The Outsider
Review by Melanie Nelson

Are you ready to laugh until you cry? Check out "The Outsider" by Paul Slade Smith at the Hudson Hudson House Grand Hotel now through October 26.

Thrust into the governor’s seat unexpectedly, we meet Ned Newley, played by St. Croix Off Broadway Dinner Theatre veteran Jason Decheine, moments after the world’s most unconfident governor gives the world’s worst TV interview.. His chief of staff, played by Jeff Yates, spends the beginning of the show finding staff to help Ned off a ledge and into his new role. One of those hires comes from a temp agency, the memorable Louise Peakes is played by area veteran actor Fredrice E. Nord. Other key staff include a pollster played by Laura Hoover, a political consultant played by Eric Douglas, a bribed media reporter played by Fjaere Nussbaum, and her sidekick cameraman Andrew Scipioni. They all enter the governor’s office to train him to win the polls, yet as is common in comedy, good intentions turn into chaos and mistaken identify.

There are a million words packed into this two-hour show, yet the silent physical comedy that plays out on stage brings down the house. There are moments flawlessly directed by Jim Zimmerman and expertly played out by Jason and Fredrice that will leave you wanting for nothing more. The script is smart and the characters are superbly cast, each actor embodying their role with genuineness. Not to give anything away, but a scene just before intermission is one of the funniest I’ve seen played out in a very long time. This scene alone is worth the price of admission.

Maybe most important about this political comedy is that it is anything but polarizing. The ideas generated about politicians and those who work for them leave you with confidence in a democratic America.

The meal? It is dinner theatre after all... from the opening bit of a warm sourdough bun to the final bites of strawberry cheesecake, my meal was perfect. I selected the steak, my partner had the salmon, and we both cleaned our plates.

More info at or call the Box Office at 715.386.2394 ext. 332.

St. Croix Off Broadway Dinner Theatre

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