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Game's Afoot, The - Full Length Play, Comedy

Game's Afoot, The

Ken Ludwig

Customer Rating: starstarstarstarstar (Rate this!)

Full Length Play, Comedy

3m, 5f

ISBN: 9780573700460

The Game’s Afoot gives you everything you love about great live theatre. Billed as a comedy thriller you will find yourself swept along for a wild and funny ride.” - Cleveland Fine Arts Examiner

More Information Below:

Description | Characters | Media | Author | Now Playing | Reviews
: Acting Edition
: Large Print
: Stage Manager

Minimum Fee: $100 per performance


Full Length Play


Farce, Mystery/Thriller, Christmas/Holiday

120 minutes (2 hours)

Time Period - 1930s

Settings Of Play - The living room of the mansion of William Gillette on the Connecticut River near East Haddam, Connecticut.


Physical Comedy, Stage Combat, Special Effects

Monologues, Scene work, Competition or audition material

Interior Set, Opportunity for Spectacle

Period Costumes


Gun Shots


Appropriate for all audiences


College Theatre / Student, Community Theatre, Dinner Theatre, Professional Theatre, Reader's Theatre, Large Stage

Winner! 2012 Mystery Writers of America Edgar Allen Poe Awards – Best Play!
It is December 1936 and Broadway star William Gillette, admired the world over for his leading role in the play Sherlock Holmes, has invited his fellow cast-members to his Connecticut castle for a weekend of revelry. But when one of the guests is stabbed to death, the festivities in this isolated house of tricks and mirrors quickly turn dangerous. Then it’s up to Gillette himself, as he assumes the persona of his beloved Holmes, to track down the killer before the next victim appears. The danger and hilarity are non-stop in this glittering whodunit set during the Christmas holidays.

“An inspired whodunit…a snappy, clever drawing-room mystery. There are twists in playwright Ken Ludwig’s The Game’s Afoot that cause the audience to gasp.” - The Cleveland Plain Dealer

The Game’s Afoot is Murderously Funny!” - Broadway World Cleveland

“The play evolves like a mystery thriller, as one tantalizing clue leads to another….In 1936, at the height of the Great Depression, people flocked to the theater for a few hours of escapism from hard times. Today, in our current recession, here is an antidote and the ideal holiday present - the gift of laughter.” - Cleveland Jewish News

“Ludwig demonstrates the theatrical equivalent of perfect pitch, both in this new work and in his past efforts.” - Cleveland Scene

“From the intriguing opening mini play within a play to the surprise last scene a split second before final curtain, The Game’s Afoot gives you everything you love about great live theatre. Billed as a comedy thriller you will find yourself swept along for a wild and funny ride.” - Cleveland Examiner

“A hilarious, quirky and thrilling alternative to your standard holiday entertainment. The Game’s Afoot is the perfect gift for the holidays..a fantastically fun night out at the theatre. It’s something we can be proud of as a city” - ClueintoCleveland.com

The Game’s Afoot will be performed by professional and community theaters across the country. Certainly this production is Broadway quality.” - TalkinBroadway.com



3m, 5f


Strong Role for Leading Man (Star Vehicle), Parts for Senior Actors


  • Meet The Playwright: Ken Ludwig

  • Ken Ludwig's "The Game's Afoot" at Peninsula Players Theatre

  • Asolo Rep's The Game's Afoot

Ken Ludwig

Ken Ludwig

KEN LUDWIG has had 6 shows on Broadway and 7 in London’s West End, and his plays and musicals have been performed in more than 30 countries in over 20 languages. His first play on Broadway, Lend Me A Tenor, which the Washington Post called "one of the classic comedies of the 20th century,” won two Tony Awards and was nominated for seven. He has also won two Laurence Olivier Awards (England’s ... view full profile

Now Playing
John Middlesworth 9/24/2015 10:37 AM
A mystery with 8 characters typically has someone relegated to a tiny role bringing on tea or something, so to have Ken Ludwig's play with juicy roles for every actor AND to have the majority of the cast be female is very welcome.  With Ludwig, I hardly need add that the play is funny, face-paced, and cleverly constructed.
Stephanie Schultze 9/18/2015 8:33 AM
We are currently in production and the cast is greatly enjoying the humor of the script. But not only that, there are plenty of learning opportunities to dig into context with questions about word choices, references, etc. so we have had great learning moments along with our laughs.  It's also good for this generation to go back to the time before.... before cell phones and the internet ... back to the mystery of it all ... "Good Egg!"
David Jones 9/8/2015 11:18 AM
We have produced Ken Ludwig's work and everyone loved it, cast and audience. However, the technical issue with the "moving/hidden" bar would be too much of a test for our crew. Still, the script is clever and funny.
Davey Jones, for Quail Creek Performing Arts Guild

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