And Then There Were None

Ten strangers are summoned for a long weekend to the remote Soldier Island off the coast of Devon, under variously different pretexts.

Characters arrive individually and in pairs, having travelled to the island to see Mr and Mrs Owens; the hosts of this group holiday excursion. They are assisted Fred Narracott(Chris Allcock) the boatman, who appears briefly in the first act, complete with wellies and Cornish accent.

Only the maid Mrs Rogers (Catherine Wilkinson), and daughter and cook Ethel (Melissa Rawlings), are there to greet them. They too are waiting on the missing couple.

There is no way for any of them to leave the island, so they set about trying to determine who their mysterious hidden host might be and where he might be hiding. As stories are shared one becomes aware that no character has ever met the Owens’ and the confusion as to why they are there and who they all are, begins.

While they are waiting, a recording, via a gramophone record, levels serious accusations at each of them that they have all been responsible for someone’s death. One by one, they are accused. One by one, their various sordid pasts catch up with them, as one by one, they meet their end!!

Tom Brown as Captain Philip Lombard, is a confident man who admits to his previous crime and has come to the island equipped to deal with trouble. Lombard is accompanied to the island by Vera Claythorne (Paris Lowcock) and there is more than a hint of attraction between them.

Anne Marston is a totally immature, irresponsible woman played wonderfully by Emma Simpson. General Mackenzie (Lawrence Chandler) is a retired military man who lost his wife some years ago. A wise, if not slightly confused man, who in a lovely way gains your sympathy.

Miss Emily Brent (Kate Nichols) is a delight to watch.  Looking down on most of the guests, she is a woman knows what she wants and likes and usually gets it. Carl Howe, in his first role for the Drama Club plays, William Blore, who initially hides his identity as a former Policeman.

Jo Longstaff plays Dr Edwina Armstrong (there is always a Doctor). And finally, we have Judge Wargrave, probably the biggest role in the whole production and a huge one to take on by Keith Irons in his debut for the Club. Keith had the appearance and characteristics of a Judge to perfection as he acted as a calming influence as the night continued.

Based on Agatha Christie’s masterpiece, And Then There Were None is the mystery play at its finest. To this day it remains the world’s bestselling mystery novel. The tension rises as the characters begin to unravel. Fingers point and suspicions are raised at the slightest thing. Each actor plays their part wonderfully and moments of humour are capitalised on.

This successful production of And Then There Were None was Maria Lowcock’s first attempt at directing for the Club. It is a taught thriller that keeps the audience enraptured as they try and work out who is the killer at the same time as the characters. This production shows why this story is a classic.  Altogether an entertaining evening of suspense.