Park Square Announces New Interactive Online Mystery
As theatres in Minnesota and around the country face an ongoing "intermission," Park Square Theatre continues to create projects that keep audiences and artists connected.
The latest is RIDDLE PUZZLE PLOT, an online interactive mystery written by acclaimed playwright Jeffrey Hatcher (SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE SUICIDE CLUB; SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE ICE PALACE MURDERS), and directed by Warren Bowles (A RAISIN IN THE SUN; MY CHILDREN, MY AFRICA).
The theatre would have been producing Hatcher's play HOLMES AND WATSON on stage this summer, but rather than adapt an existing play that relies on theatre tricks for a distanced production, this show is written expressly for the video chat medium. The story begins with an all-too-familiar premise: when a pandemic puts the kibosh on their annual summer scavenger hunt (as well as their acting gigs) a close-knit band of thespians take their game online. But that is where the familiar ends. When someone winds up dead, the actors - and the audience - have to rush find to the killer before the next life gets "disconnected." Full of secrets, clues and twisting plotlines the play will be a thrill for mystery lovers and theatre fans alike.
In a nod to classic mystery novels which were often serialized in magazines or newspapers, RIDDLE PUZZLE PLOT will be revealed in four episodes released weekly from July 24 -August 14. Audiences have the choice of streaming the episodes on their own schedule, or zooming in on Friday or Saturday nights for live introductions and post-play discussions (including hints to whodunit) with the cast and playwright, the episodes themselves being pre-recorded. One ticket will invite the ticketholder to all four episodes.
"Taking the summer mystery online in just a few weeks is a fun challenge," notes Park Square's executive director Michael-jon Pease. "We couldn't have better partners than Jeffrey and Warren. Our core audience and new patrons around the country have been so engaged with our online productions - they keep pushing us to serve the mission in every way possible as we all endure the current health crisis."
In May, Park Square released a Zoom-created production of THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK - acclaimed by the Wall Street Journal - as well as a virtual festival of scenes from plays that will eventually be on stage. A monthly online residency with THE MYSTERIOUS OLD RADIO LISTENING SOCIETY easily transitioned from on stage to online.
The cast for RIDDLE PUZZLE PLOT includes local theatrical favorites: Aimee K. Bryant (A RAISIN IN THE SUN, NINA SIMONE: FOUR WOMEN); Alessandra Bongiardina (ROMEO AND JULIET), Pearce Bunting* (HOLMES AND WATSON); Shanan Custer (2 Sugars, Room for Cream, SOMETIMES THERE'S WINE); Rudolfo Nieto; and E.J. Subkoviak* (THE RED BOX, MIGHT AS WELL BE DEAD, OF MICE AND MEN).
The production team includes Aaron Fiskradatz (Zoom Technician) and Lizzie Strief (Stage Manager) *member, Actors' Equity Association
Tickets are on sale at the www.parksquaretheatre.org.