The Mousetrap to re-open in October with socially distanced performances
| By Nicholas Ephram Ryan Daniels
(Updated on Jul 6, 2020)
The Mousetrap, the world's longest-running show of all time, may just be the first major production to return to the West End theatre stage. The show's producers have announced plans to reopen with socially distanced performances beginning on 23 October 2020. The news marks a huge milestone in getting the gears of London Theatre going again and will hopefully serve as a blueprint for other shows to follow suit.
The Mousetrap returns to St Martin's Theatre 23 October with social distancing!
After lockdown marked the first-ever extended "interval" for a show that opened nearly 70 years ago, The Mousetrap will finally return to the stage this autumn! The play will be presented in accordance with Phase Four of the Government's roadmap for re-opening UK theatre. This will include:
- no touching and social distancing on stage
- thorough cleaning and disinfecting of theatre spaces between performances
- scanned, contactless entry thanks to e-tickets with barcodes
- the removal of every other row to ensure safe social distances for audience members
- a reduced audience capacity of approx. 200 seats per performance (subject to vary depending on the audience makeup to allow for different configurations)
- Saturday matinees moved to 3pm to allow for more time to clean
- group sales and group seating suspended until further notice
The Mousetrap producer Adam Spiegel stated: "It feels very symbolic that The Mousetrap will be amongst the first – and potentially the very first – West End show to open its doors again. As well as being the longest-running play in the world, Agatha Christie is the best-selling novelist this country has ever produced. She had already left a legacy for us to take great pride in. Her name being back up in lights in the West End, heralding the beginning of the end of a very dark time in the history of the theatre, means she will rightly remain one of the most celebrated figures in our cultural life."
How will The Mousetrap show be different post-coronavirus?
The original staging of The Mousetrap called for three or four moments with touching, which the show's producer Spiegel has sad can be easily changed due to the fact that there is no "kissing, singing or dancing; and the murder takes place in the dark."
According to Spiegel, "The Mousetrap can do social distancing on stage, too, because that's the way it was originally directed." Another benefit of the show having been originally staged in 1952 is that "people are quite restrained."
The show, which has been a London staple for nearly seven decades, is very fortunate in being able to re-open. Fans of the show can thank Agatha Christie's estate for agreeing to a cut in royalties and the reduced rent for the venue, without which re-staging the show would be near impossible.
Who is starring in The Mousetrap socially distanced cast?
The re-opening of The Mousetrap in London's West End will feature a socially distanced cast starring Alexander Wolfe as Christopher Wren, Brenda Longman as Mrs Boyle, Damien Matthews as Major Metcalf, Eleanor McLoughlin as Mollie Ralston, Lizzie Muncey as Miss Casewell, Neil Ditt as Giles Ralston, Paul Hilliar as Sergeant Trotter, and Tony Timberlake as Mr Paravicini.
The new cast members, who were originally meant to start rehearsals right before the lockdown, will be directed by Ian Talbot, who aside from The Mousetrap recently directed Eugenius at The Other Palace.
The Mousetrap 2020 tickets available now from £24 and up!
Having originally opened in 1952 and now in its 68th year, The Mousetrap is set to return to the scene with a fresh new look and the same classic murder-mystery vibes you know and love.
Set in a house in the countryside where all the guests are snowed in, The Mousetrap still maintains a brilliantly intricate plot and suspenseful atmosphere that will leave you on the edge of your seat from start to finish. Join the millions of theatregoers who've discovered whodunnit without sharing the big secret!
London's St. Martin's Theatre will be following official government advice for holding safe theatrical performances, which is why you can book with confidence and have the cultural experience you've been missing these past few months!