Reviewed: At The Sign Of The Crippled Harlequin at Shinfield Players Theatre
Barrie Theobald • Published 14 Mar 2013 05:30 0 Comments
The storyline of Norman Robbins' comedy-thriller had many twists and turns with most of the characters having a secret past. In fact Marjory Pike (Eva Stone), the first to die, turned out to be the only innocent party in the piece - yet her death, arising from a case of misidentification, started off a series of sinister events.
Sally and Brian Lockwood (Jane Minchin and Martyn Washbrook), the present owners of Peak Lodge Guest House, are struggling to make ends meet whilst Pamela Seaton (a strong performance by Karen Bird) turns out to be part of a gang of jewellery thieves, along with Isobel Clarke (Stephanie Limb) - although I never did quite understand what happened to their latest heist! Melanie Sherwood and Phillippe Duquenoy extracted every last drop of humour as the sharp-tongued Joan Reece and her boastful husband Lionel, whilst Esme Bates added the final twist to the tale as the unhinged Diane Tyndale.
However, with deaths occurring at regular intervals and an alleged sighting of a ghost, the rather pedestrian production failed to set the stage ablaze, despite the detailed set the backstage crew had created.
This article appeared in Bracknell News 14 Mar 13