Press Information for DROOD

This material is from our 2013 production of The Mystery of Edwin Drood, and remains here for archival purposes.


The Audience Chooses the Ending in Los Alamos Light Opera’s Production of The Mystery of Edwin Drood

drood-A-296Los Alamos, NM—September 2013—Audiences for the Los Alamos Light Opera production of The Mystery of Edwin Drood have a most important role: they get to vote on how the show will end!

Loosely based on an unfinished mystery by Charles Dickens, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, a musical by Rupert Holmes, is set in the Music Hall Royale in London, UK. Chairman William Cartwright and his zany company of Victorian players have devised a musical rendition of the story that invites audience participation at every step. Since Dickens was so rude as to die before finishing his story, the company has rehearsed multiple endings for the audience to vote on during the second act.


The story features John Jasper, a Jekyll-and-Hyde choirmaster who is quite madly in love with his music student, the fair Miss Rosa Bud. Miss Bud is, in turn, engaged to Jasper’s nephew, young Edwin Drood. Also in love with Rosa Bud is the unpredictable foreigner, Mr. Neville Landless, who is accompanied by his tempestuous twin sister, Helena.

Our title character disappears mysteriously one stormy Christmas Eve—but has Edwin Drood been murdered? And if so, then whodunnit? Was it the drunken town stonemason, a specimen known as Durdles? Or could it have been the good Reverend Crisparkle, an Anglican with a past? Or even his overlooked assistant, Bazzard? And what about the infamous and mysterious Princess Puffer? These are just a few of the possibilities the audience will consider as this play-within-a-play comes to a hilariously madcap conclusion that is different every night!

drood-A-279Performances run October 4-6 and 11-12 at the Duane Smith Auditorium; Friday and Saturday evenings at 7:30 with a Sunday matinee on the 6th at 2:30. Tickets are $12 general admission and $10 for students and seniors, available online at or at the door.

Additional Information:

Directed by Jess Cullinan, with accompaniment by Brian Huysman and orchestral direction by Gretchen Amstutz; choreographed by Patrick MacDonald; produced by Gwen Wiens.

Cast: John Cullinan as Chairman William Cartwright; Warren Houghteling as John Jasper; Rita O’Connell as Edwin Drood; Christina Martos as Rosa Bud; Alexis Perry as Helena Landless; Jason Rutledge as Neville Landless; Carlos Archuleta as Rev. Crisparkle; Anna Dillane as Princess Puffer; Patrick MacDonald as Bazzard; Patrick Webb as Durdles; Nora Cullinan as Deputy; Irene Zaugg as Flo; Jim Sicilian as Throttle; Kirste Plunket as Wendy; Howard Barnum as Horace; Suzy Koehn as Gwendolen; and dancers Corrine D’Andrea, Renee D’Andrea, Cody Maggiore and Camille Rousculp.

The Mystery of Edwin Drood, music, book and lyrics by Rupert Holmes, is presented through special arrangement with Tams-Witmark Music Library, Inc.

The Los Alamos Light Opera has been producing musical theatre productions in Los Alamos since 1948, and is a registered 501(c)3 charitable organization.

Contact: Jess Cullinan
Los Alamos Light Opera

Download the Press Release (PDF)