Matt Davis
Brandon Wilks as inspector Frederick Carter, Ryan Staska as Perkins, the butler, Kelsi Gloyer as stage-tech-turned-actress Annie, Dan Mahoney as Thomas Colleymoore, and Crystal Miller as Florence Colleymoore.

If everything goes right in the upcoming whodunnit theater production at the Chilkat Center – everything should go wrong.

The Lynn Canal Community Players’ latest show, “The Play That Goes Wrong,” is set to kick off next week on Thursday running through Sunday. The show is a reproduction of an award-winning 2012 comedy written by Henry Lewis, Jonathan Sayer and Henry Shields about a play-within-a-play put on by an amateur theatrical troupe known as The Cornley Drama Society.

The story centers on a group of floundering actors and their desperate attempt to produce a thrilling whodunnit murder-mystery-style play set in 1922, “The Murder at Haversham Manor.” However, things start to go wrong even before the curtains open.

The result is nearly two hours of absolute chaos as the actors attempt to bring the audience along on a journey to find the culprit of the murder in a British country estate, all while dealing with a cacophony of ridiculous mishaps and mistakes during the performance.

“There’s going to be a lot of laughing and I think a lot of people are going to have fun watching it,” said Dan Mahoney, a local performer who plays Thomas Colleymoore in the play, and the best friend of the murder victim in the play-within-the-play.

Mahoney described the show as a physical comedy filled with bits that remind him of “things that made you laugh when you were a kid.” He said because of the physical nature of the show, along with the sometimes confusing play-within-a-play format, it has been a challenging yet rewarding show to be a part of. Mahoney said his favorite part of the show is how funny it is.

“We even crack ourselves during the process, so that’s a good sign that we’re having fun with it,” he said.

Tod Sebens, the director of the play, said the show has been more than a year in the making. When he first selected it, he said he knew it wasn’t going to be an easy task to pull off, but if done right, it would be an extraordinary feat for the Haines theater community.

“This play is complicated but so well put together. I’ve done quite a few plays – directed quite a few, been in quite a few, seen quite a few – but I have never come across one as funny as this,” he said. “This one just keeps you laughing.”

Sebens said the building of the set – made entirely out of real wood – and rehearsals with the nine cast members, began about five weeks in advance of the show’s opening. He said the set had to be constructed out of wood because of how physical the show is.

“There are sight gags, there are physical gags, two women fight, two people safely fall off the second floor,” he said, listing off some of the many oddities and intentional mishaps written into the show. “This theater group just wants to do a good play, they really do, but things just keep going wrong.”

Sebens encouraged residents to come to the show if they’re in the mood for a laugh – or many.