Was it the choir director with a rope in the Euler Atrium? A Chorale member with a knife in the greenhouse? Or could it have possibly been the piano player with some smooth saxophone skills in the boiler room?
On March 19, Chorale, accompanied by the Jungle Cats band, took over the Euler Atrium to put a mystery to rest.
In “Trouble on Reade Avenue,” sophomore Wesley Jones took center stage, showing off — quite literally — his many hats. Switching between his two duties as host and detective with the change of a cap, Jones led the audience along a journey of clues and intrigue.
Jones was not alone, however, as senior Timiesha Knowles gave the audience some assistance in the form of five envelopes left on the tables, allowing for an interactive whodunnit experience.
Clue #1: Red
While my table was stumped by the very first clue, other audience members dove headfirst into cracking the code. The word “Red” was the final result, leading us into a solo led by freshman Olivia Henn.
Clue #2: Fahrenheit
Inside the second envelope was a piece of sheet music with a list of numbers provided to find out which letters would create the clue word. I’m proud to say I figured this one out on my own (even if it took me an hour after the show ended). The word spelled was “Fahrenheit,” leading us into the song “Fever.”
Throughout the clue solving, Knowles invited the choir to sing some “motivational music” as audience members got to cracking the case. Yet, at the same time, with each passing song, a member of the Jungle Cats band went missing.
Clue #3: Keys
At this point, the end seemed to be in sight. It must have been the girl in the red dress with some sort of fire … but where? Clue number three gave the word “Keys,” and directly after, a maintenance man came through, giving his keys to Jones.
Clue #4: Brown paper packages tied up with strings
But don’t be fooled! While the keys seemed like a huge crack in the case, there were still two more to go.
Clue four consisted of a few cut-up spirals of papers that, when put together, read the classic lyrics from “The Sound of Music,” “Brown paper packages tied up with strings.”
With this seemingly unrelated clue, it started to feel like the case might go cold, and with more and more Jungle Cats going missing, the ending seemed bleak.
Clue #5: Reed
The final clue was simply “Reed.” Instantly, the choir’s thoughts went to their beloved director, Dr. Spencer Reed. Could it be that the man behind the baton was getting rid of the Jungle Cats right before their eyes?
With the beginning of the final group number, Reed never showed. Suspicions grew.
This was when sophomore Chris Jenkins decided to step up to the plate, soprano saxophone in hand. Jenkins graciously said he could perform for the Jungle Cats on his own with Sheila Todd, the accompanist on piano.
It wasn’t until the duo started playing “My Favorite Things” from “The Sound of Music” that it all made sense to our favorite detectives, Knowles and Jones.
The real culprit was Jenkins. He had locked his fellow bandmates in the boiler room in an attempt to perform this song with Todd. It was a greedy scheme, but it all made sense.
The red hair, the Fahrenheit clue indicating the boiler room, Todd on the keys, brown paper packages tied up with string as the song choice, and finally, the reed of the saxophone.
“It’s always, ‘Stick to the keys Chris!’ But no one was going to stop me, not even the director himself!” Jenkins said.
“Trouble on Reade Avenue” was a creatively genius interactive experience for both audience and performers. With an original script written by Spencer and countless meetings with the chorale cabinet, the amount of care and effort poured into this event was evident.
Junior Abi Kerr, a member of Chorale, said, “This show was like nothing else the chorale has ever done. Our hope was to create an interactive environment full of fun and jazz.”
They did just that, and finally, all the trouble on Reade Avenue was resolved.