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Death By Fatal Murder

What on earth just happened? I went for a lovely drive on a summer’s evening with the sun shining (would you believe?) down to the beautiful seaside at Swanage. And then all hell broke out. I’ve just spent two hours in the Mowlem Theatre, 50% of which I spent bewildered and the other half laughing myself hoarse.

Inspector Pratt’s record of crime detection at Bagshot House is not enviable. In his two previous visits the body count mounted disastrously as he looked on, helpless and hopeless. Now he’s back and, as usual, chaos reigns supreme!

And there is no exaggeration! With twists and turns galore, malapropisms in the exterminate and misunderstandings apoplexy it was a mad, insane world we were taken to.

Swanage Drama did a brilliant job with a period set, gorgeous costumes and fabulous hair.

This play must have the shortest opening scene in history which immediately had you going, “What?”.

The entire cast were superb, their energy infectious and it wouldn’t be right to single anyone out. But I have to. First off, Victoria Jones – Ginny Farquhar – came up with the most outrageous laugh you have ever heard. And it didn’t even get wearing.

Simon Wells made a lovely Blodwyn Morgan, wannabe clairvoyant and master of British regional accents. And he always sat so lady-like, not.

But hats off to Brian Travers – Inspector Pratt. That must have been such a hard part to learn. I don’t think he strung together more than two words that actually made any sense. His energy and timing were sublime.

I even loved the programme with reproduction ‘40’s adverts in there.

Were there any first night niggles? Well yes. Although mostly pacey it did drop on occasions. I had a sense sometimes that words were proving elusive and cues a bit tardy. This was most pronounced in the final scene which had the distinct feel that it might not have been rehearsed as much as the rest. On the other hand it could all have been first night nerves.

Would I go and watch it again? You bet.

Do yourselves a favour. Put the tele on record and get down to The Mowlem in Swanage and treat yourself to a tremendous night out. You won’t regret it. The show runs until June 22nd.