With Agatha Christie's The Mousetrap playing continuously for the past 60 years in London and now touring the UK, the attention it seems is all on the record breaking production. Following last year's Murder On The Nile, Bill Kenwright and The Agatha Christie Theatre Company (who are now in their eighth year) continue to expertly bring Christie's other mysteries to the stage.
Go Back For Murder is the stage play of the novel Murder In Retrospect, keeping the 'five little pig' suspects but without featuring Poirot. This vintage murder mystery takes us back to 1968, where Carla Le Merchant (Sophie Ward) sets out to discover the truth about her father's murder. After a reading a letter protesting innocence from her late mother who died in prison, Carla is determined to prove her mother was not the killer. As the title suggests, she goes back... Carla visits the homes of everyone involved throughout the first act in a series of five scenes which involved little more than sitting and talking. The layout and style of the furniture changed each time to suggest a new venue but I can't help but feel this is better suited to film. In true Christie fashion, by the interval every suspect, no more so than another is a potential murderer.
For the second act we are taken back to the day of the murder in 1948 through a camera lens (with a very bright flash) for the denouement which steadily builds to the big reveal. Sophie Ward now plays Carla's mother Caroline Crale. Sophie gives a strong performance as both characters, as does Liza Goddard as Miss Williams. Gary Mavers is Amyas Crale, the father and victim. Joining them are Ben Nealon as Justin Fogg, Mark Lisseman as Turnball, Robert Duncan as Philip Blake, Antony Edge as Meredith Blake, Lysette Anthony as Lady Elsa Greer and Sammy Andrews as Angela Warren.
You really have to follow the story told in different perspectives through some initial lengthy dialogue, but when it get's going it really does build to a very precise, intense climax - a meticulous murder mystery!
Go Back For Murder runs at the Wolverhampton Grand Theatre until Saturday 9th February and tickets can be booked here.