The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940

On the eve of WWII, a blizzard traps 10 people (and at least one murderer) in the labyrinthine countryside mansion of German Baroness Elsa von Grossenkneuten (Adrian Lee). The attendees aren’t as diverse as the gang from Clue; instead, they’re all theater denizens who portentously include the artistic team behind a play forced to close after the Stage Door Slasher sliced up three of its chorus girls. John Bishop’s quick and sly comedy thriller jokes more than it stabs, though the two actions dovetail nicely in an opening murder where the shadowy killer can’t find a place to stash a maid’s corpse (Lorianne Hill). Cleverly, besides a headstrong ingénue (understudy Jennifer Sindell), the suspects/victims are too involved in their cocktails and careers to organize a strong army against their assassin. However, the fast pacing, physical choreography and thick accents prove overwhelming for director Alex Sol and the ensemble, who have enough trouble keeping the secret doorways shut. Underneath the goofy hysteria, sound designer Ralph Rodrigues IV’s subtle whistling wind adds a chill. Fridays, Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 7 p.m. Starts: March 7. Continues through May 11, 2008


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