It’s release week for Cast for Murder! Today I thought I’d let my fictional amateur sleuth, Veronica Walsh, promote the book via an interview about the community theater production she is starring in, Blithe Spirit. I hope you enjoy her remarks to a reporter from her hometown newspaper.
Veronica, you haven’t performed since last spring, when your long-running soap opera, Days and Nights, was cancelled. How does it feel to be acting again?
I’ve been enjoying my life as owner of the All Things boutique in Barton and love working with the staff. Each morning I call the shop’s opening “Show Time,” but it doesn’t compare to the adrenaline rush of acting. I’ve missed performing and slipped back into it as if the sabbatical never happened. It’s wonderful to be part of a cast again. There’s nothing like a group collaborating to bring an imaginary world to life for an audience.
How did you land the role of Madame Arcati?
Gigi Swanson, the founder of the Barton Community Theater, walked into my boutique one day last December and offered me the role. It was completely unexpected and I was flabbergasted. Still, it took only three seconds to accept the part of Madame.
You mentioned Gigi Swanson. She was the original director of your production. Ms. Swanson was murdered the first week of rehearsals. It was you who found her body behind the theater. How has Gigi’s death affected you, the cast, and the production?
Gigi’s loss has been devastating to everyone at the theater. She was our leader. It was suggested we postpone or cancel the production, but the cast took a vote and unanimously agreed the show must go on. Our performances will be in honor of Gigi and we’re working hard to make sure her vision for the show is fulfilled.
You have developed a reputation for solving local murders. Are you investigating Ms. Swanson’s murder?
I’m too busy running All Things during the day and rehearsing for Blithe Spirit in the evenings to have time for anything else. I have full confidence the Barton Police will soon make an arrest and justice will be served for Gigi and her family.
Madame Arcati is a medium. Have you met with a medium in preparation for your role?
Gigi put me in touch with a local woman who is a medium. We’ve met and she shared interesting information about her work, but Noël Coward’s wonderful script is my main guide and inspiration for playing Madame.
Are you nervous about opening night? Do you have stage fright, even after your long career?
I don’t have stage fright, but I will have nervous anticipation before the curtain opens. It won’t be over my performance, but over the unexpected moment that always happens. It can be anything: a castmate forgetting a line, a misplaced prop, a piece of the set not properly functioning. An actor never knows when she’ll have to improvise. A distraction can also come from the audience, so a reminder to everyone coming to our shows to turn off your cell phones when you enter the theater, no talking during the performance, and if you must chew gum, do it quietly!
Hmm. It seems Veronica skirted around one or two questions. You’ll have to read Cast for Murder to get the full story.
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Remember my blog tour begins this week. I’ll be posting links to the reviews and guest posts, so keep checking in for the latest on Cast for Murder. It’s finally here!