Tag Archives: Vincent O’Neill

Spider’s Web

A scene from Agathie Christie's SPIDER'S WEB. Pic Mark Banks
A scene from Agathie Christie’s SPIDER’S WEB. PicS by Mark Banks

With a set design and directed by Ylaria Rogers the Genesian Theatre’s production of Agatha Christie’s Spider’s Web is a thoroughly enjoyable romp. We know one or more of the characters will be murdered, but how & why & by whom? Everyone has something to hide but can we solve the mystery before the last clue is given and the final twist unfolds. Probably not!

The action takes place in the drawing room of a country house Copplestone Court in the 1950s. The set has the typical Christie secret passageway, a desk with hidden compartment and French doors opening into a garden for the possible quick entry/exit of suspicious characters. Well timed lighting ensures black outs occur just at the correct the moment to allow for dark deeds and menacing music hints at evils to come. Continue reading Spider’s Web


Martin Estridge (William) and Courtney Bain (Christina) in MURDER ON THE NILE. Pic Mark Banks
A touchy moment between Martin Estridge (William) and Courtney Bain (Christina) in Agathie Christie’s MURDER ON THE NILE. Pic Mark Banks

Agathie Christie’s 1944 play MURDER ON THE NILE, based on her 1937 novel DEATH ON THE NILE, is the new production at the inner city Genesian Theatre.

On board a steamer, cruising under the scorching Egyptian sun, honeymooners Simon Mostyn and his wealthy socialite wife Kay find themselves being pursued by Jackie, an old flame of the newly wedded groom and Kay’s former best friend… Then tragedy strikes… A body is discovered. All fingers point to Jackie. But to use the old chestnut, not everything is what it seems, and holidaying cleric Canon Pennefather is drawn into a web of intrigue and deceit as he finds himself on the trail of a ruthless murderer.

Genesian theatre patrons love a good murder mystery and Nanette Frew’s current production does not disappoint.

My pick of the cast was Ros Richards who was wonderful as the ditzy, snobby Helen ffoliot- ffoulkes. Courtney Bain showed some nice touches as Helen’s sensitive niece, Christina

Michael Barnacoat impressed as Canon Ambrose Pennefather, who, with great zeal, took it on himself to get to the bottom of the murders. Noemie Jounot had the role of Kay’s French maid Louise down pat, Martin Estridge was fun as the cynical, wise-cracking William Smith. Less satisfying was Vincent O’Neill’s portrayal of Dr Bessner, which has not found its mark yet.

Frew’s creative team contributed well,- Timothy M Carter with his lighting, Michael Schell’s soundscape, Susan Carveth’s period costumes and an outstanding set by Owen Gimblett’s depicting the observation salon of the paddle steamer ‘Lotus’.

The ‘Lotus’ will keep drifting along the great Nile river, somewhere between Shellal and Wadi Halfa, until it docks into port with the final show on  Saturday October 5, 2013.