After a year of getting used to streamed theatre, one thing that has kept us all gripped is the constant versatility and innovation in the titles being made. That shows no sign of slowing down with another untapped market being announced - this time it's a murder mystery musical.
A Killer Party will receive its UK premiere as a series of nine episodes to watch on-demand. A new musical, coupled with a contemporary pop score was previously a hit in America last year where it was written and developed as a response to the closure of theatres. It will now be adapted for UK audiences.
Directed by Benji Sperring and with a book by Rachel Axler and Kait Kerrigan, it features music by Jason Howland and lyrics by Nathan Tysen. The action will be filmed entirely in each artists home with a cast to be announced soon.
When Varthur McArthur, failed West End actor and current artistic director of Blackpool’s smallest regional theatre calls a read-through for his latest murder mystery play, the cast of local actors arrive at the party with anything but theatre on their minds. But when Varthur ends up face down in his soup (a gluten-free cheese bisque), it’s up to Traffic-Police-Officer-turned-Detective Justine Case to piece together what happened. If only the ensemble of suspects would stop singing...
The cast features the very best of British stage and screen with Oscar Conlon-Morrey, Debbie Kurup, Jason Manford, Cedric Neal, , Amara Okareke, Lucas Rush, Emma Salvo, Harriet Thorpe and Rachel Tucker.
Director Benji Sperring said: "The world has never needed fun, joy and laughter quite like it does at the moment, and A Killer Party provides this in abundance - a delight of a show, with incredible performers and a world-renowned writing team – couldn’t be better timed to remind people of the joy, whimsy, and healing power of theatre that we can look forward to returning to very soon."
Producer Katy Lipson said: "As soon as I heard the score for 'A Killer Party' and learnt about its episodic nature, I wanted to be part of creating its UK premiere. We have all had to evolve the way we make theatre right now and the idea of involving a brilliant cast and creating this in such a non-traditional way really attracted me to the piece." Producer Tanisha Spring said: "While we were talking about creative ways to bring work and joy to an industry that had effectively been closed down, Jason (Howland) came up with the concept of ‘A Killer Party’, A murder mystery musical. Seeing our peer’s livelihoods and dreams stripped away, Jason went away and using all of the limited resources available created something new, intelligent, exciting and utterly hilarious. From that conversation and with the strength of that purpose I knew I couldn’t just watch but had to be involved. I am now proud and excited to collaborate with Aria Entertainment and Ilai Szpiezak to bring our version of this ridiculously funny, & catchy show to screens across the UK. A brand-new take on something that’s been missing for what feels like a long time."
Producer Ilia Szpiezak said: “Finding a new piece of theatre created especially for a world in lockdown brings both new challenges as well as a new way for audiences to enjoy entertainment in a different way. I’m extremely delighted to bring this production to the UK and put together the very best of British Theatre in a new medium to enjoy. All that, topped up with a stunning, modern and classy pop-infused soundtrack, makes it a unique project to be involved with.”
A Killer Party will be available to stream from Monday 26th April until Sunday 23rd May. Each episode will cost £2.99 or you can buy the whole season for £25. It will be available on https://www.stream.theatre/season/66
For more information head to www.akillerparty.co.uk
Here's a look at the trailer: