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Lab teacher adapts Chasing Vermeer for stage; best-selling author to see Middle Schoolers perform a staging of her novel

"There is no greater pleasure than a mystery," says seasoned novelist and former Lower School teacher Blue Balliet. "It's like throwing cold water on your brain."

Lab theatre director and drama teacher Audre Budrys-Nakas would agree. She adapted Balliet's best-selling mystery novel, Chasing Vermeer, into a Middle School stage production which premieres November 15 in the Markovitz Theatre at 7:30 p.m.

The book—now a mainstay in classrooms all around the world—is set in Hyde Park and features two Labbie-like protagonists/amatuer detectives who endeavor to recover seventeenth-century painter Johannes Vermeer's stolen painting, Lady Writing.

"I had a blast adding more characters to give voice to more students," Budrys-Nakas says of her cast, which is 27-students strong. "I even implemented thick Chicago accents and more Chicago landmarks into the production."

"Kids love hearing that there are things even adults don't know," says Balliet, who will be making a special trip to Chicago to attend opening night. "It sparks their curiosity when they think, 'maybe I could be the one who figures this out!'"

Tickets and performance times
All members of the Lab community are invited to attend this production
Chasing Vermeer, Markovitz Theatre

  • Friday, November 15, 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, November 16, 7:30 p.m.
  • Sunday, November 17, 2 p.m.

Tickets are $5, and will be available in Café Lab during Middle School lunch period as well as at the door 30 minutes before show time.

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