Review: Old Tupton Chapel Players’ raise cash for Movember by staging a Sixties whodunit

Sir Paul McCartney is credited with bringing the droopy tache look to the pop scene in the Sixties so it’s apt that The Beatles’ anthem Yesterday launches Old Tupton Chapel Players’ production in aid of men’s cancer charity Movember.

Three of the four male thespians in this week’s fundraising whodunit are showing their allegiance to the cause by sporting facial hair.

Tupton Chapel Players in Murder for the Asking

Tupton Chapel Players in Murder for the Asking

Moustaches bristle with nervous excitement in the gentle-paced drama Murder for the Asking which is set in the living room of a city apartment. The props create a truly authentic Sixties vibe and it’s particularly interesting to see that lady of the house stocking up her store cupboard with HP sauce, Lyle’s golden syrup, Bird’s custard powder and Colman’s mustard, brands which are still on our shelves.

The Sixties was also a time of colourful clothes and Players newcomer Beth Logan treats the audience to an ever-changing fashion parade of dolly bird gear. Beth is a real find for the players, putting in an excellent performance as the chirruping neighbour with a love of gossip and a withering put-down for her pal’s husband who resents her constant intrusions into his home.

Another newcomer, Linda Munton, has a baptism of fire in her role as the leading lady. Acting-wise, she carried it off last night (Wednesday, November 26), but either the mammoth number of lines she had or second-night nerves got the better of her and she had to be prompted on several occasions.

Matthew Joynes heads the cast, giving one of his finest performances yet in his role as the jobless husband who answers an advert which requires the successful applicant to carry out one night’s work in return for £3,000. Without giving the game away for those who have yet to see the play, he’s plunged into a world of intrigue which will keep viewers guessing until the final scene.

Murder For The Asking, directed by Sally Mason, continues its run at the Old Tupton Methodist Church schoolroom until Saturday, November 29. Performances at 7.15pm. Tickets £5 (adult), £1 (child/student).Contact 01246 860601 or www.chapelplayers-tupton.com

GAY BOLTON