Murder-mystery in the manor
Back Alley Productions presents ‘The Mousetrap’
Back Alley Productions will present six performances of Agatha Christie’s classic murder- mystery, “The Mousetrap,” over two weekends beginning Friday, June 1, at the Mars Theatre in LaFayette, Georgia.
Interest in Christie’s work has been revived with the successful film adaptations of “Murder on the Orient Express” and “Crooked House” in 2017. “The Mousetrap” began its life as a radio play in May 1947 by the name “Three Blind Mice,” based on the true case of Dennis O’Neil. The tale premiered on London’s West End in 1952. Since then, “The Mousetrap” has become known as theater’s longest-running play.
The play begins with five strangers arriving at Monkswell Manor during a snowstorm just after a murder in town. The manor has recently been converted into a guest house run by Mollie and Giles Ralston. While waiting for the guests to arrive, Mollie listens to a radio report about the murder in town, which states that police are looking for a man in a dark overcoat observed near the scene.
The first four guests to arrive are Christopher Wren, an unkempt, flighty young man; Mrs. Boyle, who complains about everything; Major Metcalf, an amiable ex-military man; and Miss Casewell. An unexpected fifth guest arrives identifying himself in a foreign accent as Mr. Paravicini. He tells the Ralstons his car has overturned in a snowdrift, snow has blocked the roads and that the guests of the house are trapped.
The next afternoon, Mollie answers a telephone call from Superintendent Hogben of the Berkshire Police. Hogben tells her that he is dispatching Sergeant Trotter to the guest house, and that the Ralstons must listen carefully to what Trotter has to tell them.
Trotter explains he has been sent in regard to the murder in town of Maureen Lyon. He reveals that a notebook found at the murder scene contained the address of Monkswell Manor and the words “Three Blind Mice.” A note reading “This is the First” was pinned to the woman’s body. The police have sent Trotter to find out how the Ralstons’ house is connected to the murder and whether residents are in danger.
When a second victim is found in the manor, everyone becomes a suspect and hidden identities and motivations are revealed.
Keegan Westra is directing Back Alley Productions’ version of this tale. The cast includes James Caleb Reed, Meagan Robinson, Michael Lynn, James Lanier, D.J. Lovett, David Howard, Cynthia Huber, Sam Bingham and newcomer Sally Sainthill.
Purchase tickets online at bapshows. com or call 706- 621-2870. Tickets, if available, are sold in the box office 30 minutes before curtain.
James Caleb Reed, standing foreground, with D. J. Lovett, Meagan Robinson, David Howard, Sam Bingham, Sally Sainthill and James Lanier in back, from left.