This first adaptation for the stage of Agatha Christie’s earliest thriller comes to Coventry, bringing with it the feel of bygone days.
You are transported to London in the 1920s, a time of uncertainty but hope for the future. This thriller taps into that and delivers a complex and twisting plot that is so typical to this genre. Tommy and Tuppence decide to become adventurers to make their money. Before they can find an adventure, it finds them when Tuppence unwittingly uses a false name which is significant to those around her. They are hired by Sir James to investigate the disappearance of the mysterious Jane Fish. From then on nothing is as it seems.
There are just seven cast members in this production. Quick costume changes allow them to play multiple parts. They also provide the music for the musical interludes and dramatic moments. Morgan Philpott is the band leader, narrator and magician who invites the audience into the play. His piercing and expressive eyes add to the tension. Our bold adventurers Tommy and Tuppence are played by Emerald O’Hanrahan and Garmon Rhys with conviction and enthusiasm throughout. The cast are constantly changing characters and running around the set without losing the drama of the piece.
The set is a design triumph, not only does it look good but it enables the chases and fast paced action to flow unhindered around the stage. There is a slight tongue in cheek feel about the production, aided by the interaction with the audience and the use of stylised props. This may not sit comfortably with some Agatha Christie fans, although the adaptation has tried to retain much of her original story.
The Secret Adversary is a perfect introduction to mystery thrillers of this era. An enjoyable romp that keeps you guessing until the end.
The Secret Adversary runs at Belgrade Theatre, Coventry until Saturday 2 May. To book, call the Belgrade Theatre Box Office on 024 7655 3055 or click here and book online.
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