Secrets lead to murder in twisting plot
Suddenly at Home Barlaston Village Hall
THE writer Francis Durbage once said: "My thrillers are not so much whodunnits as will-he-get-away-with-its."
In Barlaston Proscenium Players' production of Suddenly at Home, we soon figured out the villain.
Despite this, there were still plenty of twists, turns and dirty secrets left to be unearthed.
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The opening scene revealed the living room of Maggie and Glenn Howard, where the entire play would take place.
The bolshie Maggie – played well by Emma-Jane Bradbury – wants to retire to Barbados with a huge pot of inherited money.
Glenn, the under-appreciated husband, would prefer to bump her off, get the money and jump in to the arms of Sheila.
Glenn and Sheila, played by Dave Gidman and Karen Barnes, initially seemed far too pleasant to be planning murder.
However, as the plot developed and they both became more desperate, we saw a darker more capable side of both characters.
Maggie's sister, Helen Tenby, was played with poise and intelligence by Carol Galpin.
Fortunately, Helen had a friend in Sam Blaine, the man Glenn would try to frame for his wife's murder. Sam, played well by David Rose, quickly realised he was being set up, and as a successful crime writer had a few tricks up his sleeve to extricate himself from the suspicion of the law.
Each of the six scenes were defined by a prolonged closing of the curtains. As there were no set changes, I would normally question the necessity to stop the show.
However it turned out these pauses allowed the audience a chance to compare notes, theories and make an accusation or two. It really worked.
It was also good to see solid debut performances from both Paul Birchall and Jemma Boulton.
Of course the police soon arrive and Detective Remick, played coolly by Barry Palmer, plays a key role in proceedings.
As is so often the case, if it wasn't for that pesky cop, they just might have got away with it.
Suddenly at Home runs until tomorrow at Barlaston Village Hall. Email email@example.com. Tickets are £6.