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Not the ‘story you’re used to seeing’

By AMANDA HARRISON

Staff writer

After performing “Dracula” last Halloween season, the Twin Beach Players are keeping with their scary tradition, as they present Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein.”

“It’s not your Hollywood Frankenstein,” said director Sid Curl, who is also the president of Twin Beach Players.

In January, Curl said he and other members of the theater approached award-winning Maryland playwright Mark Scharf about writing an adaptation of Shelley’s early 19th-century novel.

Scharf said he looked at what had been done before with the novel and the many screen adaptations.

“I tried to stick to the novel and include as much of her original dialogue as possible,” he said, adding that Shelley’s ideas are “amazing.”

The play, set in 1816 in Antarctica, tells the tale of a young, aspiring scientist, Victor Frankenstein, who ignores the warnings of his professors to pursue his dreams of creating life. In his single-minded pursuit to help mankind, he assembles The Creature, who, after being rejected from society, exacts revenge on his creator.

Scharf said he had a script for the Twin Beach Players by mid-July and they were rehearsing by the end of August.

“It just works on every level,” said Kirk Kugel, who plays Victor Frankenstein, of Scharf’s script. “It speaks to all the really deep human questions,” including life after death, playing God and the consequences of one’s actions, he said.

Kugel said he was “surprised it wasn’t the story you’re used to seeing,” but that it’s “very different in its approach and presentation, which is hard to do with a 200-year-old story.

“It’s a monster movie type story, but it’s a little more layered than that. ... It’s really about The Creature coming into his own and as he does, I kind of fall apart,” Kugel said of his character.

Tom Wines, who plays The Creature, said Shelley’s novel is “a deep, philosophical thing with a variety of themes, and Mark has really preserved that.”

The play revolves around The Creature, Wines said, “so it’s very important to develop [The Creature] correctly, and to do it rather quickly.”

“I really hope we get an audience, because it’s really going to be a wonderful experience for them,” Wines said.

aharrison@somdnews.com

If you go

Frankenstein will run Oct. 19 and 25 through 27 and Nov. 1 through 3 at 8 p.m., and Oct. 21, 28 and Nov. 4 at 6 p.m. at the North Beach Boys & Girls Club located at 9021 Dayton Ave., North Beach.

On Nov. 1, all proceeds will go to the bank account set up in Frank Hayward III’s name at the Suntrust Bank in Prince Frederick. At the Oct. 21, 27, 28 and Nov. 3 shows, there will also be a meet-and-greet with the playwright, Mark Scharf.

General admission is $12; seniors, members and students are $10.