A dark minimalist stage with 4 doors and no walls sets the scene for the action and drama to be created by the actors and characters in Rob Croser’s outstanding adapted production of “The Maltese Falcon” by Dashiell Hammett.
A booked-out Opening Night audience were confused, stumped, and entertained by the unpredictable twists and turns of characters and plot in this classic.
Chanel Duval’s sparse and dramatic lighting; and Bob Weatherly’s audio and visual effects created the backing for San Francisco in the Prohibition era of the 1920s. Authentic costumes from Sandra Davis and Angela Doherty and props by Diana Buratto, including an old candlestick telephone, all helped to create the atmosphere, but it was the actors’ portrayal of the characters that really made it come alive!
Patrick Marlin was excellent as the cynical, cool calculating Detective Sam Spade. While Madeleine Herd as Brigid O’Shaughnessy skilfully played his strong sassy deceiptful opponent. Will Cox strongly played the foul-mouthed angry stooge Wilmer Cook. Stuart Pearce’s depiction of the over-confident Casper Gutman was well played and the eccentric character of Joel Cairo was admirably acted by Andre Vafiadis.
Multiple roles played by multiple actors made it confusing at times, especially if, like me, you have not seen the play or movie before.
Due to the old fashioned nature of this detective story, at times some of the action was corny, however the conflicts between characters – mental, physical, and emotional, and the action, sometimes violent, kept us following along on the edge of our seats.
I would highly recommend you go and enjoy this murder mystery detective show, whether you have seen the movie or not!