In his first design for 5 Wits, Mathew DuPlessie channeled the fedora-wearing, whip-cracking swagger of Indiana Jones. Called Tomb, this interactive entertainment experience threw its participants into ancient Egypt to solve riddles and clues from a supernatural pharaoh. Since then, DuPlessie, a graduate of MIT and Harvard Business School, has opened up two new adventures that combine the immersive special effects of a Hollywood movie with the interactive role-play of a video game. "It's hands-on entertainment," the former designer for Disney World and Universal Studios told the Patriot Ledger, "that forces people to get off their rear end."
Thus far, all of his adventures have worked to immerse the mind and the senses—the Shakespearean origins of the company's name. Taken from Much Ado About Nothing, "five wits" refers to the Bard's nod to memory, imagination, fantasy, common sense, and estimation. Though the scenarios are meant to thrill and challenge players, none are meant to frighten, nor are they designed to be beyond the reach of those with average physical ability and psychic powers.
South Shore Conservatory is the largest community school for the arts in Massachusetts, offering classes in music, dance and drama, as well as an arts-based preschool and kindergarten. Concerts are open to the public, and its Evenings Under the Stars summer concert series attracts concertgoers throughout Greater Boston.
Arthur Murray has been a leading name in franchise dance since 1912, when the entrepreneur began selling mail-order dance lessons. Expanding his reach, he enlisted teachers to spread his signature dance lessons on first-class steamships and skyrocketed to fame in the '30s after introducing the public to such dances as the Lambeth Walk and The Big Apple. By the 1950s, Arthur and his wife, Kathryn, were hosting their own highly popular TV show on ABC, The Arthur Murray Dance Party, which ran for 12 years. Today, Arthur Murray's team prepares students for rug cutting at special events and weekend nightclub jaunts. Throughout lessons, instructors teach the foundations of two to four dances from a long list of styles that range from Latin to country-western, helping students to learn basic step patterns, timing, and the ability to lead or follow.
Not all live comedy is contained to Boston’s Theater District. Just ask the folks at Improv Asylum, located in an underground spot in the North End, where local actors perform different sketch and improvisational comedy shows nightly. The subterranean space on Hanover Street hosts 90-minute shows with up to six different actors in each show, performing skits that touch upon family humor, current events and even some adult topics (suggested minimum age for shows is 17 years due to the content). There are nine different shows held here each week, with a cast that interacts with the audience to ensure the authenticity of each show. Best of all, military and student discounts keep the already-low prices at rock-bottom levels.
Celebrities from Busta Rhymes to Gisele Bündchen have visited Limelight Stage & Studios, a karaoke lounge designed to give every guest—even ones who have not joined Hollywood’s ranks—a chance to shine onstage. Performers can belt out their favorite tunes on a general stage while an emcee waits in the wings; alternatively, groups can retire to private karaoke studios that accommodate up to 30 for a more intimate vibe. The studios’ Mixr technology allows singers to personalize their sets by choosing their own songs, videos, lighting, and foreign accents. As stars show off their vocal cords, a team of waiters delivers platters of cocktails and finger food such as egg rolls and chicken tenders.
A step inside the opulent Boston Opera House, located near Downtown Crossing in the Theater District, reveals a magnificent marble lobby complete with a grand staircase and classic red theater carpeting, plus gold leaf finishes and brilliant crystal chandeliers. This grand dame was lovingly restored in 2004, but has managed to retain (or at least recreate) much of its historic gilded interior and gorgeous silk tapestries. The 2,677-seat theater, which is now the official home of the Boston Ballet and touring Broadway shows, was originally constructed as a movie theater in 1928. Upgraded seating options include comfortable plush red seats for both the orchestra and mezzanine levels, and choice views of the stage throughout. In addition to the Boston Ballet’s annual holiday performance of The Nutcracker, the revolving roster of year-round performances here includes everything from The Lion King to Phantom of the Opera.