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RIC’s Murder Mystery Dinner held a hilarious secret

Malcolm Streitfeld

Anchor Staff Writer


A plot was brewing on campus. Something foul was afoot and evil permeated the air. This omen brought me (Codename: Svatislav) and my associates to the doors of the Student Union Ballroom for a brutal mystery. 

Image Credits: Kristen Salemi

“The Dinner Detective: Interactive Murder Mystery Dinner” is a show where the participants give themselves codenames, investigate clues and interrogate each other to try to find the culprit behind a nefarious crime. The show was hosted and acted out by “The Dinner Detective,” a dinner-theater headquartered in Providence. Students in attendance received a free Italian dinner alongside a night of fun.


At the start of the program, guests were given a sheet to record clues, their codename, who they thought the culprit was and a theory on the motive of the murderer. There was also a bonus anagram that could be decoded for an extra clue. Of course, the real draw of the event was the interrogation process. Anyone with a name tag was a potential suspect and that included all of the students. That meant we had to ask each other questions constantly to make sure justice was served in addition to pasta. 

Image by Kristen Salemi

The night was a blast. My codename, Svatislav, was in ode to the ruler of the Kievan Rus empire from 945 to 972. I recorded my codename, along with my answers to the sheet’s other seemingly-innocent questions, such as, “Who is your most hated cartoon character?” and “What would you wish on your worst enemy?” The more clues I gathered, the more my questions revolved around those clues. It was because of this sharp deductive method that the answer started to become clear.


But alas, the truth eluded me. Near the closing of the investigation, I hastily scribbled out on my form my suspected culprit and motive based solely on one person who I had interrogated and found suspicious early on. Because of this, I failed to solve the murder. But all hope was not lost, for there were three who did manage to crack the case. 


The superb cipher-breakers among us who won first, second and third place were Marco Bonnano, Caityn Garant and Keyanna Mulvey respectively. These individuals in particular asked just the right questions and were relentless in their pursuit of the devious fiend. I was seriously impressed with their skills and cunning. Caitlyn and I worked together for the final stages of the investigation, so I can attest to their brilliance. I also shared the clues I found with my cohorts from The Anchor whose code names were inspired by characters from the “Godfather,” like Vinnie and Lorenzo. I found it hilarious how everyone from the actors to other students involved kept pronouncing my codename wrong (S-vati-slav, not S-wati-slav). 

Photo by Kristen Salemi

In the end, I left the investigation feeling proud of myself for my mad theorizing and endless questioning and doubly proud of RIC’s students for their fantastic intellectual prowess. 

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