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Photograph: Andrew CioffiFuddy Meers at Ka-Tet Theatre Company

Fuddy Meers at Ka-Tet Theatre Company | Theater review

Kathryn Bartholomew gives a memorable performance in David Lindsay-Abaire’s comedy about an amnesiac woman.

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Before writing emotional dramas such as the Pulitzer-winning Rabbit Hole, David Lindsay-Abaire penned this 1999 comedy about an amnesiac woman abducted by a trio of quirky criminals. Director James Whittington’s sketch-comedy background lends itself to the script, and his cast takes on its broadly drawn characters with appropriately exaggerated energy.

Beneath the madcap humor lies a serious message about domestic violence. Lindsay-Abaire doesn’t fully succeed in balancing those disparate elements, but through her nuanced, hilarious portrayal of Claire, Kathryn Bartholomew effortlessly navigates the script’s tonal shifts. As pieces of Claire’s memory come back to her, Bartholomew makes each new recollection a heartbreaking discovery, revealing glimpses of the traumatic past her mind desperately tries to erase.

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