THEATER REVIEW: “Clever Little Lies” @ the Ghent Playhouse [Berkshire on Stage]

February 1st, 2018, 3:00 pm by Sara

Review by Gail M. Burns

Joe DiPietro has something to say about being married for the long haul – it’s a slog. This is neither news nor entertainment, it is simply a rather dreary fact of life. And it is a crummy basis for a comedy, which is what Clever Little Lies is supposed to be. And when you start with a crummy play no amount of money, talent, or hard work is going to make it right.

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The 2015 New York production of this play starred Marlo Thomas, so it was billed as a nostalgic, 1960s sit-com style comedy and compared to early Neil Simon. Nothing could be further from the reality. In fact, 1960s sit-coms had more sympathetic and fully formed characters, and sit-com writers knew exactly how to structure a tight 25 minutes of laughs and pathos. Here DiPietro takes what should be a two-hour, two-act drama, and squeezes it into 90 intermissionless minutes, which does neither plot nor character development any favors.

All of this is in explanation of why Cathy Lee-Visscher’s production of Clever Little Lies at the Ghent Playhouse is so unsatisfying, despite some good performances and a handsome set.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.