A Murder Is Announced, Middle Ground Theatre Company, New Theatre, Cardiff

The murder was announced by ‘Middle Ground Theatre Company’, and we stepped back in time, and into the formal drawing room of a house in Chipping Cleghorn. The attention to detail was mesmerising, from the vase on the table and the clock on the mantle, to the drinks decanter in the corner, all of which were deliberately placed it turned out!

As each cast member joined the stage, every line was fill of meanings and the clues kept coming. Bunny and Letty, played by Karen Dury and Barbara Wilshure, made the perfect double act, one calm and collected, the other scatty and disorientated, and all part of the plot! Enter the maid ‘Mitzi’ played by Lydia Piechowiak, and the calm slow pace was instantly changed as she burst through the door, with tales of spies, torture and a pledge to stay silent.

Not knowing the story, there were times when I was a little lost trying to remember who had been where and why, the widow Pip was one of those characters. It was during the interval, when discussing with friends, that I started to piece together more of the names, back stories and intricacies of the mystery.

The costumes were in keeping with the times and I was fascinated by ‘Julia’, who she was, her history and whether she was telling the truth. Lucy Evans certainly made every small movement count as she moved around the stage!

Sarah Thomas as Miss Marple was simply delightful. Unassuming and straight talking with an element of mischief, she had Inspector Craddock , played by Tom Butcher, on the back foot at every turn, with an added dose of humour.

A pleasure to sit back and watch, with endless twists, ‘A Murder is Announced’ was a perfect murder mystery.

Until February 15

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