’39 Steps’ Takes Center Stage


By Grace Burns, Assistant Editor-in-Chief

Looking to fill the auditorium with laughs, The 39 Steps, this year’s British comedic play, will be performed from November 21 to 23.


The cast and crew have been diligently working on the play almost every day since the auditions, which were on September 2 and 3.  Audiences can expect spies, romance, and a lot of humor from the show, according to director Will Jenkins.

Stemming from John Buchan’s 1915 novel and Alfred Hitchcock’s 1935 film, the British comedy takes place in the 1930’s throughout Europe and follows Richard Hannay, who comes across a woman counterspy, Annabella Schmidt.  The spy mentions a mysterious group called “The 39 Steps” before she is murdered soon after.  A beautiful woman named Pamela soon cautiously becomes a part of Hannay’s adventure.  With “The 39 Steps” hot on his trail, Hannay must try to save himself and stop the foreign group of spies.

Playing Hannay, junior Kurt Eckenrode has been a dedicated member of the theatre program since he was in eighth grade and is very enthusiastic about being a part of the play this year.

“It’s been great,” said Eckenrode. “I love the show and everyone in the cast.  It’s a lot of fun.”

Perhaps the most anticipated aspect of the show is the silly humor weaved into the plot.  The overarching mystery of the plotline mixed with slapstick comedy will aim to thoroughly entertain audiences.

Junior Brooke Weber, who has been in four productions at Susquehannock, is portraying Pamela and is ecstatic to be a part of this play.

“It’s going to be a really unique play,” said Weber. “We’re all working extremely hard on it, and it’s going to be hilarious.  There is all sorts of purposeful messing up, and it’s going to be very interactive with the audience.”

Jenkins has been directing productions at Susquehannock since 2005 and is especially excited for these comedic moments since he has not done a play like this in the past.

“[I enjoy] seeing what the actors are going to come up with,” said Jenkins. “They always come up with their sort of spin on things.”

As the show appeals to no one specific age group, the cast and crew are hoping for a good turnout after all their hard work.

Senior Emma Fletcher, who will be playing the Policeman 1 and Sheriff, has been involved in ten productions at Susquehannock and would greatly encourage people to come as the enjoyment from all of the cast members shines through in the final product.

“I think people should come because a lot of people don’t think about joining the theatre,” said Fletcher. “They can just see how much fun we’re having when we’re putting on the show.”

The cast and crew are also extremely thrilled to take the comedy to the next level and perform it at the International Thespian Festival during the first weekend of December in front of about 1,000 people from all around Pennsylvania.

For more information about the cast, crew and tickets, visit the Susquehannock Theatre website.