Welcome to Post Mortem! This is where Master Mystery Productions looks back on the performance of its most recent show.
July 2016 saw the world premiere of the eighth Master Mystery Production, a hilarious romp through an English garden party gone awry during Queen Victoria’s reign titled The Last Garden Party. We teamed up with My Enchanted Cottage and Tea Room for the first time since 2015’s spring sensation, Goodbye Hollywood. Over tea and treats and under the soft lights of the Enchanted Garden, guests got to mingle with the ridiculous upper class, listen to their gossip, and solve the mystery of a skeleton in the croquet lawn.
We had–dare we say it?–an enchanted time during this entire process. Since auditions in mid-April, our hardworking, dedicated cast were committed to creating the best experience we could. They perfected their characters, honed their storylines, and embraced the show with good humor and lots of laughter and smiles. The energy was always positive, and we worked as a family to produce this show. Bravo, everyone. Bravo!
And how did audiences respond to the show?
They loved it. Adored it. The reviews–from guests and press alike–were rave.
Across four nights of shows, audiences got to mingle with suspects, ask questions, and watch as the “legendary” Walliscroft garden party went awry. When a skeleton turns up under their croquet set, the action really got going, especially when the body was possibly linked the story of a lost diamond. And after one of the suspects hints at a secret involving the dead man and one of the family members, the tension mounts as a game of croquet turns into something far more sinister. Guests traded theories and suspicions while watching a carefully constructed plot unravel before their eyes, proving the old detective fiction adage: “Nothing is what it seems.” The story is peppered with sharp, bright, witty quips and talented stagework that kept the energy upbeat and the audience laughing with our lampooned lords and ladies.
The Last Garden Party featured two endings, depending on how well the audience solved the mystery. If we had a majority of clever detectives who guessed correctly, they would receive “Good Prevails.” If not…there was always “Evil Triumphant.” Both endings were performed during the show’s initial run, proving just how sharp our audiences are. Great job, everyone!
Four winners walked away with our prize for being the best sleuth and with memories to last a lifetime. The cast and crew of The Last Garden Party thank each and every audience member who came to see us perform. And “[a]lways remember: Grace. Decorum. Poise. Even around corpses.”
At the end of the production, Monica Lorenz won the coveted Skeleton Key Award for her tireless promotional work for the show. Amazing work, Monica! Congratulations!
What’s our next show? Take one English village, a couple of mysterious murders, an empty grave, a handful of local legends of ghosts and ghouls, and four powerful families. Mix them all up in a Gothic stew and you have our next mystery adventure coming to Ridgecrest this September as a part of Ridge Writers’ fourth annual Weird Weekend…
Tickets for Pauper’s Grave go on sale September 1st at Red Rock Books! Hope to see you there!
–Master Mystery Productions