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The Sound’s the Thing:
Audio Clues on Mystery Theatre

March 12th, 2021

In Francis Ford Coppola’s film The Conversation (1974) surveillance expert Harry Caul (Gene Hackman) becomes obsessed with a cryptic recording that he believes suggests a young couple is in danger. Similarly, in Brian De Palma’s Blow Out (1981), sound engineer Jack Terri (John Travolta) investigates a mystery by listening to a recording made at the scene of a crime. And even master sleuth Sherlock Holmes demonstrates the importance of audio clues in the story “The Speckled Band” (1892), when a whistle emanating from a closed room leads him to….

[Read more at the 21st-Century Scop].

Prime Stage Mystery Theatre:
“What’s the alternative to looking?”

March 5th, 2021

The image at left is from the recently restored film Sherlock Holmes (1916), starring William Gillette in the first-ever screen portrayal of the master sleuth. The film is currently streaming on Apple TV.

There’s more than one way to find a missing person, but could you do it without actually looking? This week’s episode of Mystery Theatre invites you to consider not one but two prompts that could lead to solving the mystery: “What is the alternative to looking?” and “What does one do when one doesn’t see?”

[Read more at the 21st-Century Scop.]

Prime Stage Mystery Theatre:
Bringing Mystery to the Virtual Stage

February 25th, 2021

Agatha Christie had quite a formula. She didn’t discover it. Others employed similar elements before her, and many more have practiced it since. But Christie perfected it with her cozy who-done-its featuring Hercule Poirot.

Christie’s mysteries generally begin by introducing a cast of eccentric characters, progress quickly to an inciting incident (usually a murder), and kick into gear with the arrival of a master investigator who … [read more at The 21st-Century Scop].

Nightmares and Mysteries:
Prime Stage Mystery Theatre – Season Two

February 23rd, 2021

Heard about the actor’s nightmare? It’s a variation of the dream in which you find yourself completely out of place and unprepared for a given situation. You know, like being in the produce section of a grocery store, standing behind a stack of vegetables and hoping no one notices your naked. Or perhaps it’s the covid-era dread of sitting in a crowded classroom and realizing you’ve left your mask at home.

In the actor’s nightmare, a performer stands clueless before a packed house, unable to remember a single line of dialogue.

The dream is so prevalent among actors that Christopher Durang devoted an entire play to it, fittingly … [read more at The 21st-Century Scop].