Tommies star in fall thriller ‘The Bride of Brackenloch’

Five St. Thomas students have taken the stage for the St. Catherine’s fall play, “The Bride of Brackenloch,” which goes from Oct. 31 through Sunday at Frey Theater.

Teresa Lyons Hegdahl, St. Kate’s theater department head and play director, said the St. Kate’s and St. Thomas’ theater programs have been a joint department for years.

“(St. Thomas students) are enthusiastic, talented students, like the students that we have here on campus,” Hegdahl said. “It’s just more resources to pull from.”

St. Thomas junior Joe Feely and sophomores Mary Conway, Lindy Fischer, Elizabeth Heaney, and Willie Hustead all participated in the St. Kate’s production.

The play centers around the Brackenloch family. The family is cursed and all of its descendants’ first brides shall die on their wedding nights. This haunting ‘who-done-it’ mystery, with mistaken identities and ghoulish monsters, keeps the audience on its toes.

Fischer portrayed the character Janet Magleesh, the Brackenloch family’s housekeeper, and said she enjoyed working with a two-school cast.

“I think every night we discover new little things that we can do to jazz it up and make it even better,” Fischer said.

Hegdahl said the show is a “farcical look at thrillers.”

“For many of these students, it is a more of an exploration of a much broader style of performing then they have done in the past,” Hegdahl said.

At points in the play, the characters “broke the fourth wall” and spoke directly to the audience, explaining that they knew they were acting in a show, adding to the show’s farce-style.

Feely, who played detective Wilbur Yardle, said the production is not only his first St. Kate’s show, but his first time acting on any stage, which is something his friends encouraged him to do.

“I told my friends that I’d always wanted to get into acting, but St. Thomas doesn’t have a lot of acting things,” Feely said.

Hustead played the whimsical Jabez Thorngall, and said he enjoyed working with St. Kate’s students.

“Their eagerness, energy and determination to produce a great show is what most distinguishes (the St. Kate’s students),” Hustead said.

Caroline Rode can be reached at