Review: Murder, Margaret And Me, Salisbury Playhouse, 6 February

AGATHA Christie. Unquestionably a name most people will instantaneously associate with some of the best crime novels ever devised. Her characters may be well known, but there’s more to her story than that.

Director Philip Meeks found inspiration from an interesting source - a dog-eared Sunday supplement at an Indian takeaway.

Flicking through the pages, he noticed an article detailing a dark family secret that cast a shadow over the life of national treasure Dame Margaret Rutherford.

From there, his narrative took life and somehow, the tale of an unlikely friendship became the backbone to the enthralling tale, ready to be told on stage.

The production centres on Christie’s resistance to her growing name, mutated into becoming an out of control, money making ‘brand’.

One of the authors most loved characters, Miss Marple, was scheduled to take her silver screen debut, with Rutherford at the helm ready to vigorously bring the work of fiction to life, in a way only she could.

The dissidence, and eventual amicable unity between the two are played out.

Both women exhibit such wholehearted character and lovable quirks, the audience are unable to take sides during their lengthy struggle and butting of heads.

However, it is the mystery of dark secrets that eclipses the otherwise warm tale. Clues are slowly teased throughout the gripping performance, as the excursion into the dark territory of the lives of these acclaimed ‘little old ladies’ is underway.

Bringing such loveable and well known characters to life is no easy feat, but somehow Murder, Margaret And Me illuminates the life of Dame’s Rutherford and Christie in not only an entertaining manner, but with elements of suspense crime writer Christie herself could of eagerly masterminded.

Murder, Margaret And Me runs until the 24 February. For tickets call 01722 320333 or visit