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NRT Presents: The 39 Steps

No Refund Theatre’s latest production, The 39 Steps, follows the 37-year-old Richard Hannay as he struggles with a confusing murder mystery and his own tragic love life.

The play begins in London in August 1935. Hannay describes the woes of his life. He’s “bored and tired of the world,” so he pours a drink and decides to go to the theater to see a performance starring the character “Mr. Memory.”

There’s a playful give and take between Mr. Memory and his audience — until a gun fires and mayhem ensues.

The woman who fired the shot, Annabella Schmidt, escapes the theatre with Hannay. She explains she’s a secret agent on a mission, and her shot was a diversion to prevent two men in the audience from shooting her. She asks Hannay to spend the night with her.

Hannay wakes to find her dead, or so he thinks, and escapes the dangerous situation disguised as a milk man to continue Schmidt’s investigation in Scotland.

Throughout his journey, he is chased by two scatter-brained police officers, enjoys several short-lived romances, and navigates amusing, intense plot twists such as an encounter with the Loch Ness Monster. 

The 39 Steps is junior Clarisse Cofrancesco’s directorial debut, though she has contributed to about 15 other shows since becoming involved in NRT as a freshman.

While directing the play, Cofrancesco struggled with the more nuanced aspects of stage management.

“I don’t have much of a technical background, and this play has so many technical aspects, but luckily I had a ton of help from a ton of people which made this play great,” she said. “You just end up walking away from [the play] having a great time performing it and enjoying it as a show itself.”

“At every rehearsal we were laughing and joking around, and I just love having that as my first experience.”

NRT and SPA Latenight will present The 39 Steps at 9 p.m. Thursday, October 11 through Saturday, October 13 in the HUB Flex Theatre. You can find more info on the show’s Facebook page.

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About the Author

Annmarie Sorensen

Annmarie's brain is comprised of quotes from The Office, Harry Potter, and Gilmore Girls. She lives off of Amy's GF Mac n Cheese because she has Celiac disease. She enjoys long walks to the fridge, the deli in Findlay Commons, and to her bed after her 9am. You can follow her on Twitter @aannmarieeee for additional political commentary and email her at [email protected]

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