Hilarity and Mystery in the Indiana Repertory Theatre’s “The 39 Steps”

The Indiana Repertory Theatre, in Indianapolis downtown, presents “The 39 Steps,” a zany and mysterious Indianapolis theatre offering. This Indianapolis arts event opens April 20 and runs through May 4 at the Indiana Repertory Theatre. This fact paced mystery garnered two Tony Awards and has been called “a Hitchcock masterpiece… with a dash of Monty Python.”

This Indianapolis performing arts event is perfect for the Hitchcock fan in your house as it pays homage to the mystery master’s greatest movie moments. With the promise of rip roaring laughter in a high speed whodunit, “The 39 Steps” is a whirlwind of a play. Originally at 1935 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock himself, this fast paced adventure follows a madcap adventure filled with spies, assassins, secret plots and more.

Canadian Richard Hannay is sitting in a London music hall watching “Mr. Memory’s” incredible powers of recall, when he hears shots fired. As the room bursts into panic, he finds himself in the comforting embrace of a frightened Annabella Smith. When she takes him back to her apartment, she reveals a bombshell of a secret: she is a spy being chased by assassins. They are after her because she uncovered a plot to steal vital British military secrets led by an evil mastermind who is missing the top joint from one of his fingers. She mentions 39 steps, but doesn’t explain her meaning.

As Hannay becomes embroiled in her death, he becomes the keeper of her secrets and is sent on the run. He soon finds himself at the center of a nationwide manhunt. When he lands in the Scottish countryside, he attempts to locate Annabelle’s secret contact to make him aware of the mysterious 39 steps. When he discovers Professor Jordan and his missing finger, Hannay immediately recognizes his mistake. As he faces down the leader of the evil plot, he must escape once more.

Hannay’s journey toward truth continues to an unbelievable climax. Though the script has been tweaked to be a send up of the classic Hitchcock horror genre, this play will send shivers down your spine and laughs into your belly. For an evening of pure fun, head to the Indiana Repertory Theatre’s “The 39 Steps.”

The IRT’s production tells the story with a cast of four. One man, one woman and two clowns (who don every other role in the play). Favorite Indianapolis actor Rob Johansen (of After Paul McCartney and other great IRT shows) dons the role of first clown, joined by Tom Aulino as second clown. The cast is rounded out by Matthew Brumlow as Richard Hannay and Sarah Nealis as Annabelle Schmidt and other female characters.

A Broadway smash hit, “The 39 Steps” has been called “Theater at its finest,” by the New York Times. The Times also called the show “Absurdly enjoyable,” adding “This gleefully theatrical riff on Hitchcock’s film is fast and frothy, performed by a cast of four that seems like a cast of thousands.”

Don’t miss “The 39 Steps” at the Indiana Repertory Theatre through May 4. Ticket prices range from $20 to $55 depending on show time, date and theater section.  Make your evening out in the Circle City complete with a trip to any of these scrumptious Indianapolis restaurants. After the show, keep the laughs coming over drinks at these Indianapolis bars.

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The 39 Steps
April 20 to May 4
Tickets range from $20 to $55

Indiana Repertory Theatre
140 West Washington Street
Indianapolis, IN 46204