It’s theatre, theatre and more theatre this week with a little music thrown into the mix.
Death Knell, The Mill, Banbury, May 1 to 4
Banbury Cross Players present James Cawood’s Death Knell, a modern thriller promising an action-packed evening full of suspense and surprise, and, of course, murder.
At the head of a loch in the remote Highlands of Scotland sits playwright Henry Roth. With his beautiful trophy wife for company, he has been inspired to write another “seismic hit”.
And he has one particular actor in mind for the lead. Invited to Henry’s Highland home, charismatic but unknown Jack Willoughby has been tasked by Henry to bring with him the essential props of a murderer.
The arrival of DCI Lazan from the Metropolitan Police – on the hunt of a serial killer – adds a deadly dynamic. Not everyone’s motives are quite what they first seem. Director Linda Shaw said: “I took the script to bed thinking I’d read a few pages to give me an idea of the style and see if it captured my imagination.
I read the entire play – start to finish. I could not put it down. The plot leads you in one direction – you get comfortable with where you think it’s going and then, wham, it heads off on a completely different path.
It does this constantly – even up to the final pages. It really does takes your breath away.”
The Mouse that Roared, Middleton Cheney Village Hall, May 9 to 11
The Lynden Players present this gentle satire, telling the story of Gloriana the Sixth, the ruler of a minuscule principality, the Duchy of Grand Fenwick.
As the play opens, she is fearful for her people as the foundation of the country’s economy and income is being destroyed by an inferior product made in the USA. Requests made formally to the president of the USA are so quaint that they are not taken seriously, forcing the Duchy to desperate measures. Leonard Wibberly, an Irishman who spent much of his time in the USA, wrote the story in 1955, before it became a film starring Peter Sellers in 1959.
Details: www.lyndenplayers.com or 07849 062739
Confessions of a Menopausal Woman, The Theatre, Chipping Norton, May 2
The writer and Loose Women presenter Andrea McLean opens her debut tour with this show based on her bestselling book. The tour will see Andrea discuss stories of menopausal meltdowns, tell salacious secrets and give take-away tit-bits that every woman needs to hear. She will show audiences that whilst being menopausal can be tough, it takes more than sweaty sanitary towels under the armpits to keep this hot woman down.
The Provoked Wife, Swan Theatre, Stratford, May 2 to September 7
Caroline Quentin, Rufus Hound and Les Dennis star in this riotous new production of John Vanbrugh’s restoration comedy.
Sunjay, Kineton Sports and Social Club, April 27
Sunjay is pretty much the antithesis of your typical denim-clad folk and blues musician. From his perfectly groomed hair to his spotless winkle picker boots, he walks onto the stage every inch the ‘city slicker’. Expect an evening of exquisite blues, country and folk music combined with a masterclass in guitar playing mixed with comic anecdotes.
Details: 01926 641024