Inspector Drake and the Black Widow, Street Theatre on tour

DAVID Tristram’s hilarious murder mystery spoofs have provided rich materiel for the Street Theatre summer tours, and this year’s third offering, all about a Black Widow Spider and an unlikely murder investigated in flashback, is out on tour.

It opened to a select audience at the Edgar Hall in Somerton, and continues until its “home run” at Strode Theatre in Street.

Directed with a sure eye for comic impact by Peter Wintle, this latest Drake mystery again stars John McGrouther as Sgt Plod, with an new ace detective in the form of Matthew Maisey (taking over the title role from Rob Price, who is turning his attention to the Bard at Wells), and the extraordinarily versatile Olwen Herridge in at least eight other characters, most of them meeting a very nasty end.

The Inspector Drake plays are the sort of nonsense that make you laugh out loud, even in these dark and difficult days.

They are full of energy, inexplicable occurences, unlikely deaths and resurrections, innuendo, inventively cheap props and – in this case – music from the early 50s to challenge the memory. Just who WAS Russ Conway? And thank goodness for Google.

If you want a good laugh in a play full of  excellent performances and madcap fun, try to catch the tour on its journey.

Next stops are Long Sutton Village Hall on 9th June, Regal Theatre in Minehead on 10th June, Cossington Village Hall on Friday 16th and the final night at Strode Theatre in Street on Saturday 17th June.  They all start at 7.30 or thereabouts.


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