By Diana SaengerThe entertainment industry continues to reinvent itself with unique and surprising productions. San Diego patrons of the many wonderful theater companies in our town know this first hand.
A few months ago, the La Playhouse announced its expanded Without Walls (WoW) series, and “Accomplice: San Diego” by Tom Salamon writer, director and co-creator (with Betsy Salamon-Sufott), is the fourth WoW. This one plays out in Little Italy, March 19-April 21.
Those purchasing tickets will find themselves in a game-like experience that takes them on a mysterious journey through particular spots in Little Italy. It all begins with a phone call disclosing a secret meeting location, as they become partners with a series of shady characters (actors) to investigate a criminal plot.
“All of our shows are independent of each other and create different experiences,” Salamon said. “They all have the same conceit in which the audience is dropped in the middle of a crime story and must go from place to place where there are different actors, paths, stories, clues and characters.”
Salamon is getting raves for the productions he’s done in New York City, London and Hollywood. As he explains, “You may be led to a particular place and given a clue, like, ‘Find a guy with a red sweatshirt,’ but maybe there are three guys with a red sweatshirt, so you have to determine which guy to speak to and then a scene plays out in that place, and you’re onto the next place.”
The production team remains involved during the entire show, constantly resetting props, as there can be four to six groups in route, and some groups may be faster than others. The goal is not to win or compete, but to enjoy the thrill of the game.
“Everyone finishes at the end,” Salamon said. “It’s about going and being in the middle of a caper where you’re essential to the action.”
This is an age 21-plus experience. A few drinks and light bites are included. Each performance accommodates 10 audience members. It includes a mile of walking with minimal stairs and un-paved pathways, so patrons are advised to wear comfortable shoes and dress appropriately for the outdoors.
If you go
What: ‘Accomplice: San Diego,’ La Jolla Playhouse WoW interactive production
When: A phone call will let you know what time to show up, March 19-April 21
Where: San Diego’s Little Italy neighborhood. Arrive early to park.
Box Office: (858) 550-1010