Arts theater review

Intrigue in Boston

Curtains is a delight


Next Act

Directed by Johari Frasier ’13

April 19-21 and April 29

George Hoskera TFL, Next House

Next House presented their self-produced musical Curtains over CPW and last Sunday, in celebration of the dorm’s 30th anniversary. Curtains, originally written by Rupert Holmes, tells the tale of the murder case that occurs in a Boston theater. The star of the show, Jessica Cranshaw (Tiffany J. Lin ’11), is shot in the beginning of her performance and a detective by the name of Lieutenant Frank Cioffi (Staly Chin ’15) comes to unravel the mystery of the murder. Baffled by the fact that Cranshaw’s costars and director were glad that she passed away, the detective puts everyone on his suspects list. In this play, there are relationship issues with cast members, rekindling of love, mother-daughter issues, boat shows, and newspaper critics from The Boston Globe!

This witty musical was directed by Johari M. Frasier ’13 and Lynda Williams ’12. Frasier chose the piece because he felt like it would welcome prefrosh to MIT by showing them a musical set in Boston. He believes Curtains is uncannily similar to MIT’s environment. “Sometimes we spend hours working and nothing seems to come out right,” he said, “but because we keep trying it does come together in the end and we’re stronger for it.” For instance, the song “On the Same Boat,” bemoans life’s struggles, but emphasizes that we can all pull our weight to work together — a theme to which many MIT students can relate.

In addition, the show has comedic elements that paint scenes of characters with flaws, desires, and different goals.

Some of the cast had never been in a musical before. Staly Chin had never danced, sang, or acted on stage prior to coming to Next Act. Despite this, he landed the main role and played the inquisitive, yet vulnerable, detective perfectly.

His character falls in love with a very convincing and gorgeous murder suspect, causing his feelings and thought processes to be compromised in certain scenes, all of which he navigated beautifully. Victoria Sun ’14, who plays the lovely Nikki, Lt. Cioffi’s girlfriend, could have fooled the audience into making them think she was the murderer. In reality, her character is that of a somewhat ditzy ingénue.

Completely run by students, and entertaining in its execution, the show deserved a standing ovation!