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BrumHour was invited to the press night of The Mousetrap by The Alexandra.
By Dave Massey twitter.com/BrumHour
Please note this production contains misogynistic and casually homophobic behaviour.
Agatha Christie’s The Mousetrap at
Director by Gareth Armstrong and written by Agatha Christie
Mollie (Harriett Hare) and Giles (Nick Biadon) have opened a small guesthouse 30 miles from London. With their first guests arriving they are already feeling some pressure as it is snowing heavily. Mrs Boyle (Susan Penhaligon), Chris Wren (Lewis Chandler), Miss Casewell (Saskia Vaigncourt-Strallen) and Major Metcalf (John Griffiths). Then a latecomer Mr Paravicini (David Alcock) who hasn’t booked arrives, and soon a police officer Sergeant Trotter (Geoff Arnold) arrives at the hotel to do some investigations.
With so many characters to fit into two one-hour halves, you’d wonder how to remember them all. Luckily, they are all drawn with such broad strokes that, as the play progresses, we learn about their fairly shifty personalities pretty quickly.
The Mousetrap is a proper theatre legend first performed in 1952 and actually came to The Alexandra in that very year before its massive continuous run in the West End.
I’ve tried to keep this review pretty spoiler-free but their are certain things any audience member who has seen or read any Agatha Christie will immediately know. Some characters look down on the working class, yet seem to have no direction themselves. The setting is an old house filled with secrets and the story seems to be set in the early 1950s. (At the time it was first staged).
The single set in the reception area of the house has many doors, lights and chairs, and the lighting made my spine suitability chilled.
The Mousetrap manages the trick of being timeless and out of its time all in one go. Some of its social comment on suspicion of difference and fear of changes is more relevant in 2019 than it has ever been.
This is an engaging, fun crime story with more than a dash of humour to stop it being totally serious.
The Mousetrap is at The Alexandra until Saturday 16th November. Book tickets with BrumHour’s affiliate link >> HERE <<.
This isn’t a sponsored post.
When not writing about theatre for BrumHour, or producing Interval Theatre for Brum Radio (Tuesdays at 3pm brumradio.com/intervaltheatre), Dave Massey can be found eating crisps and tweeting about Birmingham for #BrumHour.