Fringe review: Murder In The Cottonwoods

MURDER IN THE COTTONWOODS by Colin Sharpe (CujoLemieux). Annex Theatre. July 9 at 12:30 pm, July 10 at 2:45 pm,.


MURDER IN THE COTTONWOODS by Colin Sharpe (CujoLemieux). Annex Theatre. July 9 at 12:30 pm, July 10 at 2:45 pm, July 12 at 5:45 pm, July 13 at 1:45 pm, July 14 at 7:30 pm, July 15 at 11:30 pm. See listing. Rating: NNNN

The main question in Colin Sharpes comic murder mystery is not who murdered prom queen Tammy Somers. The question is why everyone in Tammys small hometown wants to pretend that the murder never happened.

The obvious suspect is Pearl (Alexandra Hurley), whom we first meet covered in blood. She would like to confess, but Debbie, her protective mother (Christy Bruce), wont allow it. Instead. Debbie advises Pearl to win over Tammys boyfriend Ricky (Guy Bradford). After all, Rickys friends have encouraged him to get a new girlfriend and the towns pretzel-eating sheriff (Sharpe) has stopped investigating the case. So Debbies plan for Pearl works out just fine at least at first.

Heavily influenced by David Lynchs 1990s series Twin Peaks, Sharpe as writer and director masterfully creates an atmosphere that is both comic and unsettling. But like Lynch he chooses a surreal conclusion to the show so full of twists and surprises that we cant tell which revelations are true and which false.

We also need to know if the towns indifference to Tammys murder stems from something deeper than its motto Do Not Disturb.

Sharpes hourlong play is crammed with so many intriguing ideas and characters that he really should expand the piece to explore them more fully. Meanwhile, enjoy this bizarre mystery in its present form along with its gallery of fine performances.

Brand Voices

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

NOW Magazine