“Murder is A Fine Art” Cast Draws Wingate Students to Batte Center

Staff Writer: Alexandria Sessions

Last week before Easter Break, the talented cast of “Murder is a Fine Art” conducted an audience interactive play, highlighting a love triangle, jealousy, revenge, and obviously a murder. The play was brought for entertainment for friends and families by the Wingate University Department of Communication and Art directed by Barbara Pann and took place in the lobby area of the Batte center.

When you first walked in, the actors were already in character greeting guests at the door and making their rounds of the tables. One of those esteemed individuals was Hailey Beshore who played the straightforward event planner of the gallery opening, Sharon Sharealike who toted around a suspicious bag all night.  

“The show is very interactive and majority improv and so there’s a lot of things to not expect.” Sophomore, Beshore said.

The gallery opening was only the middle of what was already a storm of tangled relationships and vengeful individuals. When Libby LaBelle (played by freshman Madison Blackwelder on Monday and senior Emily Lewczyk on Saturday), who wrote reviews, suddenly collapsed on the floor, the attending cast and audience gasped with shock. The surrounding suspects: Fiona Fakes (played by freshman, Audrey Courtney on Monday, and Leah Hatherly on Saturday), Luigi Lambrusco (played by Senior Irene Wang), Pete Casso (played by freshman, Piper McClellan),  and Brett Cutler (played by freshman, Nicholas Valles ) all stood around shy of any remorse. Like many influencers today, Libby’s words carried a lot of weight and seemingly ruined the lives of her counterparts. With the help of sophomore William Worthan who played The Security Guard the killer was going to be revealed before the night was up.

“I can’t tell you who the killer is or what happens,” Worthan said. “All I can say is I’m just the security guard, I’m not the killer but you will help me figure out who the killer is.”

While the Security Guard rushes Libby LaBelle to the hospital where she was pronounced dead, her cousin, Lilac LaBelle who was played by Junior Caroline Monroe, showed up at the art gallery only to run into her ex-lover and Libby’s ex-boyfriend Brett Cutler and the news of her cousin’s death. She was immediately thrown into the pool of suspects for arriving late on the scene.

 After many arguments between the suspects, and Cutler’s and Lilac’s, ooey-gooey romance, the actors were prompted to walk around each table and answer the questions of the eager audience. With this allowed time the audience took matters into their own hands to find the killer with interrogations and witty assumptions. 

The killer turned out to be Sharon Sharealike. All other motives were obvious but hers was more believable with the murder weapon being the high heels she wore previously in another scene, shoving them into her embroidered bag and playing innocent fooled many tables but one. 

“At first I thought it was her but I was like ‘no’, Fakes had a better motive but it ended up being Sharon.” Junior Acacia Brooks said, “It was fun.” 

Trevor Hagan, a BA vocal performer, was shocked about who the killer was stating, “I really thought it was Pete Casso because the origin of the paint was poisonous.” Hagan said, “I enjoyed it, it was very interactive and I like how we got to participate. It felt like we were part of the show.”  

While many students were led astray by the red herrings, not Junior Devyn  Eury said she was not surprised.

“I did think it was Sharon just because she had so much hate and anger towards Libby.” The human service major said. 

The night ended with the wrap of a murder, a few laughs, and applauds. If you did not get to attend this play Monroe promises more in the next semester. 

“I think we are going to do something similar next year. It’s got a lot of crowd interaction and I think people will really enjoy it. Monroe said, “If you weren’t able to see this showing, next year don’t miss it for sure.”

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