Since all of Murder Café’s scheduled live shows have been suspended due to the current condition of social distancing, the 22-year-old entertainment company has taken a new direction, venturing into “theatre of the mind” — radio.
The actors utilizing Zoom meetings are recording Murder Café’s original murder mystery scripts and several classic suspense dramas from the golden age of radio. The edited recordings, including sound effects and music cues, are available on a variety of platforms including Murder Café’s website.
There are two plays currently available: Murder Me Always, Murder Café’s tribute to the noir films of the 1940s that made its debut at Mohonk Mountain House as part of their annual mystery weekend in 2018 and Sorry, Wrong Number, a play by Lucille Fletcher, one many consider the best suspense drama ever presented on live radio. A third play, The Lodger, will be added to the available program list on April 30.
Murder Café owner and operator, Frank Marquette summarized his venture into radio theatre. “During this period of isolation and social distancing artists are finding new and creative ways to reach their audiences,” he said. “After the cancellation of so many of our live shows I asked, ‘Why not radio drama?’. My troupe of actors jumped at the opportunity. It was just a question of what plays we would record and how we would join the virtual world. We hope our contribution to audio entertainment will offer our followers and new fans a diversion and an alternative to cable dramas.”