One of Agatha Christie’s classic whodunits is being brought to life by Langley’s Theatre in the Country (TITC).
Colorful characters, tantalizing red herrings, and suspenseful plot twists make up Murder on the Nile, a tale adapted for the stage by Christie herself.
The Grand Dame of mystery whisks the audience away on a honeymoon cruise down the Nile; the only problem is the bride is dead.
Master sleuth Canon Pennefather must solve the case by picking apart motives and whereabouts of the peculiar passengers.
Tarrah Tanaka, a 31-year-old actress from Cloverdale as never acted with TITC, but had popped up on local stages before, most recently in Drop Dead! and the award-winning Dancing at Lughnasa with the Langley Players Club.
She said a love for Agatha Christie books drove her to be part of this particular production.
“I grew up reading her, and watching all the Hercule Poirot mysteries on A&E with David Suchet,” she explained. “I was incredibly grateful when the director, Simon Challenger, gave me the role of Canon Pennefather, as it’s afforded me the opportunity to play one of the detectives I grew up admiring.”
Producer Reg Parks added that doing one of Christie’s shows was a real treat, escpecially since people still get excited by her murderous tales 90 years after the were first produced.
“We chose this play because we love Agatha, and her contribution to the world of theatre is unsurpassed. She is still the highest selling murder author of all time, and her plays continue to thrill audiences around the world. In fact there is a movie coming out this year based on the original book with Kenneth Branagh playing the lead character,” Parks said.
Tanaka said the character of Canon Pennefather was interesting because other characters acted comfortable around her and end up saying far too much around her that they should – particularly when murders and motives are trying to be hid.
With a cast of eleven, bright costumes, and period setting, there were a lot of elements that had to come together – especially since the source material, and author, are so highly regarded.
Despite the pressure, Tanaka said the production was challenge-free and one of the easiest rehearsal processes she’s been a part of.
“Theatre in the Country is really great at getting people together to come help out and do all of the production end of things, and they’ve had an abundance of people coming to help build the set and other things,” Tanaka said.
Directed by Simon Challenger, the production of Murder on the Nile runs Feb. 13 to 29 at 5708 Glover Rd.
TITC is a dinner theatre and offers the choice of performance-only tickets or a roast beef meal prepared by Over the Top catering.
Tickets and more information is available at theatreinthecountry.com/murder-on-the-nile-2020/.
“I really hope that audiences will have that satisfaction that I do whenever I read or watch a murder mystery. It’s so fun to sit down and try and look for clues and figure out who the guilty party is, and even if you’re wrong it’s such a fun journey,” Tanaka added.
Additionally, a musical adaptation of Catch Me if You Can is next up for TITC and auditions are being held on Sunday, Feb 16 and Monday, Feb. 17.
Anyone is welcome to submit a head shot and sign up.
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