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Classic comedy opens at SummerStage tonight

The story is preposterous -- two kindly old ladies turn out to be homicidal maniacs – yet Joseph Kesserlings “Arsenic and Old Lace,” which opens tonight at Lapham Peak’s Summerstage, has been an audience favorite since it opened on Broadway more than 70 years ago.

The comedy became a movie in 1944, directed by Frank Capra, starring Cary Grant (Jack Benny and Ronald Reagan were also considered for the role of Mortimer Brewster), which was shot in eight weeks. The stage production was still running and Josephine Hull and Jean Adair, who played the elderly Brewster sisters, were allowed a leave of absence to make the film.

“Arsenic and Old Lace” will be presented by SummerStage at 8 p.m. tonight and Saturday and next Friday and Saturday.

The beautiful outdoor setting features various shows throughout the summer including “Comedy & Magic Under the Stars” at 7:30 p.m. July 20, “Evening of Irish Music & Dance” 7:30 p.m. July 21, “Once on this Island at 7:30 p.m. July 27-29 and several other shows.

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