Perfect Crime Will Reopen Off-Broadway


The production is the first in New York City that utilizes live actors to receive reopening approval by Actors’ Equity.

Perfect Crime, the longest-running play in New York City history, will resume performances April 17 prior to an official reopening April 18, marking the show’s 34th anniversary.

The production, which plays The Anne Bernstein Theatre in The Theater Center, now features a newly updated ventilation system and is the first New York City production using live actors to receive reopening approval from Actors’ Equity.

Catherine Russell, who has performed in the show since its first preview in 1987, co-stars with Patrick Ryan Sullivan, David Butler, and Charles Geyer, plus Patrick Robustelli, who appears in a video cameo. Jeffrey Hyatt direcs the production, written by the late Warren Manzi and produced by Armand Michael Hyatt.

The technical team includes Russell’s “long-underutilized” understudy, assistant stage manager Andrea Leigh, and production stage manager Louis Crocco.

READ: Actors’ Equity Issues New Protocols for ‘Fully Vaccinated’ Productions

Russell has been an active proponent of reopening Off-Broadway theatres and other small venues, going so far as to spearhead a lawsuit against New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio.

The show will begin its 35th year of performances with numerous safety upgrades, precautions, and policies in place:

  • Everyone who works in the building (actors, stage managers, dressers, technicians, treasurers, house managers, and ushers) will be fully vaccinated.
  • Everyone entering The Theater Center must wear masks and follow social distancing protocols. The Theater Center has worked with Ticketmaster to create contactless ticketing service as well as contact tracing.
  • 10 Atmosair Matterhorn 1002 “Air Scrubbers,” a bi-polar ionization system that will “catch and kill” any contaminants in the air throughout the entire complex.
  • Sensedge Air Quality monitors to each floor, so patrons can check the quality of the air throughout the space when they first enter the lobby.
  • Upgraded HVAC filters to utilize MERV13 filters.
  • The Theater Center’s staff are following all the CDC and NY DOH guidelines for hourly and daily deep disinfection cleaning.
  • COVID Compliance Officers to ensure safety protocols are in place and adhered to at all times.
  • All audience members will be seated in “pods” with the people they came with. Each pod is socially distanced from the next. Building capacity limits will be posted in plain sight and followed accordingly to state and local guidelines.


How Perfect Crime Has Updated Itself for the Times

How Perfect Crime Has Updated Itself for the Times

The long-running Off-Broadway murder mystery has seen rotary phones out and inflation in over three decades. Here’s how it stays current.



Original showbill and 30th anniversary program

Marc J. Franklin


Perfect Crime at the Theatre Center

Marc J. Franklin


Fireplace from Musical Comedy Murders of 1940

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Bookcase from the Musical Comedy Murders of 1940

Marc J. Franklin


Tape recorder

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TV set

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Marc J. Franklin



Marc J. Franklin


Baseball bat

Marc J. Franklin


CD player

Marc J. Franklin

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