We’ve all been there. That boozy party where someone tells a great story. The crowd is enraptured, laughs at all the right spots, and you’re with them, too- til you realize you just heard the slightly-altered plot of last week’s made-for-tv movie, told as gospel truth. Darn it, and you thought he was cute, too! Still, it’s a good story… funny, too… should you tell anyone he’s a liar?
Such is the likeable conceit of Perfect Liars Club, a riff on the Truth or Dare game we all played in middle school. The premise is simple: four storytellers spin us an anecdote; all are funny, each is different, some are downright implausible- but only three of them are telling the truth. Just like in the game, it’s up to the audience to figure out who’s telling a tall tale and who’s the best liar in the room.
Emcee Cara Foran kept up a snappy pace, giving us the opening format and throwing in some clever lines of her own. Opening night our storytellers were a nicely mixed batch: Melissa Murphy told a tale of revenge in an upscale Georgetown hair salon; Keith Mellnick led us to Russia and a tale of inept robbery of four dollars; Meredith Whipple let us in on John Brown’s Day and her anticipatory date with a dreamy high school actor, and John Tong let us in on the secret of why his wife married him, despite the fact that they spent three days together in a disaster-ridden drive from the West Coast to the East- with a cat in the car. Of course there was a cat in the car.
Perfect Liars Club
1 hour, 15 minutes
Details and tickets
Of the four, Keith Mellnick gave the most bada-boom professional rendition. His journey to Russia, where as a Peace Corps volunteer he was, as he put it, ‘politely mugged’ of four dollars’ worth of local currency by a group of teenage guards, had the best delivery by far: very few of us voted for him to be the liar. Few of us, though, snagged actual liar Meredith Whipple, for who of us hasn’t had a date abruptly end with someone dressed for a reenactment– in Confederate gray?
But don’t worry about the giveaways above- I haven’t spoiled your fun. Each performance features different storytellers– and a different liar each evening.
It’s a lighthearted evening- especially great fun was had at the end, where audience members had the chance to grill the performers, and cast our vote for who was lying. (We pretty much were fooled, it should be noted). Slight mention should be made, though, that the venue (the basement of the Martin Luther King Library) is decidedly not air conditioned. Bring a hand fan, a la church revival style, unless you like to end your evening being slightly sticky.
Perfect Liars Club . Directed by Cara Foran and Pierce McManus . Emcee: Cara Foran . Storytellers (changes each show): Meredith Whipple, Melissa Murphy, Keith Mellnick, John Tong . Reviewed by Jill Kyle-Keith.