Murder, Margaret and Me
by Philip Meeks
Auditions: 8pm, Thursday 2nd February in the Bar Lounge
2pm, Sunday 5th February in the Janet Young Room
Performance dates: 24th June -1st July
Director: Nadia Higson 01732 883097 / 07796128538 firstname.lastname@example.org
Please contact Nadia if you have any queries or would like a copy of the script.
It’s 1961 and Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple is about to be portrayed on film by Margaret Rutherford – but neither of these great ladies is enthused by the prospect. As the two become more closely acquainted, Agatha realises that there is more to Margaret’s reluctance than a dislike of the “sordid” business of murder, and becomes obsessed with rooting out her new friend’s dark secret. However, Agatha has her secrets too… And then there is The Spinster – who observes, goads and drives the pair towards the revelations that they both must make.
Agatha Christie and Margaret Rutherford were both about seventy at the time but this is not a naturalistic play, and the actors’ ages (within reason) matter less than their ability to bring out the contrasts in characters’ public and private selves. The spinster calls herself “a little old lady” but again this does not have to be taken too literally.
Margaret: As “Margaret Rutherford” she is exuberantly eccentric, flamboyant in character and dress, with a huge zest for life. As “Peggy”, the private self that few see, she is vulnerable, wrestling with demons.
Agatha: Highly intelligent and highly inquisitive, Agatha is uncomfortable whenever she feels she is not in control. She combines a genteel manner with a waspish tongue, but is not at bottom an unkind person.
The Spinster: “A sweet little old lady on the outside, as sweet as strychnine within.” The Spinster has a wicked sense of humour and subtly dominates the other two characters. She takes on several other personas during the course of the play.