Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Solving A Murder Mystery During Dinner

A week and a half ago, my husband and I attended The Dinner Detective interactive murder mystery dinner show in Denver, Colorado, at the invitation of the Executive Producer, Stephen Wilder. Along with their Denver location, this company puts on its fun shows in Boulder, Colorado Springs, Fort Collins and Golden.

I sold copies of my Claire Hanover gift basket designer mystery books before and after the show and gave a short presentation before the show. In the presentation I defined the essential ingredients of a mystery (victim, suspects, means, motives, opportunity, alibis, clues, and red herrings), gave examples from my books, and suggested that the assembled guests look for those ingredients in the show they were about to participate in. The two photos below show me at my book-selling table before the event and giving my presentation. Note the taped body outline on the floor in the second photo!

As you can see behind my signing table, the evening began with a cocktail reception with appetizers, where guests were given lists of questions to ask other guests and told to suspect anyone wearing a nametag of being a killer. After my presentation in the dining room, the action began quickly with a bloody knifing victim stumbling into the room and falling conveniently into position on the taped body outline. Two detectives burst into the room, told us we were all suspects, and began questioning dinner guests. We received copies of clues they found to study at our tables, and more action, clues, and questioning occurred between each course. The detectives even improvised and referred back to my presentation to get us all thinking about how to solve the mystery.

I won't give away anything about the show, but I will tell you that my husband and I had a great time, with lots of laughs and analysis of the clues with our table mates. All the ingredients are there to solve the mystery, but they're hard to find! We managed to figure out "who dunnit" (most in the room didn't), but we didn't tease out the whole backstory of WHY the killer had done it before the denouement. The energetic actors did a wonderful job of involving all of us in the puzzle. I highly recommend you go to The Dinner Detective website and sign up to attend one of these productions. You'll be guaranteed to enjoy the evening!

1 comment:

Maureen said...

Wow, this sounds like a blast! And it gives you the opportunity to act out like the characters you create. I would love to do this, and was happy to see they put these on in Colorado Springs. Glad you had such a good time!