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Santa Clara Players Opens Season with World’s Longest-Running Play

As anyone who’s ever tried knows, catching a clever mouse in a trap is not a given—unless you’re Agatha Christie— renowned as the best-selling novelist of all time, outsold only by the Bible and Shakespeare.

The British-born Grande Dame of detective stories is returning to the Santa Clara Players to open its 2022-2023 season (and continue its 60th year) of bringing comedy and drama to the community. The world’s longest-running play (and Christie’s only), The Mousetrap runs Oct. 14 – Nov. 5, directed by Robert Casillas.

“I think everyone loves a good mystery and this is a true classic,” said George Doeltz, Santa Clara Players Board president and show producer since 2009. “I think it’s what we need to welcome audiences back to the theatre after this [COVID] plague.”

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The Mousetrap is set in the present day in a new B & B outside London during a blizzard. A murder in London has the guests who arrive at the B & B on edge. And the guests, each with a secret of their own, suspect one in their midst of being the murderer.

The Mousetrap is a thoughtful, well-conceived mystery written by the great Agatha Christie and it will be highly entertaining for the theatergoer,” said Casillas, from South San Francisco.

“I make every effort to apply attention to detail and I have a wonderful cast [of eight]. I believe it is this combination that will make the show one our audiences will enjoy.”

The Santa Clara Players first performed The Mousetrap 47 years ago—in the fall of 1975. It debuted in London’s West End on Oct. 6, 1952, closing only briefly in those 70 years because of COVID shutdowns. The stage play was adapted from a 1947 radio play Christie wrote for the Royal family.

“We will continue to entertain audiences as long as they keep coming,” said Doeltz, reflecting on the six-decade history of the Players. “And we will still have free cookies at intermission.”

“We certainly could use some volunteers to help with set building, painting, or even serving free refreshments at intermission,” said Doeltz, putting out the call for volunteers.

“SCP is a great organization to work with…The production of the show is in George Doeltz’s hands, and he is amazing,” said Casillas, now directing his sixth play with SCP. “He is the one who makes each production work so well, and when I work at SCP, it is in partnership with George to bring all the elements together to create a great show.”

Catch The Mousetrap if you can at the Santa Clara Players’ intimate 71-seat theater in Hall Pavilion (behind Santa Clara’s Triton Museum of Art), 1750 Don Ave. at Warburton Avenue.

Two comedies are lined up to begin 2023: Four Old Broads (Feb. 24 – March 18) and Tangled Webbs (May 19 – June 10).

The Santa Clara Players opens the season on Oct. 14. Visit www.scplayers.org or call (408)248-7996 for information, tickets and to volunteer. Ticket options include money-saving season tickets and flex pass tickets.

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