The Journal Register (Medina, NY)

Local News

May 8, 2013

Whodunit? Only audience knows...

Medina Journal-Register — This weekend the Medina Theatre will be the scene of a crime. This weekend, someone will be murdered.

And the police will not be involved.

For what is believed to be the first time in this area, The Mystery Company of Buffalo is bringing its brand of dinner theater to local patrons eager for an inclusive whodunit. And it will occur in Medina with the show “Murder at the Medina Theatre.”

Producer/director Jerry Kelly founded The Mystery Company in 1997 after he retired from Sierra Research Corporation. He recalled his first show — a send-up of Agatha Christie’s “Ten Little Indians” — was done with help from his son. Since then, the company expanded and branched out for a simple reason.

“There’s a need for this type of thing,” Kelly said, adding how the desire for participatory performances is a bit of a “niche” market. 

Kelly said most of what he and his company do occurs at fundraiser events or at country club happenings. He said there have also been occasions when his company has performed its act at private homes for smaller parties of under 40 people. The largest crowd he said he could recall was for a show put on for county court clerks of New York State.

Kelly’s company wound up scheduling their event for Medina thanks to just a few degrees of separation from the Medina Theater. He said his friend Dave Green, who is the club pro at Shelridge Country Club, mentioned to him how Theater owner Joe Cardone was looking to do a murder mystery show. Kelly said to pass his number along, and the rest fell into place.

Visiting Medina to get a feel for the place, Kelly said he found it charming.

“I absolutely loved it,” he said. “I played golf at Shelridge, bought some apples at Lynoaken Farms, and ate downtown. It’s a great community.”

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