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Tag Archives: interactive dinner theatre

Post Rehearsal Post

I thought for a change I would do a Post Rehearsal Post. I know, I almost always have a Lame Post Friday, but for one reason, I have had a number of lame posts lately.  For another, I would like to begin plugging A Trivial Murder, the interactive dinner theatre we are putting on to benefit Herkimer County Historical Society.  Regular readers might remember that mystery was originally scheduled for last October but was postponed.  It has been rescheduled for March 23, and we are in rehearsal mode.

Full disclosure: there was actual wine in those glasses.

The mystery begins with a toast to Jack German, the previous host of Who Knows Herkimer History? He died under mysterious circumstances.  Somebody claims to know something about those circumstances. Will he or she meet with an untimely end?

 

One taking notes, one grief-stricken, one blase. Which is sincere?

 

The plot thickens!  Of course, I cannot tell you much about the actual plot, since I am hoping to entice local readers to attend the murder mystery.  I think it is going to be highly entertain, but perhaps I flatter myself.

Accusations fly!

A Trivial Murder is scheduled for Saturday, March 23, at Little Falls Travel Lodge, doors open at 5 p.m.  Tickets are $25 for dinner and the show.  For more information, contact Herkimer County Historical Society at 315-866-6413.

 

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I Print, I Type, It’s Wuss-out Wednesday!

I just can’t do it.   I’m sitting here in front of my laptop but typing into my tablet, one letter at a time with the stylus.   I can’t get the printer to work, and I think I made things worse by trying.

OK, back on the laptop (SUCH a relief to type with all ten fingers!).  I do not use the printer often enough, so I usually screw it up the first several tries.  Once I got it working, I realized I was almost out of paper. Yikes! I really think there is a partial ream hanging around somewhere, but I could not find it.  By virtue of searching for stuff I could print on the back of, I got everything I need printed.  A trip to Hummel’s Office Plus is in my near future (just to sneak in a shout-out to a local business).

All this by way of introduction to my usual Wuss-out Wednesday post.  Sorry, readers, but I’m afraid any number of lame posts will be forthcoming in the next month or so.  Then it will be all posts about Morning’s at Seven till May.  Still, even a lame post must be made, so here I sit, typing.

I spent most of my breaks at work trying to learn my lines for Morning’s at Seven.  Next I will have to worry about A Trivial Murder. Learning my lines, that is.  I’ve already written that one.  Other than that, all time must be spent on Murder by the Book, the one I will soon complete writing (as soon as I figure out who did it) (only your really organized writers know these things before they start, you know).

For anyone tuning in late,  A Trivial Murder is an interactive dinner theatre to be presented to benefit the Herkimer County Historical Society at The Travel Lodge in Little Falls on March 23 (Yikes, that’s soon!).  Murder by the Book, also an interactive dinner theatre, will be at the Morning Star Church in Ilion on April 6. I wrote both murder mysteries. Morning’s at Seven by Paul Osborn is a full-length regular play I am in at Ilion Little Theatre, to be presented the last weekend in April and first weekend in May.  On the third weekend in May, I will have a nice, quiet nervous breakdown.

 

 

 

Murderous Mental Meanderings.

I do not think it is any too early for this blog to become All Spring Into Murder All The Time.  I have six days to get my act together!  AAAAAAAAAHHHHHH!  OK, got that out of my system.  I have just time for a fast Monday Mental Meanderings post before rehearsal.  And I just thought of my headline. I bet I’ve used it before.  Well, these things happen.  We must make the best of them.

I just walked to the library to print out a sort of a program for Saturday night’s performance.  I say a sort of, because it only lists the character’s names with a short identifying phrase.  No actors’ names, not even the title.  After all, WE don’t know there is going to be a murder.  It is always a little disconcerting when an audience member says, “So there’s going to be a murder tonight”  or, worse yet, “We’ve never been to one of these before, what are we supposed to do?”  I don’t want to break character (as we actors say), but I also don’t want to leave people in the dark and/or rudely not answer their questions.  We find ways of dealing with these things.  That is part of the fun of live, interactive theatre.

Yes, I am tired and definitely feeling Monday.  Luckily, I am not driving to rehearsal but bumming a ride from my friend, Kim.  She is very tired too, but I hope to keep her awake enough to drive with chitchat.  I am rarely too tired to chat.

The murder mystery, once again, is Spring Into Murder, at Morning Star Methodist Church at 36 Second St., Ilion, NY, 5 p.m. Saturday, April 28.  $20 includes a delicious roast pork dinner (I know this, because they feed the actors and this will be the third one we’ve done there).  Advance tickets must be purchased by Thursday by calling 315-894-4093.  You can go to the Facebook Event for more information.

 

 

On with the Murder Mystery!

It looks as if the murder mystery dinner theatre I’ve been working on is going to happen.  That is good news, since I finally know who the murderer is.  I was working on it today instead of writing a blog post.  So instead of my usual Wuss-out Wednesday, I thought I would write a little about how I create these murder mysteries and call it a Mid-week Mental Meanderings.

I often start with the setting.  Obviously the setting is the dinner the play takes place at, but why are we all there?  Just a dinner party?  A hoity-toity fundraiser for some some charity beloved by rich folk?  Rich folk are often involved.  For one reason, it gives us actors a chance to wear our most fabulous outfits.  For another reason, it’s fun to make fun of rich people.  I often have a few false starts, but that’s OK.  No mental effort is ever wasted.

What finally got me started on this one was a glimmer of a character.  I wanted to include a woman who was somebody’s aunt and preferred to be called by her full name:  Awnt Theodora.  That is not a misspelling; she pronounces it “awnt.”  Naturally there must also be a character who insists on calling her Ant Teddy (again, that is not a misspelling).  This is the sort of thing that goes over much better in a play than in a book.  In the play, we’ll all just say “ant” or “awnt.”  I won’t have to explain anything.

I decided Theodora and her niece must be hoity-toity rich people of the Old Money variety.  The character who keep mispronouncing her name would be the niece’s fiance from the wrong side of the tracks, perhaps the son of a nouveau riche cattle rancher.  The reason for the dinner could be their engagement party.

And so it began.  Soon I had the number of characters I wanted and I began to add the details.  Who dislikes whom and why?  What secrets are people hiding?  This part is a lot of fun.  The rest of the process is pretty fun, too, only it’s not as easy.  I have to make choices and figure things out.  There is a lot of brain work, a lot of sitting and thinking, a lot of writing and crossing out, and quite a bit of blank-page staring.

I fear that to go through the whole process will be longer than, well longer than I feel like writing right now.  However, I think what I have so far will be an OK post for today.  I’ll write more about the Murder Mystery Process in future posts.  And I have made a discovery: writing about writing is even more fun than writing about not writing.