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In 1952, Agatha Christie's sprawling and intricate new whodunnit, The Mousetrap (based on her radio play, Three Blind Mice), opened in the West End on a very strict condition; no audience or press member was to ever give away the plot of the show!
Christie herself was not altogether positive as to the play's run, giving it eight months 'at most', so perhaps her edict seemed fair at the time. But it is a testament to theatre audiences that The Mousetrap has endured at St. Martin's Theatre, continually running for nearly seventy years. To put that into perspective, when the show first played, Winston Churchill was Prime Minister, London still suffered from the Great Smog, the NHS was just four years old, and Dame Vera Lynn dominated the hit parade!
Six decades have done nothing to dull The Mousetrap, the story of an odd assortment of guests snowed in at Monkswell Manor, whilst a murderer is at large and en-route. But could they be already here? When bodies start showing up, it's up to the stranded group to solve the mystery, before they become a part of it?
Wonder why you haven't seen the film? The secrecy around the plot wasn't the only condition laid down by Dame Agatha. A film adaptation is only allowed six months after the West End production closes, and given that it has been going strong for nearly seventy years without any sign of ending, that doesn't look all that likely any time soon!
Opening night: 25 March 1974
The Mousetrap is recommended age for children is 12 years and up. Young children are admitted but not encouraged unless the parent is confident that the child is old enough to be attentive to the performance and not a distraction for other members of the audience. Everyone must have a valid ticket and occupy a seat. Accompanying adults will be asked to remove any noisy infants.
Two hours 15 minutes with one 15-minute intermission
Lynette Edwards as Mrs Boyle
Sam Heron as Christopher Wren
Alan Magor as Detective-Sergeant Trotter
Paul Ridley as Major Metcalf
Mary Galloway as Miss Casewell
Sean Patterson as Mr. Paravicini
Tom Rooke as Giles Ralston
Haley Flaherty as Mollie Ralston
Dan Burton as Giles Ralston
Ben Riddle as U/S Detective Sgt. Trotter / Giles
Hilary Derrett as U/S Mrs Boyle
Serena Jennings as U/S Mollie / Casewell
Thomas Lawson as U/S Christopher Wren
Clive Marlowe as U/S Paravacini/Major Metcalf
Written by Agatha Christie
Directed by Ian Talbot
9 reviews, average rating: (3.8 Stars)
Lovely quaint theatre excellent actors /actresses truly didn't work out... more
I'm not a huge fan of Christie, but this play delivered. It was much fun,... more
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