A comedy in two acts, the play will be presented in the DHS Little Theatre at 7 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 31 through Saturday, Feb. 2. A matinee performance is also planned for 2 p.m., on Sunday, Feb. 3.
General admission is available at the door, with tickets priced at $5 for students and $6 for adults.
"Murder in the Knife Room is very funny and the audience can interact," said sophomore Ali Hansford, daughter of Guy and Kathy Hansford. "Every character has their own story. I love working with my costume people and picking out everyone's costumes."
"It is probably one of the funniest plays that DHS drama has put on in the last several years," said senior Will Clifft, son of Lisa Clifft and Joseph Clifft.
"There are crazy characters and the play is one big guessing game," said junior Anna Decker, daughter of Ed and Sherri Decker. "There are many different levels of humor. There is something for everyone."
"I think the most unique part (of the play) is the variety of characters," said sophomore Kent Kirby, son of Steve and Eva Kirby. "It's like Clue on steroids."
Students involved in the project portray a wide variety of characters, including a Southern belle, a brainless model, a spooky pirate, a mysterious host, a respected general, a pompous millionaire, a sketchy foreigner, a plastic politician, a serial killer, a bearded scholar, a washed-up actress, Santa Claus, an intimidating mobster, a boy band reject, a decrepit invalid and a die-hard Dolphins fan.
How do all these unique personalities interact? Especially in the face of a murder mystery? Here is what some of the cast members have to say about the upcoming production:
-- "It's hilarious and super-cheesy," said senior Michaelia McKenzie-Prohaska, daughter of Debra McKenzie. "There are a million different personalities."
-- "The characters and the setting (are the most unique part of the play)," said senior Ragan Hinson, daughter of Brian Hinson and Kelli Gatton. "(The play) gives everyone a chance to laugh and it has a lot of great characters."
-- "It is very unique and fun to act in," said senior Lauren Martin, daughter of Rob and Gayle Martin. "It is hilarious."
-- "It is an ironic comedy," said freshman Kyle Bennett, son of Cheryl and Jeff Bennett. "Each character has a unique quality."
-- "It is a very funny play that all ages will enjoy," said senior McKenzie Reed, daughter of Tony and Tina Reed. "It has a lot of laughs... a lot of suspense and plot twists."
-- "It is very lively and keeps the house interested," said senior Lara Beth Cherry, daughter of Penny and Fred Cherry.
-- "(This play) is family friendly, but has something for everyone," said Elizabeth Hamilton, daughter of John and Angie Hamilton. "(The most unique part is) the twists an turns."
-- "I think everyone, young and old, will get a good laugh," said senior Stephen Simpson, son of Angela Bryan and Chuck Simpson. "The strangeness of the characters (is the most unique part of the play)."
-- "It is a surprising comedy," said freshman McKenzie Milburn, daughter of Amber and Jerry Bonds.
-- "The audience will get a lot of laughs out of this one," said freshman Amanda Dunn, daughter of Ken and Beth Dunn. "The ending is definitely not what you expect!"
-- "It's so hilarious," said freshman Ashley Harris, daughter of Treva Harris and Stacy Harris.
-- "This play is insanely crazy," said sophomore Johni Armstrong, daughter of Rodney and Jackie Armstrong. "Every line is a surprise."
-- "This play is hilarious," said junior Madison Evans, daughter of Cristy and Scott Evans. "Seriously, there will never be a moment that the audience is not laughing. Also, it is suspenseful because tension builds to know 'What's in the Box?'"
-- "(The play is) hilarious and unforgettable," said junior Krysta Milburn, daughter of Amber and Jerry Bonds. "The characters are definitely the most unique."
-- "It's really funny and easy to understand," said sophomore Jayvon Treadway, son of Venus Taylor. "And the whole family can enjoy it."
-- "The characters that you will meet are the most off-the-wall and bizarre individuals," said junior Taylor Sharp, son of Jason and Shelly Sharp. "It's completely random and full of surprises. You are not really sure what to expect."
Drama club members look forward to the upcoming performances, but are quick to say that they thoroughly enjoyed the entire process of creating the play.
"I love getting laughs from the audience and fellow cast members," said junior Laurie Williams, daughter of Bart and Molly Williams. "The characters are probably the most unique and specific characters ever. The audience will never see the ending coming."
"I have enjoyed the special effects that our amazing crew members have added to the play," said sophomore Diamond Jones, daughter of James and Joyce Jones.
"The whole show, in general, has been a good memory," said Reed.
"I have enjoyed all the goofy, quirky moments of our rehearsals," said Simpson. "(And) learning how to speak like a pirate."
Drama brings everyone together," said senior Tejianna Saxton, daughter of Felicia Saxton. "Everybody treats each other like family."
"(A good memory I made during the play was) dancing with all the actors," said Harris.
"I have enjoyed learning about how a play works and getting to know the other actors," said Kirby. "I don't think people realize the amount of time put into a performance."
"I love working on something with a group and watching it go from nothing to an amazing play," said Decker. "There is so much time invested into the play, way more than just rehearsals and play week."
"I love meeting new people and spending time with my drama family," said Krysta Milburn. "The public may not realize how hard we actually work to make a great performance."
"It is awesome to start with a rough version of the play and watch it grow into the finished product," said Williams. "There are so many minute details that have to be thought of in a play."
"It is a lot of commitment and work," said freshman Matthew Hampton, son of Jeff and Kim Hampton. "And you have to have imagination."
"No one will ever realize how many hours each student puts into a production, no matter what their job is," said Evans. "The people backstage are just as important as the people on stage."
For many, the experience of belonging to the drama club has been a chance to express themselves and find a creative outlet. A place to belong, where their contributions are welcome and hard work is completed in a team effort.
"Drama is a place where everyone feels important and accepted," said Cherry. "I am all for that. It's such a fun and creative way to express who you are. I love it."
"Drama gives you a chance to be with a group of people that don't care how you act or what you wear," said Hinson. "They are going to love you no matter what."
"I love working with all the different and unique people (in drama)," said Armstrong. "We all love crazy actors."
"(Drama) gives me a place to express myself," said Hamilton. "(People may not realize) how much time and effort (is provided by) the behind-the-scenes people."
"(I have most enjoyed) getting to have fun with everyone during rehearsal," said junior Elliott Feith, son of John and Beth Feith. "It takes a lot of hard work."
"(Drama) makes me who I am," said McKenzie Milburn. "It's part of me."
"(Drama) is a unique way to stand out," said Bennett. "It takes hard work and dedication."
"I enjoyed making new friends," said Dunn. "Mrs. Chris is awesome. Drama kids are hilarious and everyone loves to help out with anything needed. Drama is amazing."
"We are just one big family," said Sharp. "I've honestly met some of my absolute favorite people through drama."
"(Drama) gets you out of your comfort zone," said Treadway. "And it boosts your confidence."
"I love the family atmosphere," said Jones. "You can be yourself and not be judged."
"I really can't describe how amazing the drama club is," said Evans. "We're all a family. We treat each other equally, laugh together, cry together. ... We're truly a family and the people we meet in this club will be lifelong friends."
Cast members include Alex Agee, Johni Armstrong, Kyle Bennett, Nevin Bishop, Lara Beth Cherry, Will Clifft, Anna Decker, Amanda Dunn, Madison Evans, Elliott Feith, Elizabeth Hamilton, Matthew Hampton, Ashley Harris, Ragan Hinson, Diamond Jones, Kent Kirby, Lauren Martin, Michaella McKenzie-Prohaska, Krysta Milburn, McKenzie Milburn, Stephen Ozment, McKenzie Reed, Tejianna Saxton, Taylor Sharp, Stephen Simpson, Jayvon Treadway, Laurie Williams and Maria Yousuf.
Crew members include Lydia Amend, Alexis Aufdenkamp, Kalee Baggett, Emily Bernier, Nate Bernier, Alexis Bishop, Elizabeth Butler, Montavia Cooper, Matthew Daniels, Lindsey Dunn, Terran Dysart, Logan Epley, Bethany Glenn, Brittany Grissom, Ali Hansford, Jamie Harden, Corena Hasselle, Sarah Hasselle, Shaylah Henning, Heath Hopgood, Matthew Hughes, Emily Jackson, Carson Jones, Hannah Langley, Yvette Leon, Walter Lowery, Meranda Manley, Ashlynn Marrow, Victoria Mines, Jessica Morgan, Noah Mulvaney, Briona Pate, Ryan Phillips, Terry Pope, Erin Rausch, Holly Rausch, David Richardson, Victoria Schulthesis, Montana Snow, Ethan Spiess, Hannah Spoon, Ellen Staggs, Eri Sugiyama, Bri Tirabassi, Narissa Todd, Katey Turner, Shelby Wilbanks, Will Young and Shehla Yousuf.