We had the good fortune of connecting with Mystery Mike McHale Hennessey and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Mystery Mike, how did you come up with the idea for your business?
I was performing various characters for a party company and I was also running the office and I had multiple potential clients call and asked if we did Mystery Parties for Kids. I responded no every time because we were only doing fairy tale characters and super heros, no mystery party in sight. After the fourth mom had called inquiring about a Mystery Show I thought to myself “WHY aren’t we doing Mystery Parties?”” I thought about for a couple of days, trying to think of what we could actually DO at a Mystery Party for kids and on day two BAM! In the shower I literally SAW the entire Mystery Party playing out in my head…A birthday party….a colorful suspicious guest and missing presents and then ENTER the bumbling Detective Mumbo Jumbo Columbo! That same day someone called asking if we did Mystery Parties and I responded, “Why YES, we do!!!” And I described what I envisioned and the mom booked right away. We’re still friends to this day. And years later I have produced and performed at over 20,000 Mystery Shows all throughout Southern California. I filled a need that parents wanted beyond the 6 year old tea parties. I am proud to say to this day not one other Company does the personal interactive mystery shows for children that I provide. 🙂
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am ecstatic that I am able to use my creativity and gifts to put together wonderful interactive, educational mystery shows for children (of all ages), where they implement reading, writing, spelling and counting to solve a mystery together with other children. To date, I have ‘trained’ close to 1 MILLION children across the country either in person or currently on line. www.mysteriesbymike.com I am very proud of my Children’s Musical, KOOKIE CLUBHOUSE KINGDOM that recently played at the Hollywood Fringe Festival. It is a Multicultural interactive mystery musical with characters from all over the world that showcases a beautiful range of characters from every corner of the globe. My phenomenal musical director Laurie Grant helped this vision to come to life back in 1996 and then again in 2017.. I am now developing it as a series as we type. I am also extremely proud that in this time of Covid, I was able to ‘adjust’ and acclimate my shows specifically for online and I have had tremendous success with hundreds of students as I figured out how to bring my ‘Spy Kidz’ training into a whole new world… I have overcome AIDS and West Nile and abject poverty to be where I am today. There were times when I was sick and close to death just 10 years ago and I was ready to give up but that I realized that I know that I have more to share with the world. One of my ‘deathbed’ experiences was actually pretty interesting. I was down to 115 pounds in the hospital, dying but I kept checking my ‘Mystery Hotline’ at home and I got a call from a woman named Michelle Kelley; who heard that I was the greatest children’s entertainer in the world and she HAD to have me for her sons upcoming party a month later. We spoke many times while I was in the hospital. The weekend I was prepping for her party I get a call from the nanny reminding me that “Michelle Pfeiffer’s party was this weekend” And I thought to myself, “Noooo…it’s Michelle Kelley’s party….OOOOOOOOOOOOO….!” Then I realized that I had been talking to Catwoman this whole time. She and I had a great laugh about it and every time I see her and her wonderful husband David Kelley they are always so wonderful to me and call me by my character name “CAPTAIN BIG MOUTH”…my Pirate name 🙂
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
LOL, I AM the Tour Guide for all of my friends and family that come to visit and there are so many fun places I take them to including Hollywood Blvd, Grauman’s Chinese theatre, the walk of fame, the Magic Castle, the Hollywood Bowl and then to Casita Del Campo for a fun Campy dinner and show like Fruitcake Follies! I would also take them to BOTH of the GETTY Museums; they are incredible and breathtaking. Venice Beach and the Santa Monica Pier are MUST visit places and while we’re there we could shot up to Malibu for dinner at Dukes at sunset. A trip to the quaint Danish town of Solvang and a visit to Santa Barbara while we’re there as well. If they want to visit some great beaches I would take them to Zuma and then down to Huntington & Laguna Beach. A very good friend came to visit years ago and I had just won a lunch with Kathy Griffin so I took my friend to the lunch and it was soooo much fun. It’s great living in a magical town where you can go to great theater and have amazing dinners and then go to a beach for a moonlit walk. Of course, if they were inclined I would take them to the Abbey in WeHo and if the dance clubs were open we would be kicking our heels up or seeing one of the FUNtastic drag shows with performers like Glen Alen. For the best lunch my all time favorite place is Chateau Marmont, which is also a great place to go for cocktails in the early evening and you ALWAYS catch a glimpse of a star or two, especially around award season.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My husband and partner in every aspect of my life, Bob Burlingham has been my rock and inspiration for almost 20 years now. He has encouraged me when things weren’t always ‘happening’ the way I would have liked them to be happening. And many times when I was very ill in the past, he lifted me up and gave me the strength to continue. Also, my mother, Ellen Sue Garvey has always played an intricate part in all things kid centered. She taught me how to ‘speak kid’ And finally, my dear friend and Mentor, Dee Wallace (E.T.s MOM) has inspired me and believed in me since the day we met on Easter 1994. (Yikes, I’m dating myself) 🙂 She helped me to get in touch with my inner child and helped me to see what was always in front of me as far as gifts and what I have to offer the world.
Website: www.mysteriesbymike.com www.IamMiracleMike.com www.DinoDogz.com
Instagram: @MichaelHennesseyActor https://www.instagram.com/michaelhennesseyactor
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MysteriesByMike https://www.facebook.com/MiracleMikeHealer
Other: My children’s book is coming out next month www.DinoDogz.com (you can download a free Game App while you wait for it)
Bob Burlingham, Bart Mastronardi