Sign up for our weekly newsletter
Waterfront Festival

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

We have a favour to ask…

LeftLion is Nottingham’s meeting point for information about what’s going on in our city, from the established organisations to the grassroots. We want to keep what we do free to all to access, but increasingly we are relying on revenue from our readers to continue. Can you spare a few quid each month to support us?

Support LeftLion now