June 19, 2013
Written by Joanne Greco Rochman
Thursday, 15 November 2012 12:01
It’s not surprising that someone’s going to get killed when a wealthy upscale jewelry designer takes a handsome young waiter to bed with her, not knowing that he is videotaping the whole sexual encounter. Yes, there’s a security guard, but he’s a gambler with a lot of debts as well as a criminal record.
Although there are only three characters in David Foley’s “Deadly Murder,” there are so many twists and turns in this play that you’ll need to pay close attention.
Directed by Tom Holehan, and featuring a superb cast, it is amazing how complicated this ridiculously named mystery gets. Even the author said that he had originally named it “If/Then.” Apparently, some creative director called the play “Deadly Murder” and the title stayed with the play, even though it is rather nonsensical. Despite the weird title, Stratford’s Square One Theatre Company does an excellent job of making the complicated scenes believable.
Peggy Nelson is at her sophisticated and snobbish best as she performs the role of Camille, a “money will buy you anything” kind of woman with a sharp mind and tongue. She is just the kind of people-user that classifies her as the quintessential bitch, but a very attractive one at that. Nelson in a black negligee and silk robe looks every bit the part of a sexy successful female who evokes a hard edged confidence.
Josh Wills as Billy arrives on stage with nothing more than a towel tied at his waist. At first he looks playful and charming, but that quickly changes when Camille tries to get rid of him. He just won’t leave her gorgeous apartment. He wants to be rich like her and will do anything to accomplish that goal.
An amazing talent, Wills manages to transform himself from playboy to a living terror. One thing is for sure; he’s not just a pretty face. Al Kulscar plays the security guard in charge of protecting Camille. Kulscar never fails to deliver an outstanding performance and does so here with his two-timing allegiance.
Greg Fairbend’s scenery is spot on. If ever an apartment looked high end, SoHo artistic with lots of class, it is this set with the gorgeous white couch with red and black accents. The book shelves feature gorgeous collectible items. Bringing out the best of this set is Cliff Fava’s lighting. When the stage turns red, you know that “bloody murder” is a knife stab or gunshot away. Someone does get killed in this bloody thriller, but you’ll have to attend the play, which runs through Nov. 17 to find who. You will definitely be surprised.
While mystery-lovers and thrill-seekers will enjoy this production, the ending is so full of information necessary to tie up all the many loose ends, that it gets pretty convoluted. However, pay attention and it all adds up. Performances are at the Stratford Theatre, 2422 Main Street; box office: 203-375-8778.
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