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Whodunit at Crosswinds

Students at Crosswinds Art and Science School have been tasked with solving a murder.

The school play "Murder at Crooked House" premiered last weekend at the school. The play continues this weekend.

"Murder at Crooked House" is a parody of 1950s murder mysteries, namely Agatha Christie, "Private Eye" and "Dragnet."

"It takes kind of an insightful yet hilarious look at those types of mysteries," said play director Cornelius Rish. "Everyone is a suspect, so the audience has to try to guess whodunit."

Rish said he decided on "Murder at Crooked House" as this year's school play because he felt the East Metro Integration District community needed something light-hearted to help come back from the events of the fall.

Earlier this fall the EMID School Board discussed whether or not to keep Crosswinds and Harambee open.

"We had a very tough fall," Rish said. "I decided to do this play because we needed to laugh."

Additionally, Rish said he landed on the play since he is a fan of suspense.

To help prepare the students, Rish said he took some time to help his actors understand some of the language and style of the 1950s murder mysteries because it is a little different than what they are familiar with.

"What I really enjoy with these kids is that they were up to that challenge," he said. "Once the light bulb went off, that's the fun part."

Rish said the students have greatly enjoyed getting acquainted to their characters.

"The kids really enjoy those characters once they understood the complexity of those characters," he said. "Besides just building characters on stage, we build characters in the kids."

Rish said he is confident in the show's success.

"I really believe in the show," he said. "The kids really put on a fine show."

Performances for "Murder at Crooked House" are Dec 15-17 at 7 p.m. Tickets are $7 for adults, $5 for children, $3 for seniors and $3 for Crosswinds students.

Amber Kispert-Smith

Amber Kispert-Smith has been the schools and Afton reporter at the Woodbury Bulletin since 2008. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Minnesota. She previously worked as a reporter for Press Publications in White Bear Lake.

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