Bandits, bullets and bliss at Kenosee Gulch

Kenosee Lake Drama Club presented their musical Rogue of the Railway, a play by Tim Kelly, Arne Christiansen and Ole Kittleson. The play was directed by Brenda Daku and Robyn Roy-Hampton. It takes place back in a little prairie town called Kenosee Gulch with the main scene taking place at “The Moose Mountain Melody Hotel”. The stage is also set up with one side leading to Main Street in Kenosee Gulch and the other side leads to the Dining Room and guest rooms of the hotel.

Farmers Jake (Jeanette Knox) and Matt (Jim Reed) enter up the middle aisle coming to town selling turkeys.

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Moose Mountain Melody (Jada Wright), an innocent young lady owns the hotel in town where Sarah the Maid (Teresa Field) is employed. Melody’s boyfriend, Sheriff Billy Bold (Kent Sauter) keeps law and order in the town. The local farm men (Jake – Jeanette and Matt – Jim) often stop in at Melody’s hotel for a fine meal at a reasonable price and folks like Mrs. Blackman (Gerard Hengen) travel to Kenosee Gulch on the train that stops at the station twice a day.

The Temperance ladies (Agnes – Robyn Roy-Hampton, Ethel – Cathy Sauter, Kim Crawford, Laurie Haaland and Joan McDonald) protest throughout town against the evils of alcohol and wanting equal rights for women.

The word goes out in town that there’s a medicine show coming to Kenosee Gulch. There will also be a new villain showing up in town, a blackhearted scoundrel, Professor Silas Scavenger (Ben Dubois), who, with his side kick, a Mexican named Jose Manuel Ricardo Santiago Rodrigues Diego (Ron Bennett) sells a “cure all” tonic. They along with Theodora (Evelyn Cullum) lead a group of Medicine Show performers (Fifi – Emily Henwood and Laurette – Cynthia Mellom). Of course our fairest cornflower, Melody, catches Mr. Scavenger’s eye, and his villainess ways are shown. He doesn’t want to pedal snake oil all his life and when he meets the daughter of Honest John Muttonchops.... Hmmm he comes up with a plan...if he was to marry her he wouldn’t have to work again!

The townsfolk have nothing to fear of the villains, for the Pinkerton man of the Rufus Clang (Gerard Hengen) is in the vicinity and happens to stop in at the right time.

Of course every melodrama needs its villains and Kenosee Gulch has its fair share. Townspeople are alerted about the gang coming to the area, the local bandit Wild Prairie Rose (Ainsley Sauter) who, along with her Prairie Bandit Gang, Dusty (Brenda Daku) and Rusty (Robyn Roy-Hampton), like to terrorize the good citizens.

As night falls on Kenosee Gulch Prairie Rose proposes a plan to Sheriff Billy that they partner up to rob a bank. Rumor has it that Sheriff Billy is really a felon, they say he robbed a bank in another city. “You can’t trust the Sheriff!”

The audience was treated to a brief intermission.

Wild Prairie Rose plans to rob the Midnight Express. The Sheriff pretended to be in on the robbery to catch the girls. He deputizes the farmers to help out.

Sheriff Billy escapes and takes everyone on a wild goose chase through the audience with the farmers chasing him down.

Back at the hotel Silas Scavenger asks Melody to marry him but it’s Sarah the maid who would like to marry Silas.

Melody casts Mr. Scavenger aside and now he looks for revenge.

Meanwhile the outlaws hide out but the Sheriff saves the day and his Deputy catches the Wild Prairie Rose.

Later in the second act the scene changes to the tracks just outside of town.

Silas Scavenger and his side kick Jose get revenge on Melody.

And he threw her down on the railway tracks!

And he tied her up to the railway tracks!

And then the sound of the train whistle was getting louder and louder and the train was getting closer and closer.

And then along came Billy to save the day.

The scene changed back to the hotel where after the medicine show the group is supposed to pack up but the show girls want to stay in Kenosee Gulch and Jose is through helping Silas Scavenger.

Silas wants to steal the hotel’s cash box and make a run for it but the Sheriff nabs him, they have a slow-motion knock down and shoot out and Sheriff Billy puts Silas in jail.

In the end the Wild Prairie Rose gives up her life of crime.

What made it even more of a great performance was that all throughout the play there were references made to local businesses and their staff of Kenosee and surrounding communities.

What a great performance! The cast received many hoots and laughs from the crowd all throughout the show ending with a standing ovation.

A special presentation was made to their directors Brenda Daku and Robyn Roy-Hampton.

© Copyright Carlyle Observer

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