Theater at Monmouth opens its season with “Murder for Two,” with book and music by Joe Kinosian and book and lyrics by Kellen Blair.

Show times are 7:30 p.m. June 22, July 6, 10, 30, Aug. 14 and 16; 1 p.m. July 21, 27 and Aug. 8, at 796 Main St., in Monmouth.

One actor investigates the crime. The other plays all of the suspects. And they both play the piano! A zany blend of musical comedy and madcap mystery, this fast and funny whodunit is a highly theatrical duet loaded with killer laughs.

On the eve of his surprise birthday party, legendary American novelist, and guest of honor, Arthur Whitney is shot dead by an unknown killer. Small town policeman Marcus Moscowicz’s only orders are to keep the scene secure and the party-goers turned suspects from leaving; but this could be the break he needs to prove to the chief he’s ready to make detective. If he can stick to protocol, he might be able to solve this crime. Unless the suspects and his painful memories get the best of him first.

Director Adam P. Blais feels “the strength of Murder for Two is the way Kinosian and Blair lovingly spoof, celebrate, and reimagine both the murder mystery and musical theatre genres.” First produced by Chicago Shakespeare Theatre in 2011, Blair and Kinosian have concocted a theatrical and literary love letter that honors the work of Agatha Christie, the Marx Brothers, Alfred Hitchcock, Frank Loesser, and Charles Ludlam. Blais continues, “Murder for Two encompasses everything that I love about the theatre. The story is smart yet funny, the characters complicated yet endearing, and the score is intricate yet hummable.” The New York Times called it an “ingenious miniature musical in the form of a snazzy vaudevillian double-act.”

Murder for Two features TAM New-Comers Robbie Harrison as The Suspects and Quinn Corcoran as Detective Marcus. Directed by Adam P. Blais; Set design by Daniel Bilodeau, costume design by Jonna Klaiber, lighting design by Jim Alexander, and sound design by Rew Tippin.

A post performance discussions with the cast and creative team is set for Saturday, July 6.

Tickets cost $34 for adults, $29 for senior citizens, and $20 for children. Groups discounts are available.

For tickets or more information, contact the TAM Box Office at 933-9999 or visit theateratmonmouth.org.

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