You are here: Home Drama Beat Latest Drama News The Game’s Afoot with Playgoers of Lethbridge for Fall dinner theatre
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

L.A. Beat

The Game’s Afoot with Playgoers of Lethbridge for Fall dinner theatre

E-mail Print

If you like Sherlock Holmes and if you like screwball comedy, then get a clue and a get your tickets then get ready to laugh  because The Games Afoot— again.

 Hatrix Theatre put on a production of the Ken Ludwig’s 2012 comedy in 2016.


 Playgoers of Lethbridge is  taking  it on Oct. 17-21 underneath the Keg for their annual Fall dinner theatre.


“ The Games Afoot, or Holmes for the holidays is based on a real character, William Gillette who wrote a play about Sherlock Holmes with Arthur Conan Doyle’s blessing.

After Gillette is shot  during a run of his long running play about Sherlock Holmes, he invites his friends in the cast to his mansion for Christmas Eve in 1936 to try and find out the identity of the killer. A storm is brewing literally and figuratively as,  poison pen theatre critic named Daria Chase pays them a visit, which leads to complications and hilarity as they hold a seance to find out who attempted to murder Gillette as well as the doorman at the theatre where they were performing in.

Jocelyn Steinborn,Cole Fetting, Lori Garner, John Poulsen and Jaclyn Elfring show off their costumes for the Game’s Afoot. Photo submitted


 Director Rita Peterson didn’t know Hatrix recently did the play. She didn’t know a lot about it before taking it on other than knowing it was penned by Ken Ludwig.


“I didn’t realize Hatrix had done it, but I read the play and it is so funny,” said  Peterson, who has been part of other Ken Ludwig plays and knows how funny they are.

“ I’ve directed  “Leading Ladies,” said Peterson who has always been a fan of the playwright, so she knew it was going to be funny.

“It’s really different than his other plays,” Peterson said, praising her cast.


“ There’s a lot of great characters in this play. We have a great cast and crew. They  work together so well and they really listen to direction and have great suggestions. And we have great costumes,” Peterson said.


The experienced cast includes a lot of familiar faces including University of Lethbridge professor  and  Lethbridge Shakespeare Performance Society veteran John Poulsen playing Gillette; Taber Players, Hatrix Theatre   and playgoers veteran Jocelyn Steinborn as  Martha Gillette, Lori Garner as Madge Geisel, Patrick Roach as her husband and Gilette’s best friend Felix, Playgoers of Lethbridge, Lethbridge Shakespeare Performance Society and University of Lethbridge graduate Cole Fetting, Chinook High School drama teacher and Hatrix Theatre veteran Maren Coates who was big sister Catherine in Hatrix Theatre’s Spring production of the Foreigner as Aggie, LMT and Playgoers of Lethbridge veteran Monica Baczuk as Inspector Goring and Taber Players veteran Jaclyn Elfring as poison pen gossip columnist Daria Chase.


 Retired University of Lethbridge professor Teresa Heyburn is handling costumes  for the show.

John Poulsen is excited to be play

John Poulsen and Patrick Roach rehearse the Game’s Afoot. Photo by Richard Amery

 Gillette  the show though he too wasn’t that familiar with the play.


“ Rita needed  someone to play Gillette and asked me. There‘s 565 lines I have to remember. I counted them. As soon as I read the script I said yes, ” Poulsen laughed.


“ It moves so fast. In a comedy it needs to move fast,” he said praising his cast-mates.


“It’s such a solid group. It feels so natural to work with them. It’s tightly written play. Gillette is such a funny comedic role that is lots of fun to play,” Poulsen continued.

 Maren Coates was supposed to direct a production of the  Games Afoot in her hometown of Fort Macleod at the Empress but the scheduling.   didn't work out.

“ I was very familiar with the play. I was going to direct it six years ago. I had  the script and already had planned the blocking and designed a scale model of the set and everything, but the scheduling didn’t work out. So I thought If I can’t direct it, maybe I could be in it and when I got the chance I jumped at it,” Coates said, adding she is enjoying playing the ingénue Aggie.

“ She knows how to play the game. She’s cool and spunky and lively. She’s amiable but also  polished,” she said.


“ She’s delightful,” she enthused, adding her favourite part of the  show is working with her cast mates.

“I love interacting with the cast. We’re really comfortable with each other. We have our inside jokes and that[s amazing,” Coates said.


Cole Fetting, a regular  performer with the Lethbridge Shakespeare Performance Society and who was in part of Playgoers production of “Daisy” right before the pandemic is excited to be back on stage with playgoers of Lethbridge as Simon Bright in The Game’s Afoot.

“ He’s an enthusiastic young actor. He‘s very sincere and he loves his wife Aggie. But he’s very unintentionally stupid,” said Fetting, who  first read the script in 2016 and loved it.

“I love Ken Ludwig’s plays. When I read the script, I couldn't put it down,” Fetting said, adding he was excited to work with Rita Peterson again. She also directed him in “ Daisy.”

“ It’s been fantastic. I’m really excited to be part of it. The cast is a. lot of fun. So come prepared to laugh,” he said.


 Peterson is excited about the show.

“ There’s a lot of laughs as everyone tries to  figure out who the killer is,” she said.

“The cast is great and the script is full of surprises. People are going to be in for a bloody good time.”


The Game’s Afoot runs at the Country Kitchen beneath the Keg on Mayor Magrath Drive, Oct. 17-21.


 Cocktails are  a 6 p.m., dinner will be served at 6:30 and the show will begin after.

 Tickets are $60 and available at casa.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

The ONLY Gig Guide that matters


Music Beat

Lights. Camera. Action.
Inside L.A. Inside

CD Reviews


Music Beat News

Art Beat News

Drama Beat News

Museum Beat News