This Weekend at Prime Stage:
Study the Clues of “A Most Deadly Poison”

May 6th, 2022

A selection of drinks stands on the table. Their labels read Obnoxious Padre Wine, Stained Fork Ale, and Roast’d Knife IPA. There’s also a pot of Goofy Odour Tea and a plate of wafers simply labeled A Set of Tea Biscuits.

The challenge: determine which are safe and which (if any) might be poisoned.

Such will be the puzzle awaiting attendees who drop by the Mystery Theatre display at this weekend’s opening of Prime Stage Theatre’s Arsenic and Old Lace.

Employing a set-up similar to the PSMT display on the opening night of Prime Stage’s A Wrinkle in Time, this week’s event will invite amateur detectives to peruse the clues and try their hands at solving the mystery presented in this week’s installment of “A Most Deadly Poison.”

Given the responses we received at our previous display, I’m confident this latest puzzle will be solved by intermission, at which time one participant (to be chosen at random) will walk away with a book of stories featuring the greatest detective of all time—Sherlock Holmes.

The books are:

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. Originally published in 1892, this book is a reprint of the first and best collection of stories about the legendary sleuth. Among the stories are “A Scandal in Bohemia,” in which a king is blackmailed by a former lover and Holmes matches wits with the only woman to attract his open admiration; and “The Speckled Band,” a confounding locked-door mystery with a slithering twist. In all, it’s a classic collection for all ages.

Gaslight Grotesque: Nightmare Tales of Sherlock Holmes. This collection of all-new stories is edited by JR Campbell & Charles Prepolec, who have assembled 13 masters of contemporary mystery, horror, and suspense to reimagine the master sleuth for a new generation of readers. Among the stories are “Hounded” by screenwriter Stephen Volk (Ghostwatch, Gothic) in which Watson reveals the truth behind The Hound of the Baskervilles; and my own tale “The Death Lantern,” in which Holmes and Watson ponder what may be the first murder ever recorded on film.

Gaslight Arcanum: Uncanny Tales of Sherlock Holmes. JR Campbell & Charles Prepolec’s follow up to Gaslight Grotesque, this edition assembles tales by 12 of today’s masters of mystery, horror, and suspense. Among the stories are “A Country Death” by novelist Simon Kurt Unsworth (The Devil’s Detective, The Devil’s Evidence) in which a policeman investigates the death of Sherlock Holmes; and my own tale “The Executioner,” in which the master detective meets the Frankenstein monster.

The Prime Stage Mystery Theatre display will be up and running one hour before the preview (May 6) and opening night (May 7) performances of Arsenic and Old Lace at Pittsburgh’s New Hazlett Theatre.

Curtain time: 8:00 PM. Tickets may be purchased at the Prime Stage website.

It should be a fun night. I hope to see you there!

  1. This entry was posted on Friday, May 6th, 2022 at 4:29 pm and is filed under 21st-Century Scop. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response or trackback from your own site.


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