• Mike Cooper

A Well Orchestrated Crime


The Minor To Major Symphony Orchestra need your help! Last night, while rehearsing for an upcoming performance, somebody stole the conductor’s baton! This baton is priceless, it is hundreds of years old and said to have been carved from the desk on which Beethoven completed his final concerto.

The orchestra had been rehearsing non-stop for hours. The conductor and world renowned pianist, Baron Von Wavystick, was a ruthless character who would push his musicians to be the best. Although he would produce fantastic music, he was rude, arrogant and would lose his temper at the slightest mistake. During the rehearsal, he had insulted each and every member of the orchestra. They all had motive to commit the crime.

Finally, The Baron allowed the musicians to have a break. Everyone had disappeared to their dressing rooms and returned to the stage fifteen minutes later. The Baron’s face turned white as he approached his music stand and saw that his priceless baton was missing! Immediately, the police were called and shortly afterwards, Detective Constable Al Coda arrived to solve the case. Although he is a great detective, he needs your help! He has questioned the suspects and gathered the evidence but he lacks the musical expertise to put the final pieces together to solve the mystery. This is where you come in. Are you up to the challenge? Think you’ve got what it takes to be a master musical mystery solving sleuth? We hope so!

The Suspects

Group A Violet Longbow - Violinist. Vince Longbow - Violinist.

Group B

Emma Bouchure - Trumpet.

Tommy Tight-Lips - Trumpet.

Group C

Fast-Hand Percy - Percussionist.

Margaret Mallet - Percussionist.

Group D

Baron Von Wavystick - Conductor and Pianist.

Peter Scales - Pianist.

Group E

Peggy Wobble - Double Bass.

Debby Basé - Double Bass.

Group F

Oliver Reed - Tenor Saxophone.

Tootsy Longhorn - Tenor Saxophone.

You can download the list of suspects here:

Suspect List
Download PDF • 30KB

First, D.C Al Coda needs your help to work out the coded message left behind by the thief.

Well, we’re clearly dealing with a serious criminal here! You better solve this mystery quickly! Now it’s time to start eliminating suspects. Each piece of evidence below includes a recording made at the time of the theft, and statements from two suspects. Listen to the evidence of each group and read the statements to work out who is telling the truth and who is lying.

The suspect telling the truth can then be eliminated from the investigation.

The Evidence

Evidence A

Violet Longbow

“You think I did it? There’s no way I could have done it. I was busy practicing a new piece. I can’t remember exactly what it was called but I remember that the tempo marking was Largo.”

Vince Longbow

“Nnnn…nno. I didddn’t do it. I’m too sss..scared of the Bbb…Baron! Please don’t send me to jail! I was practicing a new piece, it was very difficult because the tempo marking was Presto.”

Who is telling the truth?

Violet Longbow

or Vince Longbow

Evidence B

Emma Bouchure

“Well hello, darling. Isn’t this whole affair just ghastly! You wouldn’t expect this sort of behaviour from a professional orchestra. Did you know that I was first trumpet for the London Symphony Orchestra? Oh yes, I am a star. No, I most certainly did not commit the frightful theft. I was busy practicing my time signatures. Yes, I remember now. I was playing a piece in 2/4. Good day to you!”

Tommy Tight-Lips

“I ain’t sayin’ nothin’. It weren’t me. If I knows who dun it then I ain’t sayin’ that either. I was busy when it ‘appened. Playin’ a piece in a 3/4 time signature I was.”

Who is telling the truth?

Emma Bouchure

or Tommy Tight-Lips

Evidence C

Fast-Hand Percy

“Sure, I would love to have stolen that baton! The look on the Baron’s face was priceless! But no, it wasn’t me. You want proof? No problem, I was practicing my scales on the glockenspiel at the time.”

Margaret Mallet

“No way did I steal that baton! I’ve got enough mallets and drum sticks, I don’t need another one! I was busy practicing my scales on the xylophone at the time.”

Who is telling the truth?

Fast-Hand Percy

or Margaret Mallet

Evidence D

Baron Von Wavystick “I am furious. First someone steals my precious baton and now you have the audacity to accuse ME of the crime! How dare you? Well, you will be looking very foolish pretty soon because I definitely didn’t do it. I was in my dressing room playing a lovely piece on the piano. The name of the piece? Oh, I don’t concern myself with facts like that. I do, however, distinctly remember that it was in B major. Now leave me alone!”

Peter Scales

“Well, it’s just dreadful isn’t it. How ever will we perform tonight without that baton? Did you know that we’ve been rehearsing this piece for months? It’s a very difficult piece. If you ask me, even the Baron was struggling with some of the tempo changes. Anyway, I wouldn’t dream of committing such a grievous crime! I was practicing my sight-reading at the time. I didn’t look at the name of the piece but it was definitely in B minor.”

Who is telling the truth?

Baron Von Wavystick

or Peter Scales

Evidence E

Peggy Wobble

“Woah! You nearly made me choke on my sandwich! You think I stole the baton? What would be the point? I mean, yes, I have been known to steal people’s food from time to time. But if they’re just going to leave a piece of chocolate cake in a tupperware box, wrapped in a plastic bag, taped shut and hidden at the back of the fridge with a note saying ‘DO NOT TOUCH’ then what do they expect? It’s just asking to be stolen. But no, I didn’t steal the baton! I was busy practicing my swing rhythms.”

Debby Basé

“Oh my! This is dreadful! It’s just like the time someone stole my piece of chocolate cake from the fridge! I tell you, whoever took that cake is probably the same person who took the baton! Anyway, it definitely was not me. I was busy practicing in my dressing room. What was I practicing? Oh crumbs, I simply cannot remember. All I remember is that it definitely had a straight rhythmic feel.”

Who is telling the truth?

Peggy Wobble

or Debby Basé

Evidence F

Oliver Reed

“No, no, no. Such a simple theft is completely beneath me. If I were to steal something it would involve months of planning and a clear exit strategy. Whoever committed this crime clearly has a much lower I.Q than myself. Can I prove it? Of course! I was working on my dynamics at the time. I was practicing my diminuendos.”

Tootsy Longhorn

“Ha, ha! That Baron had it coming! He’s been treating us badly for years. Yes, I’m very glad someone took that baton! Me?? No, I didn’t do it! I wish I had. I was too busy at the time practicing my crescendos.”

Who is telling the truth?

Oliver Reed

or Tootsy Longhorn


Well done! After a very tricky investigation you have narrowed it down to six suspects. D.C Al Coda has called these suspects back in for interrogation. Here is what they had to say:

Violet Longbow

“Ok, fine! I lied. I was not in my dressing room. A few members of the band had snuck out the back to play some jazz music. Being the prestigious classical musicians we are, we didn’t want anyone else to hear! I was there, I swear!”

Emma Bouchure

“Oh dear, darling! How embarrassing! Yes, I remember now. I was not in my dressing room at all, I had snuck out to the alleyway with some of the others to play some….jazz music. Oh dear! I am so ashamed.”

Margaret Mallet

“Yes, I lied. I’m really sorry, I just didn’t want anyone else to know my secret. A few of us had gone out in to the alleyway to play some jazz music. Do I regret it? No, it was great fun! Just…please don’t tell my parents.”

Baron Von Wavystick

“This is beyond a joke! How have you still not caught the thief?!? And how dare you accuse me of lying. Yes, obviously I was lying the first time but that was just to test your skill as a detective. If you want the truth, I was in the alleyway with the group playing jazz music. Now move along and stop wasting my time!”

Debby Basé

“Oh gosh, I do apologies for lying. We had agreed not to tell anyone, but I suppose the cat’s out of the bag now. Yes, I was in the alleyway playing some tip-top, toe-tapping jazz music with the hippest cats in town, baby! Oh my, I’m so sorry about that. It’s just the dreadful effect that music has on my manners.”

Oliver Reed

Well done, you somehow outsmarted me, this time. It won’t happen again! No, I was not in my dressing room. I was in the alleyway with the others practicing a jazz tune.”

The Final Clue

Here is a recording from the jam session in the alleyway, but one instrument is missing! It is up you to figure out who was not at the jam session.

The person missing from the recording is the thief!

Who do you accuse? Click their name below to see if you are correct.

Violet Longbow
Download PDF • 8KB