No-one is who they seem

Secondary Cause of Death 
By Peter Gordon
Taieri Dramatic Society
Fire Station Theatre
Sunday, July 23 

A cold and wet Sunday afternoon was ideal for enjoying a comedy murder mystery, alongside a large audience for Taieri Dramatic Society’s production of Peter Gordon’s Secondary Cause of Death.

Directed by Zac Henry, the production follows the adventures of the bumbling Inspector Pratt on his return to Bagshot House, stumbling from one disaster to another as the bodies pile up.

No-one is who they seem, as the hapless Pratt, played with verve by Matt Brennan, keeps up a constant flow of malapropisms, bringing the humour to the fore.

John Rowe switches smoothly between his dual roles of Colonel Craddock and thespian Cardew Longfellow, while Zach Hall and Heidi Rixon were amusing as a pair of scheming villains ... or were they?

Also entertaining were Alison Ayers, Laura Wells, Maxine Sannum, Ella Coudret, and Aimee Freeman, as villains, heroes, and everything in between.

The witty dialogue flowed quite well throughout, although faster repartee would have been helpful at times.

Secondary Cause of Death is set in a nicely realised drawing room — designed by Heidi Rixon, with plenty of entrances and exits to bring the farcical elements of the play to the fore.

Costumes by Judy Spillane gave a nice sense of the pre-World War2 era.

All in all, Secondary Cause of Death was an entertaining murder mystery.

The play continues at Mosgiel’s Fire Station Theatre until Sunday.