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Fringe Show Reviews

Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

Trouble Walked In: An Improvised Noir Mystery

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An audience suggestion that its noir mystery be set around Christmas-tree decorating sent the Parking Lots Improv production on the trail of a killer Grinch.

The rumpled, hard-boiled character who looks like a detective is actually Jack, a small town’s chief Christmas-tree decorator who nevertheless solves the double-murder. ’Tis the season to off Donny, a lowly but eager-to-please town worker who erects the tree and loves to build snowmen. He is discovered dead with a carrot shoved in his eye. The suspect list for police chief Blake, is headed by himself, a noted Christmas-phobe, Richard, the owner of a failing gift-wrap store and the femme fatale Julie, a civic booster who has managed to entice Martha Stewart to come and make the town famous.

So the five ad-libbers thicken their plot with character walk-bys, during which details are announced and are built upon by those that follow. Their hour-long storytelling was pleasantly entertaining as they attempted to make the most of the holiday theme. Colin Ward as the humourless chief made a strong impression; so did Jesse Bergen as the trench-coated, tough-talking Jack, and Caitlin Curtis playing the shady woman in red.

— Kevin Prokosh

 

 

From the Fringe program:

Cast: Jesse Bergen, Luke Cecelon, Michael Ostry and Colin Ward

The show walked into the Fringe and right then I was smitten. It had your grizzled detective, your enigmatic femme fatale, your shadowy figure pulling all the strings. It had suspense, intrigue, danger: and it pulled all of this together with a quick wit and impeccable sense of timing that made it go off with the bang of a Colt 45.

From Parking Lots, the troupe that brought you Strangers And Fiction (****, Winnipeg Free Press)

Audience Classification: Parental Guidance

Length: 60 mins.

Tickets: $10

Door Discount: $8 for Matinees, Students, Seniors, Kids (12 & under)

Warnings:

It's improv, anything can happen!

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