MvVO Art Launches AD ART SHOW
Shear Madness a Cut Above the Other Murder Mysteries
Jordan Ahnquist, Lynne Wintersteller, Jeremy Kushnier, Sheer Madness Kate Middleton

Jordan Ahnquist, Lynne Wintersteller, Jeremy Kushnier and Kate Middleton

It took 36 years for Shear Madness to reach New York. This audience-participation murder mystery with franchises all over the country will be a hit with the outer borrows and New Jersey, but New Yorkers may just be a little to hip for this. What they will find fascinating is that Mrs. Shubert played by Lynne Wintersteller (original cast of Closer Than Ever) and Eddie played by Footlose Jeremy Kushnier have roles in this non musical. Pity they don’t sing.

The show takes place at the Shear Madness salon run by owner Tony Whitcomb (Jordan Ahnquist), a gay obnoxious queen and his assistant, Barbara DeMarco (Kate Middleton), a hooker type with brains from Brooklyn, who’s having a secret affair with Eddie (Kushnier). Undercover cops Lieutenant Nick O’Brien (Patrick Noonan) and Mike Thomas (Adam Gerber) are posing as clients among real clients socialite Mrs. Shubert (Wintersteller) and Eddie. When the upstairs owner plays too much piano all hell breaks lose and the concert pianist becomes the victim of murder as you the audience tries to figure it out.

If you weren’t paying attention during the set up, then you might have a problem with the rest of the show. After the intermission in which you can drink, Lieutenant O’Brien questions the audience and it really does become the audience’s choice. This portion becomes total improve on the part of the cast as none of the performers knows which one — will be voted the murderer by the audience. How much you enjoy the show becomes how interactive your audience is. I lucked out as my audience was mostly from Brooklyn and New Jersey and they were totally into it. They were as hysterical as some of the actors on stage.

The 1963 play is by German author Paul Portner and was adapted by director Bruce Jordan, who is also the show’s original producer. As far as murder mysteries go this is one of the better written. I have a chance to perform in several in Philadelphia awhile back, so I know the genre well. The improvisation skill are excellent and the topical quips up to date. Watching the actors try to crack each other up is also enjoyable. What is not up to date is the set by Will Cotton. We are supposed to be in a unisex hairdressing salon, at 50th and Ninth Avenue. Yet the prices are nowhere near what they would be. I know because there is a hair salon on 51st and 9th and I know there prices. This is a salon maybe 20 years stuck in time, yet we have jokes that put the time frame in the present.

Like Girl’s Night Out or Tony and Tina’s Wedding, there is an audience for this who will laugh out loud.

Shear Madness: New World Stages, 340 West 50th.


Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email:

More in Entertainment

Check Out The Feast Of San Gennaro

Suzanna BowlingSeptember 20, 2021

The Glorious Corner

G. H. HARDINGSeptember 20, 2021

Ask Bob Blume – Column #77– Starting an Acting Career Later in Life with guest Nicole Kafka

Suzanna BowlingSeptember 20, 2021

Go Inside Smokey Joe’s Cafe at the John W Engeman Theater Northport

Genevieve Rafter KeddySeptember 19, 2021

The Last Boy Returns So History is Not Forgotten

Suzanna BowlingSeptember 19, 2021

Theatre News: Little Shop of Horrors, Take Me Out, Bedlam, A Turtle on a Fence Post and Fairycakes

Suzanna BowlingSeptember 19, 2021

New Musical Audio Drama by Byzantine Choral Project Icons/Idols: Irene

Suzanna BowlingSeptember 19, 2021

Theatre News: The Tony Awards, Broadway Flea Market, American Utopia, Paradise Square and Curtain Up!

Suzanna BowlingSeptember 18, 2021

Publicist Judy Jacksina Mourns As Her Mother Passes On

Suzanna BowlingSeptember 18, 2021