy young man, he said.

He offered advice for students considering theater.

“Don’t be afraid when you first try. Don’t feel embarrassed or that anyone is going to make fun of you,” he said. “We are all here to do the same thing. It all works itself out.”

Stefanie Williams plays the neighborhood clairvoyant. She auditioned for the part with a Jamaican accent that prompted a name change for the character from Helga Ten Dorp to Ziare Kutumbay.

Williams has been directing plays since she was 10, been in theater on NW for three years and worked in five plays with Alford.

“I love working with Brent. He’s a fun director … an actor’s director,” she said. “I definitely wanted to be a part of this play. It’s a great play. The group is small [only five cast members], and we feel like family. I was nervous when I first came here, but I was welcomed with open arms.”

Porter Milgrim, Sidney’s attorney, is portrayed by Patrick Neumann. With the theater group for one year, he has worked in several plays.

Neumann also plays clarinet, saxophone, upright bass, electric bass and harmonica. Since seeing The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe at Casa Manana with his kindergarten class, he’s wanted to act. For now, he’s working as a counselor and hoping to get a teaching degree.

Myra Bruhl, the wife of the despondent Sidney, is played by Abigail Herring.

Alford began his career at age 17 and still performs in area theaters.

The cast hopes the audience will appreciate the play’s nostalgia.

“The re-watch value is indefinable,” Clawson said.

Performances are 7:30 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $6 for general admission, $3 for seniors and non-TCC students and free for TCC students, faculty and staff. For reservations, call 817-515-7724.

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