There’s a constant stream of twists and turns in Central Alberta Theatre’s latest dinner theatre production Deadly Murder, which runs at the North Hill Quality Inn through to Feb. 7th.
Nominated for a 2008 Edgar Award, Deadly Murder, penned by David Foley, follows a woman by the name of Camille Dargus – a New York jewellery designer with a roster of high-end clients, a loft apartment in Soho and a penchant for younger guys.
One night, at a function, she picks up Billy, one of the waiters, and brings him home. But there’s more to Billy than meets the eye, and before long she’s summoned her security guard, Ted, to get him out of her apartment. Nicole Orr plays the part of Camille; Jason Steele is playing Billy and Perry Mills stars as Ted.
And so begins a ‘game of cat-and-mouse involving a mysterious jewel, reversals, crosses and double-crosses, murder and a journey into the past that Camille has tried to leave behind.’
First off, it’s vital to point out what a tremendous cast this really is. Orr is perfect as Camille, nailing every single emotion this woman experiences through this deeply harrowing experience. Orr, who has appeared in several CAT shows over the years, continues to prove what a gifted actor she really is, adept at snappy comedy as well as briskly-paced suspense and drama.
Mills is also excellent as Ted – a character who has a whole lot more going on in his world than what might first be suspected. Ted is a kind of ‘everyman’ – or so we think. Mills brings it all together with a consistent and convincing performance.
Finally, hats off to Steele in his portrayal as Billy. Steele stepped in virtually at the last minute for the part when the previously cast actor backed out. He is terrific – it’s really hard to believe he came onboard late in the process, as he is so well-suited to the part. Billy is a complex character – and as the play unfolds his traits really begin to surface. Again, Steele goes above and beyond in capturing what this character is all about.
Kudos to director Sherry Ainscough as well, as it’s clear she has deftly guided her cast through the process with a precision and dedication that shines through at every turn.
The story begins on a steady note, but the tension and plot quickly escalate as the secrets come spilling out. Ainscough’s vision for the production is spot-on – there really isn’t a weak spot to be found.
Originally titled If/Then, Ainscough has noted that the sense of not really being able to predict what’s coming is at the heart of the show and really keeps things interesting.
Ainscough also said part of what also contributes to the play’s appeal is the style of playwright David Foley. The script has indeed been carefully crafted – it’s smart and stylish and clips along at a brilliant and even, at times, breathless pace.
For ticket information, check out www.blackknightinn.ca.