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'The Office' parody murder mystery coming to Paramount Theatre in Austin

Eric Webb
Austin 360
"The Office! A Murder Mystery Parody" hits the Paramount Theatre in April.

First, local theater patrons were asked to help solve an art heist. Now, they get to solve a murder. 

Last fall, the Paramount Theatre presented "Art Heist," a socially distanced, outdoor, immersive theater experience. This spring, they'll host a similar event with "The Office! A Murder Mystery Parody." Yes, that "The Office."

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"There’s been a murder in Scranton!" reads the event summary. "Dust off your detective hat and put on your gumshoes, because Michael needs help solving the case." The experience is described as an "unauthorized parody" of the long-running NBC sitcom. Groups of up to 35 will walk to five locations and meet characters like Jim, Pam and Dwight as they put their detective skills to the test. The Scranton Strangler has to be brought to justice, after all. 

“The shutdown of live theater during the pandemic was devastating,” show co-creator Bob McSmith said in a statement. “We took a deep inward look and decided the world needed two things: a COVID-19 vaccine and a parody walking tour. We only have the bandwidth to deliver one of them. We are proud of this unauthorized parody walking tour and hope to bring some fun and nostalgia to people’s lives during these trying times, all while catching a killer."

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The show runs on select dates from April 6-25, with various showtimes. Tickets start at $39.50, with group discounts available. Go to austintheatre.org for more information.

Correction: An earlier version of this post referred to "The Office! A Murder Mystery Parody" as an authorized parody, based on an incorrect description on the Paramount Theatre website. It is an unauthorized parody.