Mr Monkey sees The Mousetrap on tour at the Opera House
Venue : Opera House, Manchester
Tour start date: 11th September 2012
Tour end date : 14th June 2014
Visit date : 23rd October, 2012
Because 2012 marks the 60th year of uninterrupted performance of The Mousetrap, Mousetrap Productions Ltd has decided to take the play on tour around the UK and Eire.
When Mr Monkey found out that the play would be on at the Opera House in Manchester in only a couple of weeks, he made his humans buy tickets. Slightly predictably a lot of other people had booked tickets already, so Mr Monkey and his humans were up in the gallery. Luckily, the Opera House still hires out opera glasses for people who have left their telescopes at home.
The action of The Mousetrap takes place in the lounge of Monkswell Hall, a country house which has just opened as a guest house, sometime after the Second World War. Despite increasingly bad weather, a variety of guests arrive at the Hall. Unfortunately, by the time a policeman arrives and announces that it's fairly likely that a murderer is on his way from London to kill one of the Hall's inhabitants, the telephone is out of order and the Hall is cut off from civilisation. And then one of the guests is found strangled...
Mr Monkey was really impressed by the set, which shows the main lounge of Monkswell Hall. He admired the plentiful wood panelling and the unlikely profusion of doors for suspects to be suspicious in and out of. The most impressive feature is a massive window looking out onto a snow covered lawn; there's a lovely snow effect and the light through the window changes to show the time of day or night.
Mr Monkey thoroughly enjoyed The Mousetrap. The characters are fairly crudely drawn, much as Mr Monkey had expected, and a few sections where two characters talk while four other people in room just do nothing demonstrate that the Mousetrap started as a radio play, but that doesn't really seem to matter. The play is funnier than Mr Monkey expected and the actors all do exactly what is necessary for an enjoyable two and a bit hours.
Because Dame Agatha plays fair and Mr Monkey reads a fair amount of Golden Age crime fiction (and is a clever monkey), he successfully ignored all the red herrings and worked out who the killer was a little before the police did. He can't tell you who did all the murders because he, and all the audience, were sworn to secrecy.
The Mousetrap tours the UK and Eire until 14th June 2014.