Liz Grand as Agatha Christie

Where is Mrs Christie?

Worcester Repertory Company

Swan Theatre, Worcester


The disappearance of Britain’s best known crime thriller writer in December 1926 caused a national sensation.

The police were perplexed , the press responded like modern-day paparazzi, the nation was alarmed!

 Agatha Christie, the creator of Hercules Poirot and Miss Marple, had disappeared without apparent trace. Why and where? The mistress of mystery plots was herself the subject of a mystery!

Her car was found at Newlands Court perched above a chalk quarry; was this a case of suicide? For eleven days the nation was on edge until she was finally located in a hotel in Yorkshire.

Agatha Christie herself chose not to discuss or explain her disappearance and absence. Interviews with the press in the years that followed were carefully managed to avoid her having to answer any probing questions on the subject.

Chris Jaeger has written a play for one actress designed to explore this extraordinary story. He espouses a theory which the play develops to make sense of those events. It is strongly rooted in her relationship with her first husband Archie Christie with its tensions and issues. He bypasses the theory that she and Archie chose to leak to the media on the subject.

The play has a well defined structure. Agatha’s monologue is an autobiographical account of her life but it is punctuated by a succession of radio news bulletins describing her disappearance and the various developments in the story of the police and Press looking for answers. Act One brings us to the point where, in her life story, she decides to run away from home;  we hear the engine of the motorcar as she sets off on her way.

There is an irony in that Agatha was clearly a very shy and retiring individual who did not enjoy the limelight of media publicity, but she is sharing her story and explaining the mystery to us as an audience.

Liz Grand gives a clear and convincing performance as Mrs Christie. Despite the very occasional hesitation in delivery of some lines, she took full advantage of the intimate context of the Vesta Tilley studio to bring a strong sense of bringing us into her confidence.

There are some humorous remarks and moments as she does so. But there is a large amount of narrative which is interesting without always being hugely dramatic.

The costume and set is simply designed but thoroughly effective. With her hair well-styled, Liz Grand looks the part perfectly.

The name of one of our best loved authors is a powerful draw. The mystery surrounding the writer of so many mysteries provides subject matter for an intriguing evening, and the full audience left satisfied and rewarded by a fascinating take on a national puzzle. To 23-09-17

Tim Crow



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