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Deathtrap @ The Waterside Theatre, Aylesbury

Published by: Yvonne Delahaye on 20th Sep 2017 | View all blogs by Yvonne Delahaye

Image result for deathtrap tour poster

If you’re of a nervous disposition, then be prepared for some loud noises that will make you jump out of your skin!  With so many plot twists and turns, Deathtrap is a play within a play with one set and five characters written in 1978 by Ira Levin.  It holds the record for the longest running comedy-thriller on Broadway and was also nominated for the Tony Award for Best Play.  It has been revived many times and was adapted into a film in 1992 starring Christopher Reeve, Michael Caine and Dyan Cannon.

Sidney Bruhl, a once-successful writer of stage thrillers is in the grip of chronic writer’s block, when young playwright Clifford Anderson sends Bruhl his brilliant new whodunit, Deathtrap.  Desperate to set Broadway alight once more, should Bruhl kill the newcomer and pass the play off as his own?

Playing the central role of Sidney, is Paul Bradley who is best known for his ten year role playing Professor Elliot Hope in BBC’s Holby City, as well as playing Nigel Bates in Eastenders.  Rarely off the stage, it’s a huge role and Paul gives a commanding performance as the complex, ruthless Sidney.

Playing Sidney’s wife, Myra Bruhl, is Eastender’s actress Jessie Wallace.  It was good to see that she could master an American accent, but at times she looked quite uncomfortable as the first scenes were a little stilted leaving her standing for long periods of time.  A bit more movement and chances to sit would have made all the difference I think!

Disrupting the proceedings is the arrival of Clifford Anderson (Sam Phillips), changing the course of their lives forever.  Beverley Klein relishes playing psychic Helga Ten Dorp and gets lots of laughs as she hams it up in spectacular style.  Julien Ball completes the cast as lawyer Porter Milgrim.

The play runs till Saturday 23rd at The Waterside Theatre, then continues to Birmingham and Richmond.

 

Reviewed by:

Yvonne Delahaye

19.9.17

 

@yvonnedelahaye

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