clue cast

Suspects . .  or victims a plenty. Picture: Craig Sugden


Belgrade Theatre Coventry


Cluedo, based very loosely on the famous game we’ve all played at Christmas, is a really clever murder mystery comedy.

It comes from the ‘Goes Wrong’ genre, one where Mark Bell is a well-known director and, as such, there are some of the characteristics you’d expect. It is fast, funny, and frenetic with a beautiful attention to detail, particularly with character, props and scenery that makes this show quite simply delightful.

We’re in Boddy House, thunderstorm and violent lightning raging outside, Clement Atlee is prime minister and leading a crusade, a little like the McCarthy witch hunts but against corruption. Each new character is beautifully introduced by butler Wadsworth (Jean-Luke Worrell) and ‘French’ maid Yvette (Georgia Bradley).

First to arrive is Colonel Mustard (Wesley Griffith), dressed in mustard, and not the sharpest of knives. Next is Miss White (Etisyai Phillips). Clever clues are dropped throughout – Wadsworth notes that Yvette and Miss White appear to know each other which both deny fervently.

Reverend Green (Tom Babbage), clumsy and apologetic, arrives. Mrs Peacock (Judith Amsenga) is next, fond of a drink, and then, Professor Plum (Daniel Casey), clearly pleased with himself, together with Miss Scarlet (Michelle Collins) fabulous in scarlet frock and blond locks, who he has picked up on the road.

Why are they gathered? They all have letters to invite them to dinner. Means, motive and opportunity are always key. And each guest is given the means straightaway; the candlestick, the spanner, the rope, the revolver, the lead pipe and dagger. Motive is simply blackmail. Mr Boddy, the founder of the feast, has information that is career-ending and, in the context of the time, life-ending too.

There are plenty of murders to solve; Mr Boddy (twice!), the cook, the local Bobby, the motorist, and finally one of the long-awaited detectives. There are brilliant scenes – particularly where Wadsworth recaps on the story so far.

 I loved the tableaux where they all stand in a rictus of petrified horror and the clever scenery where doors turn inside out to reveal rooms beyond – you’ve guessed, the library, the lounge, the billiard room and so on. Well-oiled Mrs Peacock made me think of Margaret Thatcher until she popped upstairs with Professor Plum for a bit of how’s your father! This is tip top entertainment and well worth a look. To 19-03-22.

Jane Howard


The mayhem will be rolling along to The Alexandra Theatre, 2-7 May 2022, Malvern Theatres, 20-25 June 2022 and The Grand Theatre, Wolverhampton, 11-16 July 2022. 

Index page Belgrade  Reviews A-Z Reviews by Theatre