POCATELLO — For the Westside Players’ production of “Clue,” based on the classic murder mystery game, many different people were involved to make the show possible. Two important figures are Roger Freeman and Jackie Czerepinski. Freeman is the show’s stage carpenter, while Czerepinski is the director and costumer.
“We’re in charge of stuff,” said Czerepinski. “I wrangle the costumes and the props and Roger wrangles the construction area.”
Both have been involved with the Westside Players for many years. Czerepinski has been with them for about 27 years, and Freeman for about seven.
Building the sets was particularly difficult as it required Freeman to fit nine rooms onto a fairly small stage.
Despite this, Freeman explains that he enjoys the problem solving part of his work.
“This particular production has been enjoyable,” he said. “Figuring out how to make stuff happen with very little resources.”
In order to accomplish this, he had to build walls that could change to represent the different rooms in the game. This way, he could fit three separate rooms on each side of the stage. The other rooms are represented in different parts of the stage.
“Doing that, you can have all the rooms in the ‘Clue’ game,” said Czerepinski as she described the set.
Other features of the set are a portrait with a hidden safe behind it and mugshots of each of the six main characters appearing from behind a bookshelf in the library as “evidence” when the characters aren’t looking.
As Czerepinski described her role, she explained that many people donate their old things to the theater.
“People give us furniture and clothing,” she said. “And as the person in charge of stuff, my goal is to use everything in the building at least once.”
This goal may prove difficult, as the basement is full of items such as old lamps, typewriters, telephones from various points in history and more. With all the variety, there is sure to be something that can be used in whatever play the Westside Players decide to produce.
In the lobby of the building, there is usually a small art gallery on the wall exhibited by a local artist. Even when no art is being exhibited, there is always something in the lobby for viewers to enjoy, such as a bridal salon featuring wedding dresses from various time periods for their production of “Steel Magnolias.”
“There’s always some sort of theme in the lobby in addition to whatever’s going on and what the artist is exhibiting,” said Freeman.
For this production, a local artist named Mariah Larsen features images of each of the six characters in the game with one of the six potential weapons along with a few others featuring skeletons. There is also a large crescent, blood moon that Freeman built on the wall surrounded by black bats in honor of Halloween.
Czerepinski explains that while tickets for “Clue” are sold out, auditions for the next production will be held on Oct. 24 and 25. This next show will be “Arsenic and Old Lace,” which will be showing in January.
“If being involved in some hard work and a lot of silliness sounds interesting and fun, people should come audition for ‘Arsenic and Old Lace,’” she said.
More information about the Westside Players can be found at www.westsideplayers.org.