Upper School Fall Play: The 39 Steps

Freya Young '22, Staff Writer

On Friday, November 9th, at 7 pm, and on Saturday, November 10th, also at 7 pm, the Upper School play, The 39 Steps, will be performed. The talented cast and crew have been working hard, and the play will surely be entertaining and fantastic. The play is perfect for those who are interested in spies, accents, and action.

The 39 Steps takes place during the 1930s – between World War I and World War II – in Great Britain. The play depicts the growing tension between Germany and Great Britain through the lense of espionage. The play follows Richard Hannay, played by Henry Jodka ‘20, who finds himself in trouble after shots are fired at a performance of “Mr. Memory” in a London theater. Soon, Richard Hannay finds himself back at his apartment with Annabella, a woman who was also at the theater, played by Katie Libman ‘19. Annabella reveals that she is a spy and has discovered someone’s plan to steal the British military’s secrets. The next morning, Richard Hannay finds Annabella dead, and his chaotic adventure truly begins.

The 39 Steps, written by Simon Corble and Nobby Dimon, was first performed in 1995 and is based off a novel written in 1915 by John Buchan and a 1935 movie by Alfred Hitchcock. “The play takes a serious topic and makes it into a comedy with basically the same script,” Jodka explains. The play was adapted from serious topics, but the parody balances those topics with comedic and light-hearted moments. Patrick Barlow’s award-winning version of The 39 Steps has won several notable awards, including two Tony Awards. The 39 Steps is a worthwhile play and puts forth an exciting challenge for ambitious high school actors.

Note – this article was written with the help of the following sources: