Tired of watching the BBC Sherlock? Put on your sharpest thinking cap and head out to International Drive for dinner sometime to try your detective skills at Sleuth’s Mystery Dinner Shows!
The hospitable folks at Sleuths invited Central Florida Top 5 to pay a visit for dinner along with a group of lady bloggers. We visited their recently renovated I-Drive theater in September, and found great food, an enjoyable well-paced format, and family-friendly hilarity as we watched their production of Squire’s Inn.
For those of you who have never been to Sleuths, here’s five awesome reasons you should check them out.
1. There’s a show every night of the year.
So there’s no excuse not to go sometime. Seriously, though, private groups are also welcome and they have three different theaters for their 13 different shows. Performances usually start at 7:30pm, and run about 2 1/2 hours. / In fact, Sleuths even invites Central Florida residents and visitors to spend the holidays with them.
Every year on Thanksgiving, they host a special 12pm matinee in addition to the 7:30pm show. In addition to the usual appetizers and unlimited drinks, they serve up a full traditional Thanksgiving dinner: turkey and gravy, mashed potatoes and herb stuffing, sweet potato casserole, vegetables, and cranberry sauce– plus a special mystery dessert.
This year, as the holiday excitement ramps up during the first three weeks of December, Sleuths will be presenting a special Central Florida tradition for the first time: “Dickens by Candlelight,” a special three-person production of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol lit almost completely by candles. They’re only running six shows, so be sure to make your reservations if you are interested!
You can even ring in 2015 at Sleuths with their New Year’s Eve mystery party, enjoying an evening of comedy entertainment and dinner, and a champagne toast at midnight.
2. The food is delicious.
During your show, you’ll be served a three-course meal. The characters from the show wander among you while you settle in and start with salad, cheese and crackers, and dinner rolls.
The first half of the show is a scripted 45-minute performance, in which all the clues are presented. Then they stop for intermission, and dinner is served (your choice in advance from lasagna, cornish hen, prime rib, or a vegetarian option). In the second half, the audience asks questions of the characters before another intermission, dessert, and the final ‘whodunit’ reveal.
Also wonderful? The unlimited beer, wine, and soda available throughout the evening. The wait staff at Sleuths is attentive and generous in keeping all glasses full.
3. They draw some seriously good talent to their casts.
Over 50 Central Florida actors perform in shows at Sleuths, and many of them perform in other major area productions and shows as well. They’ve even drawn some people who have become pretty big names over the last 25 years: Rus Blackwell (Monster, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Banshee), Jon Freda (The Family, Digital Physics), Brett Rice (The Ultimate Life, Foxcatcher, Mom’s Night Out), Aasif Mandvi (Curb Your Enthusiasm, The Daily Show, The Brink), and Cheryl Hines (Curb Your Enthusiasm, Suburgatory), and more!
4. The shows are 50% improvised.
I’m not going to lie– the kind of humor you see in shows at Sleuths is more The Muppet Show than Family Guy– and that’s okay. It makes it a great place for whole families (including younger children) to go for an evening out.
The shows themselves are humorous, but the funniest part of the show happens in the second half, when the actors must answer audience questions in character, improvising their responses while still providing necessary details. Depending on the line of questioning, you never know what details you’re going to get!
5. You become the detective.
You and your table are responsible for working together to decide what questions to ask the characters during the Q&A time. Not only that, after everyone responds to the questions, you must individually decide who you believe is responsible for the crime. Guess right, and you could go home with a special detective’s prize!
You can also visit Sleuths every Saturday night to watch some good Central Florida stand-up comedy… or stop by for one of their special events like Dickens by Candlelight.
Have you ever been to Sleuths? What was your favorite thing about the performance you saw?