Active-duty actors showcase talents in KMC Onstage’s ‘Arsenic and Old Lace’

Christine June, Story and photos
U.S. Army Garrison Kaiserslautern

***image1***“Arsenic and Old Lace” opens today showcasing the talents of 16 KMC members, including six active-duty personnel.

“It’s not only the highest number of active-duty we’ve had in a play,
but it’s also the highest total percentage of any cast we’ve had,” said
Laurie Ellington, KMC Onstage director.

Mrs. Ellington said this is significant because KMC Onstage exists to serve Soldiers, Airmen and their families.

“An active theater program can help military members deal with the
stresses of a high operations tempo, deployments and separation from
family; therefore, with so many military members in this show, it shows
that our program is hitting its mark.” Mrs. Ellington added, “Besides,
these six guys are very funny and are going to put on a great show.”

***image2***The show is about a frazzled drama critic Mortimer Brewster, played by
Sgt. Chris Patterson, who has two aunts who ply lonely geezers with
poisoned wine, one sociopathic brother who looks like Boris Karloff,
another brother who thinks he’s Teddy Roosevelt, one impatient new
bride and only one night to make it turn out all right.

As “Dr. Einstein,” Airman 1st Class Joshua L. Batts contributes to
“Mortimer’s” bad night. Whether a help or not to “Mortimer,” the four
Brooklyn cops are portrayed by the rest of the active-duty cast.

Staff Sgt. Adam J. Wurtz is Captain Rooney; Staff Sgt. Michael T.
Malone is police Sgt. “Brophy;” and Sgt. Joel Abelson and Airman 1st
Class Kyle R. Beshears are police officers “Patrick O’Hara” and
“Klein,” respectively.
This show is the first in the KMC for half of the active-duty cast.

“It gives you more perspective on what you can do because I would’ve
never thought I would be able to do this until I went to college and
just tried it,” said Sergeant Malone, U.S. Air Forces in Europe
Computer Systems Squadron command control systems administer.

***image3***Learning lines in the midst of working and rehearsal were a bit of challenge for some of the active-duty cast.

“I would find time to read my lines in the car on the way to rehearsals
or home, or while I’m eating or sleeping,” joked Airman Batts, 435th
Civil Engineer Squadron readiness craftsman.

“Arsenic and Old Lace” is a stage play written in 1941 by Joseph
Kesselring and made into a movie by Frank Capra starring Cary Grant in

KMC Onstage will present this comedy “Arsenic and Old Lace” 7:30 p.m.
today, Saturday, Oct. 21, 22, 28, 29, and Nov. 4 and 5, and 3 p.m. Oct.
23 and Nov. 6 at building 3232, Kleber Kaserne. No children under 5
admitted. Patrons may call for advance tickets at 483-6626.