Auditions for DEATH & TAXES will be Sunday, March 3rd from 7pm – 9pm and Wednesday, March 6th from 7pm – 9pm upstairs at the Historic 1908 Courthouse in Independence.  Perusal scripts are available at the Arts Council offices in Galax.  Rehearsals will begin the week of March 13th.


Ever wonder what goes on at a small-town city council meeting? In Hendricks, they’re looking for a murderer. Mayor Kathleen Lyles boldly announces that the meeting will be more like a coroner’s jury than the usual round of arguments. Not only was a man murdered, but he was an employee of the IRS. “Somehow I don’t feel that bad!” Carl Johansen says, as the sheriff clamps the cuffs on him, making him the prime suspect. Slowly it becomes apparent the entire city council had seen the man, and each of them seems to be hiding something. Who murdered the stranger? Was it Cora Sedgewick, who was still dizzy at the time from stepping on a rake and being thumped in the face with its handle? Or newspaper editor King, who’s right on the spot to report the facts, if he could only find a pencil? Or maybe the mayor herself, who was doing her laundry in the back of city hall? This easy-to-stage intrigue is chock-full of small-town characters and hilarious dialogue. And, as an added bonus, it can be produced as an audience participation mystery where the audience can not only see the scene of the crime but also question the suspects.  Directed by Stephannie Dees, the play calls for 4-5 women and 5 men.  The roles are:

Kathleen Lyles – the mayor of Hendricks, stylish

Eddie King – editor of the Hendricks Herald, pushy & brash

Lydia Kleft – secretary at City Hall, mousey

Wesley Thorne – the sheriff, a former football player

Carl Johansen – citizen of Hendricks, sarcastic

Mattie Johansen – Carl’s wife, no-nonsense

Cora Sedgewick – the epitome of the nosy neighbor

Dr. Efrem Bishop – standard country doctor, a quarrelsome man

Evelyn Martindale – drama teacher with an eye for detail

Performances of DEATH & TAXES will be May 9-12 at the Historic 1908 Courthouse in Independence with a special benefit performance on May 18th at the Fries Theatre. For more information, please call the Arts Council at 276-238-1217 or email us at




Comments are closed.

Get Arts Council Emails

  • Events are coming soon, stay tuned!

Your support of the Arts Council provides free arts in the schools programming, annual scholarships, and exciting public events that enrich lives throughout the twin counties!