Plays Directory : Arsenic and Old Lace

The information below is intended to give you a brief guide to the show and highlight some of the other The Mandy Network members who have also been involved in this show.

  • Author
    Joseph Kesselring
  • Written
    1939
  • Setting
    New York
  • Overview
    The play is a farcical black comedy revolving around Mortimer Brewster, a theatre-hating drama critic who must deal with his crazy, homicidal family and local police in Brooklyn, New York, as he debates whether to go through with his recent promise to marry the woman he loves. His family includes two spinster aunts who have taken to murdering lonely old men by poisoning them with a glass of home-made elderberry wine laced with arsenic, strychnine, and "just a pinch" of cyanide; a brother who believes he is Teddy Roosevelt and digs locks for the Panama Canal in the cellar of the Brewster home (which then serve as graves for the aunts' victims); and a murderous brother who has received plastic surgery performed by an alcoholic accomplice, Dr. Einstein (a character based on real-life gangland surgeon Joseph Moran) to conceal his identity and now looks like horror-film actor Boris Karloff (a self-referential joke, as the part was originally played by Karloff). The film adaptation follows the same basic plot, with a few minor changes. It is customary, after the cast takes several curtain calls, for the final one to finish with the "murder victims" (often well-known local personalities) entering from the basement and joining the cast for the final bow.

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5 known characters

3 known roles


Connected mandy members:

Janis Snyder
Janis Snyder
Costume Designer
2019, Costume Designer
Rotary Stage at Andrews Hall in the Sonoma Community Center
Mark Huckett
Mark Huckett
Actor
2019, Doctor Einstein
Pomegranate Theatre
Arch Darrow
Arch Darrow
Actor
2018, Jonathan Brewster
Paul Battiato
2018, Jonathan
East Lynne Theater
Teagan Hughes
2018, Martha Brewster
Bryan College
Daniel Anderson
2018, Mortimer Brewster
St Lukes
Christopher Clark
Christopher Clark
Voice Over: Canadian
2018, Jonathan Brewster
Colin Rice
Colin Rice
Actor
2018, Jonathan Brewster
St. James' Church Hall, Woolton, Liverpool
Matt Anderson
2018, Jonathan Brewster
Glasgow Clyde College Theatre
Michael Sherwin
2017, Teddy
Theatre Royal Nottingham
Chris Povey
Chris Povey
Actor
2017, Officer Klein
Stoke Repertory Theatre
Megan Cudd
Megan Cudd
Costume Maker
2017, Stitcher
C.M. Taylor
C.M. Taylor
Costume Assistant
2017, Stitcher/Wardrobe Crew
Kianna Batista
2017, Abby Brewster
Cornwall Central High School
Nicola Jayne Chirnside
2017, Assistant Director
Stoke Repertory Theatre
Stephen R. Jones
2016, Officer O'Hara
Dylan Thomas Theatre
Andrew Fettes
2016, Dr. Herman Einstein
Theatre Royal Nottingham
Richard Ede
Richard Ede
Actor
2016, Mortimer Brewster
Theatre Royal Nottingham
Dan Palmer
Dan Palmer
Actor
2016, Officer O'Hara
Trinity Theatre, Tunbridge Wells
Jerome Burelbach
2016, Jonathan Brewster
Corpus Playroom

Alternative Names

Arsenic and Old Lace, Arsenic & Old Lace