“Dead Within the Hour” 

Murder Mystery Dinner Theatre Production!


AUDITIONS  (ages 8-18)

Saturday, January 6 – 2:30pm

For the audition, kids must prepare a short (1-2 minute) monologue that demonstrates acting skills and range.  In addition, kids will read some scenes from the play.  Once a child signs up for an audition, additional information will be sent out.

*Advance registration is required. Space is limited, so hurry and sign up now to reserve a spot! To sign up, please click on the link below.*


Starting January 13

749 W. 14 Mile Rd., Clawson (Lower level of Trinity Lutheran Church)

Fridays – 7:00-9:00pm

Saturdays – 2:30-5:30pm

*There will be a mandatory parent meeting on Friday, January 12 at 7:00pm and a welcome party for cast and families immediately following the parent meeting*


March 13, 14, 15 – 6:30-9:30pm


March 16 – 7:00pm

March 17 – 7:00pm

Performances will be held at the Royal Oak First United Methodist Church located at 320 W 7th Street in Royal Oak.



For more information, please contact us at

In addition to the production fee, there is also an additional annual registration fee of $25.00.  The annual registration fee is good from September 2017-August 2018.  If the annual registration fee was already paid in September 2017, it does not need to be paid again until September 2018.

Volunteers for Upcoming Productions 

We are also looking for volunteers to help out with the production. Teens and adults that are interested in volunteering for the following positions should contact us directly at

Assistant director
Stage manager
Assistant producer
Set construction
Props and/or Costumes
*Marketing and Publicity* (we need the most help with this!)


Dead Within the Hour Synopsis

This play is a murder mystery in two parts. Part I takes place at the 70th Anniversary screening of the classic film, Dead Within the Hour. The event is filled with Hollywood stars and fans of the movie, who all have something to say about the film. This is the event that the audience will be a part of, playing along with the personable hosts and guests that are planted in the audience.

Part II is the actual movie itself, acted out on a stage in front of the audience. Dead Within the Hour takes place in an old house, where a mysterious author has invited six strangers to their home. A storm is raging outside and everyone finds that they are trapped inside with a hostess who has been poisoned. An athlete, a radio show host, an actress, an art historian, a pilot, a professor, and the mysterious butler struggle to find out the truth. Lies are stripped away, tensions start to rise, and no one is really who they say they are.




These characters are the ones who will be doing audience interaction. They are modern-day, with a wide range of personalities and flexibility to them. They are attending and/or participating in the 70th Anniversary screening of Dead Within the Hour. These roles are largely comedic and can include improv. These are the people that warm the audience up. In Part I, roles can be created and molded to fit the actors who have been cast.


-Male or female. Host of the evening, regular job is hosting The Super Late Show. Personable, excited to see the movie once again, patient and friendly.


-Male or female. Co-host of the evening, regular job is hosting The Even Later Show. Wry, honest, but not mean. This character is slightly more cynical than Dakota.


-Male or female. Comedian who is there because he/she loves this movie. This character is excitable, smart, and loves to talk about Dead Within the Hour. Bright, likeable personality.


-Male or female. One of the original cast members of the movie. Very old, but very excited to be there. A sweet disposition, the kind of grandparent that everyone would want.


-Male or female. One of the original cast members of the movie. Very old and very grumpy. He/she refuses to say anything positive, and he/she really doesn’t want to be there. Has no problem shutting people down.


-Male or female. Glamorous, elegant, rich, and slightly clueless. Is a famous actor being paid to speak about the movie. Has never actually seen Dead Within the Hour, but doesn’t care.


Part II is the actual movie Dead Within the Hour. These are the characters involved in the murder mystery. They are characters that would be found in an old movie. Very little to no improv, and no audience interaction. These characters are comedic, but also serious, and they capture the audience through the mystery they create.


-Male. He takes care of the house, but he is not the butler. He is poised and polite, but professional. He is there to do his job, but is quick to point fingers when things go awry.


-Female. A stage actress who has a love for all things dramatic. She is elegant and classy, with just a slight twinge of superiority. Overall, though, she is a decent person. She is currently married to Jack Hollis.


-Female. The hostess with the mostest. She is a famous writer who has kept her identity secret until tonight. She is charming and welcoming, but is the victim of a poisoned drink.


-Male. He is a well-known host of a popular radio show, and that has gotten to his head. He is impatient, cocky, and bordering on rude. He is the current husband to Celeste Devereaux, and ex-husband to Claudia Rothschild.


-Female. She is a mysterious art dealer, who claims to know everyone there. She carries herself tall, and is cool and collected, until things go wrong. A bit wry and not quite trustworthy.


-Female. She is a famous pilot, who is very proud of that fact. She says it like it is, she is quick and slightly bitter. She has little patience. She can’t stand her ex-husband, who is Jack Hollis.


-Male. He is a professor of Egyptology. He is a bit of a know-it-all and believes he can solve the mystery. Annoying and not quite as smart as he think he is. Opposite, personality wise, of Theodore Young.


-Male. He is a professional baseball player, and smarter than he lets on. He is on the quiet side, but he is charming and polite. Opposite, personality wise, of Ernest Vandenberg.


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