As Many Giggles As Scares

As Many Giggles As Scares

Playwright brings new ‘Sleepy Hollow’ to life


“The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” is coming to Arts Live — but director Jason Suel says the story of the eerie headless horseman might lack just a little of the scare power it has packed in other renditions of the legendary tale, thanks to Mark Landon Smith’s witty adaptation.

“[Smith] came to me with about 10 or 12 pages and said, ‘Do you think this will work?’” says Suel. “We took those first pages and read them aloud with the cast. Then I took them back and said, ‘This was really working, this will need to be tweaked,’ and he turned out a play that was, by and large, a comedy. … Mark writes comedy really well.”

Suel says the comedic talents of his relatively small cast are part of the reason the script has turned out so funny.

“We have three female characters who we call the ‘ine sisters’ because their names are Delphine, Coraline and Claudine,” he says. “They’re the gossip girls, hanging out by Ye Olde Wagon Wash. These characters were minor until these three actors got together, and their energy played so well off of each other that we decided to have them provide some of the narrative of the story — and now they’re integral to the plot.”

Suel says he will be using every inch of the Arts Live performance space in a unique staging style.

“We have various acting ‘stations’ throughout the room,” he explains. “So it will be a little like a tennis match. You’ll watch something on one end of the room, then another scene at the other end, then your attention will go up to the main stage. We’re using the comedy and pinging it all over the room.”


‘The Legend of Sleepy Hollow’

Courtesy photo.
Kayla Henderson, Will Shepard, and John Laing will help bring “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” to the stage of Arts Live Theatre.

WHEN — 7 p.m. Feb. 23-25; 2 p.m. Feb. 24-25

WHERE — Arts Live Theatre, 818 N. Sang Ave., Fayetteville

COST — $7-$10

INFO — 521-4932

Categories: Family Friendly