Clever Little Lies – Review by Bonnie Goldberg

If your mother thinks she’s a detective, a cross between Sherlock Holmes and Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot, it is advised not to tell your father any secrets. He is doomed to blather them all, with only a small amount of persuasion. He does not even need to be tortured along the way.

The case in point is Alice, a happily married Karen Gagliardi, who runs a book shop and lives vicariously through the heroines in the novels she sells. She is disillusioned that current readers have deserted Austen and Dickens and prefer the salacious tales like “50 or 60 shades of Grey.” When her hubby Bill, a devoted Michael Gilbride, comes home from a tennis match with their son Billy and boasts about winning, Alice’s antenna immediately suspects there is a story he is concealing.

Come put your ear to the bedroom door of Joe DiPietro’s comedy “Clever Little Lies” being entertained at the Connecticut Cabaret Theatre weekends until Saturday, December 15.

Alice couldn’t be more right and before you can say “who wants a piece of cheesecake?” three times, she has invited son Billy, a new dad and an even newer adulterer Chris Pearson, and wife Jane, an excited and exhausted Tracey Brown, over to fix the problem.

Confessions are soon spilling from the most unlikely places, as baby Emily cries, and the four try to diagnose how to save not one marriage but two. The conversation is frankly sexual as each unburdens and confesses and tries to find the shiny happy side of life. Billy’s young fantasy woman, his personal, very personal, trainer at the gym figures significantly in the lust/love equation.

Kris McMurray directs this comic homage into what can happen to even the most stable of marriages when eyes stray.

For tickets ($34), call CT Cabaret Theatre, 31-33 Webster Square Road, Berlin at 860-829-1248 or online at Performances are Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m., with doors opening at 7:15 p.m. Remember to bring goodies to share at your table or plan to buy dessert and drink on site.

Marital challenges and the very real question of trust loom large as both couples chase happiness and try to make it their own.