Theater review by Gail M. Burns
How do you write a review of a comedy/thriller with a plot so convoluted and hilarious that even listing the names of the actors would give away important plot points? A show where, at the curtain call, the cast swears the audience to complete secrecy? Well, you start by saying that this production of Rupert Holmes’ Accomplice at Shakespeare & Company, directed by Stephen Rothman, is smart and funny and sexy and well worth seeing. The cast, who I may not name, is very good. A slightly stumbling performance by an old favorite is balanced out by a nice turn from a newcomer. Patrick Brennan has designed a nifty set which, abetted by James W. Bilnoski’s lighting and Ian Sturges Milliken’s sound design and score, is almost as full of surprises as the script
Accomplice was the third theatrical outing for the fearsomely prolific and multi-talented Holmes, who had already won multiple awards for his first show, Drood (1985, formerly titled The Mystery of Edwin Drood). Holmes took home is his second Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America for this 1990 opus, which holds a special place in Rothman’s heart (he has directed it twice before). Rothman saw a good fit between this script and some of Shakespeare & Company’s core actors, and he was right. I am not telling tales out of school when I say that it gives Elizabeth Aspenlieder another star turn as the Company’s leading comedienne.