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Canberra Today 4°/8° | Saturday, April 13, 2024 | Digital Edition | Crossword & Sudoku

Theatre to perform good, clean murderous fun

Josh Wiseman (Charles Granillo) and Pippin Carroll (Wyndham Brandon). Photo: Helen Drum.

CANBERRA Repertory Society is inviting everyone to the perfect murder.

Actually, it’s the play “Rope”, made famous in Alfred Hitchcock’s 1948 film version and the first successful play by Patrick Hamilton, an English author and playwright who seemed destined to be outstripped by films – he also wrote “Gaslight”, the star vehicle for Ingrid Bergman and Charles Boyer.

Hamilton revelled in the psychology of sociopathic relationships and the term “gaslighting”, based on the scenario of that terrifying play, has become common in the modern feminist vocabulary.

He based it on a famous 1920s America murder case, “Rope”, but retained the “perfect crime” motif and switched the locality to Mayfair in London, then after the play was broadcast on the BBC in 1939, Hitchcock picked it up and set it back in the US.

Alex McPherson (Leila Arden) and Ryan Street. Photo: Helen Drum

It shows two smart young flatmates, believing themselves to be intellectually superior to their contemporaries, murdering their friend purely to see if they can get away with it.

They then throw a cocktail party, serving food from the top of the trunk where they have hidden his body.

“Rope” is one of REP’s favourite thrillers, having been performed by the company in 1941 and again in 1960.

This time round it’s directed by Ed Wightman in his fifth directorial role for the company, with an all-star cast.

Good clean murderous family fun.

“Rope”, at Canberra REP Theatre, (Theatre 3), 3 Repertory Lane, Acton, May 21 to June 5, with a preview on May 20. Bookings here or 6257 1950.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Helen Musa

Helen Musa

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