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Boundary Players - Silhouette

9th to 13th February 2010.

This was the NWN review.

Guessing to the end

Boundary Players: Silhouette, at the William Penney Theatre, Tadley, from Tuesday, February 9 to Saturday, February 13

When the police arrive to investigate the murder of actor Martin Powell at his home in Sussex, it appears to be a fairly straightforward case. At the house they discover the actor's estranged wife Celia and the strangely eccentric young journalist Neville Smallwood, whose obsessive behaviour, police record and hatred towards Martin make him a prime suspect.

However, all is not as it seems in Silhouette, Simon Brett's thriller, which was performed by Boundary Players at William Penney Theatre last week. Having given the audience a chance to jump to conclusions in the first act, the author takes us back in time in the second half to view the events that actually led up to the murder.

This was an original script, written in Brett's very witty style, and director Mary Robinson's cast gave a polished performance.

Jim Milne, as DI Bruton, was particularly strong and really captured the character of the interrogating officer. He was well supported by Dave Stephenson as DS Fisher, responding cheerily to the inspector's constant demands, and Davina Harris as the slightly mysterious and well-informed Wpc Leach.

Pat Archer gave a confident performance as Celia, exchanging waspish comments with Martin (nicely played by Richard Mier) while deviously manipulating the hapless Neville - though I felt she remained a little too composed at the sight of Martin's body.

Clive Lewington was suitably star-struck and unnerving as Neville, with some excellent mannerisms, but he was somewhat older than the script suggested (the line about cradle snatching could perhaps have been dropped). Sam Robinson as the scene-of-crime officer rounded off the cast - it was a nice touch that, whenever the study curtain was pulled back, he was seen busily attending to the body.

Producer Paul Robinson and the backstage team provided well-managed sound and light, as well as an imaginatively dressed theatrical set (I loved the cardboard cut-out from Annie Get Your Gun).

Overall, a very enjoyable evening's entertainment - the gasp from the audience when the hooded man revealed his identity showed that the suspense was well maintained to the end.