The longest-running play on London’s West End, The Mousetrap, opens at the Theatre on the Bay for the festive season.
Written by crime queen Agatha Christie (pictured right) in the 1950s, the play is set in a stately home in the British countryside, during the dead of winter. The manor has been converted to a guest house, and a number of guests – both expected and unexpected – arrive, only to find themselves later snowed in due to the bad weather. And then, they discover there is a murderer in their midst …
The Mousetrap is known for its twist ending, which the audience are traditionally asked not to reveal after leaving the theatre.
The South African production at the Theatre on the Bay is directed by Jonathan Tafler, and features West End actor Mark Wynter as well as a local cast including Melissa Haiden, Mark Sykes, Matthew Lotter, Michelle Maxwell, Malcolm Terrey and Aidan Scott.
The Mousetrap has been running for nearly 70 years in London’s West End, and was initially performed as a radio play in 1952. Not bad for a play which Christie thought might run for eight months while its original producer, Sir Peter Saunders, gave it 14. Initially, three leading directors turned it down, and a fourth later withdrew. Reviews following the West End first night on November 25, 1952, were mixed.
And yet. Agatha Christie’s gift for creating suspense and drama prevailed, and the show steadily gained traction. Over the years The Mousetrap has attracted its fair share of famous audience members, including the Queen and Prince Phillip, Richard Attenborough, Winston Churchill and Quentin Tarantino. There has even been a Chinese-language version, which included a traditional Chinese dance and a different ending.
However, rest assured that the Theatre on the Bay production will retain its original charm!
What: The Mousetrap
Where and when: The Theatre on the Bay from 5 December 2018 to 19 January 2019