Imagine you're newly blind, your husband is ensnared in a drug-smuggling plot, and dangerous criminals claiming to be old friends are tormenting you to find the stash. Such is the story of Wait Until Dark, the Little Theatre of Savannah's newest production.
Sam Hendricks is asked by a woman at the airport to hold a doll, but the woman disappears, so Sam takes it home. The woman’s partner tracks the doll to Sam, whom he tricks into leaving town so that retrieval of the doll is possible. His only obstacle is Sam’s blind wife, Susy. He and two hoods manipulate and coerce Susy to find the doll, which has been stolen by a young girl that lives upstairs. She eventually has enough and turns out the lights to even the playing field.
Though originally set in the 1950’s, the show has been updated to the 70’s. It wasn’t brought to a more current era for logistic reasons, both technologically and socially.
“The tools of a ‘50s con man are so different from today. A cell phone would kill the entire thing.” explains director Christopher Soucy. “As a society we’re so wary of being conned. This speaks of a time when we were quick to trust people.”
Another unusual element is the blackout that occurs on stage for a chunk of the show. Though used to simulate Susy’s ruse to trick her tormentors, the blackout heightens the audience’s senses and makes them feel like they’re part of the action.
The audience isn’t the only one feigning blindness. Rachel Herrick, who plays Susy, discusses preparing for her role. “I tried to explore being blind and researched how the blind function,” explains Herrick. “It’s exciting to tackle so interesting a role.”
Twelve-year-old Kasey Siebert, playing Susy’s neighbor Gloria, is excited for another reason. “It’s a different atmosphere. I’m usually involved in happier plays, but I really like getting to work on something with a scarier feel.”
A thriller filled with intrigue and a constant feeling of suspense, Wait Until Dark is perfectly timed for the post-Halloween season. So if you didn’t get enough spooks, this is sure to fill your breath-holding quota. cs
Wait Until DarkWhen & Where: Nov. 13-15, 20-22, 28-29 at 8 p.m., Nov. 16, 23, 29-30 at 3p.m. Freight Station, 703 Louisville Rd. Cost: $20, $10 children Info: 912-631-3773, www.littletheatreofsavannah.org