Theatre review: The Unexpected Guest, The Rossendale Players

The Unexpected Guest
The Unexpected Guest

Whodunnit? The Rossendale Players, and they did it very well.

The amateur theatre group’s latest production, Agatha Christie’s murder mystery “The Unexpected Guest” is a very expected success.

Indeed, such is the quality of the Player’s latest staging, this production was quite possibly the group’s best in years.

The 1958 play by the Queen of Detective Fiction was brought admirably to the stage by the Rossendale Players in a moody, atmospheric production.

A near-perfect ensemble cast, gathered in a south Wales country house, is topped by Stephen Claxon as the enigmatic title character who calls at the home of the Warwick family, and changes their lives forever.

Stephen’s performance keeps you guessing to the very end.

Helen Lockett, who plays Laura Warwick, a woman with a dark secret and a potential murderer, is excellent too.

Special mention must also go to Ben McCarthy who sensitively plays the part of Jan Warwick, a young man with learning difficulties.

As so often with productions at the Players’ intimate New Millennium Theatre home, the set and costumes are as much a part of the overall success, and here again they do not disappoint.

Directed with aplomb by Christine Durkin, the play rattles along at a great pace and the audience is kept on tenterhooks throughout.

For more information about the Rossendale Players visit www.rossendaleplayers.org.uk