And Then There Were None

Agatha Christie
Theatre Royal Newcastle-Upon-Tyne

Listing details and ticket info...

The full cast of And Then There Were None Credit: Manuel Harlan
David Yelland as Judge Wargave standing Credit: Manuel Harlan
Bob Barrett as Doctor Armstrong Credit: Manuel Harlan
The cast of Then There Were None before dinner Credit: Manuel Harlan
Sophie Walter as Vera Claythorne Joseph Beattie as Philip Lomabard Credit: Manuel Harlan
Katy Stephens as Emily Brent Credit: Manuel Harlan
Jeffery Kissoon as General Mackenzie Credit: Manuel Harlan
Nicola May-Taylor as Jane Pinchbeck/ Beatrice Taylor Credit: Manuel Harlan
Andrew Lancel as William Blore Credit: Manuel Harlan

A muslin curtain covers the set, tantalisingly masking what is to come. In the form of many stories, the first half introduces all the characters involved with some of their background.

Eight apparent strangers all find themselves invited to a weekend on a small isolated island. In the best of murder mystery traditions, they are cut off from the world with no telephone and a raging gale outside; I wonder who was responsible for that scenario? They are two servants, the cook Nicola May-Taylor and housekeeper Georgina Rogers (Lucy Tregear). The ‘hosts’ have apparently been detained, so we are left with “the ten”. Even if one does not know the story, the title somewhat gives it away: all are doomed, but why and by whom remains the thread that keeps you interested.

This is very much a production in two parts. The first half, while intriguingly set, is very traditional in format and style, if anything a little pedestrian in pace, very even, with very little change of tempo. In contrast, the second half romps away, almost manic in sections and more impressionistic and abstract in style. Various deceased, disembodied characters appear at the rear of the stage periodically, one supposes to add an air of eeriness?

An intriguing story is well cast; most, if not all, are very familiar faces and names from TV and screen, so lots of experience, well-acted with an original set. Christie said it was the most difficult story she had ever had written in her 86 years, probably as it was based on an 1869 minstrel song by the British songwriter Frank Green which serves as a major plot element. The book with over 100 million copies sold is one of the best selling books of all time. Its title has changed, from "Ten Little Indians", “Ten Little Soldiers” and eventually “And Then There Were None”, taken from the last five words of the song.

Dame Agatha Mary Clarissa Christie, Lady Mallowan, DBE was born in 1890 in Torquay and famous for writing the world's longest-running play, The Mousetrap, in 1952. Next to the Bible and Shakespeare, she is the best-selling author with her books having sold over a billion copies in the English language and a billion in translation. It is easy to see why she is called “The Queen of Crime”, obviously adored by the packed audience of fans old and new.

A super original plot that gives no clues away and leaves you guessing up to the final scene, unless you already know. As a couple behind me said, “absolutely love it”, which summed up the feeling of the theatre.

Reviewer: Anna Ambelez

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