The physical antics of Miss Skillon, played by actress Joy Williams 

Footlights

Much of the humor in the Mill's latest farce results from slapstick-flavored physical antics centered on the character of Miss Skillon, played by actress Joy Williams. The gags start early: Miss Skillon is knocked out cold by the end of the first scene. "I come in and find the character of Mrs. Toop looking like she's engaged in a brawl with her husband," the actress explains. "She's supposed to hit him, but I'm the one who gets hit."

The other characters try to revive her — inexplicably using alcohol — and Miss Skillon awakens in the following scene. "When I come to, I'm pretty looped," Williams says. "There's a lot of fainting, and they drop me on the floor because there are other things that are more important than taking care of the fainted, drunk woman. Each time, I end up in the closet." The closet? "I'm just kind of in the way, and they need to hide me, so they keep me in the closet," she says. And that's not all. "Let's see," Williams muses. "I get hit twice and knocked out of that way, and I faint three or four times. And I get dropped twice. … and I kind of slide down a banister. It's very physical."

"I've gotten a couple of bruises," Williams concedes, "But for the most part, I control it. I never really honestly get hit. … Vicki (McLeod) swats at me, and I move my head and clap my own hand. … The rest of the time, it's just making my body really loose and knowing which direction I'm going to fall in. Like Tom says, 'You do it by the numbers, and then throw the numbers away.'"

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