Arts & Entertainment

CBC takes audience on twisty ride with 'Private Eyes'

There are plays with twists and turns, and then there's playwright Steven Dietz's Private Eyes, which is a cleverly written stage show with a plot that, simply put, is a play within a play within a play.

"(Dietz) is one of my favorite playwrights," said Ginny Quinley, the play's director. "In this play he makes so many cogent, thought-provoking observations about relationships, while managing to develop a plot and entertain, that it's amazing!"

Private Eyes opens with an audition scene where a woman, played by Katrina Carlson, is trying out for the part of a waitress but the Screen Actor's Guild representative overseeing the auditions, and played by Tri-City actor Bryan McClothlin, isn't buying her portrayal. He asks if she's ever waited tables before and the woman denies it, though she really is a waitress.

The woman's deception is soon discovered when the SAG member has lunch at the restaurant where she works. He asks why she lied to him and the waitress bluntly tells the man that at the theater he had the power. However, here at the restaurant he has none because she has the power now.

"I love how this play makes you think about ideas that make sense, but we've probably never thought much about," Quinley said.

The audience won't know until the very end what was reality and what was a rehearsed part of a play.

"This play is fun from a number of levels," Quinley said. "The mystery of what's really going on; the hearing and reflecting on truths of life; the interweaving of the characters and their relationships; and some of the comedy of one of the characters getting to do whatever he wants -- the way most of us have fantasized from time to time."

Other key actors appearing i include Korry Watkins, Alisha Reed and Rob Chisholm.

Private Eyes has an R-rating because of strong language and adult situations.