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Trouble follows Henry Perkins when he finds "Funny Money"

Vic (Mack Russ)tries to help friend Henry (Damon Fichter) continue their complicated cover story, while Sgt. Davenport (Nathan Amberg) and Sgt. Slater (Brianna Peterson) become ever more confused as they try to get their report in a rehearsal scene for Dickinson State University's "Funny Money."

Henry Perkins finds himself with a dilemma when he discovers a briefcase stuffed with a great deal of cash.

Does he give it back, report it the authorities or skip the country on the next flight? Now, if he can only get his wife to agree to the plan and keep his story straight long enough to get away with it.

Audiences will journey with Perkins as he decides to grab the opportunity with both hands in "Funny Money" by playwright Ray Cooney.

"It's a show everybody can relate to," guest director Lydia Dworshak said.

Dworshak, who is DSU's director of residential life, has directed hard-hitting and thought-provoking plays in the past, so when she searched for a play, she wanted something light-hearted.

"I'm laughing every night at rehearsals," she said. "The closer we get to show date, the better things are working. People are figuring out their characters. When they look at the other actors, they have broken down in laughter."

The performance is a comedy set in Henry and Jean's house in London. The set was designed by student Nathan Amberg and constructed under the direction of Jarvis Jahner, technical director and properties manager.

Henry is played by Damon Fichter and Jean is played by Emily Gunderson.

"When my character finds a suitcase with a lot of money, he doesn't know how to handle it and eventually the lies catch up with him," Fichter said. "He's definitely a different character than I'm usually cast as."

He has enjoyed the opportunity to return once again to the DSU stage.

"We have a good mix of actors -- actually we have all returnees except one transfer student," he said. "We absolutely like working together -- we have a good time."

The cast includes Gwendolyn Coppa and Mac Russ as the couple's friends, Betty and Vic Johnson.

Jill, the taxi driver, is played by Madison Rhodes, Sgt. Davenport by Amberg and Sgt. Slater by Brianna Peterson and a passer-by by Tim Rosin.

The performance is the first of the 2013-14 theater and dance events on campus.

Ron Gingerich, chairman of the Department of Fine and Performing Arts, described "Funny Money" as a typical British farce.

"Which means there are lots of meticulous-timed jokes," he said. "Everything that can happen to the main character happens while he tries to survive."

Performances are in the Backstage Theater of May Hall at 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 10-12 and Oct. 16-19.

Tickets are $6 for adults, $5 for seniors ages 62 and older and students up to age 18. DSU students, faculty and staff are free. Seating is limited and reservations are recommended. Reserve tickets by calling 701-483-2154 or visit weekday afternoons in May Hall room 3.