Can you keep a secret?

Rebecca Holmes, Staff Writer 

Photo courtesy of carolinacurtaincall.com

Photo courtesy of carolinacurtaincall.com

Agatha Christie’s well known play "The Mousetrap" premiers at the Greenville Little Theatre on Sept. 8. Before we go any further, I know what you’re all thinking. What makes this play so different? What makes this play better than hanging out in my room and watching Netflix? Well for one thing, it’s cheap.

According to director Suzanne McCalla, “Students get a significant discount. Only $15 for a rush ticket.” As students, we would be paying half of what other adults would be.

Secondly, it is a phenomenal play to see with friends. According to McCalla, “IIt’s so much fun to talk about your theories of “whodunit” during intermission.”

Lastly, let’s be realistic. Who doesn’t love a good murder mystery? According to McCalla, “It’s also a chance to see a great production of one of the best mysteries ever written!”

"The Mousetrap" has a reputation for being the longest running show. There are many opinions as to why that is, but in my opinion, it’s the suspense. As the curtain opens, the audience hits the ground running with seven strangers sitting together in Monkswell Manor. It is a wintry night, the roads are blocked with snow and the telephone isn’t working.

We are quickly informed that a woman from the local town has been murdered, and that there was a note left at the crime scene. The note indicates that the unknown murderer is planning to visit the manor. At this point, the audience is freaking out because we don’t know if the murderer is sitting among those seven strangers we mentioned earlier.

Simultaneously, a thousand questions start rolling through our heads. Who knows who the murderer could be? Who knows who the next victim will be? Will the murderer be caught?

With no way out and no way of communicating to the outside world, it’s looking grim for the seven strangers. That’s when Detective Trotter comes in. He is determined that he will solve this seemingly unsolvable crime. He only has a children’s song as his lead, but he is essentially their only hope. Will he be able to solve the murder before the killer claims their final victim? 

"The Mousetrap" is a typical Agatha Christie play. Everything about the scenes make the audience feel as if we’ve been there before. The manor has an old look to it, yes, the creepy kind of old with lots of back stairwells and hidden passages. This adds to our feeling that we are never quite sure where everyone is, and when there’s a murderer on the loose, that’s not exactly ideal. As the play progresses, more and more secrets are revealed. The plot will twist and turn all the way up to the final scene.

The seven strangers create a melting pot of personalities. Mollie and Giles Ralston run the guest house as though they aren’t afraid at all. How in the world could someone be that calm with a murderer on the loose, unless of course they are the murderers?

Mrs. Boyle is a cut and dry person. She doesn’t seem quite as human as the rest of the characters.

Miss Casewell carries a suspicion about her that can make your skin crawl, almost like our sixth sense is telling you that she’s guilty.

Mr. Paravicini is equally as suspicious; his presence causes us to be so hyper focused on who the murderer is that we totally miss the little details that might possibly matter the most.

Christopher Wren is extremely happy; he’s almost a little too happy considering there is a murderer on their way to the manor to potentially kill him.

Major Metcalf is the retired army type ready for anything. He concerns us because he has the background that would point to a stealthy killer.

Finally, police sergeant Trotter seems to be very sincere in his quest to find the killer, but he also seems to be hiding something.

Each facet of "The Mousetrapcomes together to create a suspenseful atmosphere from which a murderer rises to the surface. Christie creates a mixture of secrecy, shadows and suspicion that inevitably leaves us wanting more. After all, murder is about secrets. So I ask you again, can you keep a secret?

"The Mousetrap" runs from September 8 to October 1.  Click here for more information.