People are dying to see the Warren High School drama department's latest murder mystery dinner theater.
Three hundred tickets for the interactive Nov. 16 presentation "Wedding from Hell" sold out in less than three days, said English and drama teacher Angie Erb-Gentile.
"And that was without putting a single poster out or having it in the paper or anything," she said.
On Wednesday, Erb-Gentile finalized plans for a second performance on Nov. 17. Tickets are $7 and must be purchased in advance by contacting a drama department member or the high school.
This is the fifth year Erb-Gentile and her students have put on a murder mystery dinner.
"I started doing it because it was kind of a 'non-threatening' type of drama. It's not like a 'To Kill a Mockingbird,'" she said. "It was my way for actors to get used to something lighthearted."
If you go
What: "Wedding from Hell," the Warren High School drama department's annual murder mystery dinner theater.
When: 7 p.m. Nov. 17.
Where: Warren High School cafeteria.
Who: Recommended for audience members age 10 and older.
Tickets: $7, must be purchased in advance by contacting a drama department member or the high school at 678-2393, ext. 1405.
It works, according to junior Jordan Smreck, who started acting in the mystery dinner productions as a freshman.
"At first, most freshmen are nervous, but as it goes on, you get used to it and it's fun, just being with your friends and acting," she said.
This year, Smreck will be playing the bride at the titular wedding. From caterers bringing tailgating refreshments instead of fillet mignon to the judge presiding over the ceremony showing up drunk and the ultimate disruption of a murder in the midst of the nuptials, everything that can go wrong does, taking a toll on the young woman's nerves.
"It's very entertaining because every time I see Bruce, my groom, I'm always trying to switch to be this happy character, so it's really fun to switch between those two characters," Smreck said.
The performance will be held in the Warren High School cafeteria, where the audience will be guests at the wedding reception that, in keeping with the mishaps befalling the event, starts before the ceremony. The audience will join the hunt for clues and interact with characters.
"You really never know what's going to happen, and you can just act on the spot," Smreck said.
The dinner is the drama department's only fundraiser of the year, Erb-Gentile said, and she hopes it will continue to be an enjoyable experience for students and the community.
"I think people in this day and age, they just want to laugh," she said.