Review - The Mousetrap - National Tour


The Mousetrap - National Tour

A night of Classic Drama, full of mystery, suspense...and murder. The Mousetrap has it all!

I , like many , have been a fan of Agatha Christie and her numerous crime stories for years . She is the Queen of Crime, creating numerous infamous detectives, like Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple who often had to solve the classic locked room/isolated house mystery, where usually there's been a murder! .

Inspired by true events,  Agatha Christie , first created a play in 1947 called Three Blind Mice. This short play was performed on the radio and was written as a birthday present for the consort Queen Mary . Five years later the play, now renamed The Mousetrap began its incredible history. 71 years later The Mousetrap is the world's longest running play, having been seen by over 10 million people. To celebrate this incredible ongoing achievement The Mousetrap is out on its 70th Anniversary Tour.

The curtain rises to reveal the lounge of the grand Monkswell Manor.  Numerous doors and archways lead off to the other unseen rooms of the Manor. An inviting fire burns in the fireplace. It's winter, present day (1952) and a blizzard and snowstorm leaves the house isolated. The perfect setting for a murder mystery. 

Like many grand houses , Monkswell Manor has been turned into a guesthouse. Soon you are introduced to the owners, Mr. and Mrs. Ralston and their guests: Christopher Wren, Mrs. Boyle, Major Metcalf, Miss Casewell and the eccentric Mr. Paravicini. All have their own story to tell . The seven, are soon joined by Detective Sergeant Trotter who informs everyone that an escaped murderer is on the run and there is a clue that the murderer is on the way to Monkswell Manor. As you would expect in a Classic Christie drama, everyone is a suspect and they all have secrets to hide. 

The play features a small cast of 8 and all perform their roles brilliantly. Special mention to Joelle Dyson who plays the lady of the house, Mrs Mollie Ralston. Dyson keeps the house at its best and commands the stage with her presence. You also get to hear her sing briefly and her voice carried right through the theatre giving chills to a familiar tune.

Elliot Clay plays the young energetic Christopher Wren and has the audience laughing along with his antics and comic moments. Clay brings the light hearted humour to a dark mysterious tale. Joining him in comic moments is the eccentric foreign unexpected guest Mr. Paravicini, played by Kieran Brown who's overly foreign accent and acting keeps you wondering who is to be believed.

Completing the line of suspects are Laurence Pears (Mr. Giles Ralston ), Essie Barrow (Miss Casewell), Joseph Reed (Sgt Detective Trotter), Todd Carty (Major Metcalf) and Gwyneth Strong (Mrs. Boyle). Although unseen, the Understudies play credited technical roles behind the scenes , keeping the mystery of the theatre ongoing.

The play, thankfully, hasn't been modernised and the staging and sound of the show remain the same as it would have been back in 1952. The Mousetrap is a classic piece of theatre and the packed auditorium show that it's still a well-loved show, even after 70 years.

At the end of the play, you are reminded that you are now partners in crime and asked not to reveal the secrets of Monkswell Manor, so that future audiences can continue to enjoy the mysterious play and try for themselves to work out 'Whodunnit?'

This production was reviewed at The Kings Theatre, Glasgow on Monday 1st May where it runs until the 6th May 2023.  Tickets for all tour dates can be found here: The Mousetrap Official Tour Site - The world’s longest running play (mousetrapontour.co.uk)

***** stars

Steven McCann

Catch Steven every Sunday at 4pm for 'Showtime with Steven' here on Box Office Radio