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Mad Cow ReviewerReviews

Here are some reviews of our previous productions.

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Reviews - The Game's Afoot

Claire Dunn

The Games Afoot


Claps of thunder, cracks of lightning - and a chilling scream.

It can only mean one thing - those Mad Cows are back at Shrewsbury's Theatre Severn - and this time with a bang, a gunshot and a whole heap of trouble!

Their curtain has gone up on their latest production - Ken Ludwig's The Game's Afoot - a clever whodunit with many a delicious twist and turn.

There was murder, mystery, mayhem - and even Moriarty in the West End last night! And the audience joined the impeccable cast on a tumultuous journey to discover just who had dunit!
The play opened in the Walker Theatre - the perfect setting for this drawing room masterpiece. When the curtain rises - we see actor William Gillette - excellently portrayed by teacher Paul Fitzgerald - in full flow on stage as sleuth Sherlock Holmes. But as he takes a bow with the cast as the curtain goes down - a shot rings out, and a bullet hits his arm.

The next time we see him, he is recovering with his mother. It is Christmas Eve and the whole case - including Lucy Billau as Aggie Wheeler, Natalie Wyatt as Madge Geisel and Joe Phillips as Simon Bright - have been invited to join him to celebrate.

But there is more to his invitation than first meets the eye. He is convinced that one of them was behind the attempted murder - and in true Sherlock Holmes fashion - he sets out to uncover the truth, along with a little help from the rather eccentric Inspector Goring - played by Emma Hedges.

And as with every good whodunit - nothing is as it first seems - and then a real murder ensues! But who is the killer?

A rollercoaster ride of detective work, comedy moments and some very clever acting makes this a production that just cannot be missed. All of the cast completely immersed themselves in their roles, right down to the American accents.

Emma Burrows is fabulous as the acid-tongued newspaper columnist Daria Chase - and all credit to the wonderful Barbara Vesty as Martha Gillette - a grandmother on her ninth production with the 'cows'. The scene where William Gillette and his best friend Felix Geisel - played by the fantastic Keith Clements - attempt to hide the victim's body, is hilarious - not to mention the eventual demise of the murder victim!

It's hard to believe that it is the first time on stage for some of the cast - but for this herd of clever so-and-so's, it was merely elementary!