It’s no mystery why WHS students are game to stage “Clue”

The fall play will be performed in the Watertown High auditorium on Friday, Nov. 18, and Saturday, Nov. 19, at 6 p.m., and Sunday, Nov. 20, at 2 p.m.


Raider Times photo / Raider Times staff

The cast and crew of “Clue,” the Watertown High School fall play, which will be performed in the WHS auditorium Friday, Nov. 18, through Sunday, Nov. 22, 2022.

Katherine A. Schick, Raider Times staff

“It’s really just such a crazy feeling of optimism, anticipation, excitement, and nerves to stand on the stage and hear your character’s words coming out of your mouth,” said sophomore Sylvia Sakata.

She will take on the role of Mr. Green in Watertown High School’s upcoming production of “Clue.” “It really makes you feel like you are part of something.”

From Friday, Nov. 18, to Sunday, Nov. 20, in the WHS auditorium, actors and crew members will present three showings of “Clue,” a murder-mystery play based on the iconic board game. The cast is currently in their final rehearsals, as the crew puts its finishing touches on the sets, props, and costumes.

“We have more of a sense of what we’re doing, so we can have more fun with our characters and how we interact with each other,” said sophomore Avery Macdonald about the current atmosphere of rehearsals.

Macdonald has professional acting experience and plays Mrs. Peacock, whom she describes as “tacky and eccentric, to say the least.”

The play is set in a 1950s mansion in New England, where six guests gather for a dinner party. But when the host is  killed, the mystery to pinpoint the murderer unfolds.

The guests parallel the board game’s unique and animated set of characters: Mr. Green, Colonel Mustard, Mrs. Peacock, Professor Plum, Miss Scarlet, and Mrs. White.

“Plum is smart, Peacock [is] dramatic, White is mysterious,” Sakata said. “Green adds a character to balance out the big personalities.” 

Actors auditioned at the end of September and began rehearsing soon after. While the majority of the cast has previously taken part in WHS productions, Sakata is new to the scene but felt welcomed from the start.

“Each one of us is a puzzle piece and we fit together so easily. We all play off each other’s energy in a way that just enhances everything,” she said.

Senior Lexi Burroughs, who plays Mr. Boddy, felt an extra responsibility taking part in her final fall play at WHS.

Pullquote Photo

Each one of us is a puzzle piece and we fit together so easily. We all play off each other’s energy in a way that just enhances everything.


“I was definitely motivated to do my part as a senior and be a role model for the underclassmen in the cast and crew,” Burroughs said.

After graduating from WHS, Burroughs plans to attend college to study theater and performance. This year she she said she hopes to “set in stone what the theater department should be and look like.” 

The play is directed by Robin Wilson, who is in her second year at WHS staging the shows, teaching drama classes, and running the dance team.

“I’m just so grateful for how committed she is to the show and all of us,” said Sakata. “Her positive energy definitely spills over to all of us. When she’s happy, we’re happy. When she’s confident, so are we.” 

In Ms. Wilson’s first year, the theater department did “Get Smart” as the fall play.

“I think that a lot of what we did last year was rebuilding the theater department,” said Macdonald. “This year I think we all feel more confident with what we’re doing and how everything will come together.” 

Sophomore Kiran Owens, who co-starred alongside Macdonald in “Get Smart,” agrees.

“More people are in the play this time. Everyone seems more excited and affable,” Owens said.

This year he plays the butler Wadsworth, who, in Owens’s words, is the “posh, mysterious, British fellow who tries his best to keep the others in order.”

In order for the cast and audience to be transported into a 1950s luxurious mansion, a dedicated crew is required. Sophomore Jaylyn Le is in charge of making the props that the school doesn’t already have. He reflects that the work “requires me to get creative since I would need to make something out of almost nothing. Looking at everyday items – even trash – to see how they can be valuable to a project I’m working on is challenging but enjoyable.”

His projects include a record player (that actually spins!) and a television.

“To see all the hard work being shown and adored, in the end, makes all the late nights worth it,” he said.

The board game, where players make guesses about characters’ whereabouts and weapons to debunk a murder, also influenced the 1985 movie “Clue.” Some actors, such as Sakata, treated the film as “a get-to-know-you-activity” in developing their character, while others ignored it completely.

“I have seen the movie but I’m putting my own touches to the character,” said Burroughs. “I always make sure to sprinkle my own charm and charisma.”

A trademark to the movie is that it has three different endings. The play’s ending is structured differently, and sophomore Campbell Pelton-Cairns thinks it captures “the unpredictability of the board game while having the ending make narrative sense.”

She plays the Cook, whom she considers the “red herring” of the show who “stays as a potential threat in the shadows. 

The show will run this Friday, Nov. 18, and Saturday, Nov. 19, at 6 p.m., and then Sunday, Nov. 20, at 2 p.m. Tickets are free to WHS students, $5 to students from other schools and people 65+, and $10 to everyone else at the door.

When asked if she has any words for future audiences, Burroughs said, “I want them to laugh and walk away — the perfect accessories to murder, so to say.” 

–Nov. 15, 2022–