There's a chill in the air while dinner is served during "My Sister in This House." The play follows the relationships of four women to uncover the journey that leads two sister employed as maids to commit horrific murders of the two women who employ them. From left to right: Carolyn Wirtz of Manhattan, Kan., Brittany Greunke of Winside, Megan Buresh of David City, and Rachael Hill of Omaha.
Play explores famous French murder
A famous murder, an interesting relationship between two sisters and a cast of only four women make the university production of “My Sister In This House,” the play to see this week.
“The play is based on the most sensational murder case in 20th Century France,” Director Jack Garrison said. “It was sort of the O.J. Simpson murder of France, and it was notorious.”
The play “My Sister In This House,” opens at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 16, in the Studio Theatre located on the lower level of the Fine Arts Building.
“My Sister In This House” is based on a 1933 murder case, where two French sisters, who worked as maids, murdered their employers.
Garrison, a UNK theatre associate professor says the play explores the motives that led the two sisters to brutally murder a mother and daughter after working as maids for six years.
“The two sisters went bonkers and in a fit brutally murdered the women they worked for,” he said. “The sisters literally tore out their eyes bare-handed, and beat their heads to an unrecognized pulp with a hammer.”
The play attempts to explain why these two women committed the crime. “My Sister In This House” retells what led up to the murder, and what happened to the women to make them commit such a crime.
“This is a very strong women’s studies case focusing on the oppression of the two sisters who came from a dysfunctional family,” Garrison said. “The mother and daughter who employed the sisters as maids never spoke to them in the six years they worked there.”
“My Sister In This House” is an unusual contemporary American play with only four female characters. The play does not depict the actual murder, but leads right up to the event. “The play is a character study, a study of four characters, who wouldn’t usually be associated with this activity and tries to explain why they did what they did,” Garrison said.
According to Garrison, there were no witnesses to the crime, and the French have been fascinated with it for about 80 years. Movies, novels and psychological thrillers are still being written about the case. “What’s so fascinating about the crime is to this day no one knows why the sisters did it,” Garrison said.
Garrison emphasized that “My Sister In This House” contains mature subject matter, and is not recommended for children.
“My Sister In This House” performances will be Wednesday-Saturday, Feb. 16-19, at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, Feb. 20, at 2 p.m., in the Studio Theatre located on the lower level of the UNK Fine Arts Building.
Admission is free to UNK students; $7 for adults; and $5 for UNK faculty/staff, non-UNK students and seniors.
For tickets, or more information, contact the Theatre Box Office at 308-865-8417 or firstname.lastname@example.org.