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The Comedy of Errors

Theatre Review: Father Brown

30 June 21 words: Ian Douglas

A Very Unholy Triangle

Classic Thriller Season - man sneaks into door

The Colin McIntyre whodunnit season is back again at the Theatre Royal. Four classic thrillers over four weeks. And there’s nothing like a juicy murder to take our minds off the Pandemic.

The Murderer in the Mirror is adapted from a GK Chesterton mystery by John Goodrum. And it is a play within a play. Father Brown is invited to a dress rehearsal at a West End theatre. Only-you’ve guessed it-a murder most foul takes place in the wings. Can the good father work out the culprit before the conveniently-delayed police arrive? Can you?

Fans of TV detective series A Touch of Frost will be delighted to see actor John Lyons donning the sleuth’s cassock and not for the first time. He’s played Father Brown before. A small cast works hard, and actors John Goodrum and Karen Henson deliver fine performances that keep the play ticking along.

The plot revolves around an unseen and temperamental Italian actress, a new avant-garde play, alleged affairs and all manner of red herrings. It’s non-demanding, easy on the eye, and good clean fun. Some of the dialogue could be tightened up. One character, standing beside the eponymous mirror, refers to it as; the mirror beside the door. Why would you qualify the word mirror with a ‘by the door’ when you’re standing right next to it?

That’s a teensy nit-pick. Mostly, you’re in for a murderous treat. And naturally, Covid security is in full swing to keep theatregoers safe. Expect social distancing, temperature readings, no food-or-drink in the auditorium, no intermission, etcetera.

Despite all that, what could be better to be back in the Theatre Royal, supporting the arts, and sinking our teeth into a good murder. Enjoy!

Father Brown-The Murderer in the Mirror plays at Nottingham’s Theatre Royal from Tuesday Jun 29 to Saturday Jul 3 2021.

Tickets available at trch.co.uk

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