True to its title, Fyodor Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment explores the roots and effects of murder, though the novel centers on the crime's strain on the conscience, not the legal system. The haughty and unhinged Raskolnikov murders an elderly pawnbroker and her sister, only to suffer psychological effects in the sprawling work, but playwrights Marilyn Campbell and Curt Columbus have trimmed the text down to a 90-minute, three-actor play. What remains is a terse, suspenseful performance that cuts to the heart of Dostoevsky's thoughts on transgression and redemption. Stuart Carden directs this adaptation, which is being staged in the Emerson Studio Theatre of the Loretto-Hilton Center for the Performing Arts (130 Edgar Road; 314-968-4925 or www.repstl.org). Crime and Punishment plays Tuesday through Sunday (March 10 to 28) and tickets are $35 to $54.
Tuesdays-Saturdays. Starts: March 10. Continues through March 28, 2010