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Cross-dressing comedy at Backstage in Breckenridge

Summit Daily/Mark Fox
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BRECKENRIDGE ” Skip Wee and Chris Willard fill the Breckenridge Theatre with a myriad of characters in a slightly dark, but mostly comedic tale, “The Mystery of Irma Vep.”

We last saw Willard, Backstage Theatre artistic director, and Wee paired together as the canine companions in the children’s production, “Two Dumb Dogs.”

Shelly Bordas directs the production which follows the story of a hunchback stableman named Nicodemus (Willard) and housemaid Jane (Wee) who interact with Lord Edgar (Wee) and Lady Enid (Willard), characters that are a cross between “Wuthering Heights” and “Psycho.”



The many roles and costumes by the two actors are distinct enough to make you forget there are only two. Yet the fact that the stage and costumes are a playground for them as they speedily alternate roles is not lost on the audience.

“The Mystery of Irma Vep,” opening tonight for a run through Halloween, was originally staged in Breckenridge in 1991, and for the theater’s 35th anniversary, they are bringing back some of the favorite shows over the years.



For Wee, who said he has been involved in at least six shows in the community since his first at the Backstage “Zorba” in 2000, the comedy will be his last in Breckenridge.

Living in Denver for the past year, he cites the rising cost of gas as the turning point in his ability to continue working in Summit County.

He said of his local theater career there were both horrible and wonderful experiences, yet “even the horrible was all good stuff. It’s all learning.”



He cited his roles as Ellard in “The Foreigner” in 2006 as one of his favorite roles, along with Chug in “Yakkin” in 2005.

Wee and Willard will perform “The Mystery of Irma Vep” tonight through Nov. 1 at the Breckenridge Theatre.

Call the box office at 970-453-0199 for tickets.

What: “The Mystery Irma Vep”

When: Today at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 6:30 p.m.; Oct. 24-25 at 7:30 p.m. and Oct. 26 at 6:30 p.m.; and Thursday, Oct. 30 through Nov. 1 at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets: $18 for adults and $12 for children under 12.

Director’s Note: There is some mild, comic violence, but other than a terrific amount of silliness, the performance is suitable for a general audience.

More information: Call 970-453-0199 or visit http://www.backstagetheatre.org.


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