REVIEW: Fine Production of a Christie Classic

Reviewed by: Robert Delaney, New Monitor Detroit

The Mousetrap

Pictured: Alec Barbour (Giles Ralston), Topher Payne (Christopher Wren)
Photo: Felix Li

An eclectic assortment of characters snowed in at an English manor house-turned guesthouse are terrified when first one, then another is murdered in Agatha Christie’s classic thriller, “The Mousetrap,” the first production of the new season at Wayne State’s Hilberry Theatre.

“The Mousetrap” is the record-setting mystery thriller that has intrigued generations of playgoers, as they try to guess which of the characters might be the murderer (or murderess). And Christie keeps the audience guessing as, bit by bit, we learn more about these characters who have come together not entirely by chance.

Master director David J. Magidson and a talented cast of grad-student actors have given us a very fine production.

Alec Barbour and Megan Dobbertin are Giles and Mollie Ralston, the bright young couple who have turned Mollie’s white elephant of an ancestral home into a guest house.

Topher Payne is the flamboyant Christopher Wren, who was named after the famous architect.

Vanessa Sawson is the testy and disapproving Mrs. Boyle; Joshua Blake Rippy is the brusk Major Metcalf; Danielle Cochrane is the very liberated Miss Casewell; and Edmund Alyn Jones is the exotic Mr. Mustapha.

Christopher Call rounds out the cast as Detective Sergeant Trotter.

Special mention must be made of John D. Woodland’s fine costumes, and extra-special mention is due the spectacular set designed by Curtis Green.

Even the many playgoers who have seen “The Mousetrap” before should find this an enjoyable evening (or afternoon) of theater.

SHOW DETAILS: “The Mousetrap” continues in rotating repertory through Oct. 13 at the Hilberry Theatre, at Cass and West Hancock on the Wayne State University campus. For performance and ticket information, call 313-577-2972 or go to

Reprinted with permission of the New Monitor, Sept. 27, 2012

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