4-7 June 2014
Reviewed by Leah Roberts
Wow! That was my initial reaction walking into the circle of New Theatre in Cardiff, the stage was red. I mean red! I instantly knew I was in for a dramatic delight and was itching for it to begin.
Having only a brief idea of the plot I was sat on the edge of my seat watching the events unfold on the stage. A loyal wife? A loving husband? Old friend? Was it all as it seemed?
The loving husband, Daniel Betts was fabulously cast as Tony Wendice. His facial expressions and body language added to the sneaky, secret keeping villain. He played the part so well that I felt glad to see his comeuppance. Sheila Wendice, played by Kelly Hotton portrayed his scatter brain, skittish wife who was seemingly under the thumb while leading her secret second life. She was absolutely perfect for this role, and beautifully dressed for the era. It would be very interesting to see her out of costume as now I can’t imagine her any other way. Her secret lover, Max Halliday played by Philip Cairns showed fantastic chemistry on stage but I did feel he wasn’t quite comfortable in the role. The would-be assassin, The Captain, Robert Perkins, was well played. His realistic acting really added something to the nail biting murder scene. My favourite was the Inspector – Christopher Timothy, who was absolutely brilliantly cast for the typical inspector of that time. His costume was just perfect, I found myself instantly respecting him.
The plot was intriguing! It was so well thought out and translated to the stage. The costumes, as mentioned, were absolutely outstanding and fantastic quality. It really added to the feel of the production. The set was great but slightly confusing at some instances – when the scene flipped the set, we couldn’t quite work out why it had suddenly mirror imaged or altered, and felt a door was missing leading to “other rooms”. The red theme was brilliant, and the swishing curtain depicting the passing of time was so clever. It did take a while for me to understand it but once it clicked it made perfect sense and frankly genius! My absolute favourite thing was the lighting – it was so effective.
Time absolutely flew as I enjoyed myself so much and I would absolutely recommend this production and have done to anyone that will listen. The New Theatre proved to be the perfect venue as always. It’s clean, well kept, and such a lovely traditional theatre. Its best merit is the comfortable seats and the ever so helpful staff.
Tickets cost from £8.50 to £27.50 (plus £1.75 online transaction fee).
Dial M For Murder is at the New Theatre, Cardiff until 7 June 2014. For more information or to book tickets click here or call the box office on 029 2087 8889.
New Theatre, Park Place, Cardiff, CF10 3LN | 029 2087 8889