By Mary Boyle
First, you take a familiar concept like a murder mystery. Then, to make it really interesting, you only have two actors: one to investigate the murder, and the other to play all of the suspects. Finally, you throw in a piano. Oh yeah - and both of the actors play the piano. Welcome to Murder for Two at The Rep!
Growing up in Milwaukee, Joe Kinosian was lucky to have a middle school teacher who took him, and other interested classmates, to the Milwaukee Repertory Theater on a regular basis. He couldn't have possibly known then that one day he would write a musical of his own and return to The Rep's stage to perform it. Now, this Milwaukee High School of the Arts alum has come home to co-star in the musical he wrote with Kellen Blair, in which a local author is murdered in a small town at his own surprise birthday party, and Officer Marcus Moscowicz (Matt Edmonds), who dreams of becoming a detective, is first on the scene. Can he figure out which one of The Suspects (Joe Kinosian) committed the murder before the real detective arrives?
The Rep's Stackner Cabaret is the perfect venue for this game-of-Clue-meets-dinner-theater production, where the actors get up close and personal with the audience, and the piano is the only accompaniment. Kinosian's rapid change between suspects, from a haughty ballerina who was having an affair with the victim to the three remaining choir boys from the twelve boy choir, is as impressive as it is funny, and Edmonds' seriousness is the perfect foil for Kinosian's plethora of crazy characters. Kinosian and Edmonds have great chemistry; they're both adorable, and they're both really good piano players. Laughter, romance, music, and mayhem - Murder for Two has it all!
Murder for Two runs through January 14, 2018, in The Rep's Stackner Cabaret, located at 108 E. Wells St. in Milwaukee. Tickets are avilable online at www.MilwaukeeRep.com, by phone at (414) 224-9490, or in person at the Ticket Office.
About Milwaukee Repertory Theater
Milwaukee Rep is a nationally-recognized company that presents compelling dramas, powerful classics, award-winning contemporary works and full-scale musicals housed in its three unique performance venues: the Quadracci Powerhouse, Stiemke Studio, and Stackner Cabaret. The Rep also produces an annual production of A Christmas Carol, featuring a World Premiere of a new adaptation in 2016 at the historic Pabst Theater. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Mark Clements and Managing Director Chad Bauman, Milwaukee Repertory Theater ignites positive change in the cultural, social, and economic vitality of its community by creating world-class theater experiences that entertain, provoke, and inspire meaningful dialogue among an audience representative of Milwaukee's rich diversity.