Cahoots – Play Synopsis
The setting is Ken and Jan’s apartment in a Manhattan high rise, where Jan and her friend Lois are setting up for a dinner party before attending a block association meeting on neighborhood crime—a subject that has become an obsession with Lois’ husband, Al. In fact, just to show how vulnerable they all are, Al, impersonating a masked burglar, breaks into the apartment via the terrace while the ladies cower in fear. For this, and other offenses, there is a growing antagonism between Al and Ken, and as dinner progresses so do the insults—culminating in disaster when Ken fatally clobbers Al with an oversized pepper mill. The problem then becomes what to do with the body, a dilemma which is compounded when a suspicious security guard arrives at the door and, being bent on blackmail, is also summarily dispatched. Before the evening is over our concerned citizens find themselves turned into expert, if accidental, criminals, as one of their victims is killed twice and several bodies are deftly disposed of from the terrace. Filled with witty dialogue and hilarious one-liners, the play manages to maintain a farcical unreality while demonstrating that things usually do get worse before they get better—and that the vaunted dangers of street crime can pale beside the outrageous mayhem that can ensue when four “good friends” get together for a quiet dinner.