Lots of Laughs at Elmwood Playhouse, Nyack with “Black Comedy” and “The Real Inspector Hound”

BY GEORGE J. DACRE

Inspector Hound:  Matt Masiello, James Lugo, Christina Orfanoudakis, & Meg Sewell Photo credit: Jennie Marino
Inspector Hound: Matt Masiello, James Lugo, Christina Orfanoudakis, & Meg Sewell
Photo credit: Jennie Marino

Both shows appearing now at Elmwood Playhouse in Nyack are zany and the audience rocked all night in response to the actors’ antics. Set in an artist’s apartment in London, summer of 1965, “Black Comedy” is all about lights and what happenswhen a fuse blows. The show opens with a dark stage and actors moving around with no problem.

Then the stage lights come on, but the cast cannot see a thing and they stumble all over the place. When they use a candle or a flashlight, again the stage goes dark. Somehow a story gets involved with actors Dale O’Dell, Jenna Dunlay, Debbie Buchsbaum, Earl Ziff, Mark Rinis, Marty Andreas, Emily Gardner and Reynard Bauer peforming in a comedy of errors. Written by Peter Shaffer, directed by Melinda Pinto and produced by Penny Buccafuri, “Black Comedy” is presented competently and athletically by the actors.

“The Real Inspector Hound” will keep you guessing and laughing all the way from beginning to end. With the legs of a body clearly sticking out from under a couch, the cast blithely goes through this production and people get killed randomly as they look for the real “Inspector Hound” to solve the mystery. Actors Birdboot (James Lugo) and Moon (Matt Masiello) watch from a theater as Simon Gascoune (Stavros Adamides) gets shot. Ralph Bowers shows up as Inspector Hound, but rather incompetent.

Mrs. Drudge (Meg Sewell), the maid to Lady Cynthia Muldoon (Elaine D’Addezio) provides comic relief as she tries to help solve the case or cases. Major Magnus Muldoon (Andrew Deutsch, in a wheelchair} observes it all. Simon and Lady Muldoon have a thing going on. And so forth. The theatre observers become Simon and Inspector Hound (maybe).

There are two more killings and two more Inspector Hounds. And guess who turns out to be the REAL Inspector Hound.

I won’t spoil it for you, so go see it and Black Comedy at Elmwood Playhouse in Nyack. Between the two shows I rate them three out of four Stars. Tickets and information at elmwoodplayhouse.com or 845-353-1313.