Friday, 31 July 2015

Wet Wet Wet Get The Big Picture - Tommy Cunningham Interview

To coincide with the 20th anniversary of their Picture This album, Wet Wet Wet will bring their Big Picture Tour to Cardiff Motorpoint Arena on March 9, 2016.

The Wets, Marti Pellow, Graeme Clark, Neil Mitchell and Tommy Cunningham have sold over 15 million records worldwide whilst notching up over thirty UK chart hits including three number 1’s.

Alongside their incredible success, performing amazing live shows has always been at the heart of what the band do. having played to over 5 million people across the globe since 1987. “Our business is taking care of the legacy we've managed to build up over the years,” the bands drummer Tommy Cunningham tells Andy Howells, “ we've got to make sure that we don't destroy that and we treat it with respect. We’re always taking care of the back catalogue but at the same time we're pushing forward and trying to do new songs.”

Tommy confirms that fans will get to hear many of The Wets hits on the new tour, “There are certain songs we have to do including Love Is all Around and Goodnight Girl. We also like to bring out songs we've not touched in a while, songs like Angel Eyes from our first album.  It was a top 10 hit but we don’t play it at every gig or songs like Sweet Surrender.”

The Picture This album, originally released in 1996 has cause to be celebrated highlighting a peak in Wet Wet Wet’s chart success including the hits Julia Says, Don’t Want to Forgive Me Now, Somewhere Somehow, She’s All On My Mind, Morning and Love is all Around. The album has recently been remastered for special anniversary releases.

There is still a lot of excitement for the bands live shows not just from the Wets huge fan base but also the band themselves, “They can digitise your music, they can digitise your image but they can’t digitise the live experience!” continues Tommy, “People who come along to our concerts want to be entertained and it’s our job to do that.”

Tommy Steele To Star In The Glenn Miller Story - Interview

“It’s an adventure in music you won’t stop tapping to!” music legend Tommy Steele tells Andy Howells as he prepares to take to the stage in a spectacular new imagining of the extraordinary tale of the world’s most famous big band leader – in The Glenn Miller Story.

Accompanied by a live 16-piece authentic Glenn Miller orchestra, as well as full supporting company of singers, dancers and actors, the story of one of the most iconic musical figures of the 20th century will be told as never before when it takes to the stage of Cardiff’s New Theatre this November.

Tommy revealed to an invited audience of press and fans in Cardiff a few weeks ago that the idea of the musical had come from one of his many suppers with Bill Kenwright who has previously produced Tommy’s musical successes Dr Dolittle and Scrooge.

Tommy Steele with Andy Howells
Britain’s first rock ‘n’ roll star, Tommy was dubbed the UK’s answer to Elvis Presley, and he gained his first UK No.1 Singing the Blues in January 1957, reaching the top spot before Elvis, who didn’t get his first chart-topper until the June of that year.

Tommy’s legendary career includes over twenty hit singles, twelve hit movies and countless award winning stage musicals including Half a Sixpence, Hans Andersen and Singin’ in the Rain.

It was when discussing a particular favourite of theirs; the James Stewart box office smash The Glenn Miller Story, that Bill discovered Tommy’s adoration for Glenn Miller and his Orchestra. The seeds were sown for an exciting new musical platform for Tommy who originally saw Miller on stage back in the 1940s.

“First of all you’ve got to remember I was a kid in the blitz,” says Tommy, “the bombs were dropping everywhere and in 1942 the Americans came into the war. I was only four and all of a sudden over AFN (American Forces Network) came this music saying Glenn Miller’s coming to England, my mum and dad were thrilled! My dad took me to the Albert Hall to see him. Today all I can remember is this wonderful sound and then came the mystery of his death. Did the Germans kill him or was he assassinated?”

At the age of 78, Tommy is still one of this country’s greatest “8 shows a week” song and dance men, but insists he’s too old to play Glenn. However, both he and Bill have come up with an answer that they think will delight fans when they turn out to see the show as it tours the UK in the autumn.

Tommy is still keeping that element a surprise but is enthusiastic about the shows content. “You hear the story of this man in search of a sound,” he says, “It’s a great example of music from the swing era and it works beautifully.”

  • Catch Tommy Steele in The Glenn Miller Story at Cardiff New Theatre from November 9 –14 Call Box Office: 029 2087 8889 or visit: for ticket details.
  • A version of this interview by Andy Howells appeared in The South Wales Argus entertainment supplement on July 31, 2015.

Thursday, 30 July 2015

DVD Review: The Third Man (4K Restored Version)

Upon its release in 1949, Carol Reed’s atmospheric screen adaptation of Graham Greene’s The Third Man instantly became a cinematic classic winning numerous plaudits and awards from the Grand Prix at Cannes to The Oscars.

The iconic thriller stars Joseph Cotten as American pulp western writer Holly Martens who arrives in post-war Vienna following up an invitation fro childhood friend Harry Lime. However Martens discovers that Lime (Orson Welles) has apparently been killed in a recent accident leaving behind a grief stricken lover, Anna (Allida Valli) and a British investigating officer called Calloway (Trevor Howard) who seems determined to expose Lime as an unsavory criminal.

StudioCanal’s new 4K restoration from a fine grain master positive struck from the original negative takes the DVD and Blu-Ray audience back to 1949 and is the ultimate experience in black and white cinematography.

As far as classic dramas go there’s much to enjoy here from the war-torn Viennese backdrop which provides much in the way of atmosphere as the drama unfolds in a variety of locations including a playground, a cemetery underground sewers to Anton Karras’ score and iconic theme tune.

The film has many surprises in both storytelling and performance and its easy to see why it is still held in such high regard some 65 years after its original release. Joseph Cotten turns out a compelling performance as Martens while Allida Valli gives is convincingly standoffish as female lead Anna. Of course, Orson Welles is nothing short of brilliant as the mysterious Harry Lime but Trevor Howard is equally compelling as Calloway as he tries to uncover the truth about Harry Lime. James Bond fans should also look out for an early acting role by the original M, Bernard Lee who plays a chirpy military cockney sidekick to Howard’s investigator.

The DVD and Blu Ray comes bristling with new extras including rare audio interviews with Graham Greene and Joseph Cotten and an insight into how the film has influenced modern day film makers such as Martin Scorcesse.

The 4K restored version of The Third Man is available from StudioCanal on Blu Ray and DVD formats now.

  • A version of this review by Andy Howells appeared in The South Wales Argus entertainment supplement The Guide on July 24, 2015
  • Visit Studio Canal website.

Sunday, 19 July 2015

In Concert: Family Prom 2015, St David's Hall, Cardiff

This years Welsh Proms family event upped its game incredibly from last years show. Held this time at 3pm on a Sunday afternoon, it commanded a good turn-out from an audience of all ages eager to hear popular classics and film scores from the Cardiff Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Michael Bell.

Compering the event was popular Radio Wales presenter and singer Wynne Evans who delivered a family friendly and fun presentation introducing many pieces in the style of an awards ceremony.

The awards on this occasion weren’t going to actors or performers but the instruments themselves, all of which create the sounds to form particular highlights of memorable themes. While the flute stole the Award for Contribution to Dance by a Woodwind Instrument on Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake, (the piece itself complimented with flare and elegance by several ballerinas) the award for orchestral selection with the most melodies went to the strings following a performance of The William Tell Overture (famously used as the theme to The Lone Ranger).

The Cardiff Philharmonic Orchestra performances were superb as well as educational, outstanding particularly were Hans Zimmer’s Lion King Suite, a beautiful performance of James Newton’s The Hanging Tree from The Hunger Games (which featured four leads on the stage complimented by members of the choir interspersed around the stalls) and John Williams’ Imperial March from Star Wars complimented by the appearance of Darth Vader and several Imperial Storm troopers on the stage.

The prom, lasting just over an hour, brought smiles to both youngsters and adults who attended and is clearly proving to be one of the most popular concepts of The Welsh Proms series.

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

In Concert: The Big Chris Barber Band, Newport Riverfront

There are some shows which immediately fall on to the must-see radar for me and the scheduled appearance of legendary jazz star Chris Barber and his Big Band at Newport Riverfront was certainly one of those.

“I am frequently greeted by people at my concerts who say “I last saw your band in 1955”” Barber informed the Newport Riverfront audience on Friday evening before continuing, “What can I say? But thank you for coming again!”

Barber and his smartly attired ten-strong band may have been recalling the fabulous New Orleans inspired tunes of Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong in their set list as they did back in 1955, but it was clear the energy and enthusiasm was still there as the cool jazz sounds of Take Me Back To New Orleans and Down On Blue Street reverberated through the Riverfront theatre.

Much of Barber’s class of the 1950s are no longer with us, including Monty Sunshine, Lonnie Donegan and Pat Halcox, but there spirit in music truly lived on through wonderful renditions of Going Home, Wild Cat and Bourbon Street Parade.

Each band member gave a sparkling performance through a variety of instruments as solo spots were given to bass, double bass, banjo, clarinet and trombone. This was particularly highlighted on their rendition of Petite Fleur which featured a virtually stripped back performance that was ultimately owned by the clarinet until the whole band joined in again to bring it to a climax. “That is what we call in our trade a medley of our hit,” Barber joked referring to the fact it was the Barber band’s only chart entry in 1959.

If the first half featured traditional jazz numbers much of the second half was given over to the Blues, much of which Barber helped bring to the UK from America in the 1950s. One particular highlight was the band rendition of Corn Bread Peas and Black Molasses which had a classic pop feel to it.

The concert drew to a close with When The Saints Go Marching In followed by favourites Ice Cream and Rock My Baby Roll. A fabulous evening comprising the best in jazz and blues it was an evening of music I will remember and treasure for a very long time to come.

Friday, 10 July 2015

British Jazz Pioneer Chris Barber Plays South Wales Show - Interview

Tonight jazz legend Chris Barber OBE will make his first ever appearance at Newport’s Riverfront Theatre, heading up the world famous Big Chris Barber Band.

A hugely talented trombonist and successful bandleader for over 60 years, Chris continues to perform with the same fire and enthusiasm that inspired traditional jazz audiences in the 1950s. He still loves the New Orleans revival sound and features Bourbon Street Parade as his signature tune. But, with its thrilling 10-piece line-up, the Big Chris Barber Band is also able to breathe fresh life into the jazz of Duke Ellington’s early years, including such classics as Jubilee Stomp and Black and Tan Fantasy.

Chris who began his first band in 1949 has included an illustrious list of names in his line-ups over the years including Alexis Corner, Lonnie Donegan, Monty Sunshine and vocalist Ottilie Patterson.

“It was the first time people were recording things from the 20s,” Chris tells me as we discuss those early days of The Chris Barber Jazz Band, “The jazz sounds weren’t released that strong in Britain. They had a minority appeal but we were emulating that great music from the 20s. We enjoyed it so much; it came across to the public. We couldn’t understand why anybody wouldn’t like it. When people came to see it, we didn't feel amazed because what else were they going to go and see?”

Chris’s band was the first to achieve success in popular music with strong record sales and sell-out concert dates, predating the success of later Trad-Jazz successes Mr Acker Bilk and Kenny Ball. However, Chris reveals that popularity and fame didn't necessarily walk hand in hand in post-war Britain. “The sheer fact of been popular in the 50s didn't mean anything,” he says, “We played all the major concert halls around the country. The fact that we were getting those places full never made the national papers because it wasn’t worth mentioning. It wasn’t interesting. It became interesting when The Beatles started up and were playing the same places”

Chris recalls a time when he met The Beatles before their fame beckoned. “We used to see them in Liverpool; we’d pop down the jazz club to see our friends after we’d finish our concert at 10 in the evening. Of course, it (The Cavern Club) later became a rock rendezvous. We actually met The Beatles; they did the interval slot while some Trad band got the main spot. I remember John (Lennon) coming to one of our band members trying to convince him to become their manager because the one they had was useless. The bloke they asked would have had them bankrupt within five minutes!”

By the late 1950s, Chris had become one of the pioneers of the blues movement on this side of the Atlantic. He was the first British bandleader to bring across from America and tour with such iconic figures as Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf and Dr John. Many UK blues musicians such as Eric Clapton and Van Morrison have since acknowledged Chris’s influence and admire his blues playing. “We brought these people over, Muddy Waters and so forth,” says Chris, “Bands started up like The Rolling Stones. They tried to copy that music and they did very well with it. A lot of them saw us doing that and later came to me and said “it was you doing that, which gave us a chance. Had you not done that, we wouldn’t have created the music.”

As well as touring, Chris Barber’s Band also rode high in the music charts in 1959 with their hit Petite Fleur. “We’d done a couple of short (10 Inch) LP’s”, recalls Chris, “I’d done a solo bit, as had Pat (Halcox) the trumpeter. Then we were going to record the third one and we said “We’ll have Monty Sunshine on the clarinet!” He said “I have this nice tune from Sidney Bechet” and played it to us. What made it special about that number was the key Monty played on the clarinet was difficult to play. Sidney Bechet had played it in an ordinary key but Monty’s record player had played it too fast. So it took it up half a tone, it was played in a difficult key and that was its secret because it made the sound more individual. There was a hard edge to Monty’s playing which made it more powerful.”

Chris has continued to pack in the crowds to concert halls around the world in the decades that have followed and no doubt his appearance at Newport Riverfront tonight will be one for fans of jazz and the blues to savour. “We’ve been dead lucky playing music all this time,” he says, “playing the best we can and to a strong audience.”

  • Tickets are now available at £19.50 and £15.50 Phone Riverfront Box Office on 01633 656757 or book online at
  • A version of this interview by Andy Howells appears in The South Wales Argus entertainment supplement The Guide on July 10, 2015
  • Visit the official Chris Barber website

Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Meet The Band: Restorations

After a whirlwind winter and spring full of touring in the United States, Philadelphia’s Restorations will finally make their way back across the pond for a headlining summer run throughout the UK including a date on July 11 at Cardiff's Moon Club with Crazy Arm and Sam Russo for support. .

A marriage of big sounds and meaty songwriting, Restorations’ third full length, LP3, swept the music community off its feet upon initial release back in October 2014, with standout single Separate Songs leading the charge. Both the song and album have received high praise from NPR, Rolling Stone, Consequence of Sound, PAPER, Noisey, Grantland, Stereogum and The A.V. Club. With LP3, Restorations has taken every potential cliché and tossed them out the window to create the most memorable and standout record of their career to date.

Andy Howells recently put questions to Jou Loudon from the band

Who are you and how did you come together?
My name’s Jon and I play guitar and sing in a band called Restorations. We got together in 2008ish after our old bands broke up.

Where are you from?
All of us are from Philadelphia.

How would you describe your music style?

What’s been your best live experience?
For our band: our record release show last fall at the First Unitarian Church basement in Philadelphia.
For me personally: Any time I saw Bear Vs Shark play in the mid 2000s.

You have a new single and album coming soon can you tell us more about that?
Our record LP3 came out last fall on SideOneDummy records. We recorded it in Philly with our good friend Jon Low. We’ve been touring quite a bit this past year off of it and really enjoy playing these songs in a live environment.

You’re touring shortly are you looking forward to that?
I can’t wait. The last time we came through the UK was fantastic. Hoping to re-live the experience.

What can people expect from your forthcoming Cardiff gig?
We’ll be playing songs from all of our albums and going a little longer than usual. We’ve got our dear friends Crazy Arm and Sam Russo as support. It’s going to be great. Our second Welsh show ever.

Will you be playing anymore Wales dates in the future?
Nothing concrete at the moment, but we’ll definitely be back. We played Le Pub in Newport previously and also had a lovely time.

Where can people hear your music? has our entire discography and links to physical copies from there.

Friday, 3 July 2015

Meet The Band: Danny and The Champions Of The World

Before hitting the festival circuit over the summer, Danny and The Champions Of The World have added a final Welsh live date on July 3 in St Donat's Arts Centre (Atlantic College) at Llantwit Major.

The country soul sextet released their fifth studio album, What Kind Of Love, via Loose Recordings, in June and are currently on a tour of the tour of the UK.

Led by Danny Wilson (Grand Drive), Danny and The Champions Of The World spent much of last year on the road (one such night was captured on 2014’s justly acclaimed Live Champs!), touring across the globe. Following the end of their travels, the band regrouped in the studio to cut ten new songs with home team producer Champs bass player Chris Clarke at his north London studio Reservoir Sound.

The London band hit the road once again in June 2015 to take songs from What Kind Of Love to audiences up and down the country. Andy Howells recently put questions to Danny Wilson.

How did you come together?
The band has kind of evolved rather than springing from a garage fully formed...I was in a band with my brother called 'Grand Drive' for many years and when we decided to have a break 'The Champs' slowly became a thing... at first it was just a very loose collection of friends from different bands playing some tunes that I had on the go and it's just organically become a 'proper' band...

Where are you from?
We're from all over really...Australia, Scotland, London...but very much a London band

How would you describe your music style?
The subject matter is very much about 'our' lives, our friends, our experiences but I guess the sound is largely influenced by great Rock and Roll music... be that The Everly Brothers, Chuck Berry, Sam Cooke, Van Morrison or Rockpile... If we like it then it'll have an effect... I'm a big fan of the great British bands of the 70's who we're very true to their local roots lyrically but enthrall to the wonderful and exotic sounds emanating from the jukeboxes and transistor radios of the their youth

What’s been your best live experience?
We've had so many amazing nights from Nashville to Barcalona to Swansea...We really try to make every night special for both us and the audience...As Springsteen said "Prove it all night, every night"

You have just released a new album What Kind of Love - can you tell us more about that?
It's the most collaborative album the band has made... co written largely with different band members and friends, self produced in Chris (our bass player) studio with a few mates helping out here and there... it's about us but very much influenced by the soul and rhythm and blues records that we listen to in the van.. I'm very proud of it.

You’re just coming to the end of your UK tour - how has it been so far and what can we expect next?
More touring to be honest.. it's really what we're about... I love the studio but I really feel that music really comes to life in a sweaty club or theatre... it's a collaboration between the audience and the band... the real thing. We'll go into the studio again at some point later in the year but the records serve as a document of where we are and a map for what the shows are likely to be based upon..

What can people expect from your forthcoming gig at Llantwit Major's St Donat's Arts Centre?
It'll be great fun..we love playing in Wales and are lucky enough to be able to come back fairly regularly... I'm not a fan of navel gazing or purely 'promotional' shows... it's nice to feel that whatever is happening on stage is special for tonight... tomorrow will bring something else altogether...

Where can people hear your music?
If we're lucky you'll maybe hear us on the radio but outside of that there's plenty online in all the usual places! You can pick our stuff up in all good record shops or you could always take a punt and come out and have a night with us...Looking forward to it.

Interview With Actor Daniel Llewellyn Williams

Actor Daniel Llewellyn Williams will be putting his director’s hat on this weekend, as the play Between the Crosses plays Caerleon Festival. This recent work follows the Newport actor’s successful one-man show A Regular Little Houdini and coincides with his casting in the lead role of Richard Hannay in the West End production of The 39 Steps. Andy Howells recently had the opportunity to put questions to Daniel .

It’s been a busy year for you so far, having won a Wales Theatre Award for Best English Performance in Not About Heroes, taking on a West End Role in The 39 Steps and producing Between The Crosses. How are you managing to balance all these projects?
With difficulty! I could do with a couple of clones to be honest. It's been a great year so far and I've been extremely lucky to have these opportunities. I haven't always been this busy or lucky and life as a jobbing actor can be very challenging especially when you have a young family.

It's like waiting for a bus and now several have come along at once. Working in the West End or touring is lovely but the down side is I miss out on a lot of landmarks in my kid's growth because our family home is still in Newport. Although I do see them and my wife every Sunday, without fail.

You’re one-man show A Regular Little Houdini was fabulous, you’re passion for bringing some of Newport’s history alive really came through in the performance. Was it well received?
That's very kind of you. It has been extremely well received and I'm immensely proud of it. It really gives people with any affiliation with Newport a real kick of pride and nostalgia when they see it but the story is about more than where it's set. People who have no idea about Newport also love it because it is set in a real place, which isn't London or New York, it has an identity and a heart and people pick up on that and love it for that too.

I've had requests to take it all over Britain and America and I've also been invited to play at the Pleasance theatre at the Edinburgh Festival but my West End commitments now mean A Regular Little Houdini will be "on hold" until I'm available in the New Year. In 2016, I will finish the radio play and I'm also in early stages of turning it into a film.

Will there be any further performances of A Regular Little Houdini in the future?
Yes - Definitely! I had to postpone a few performances this summer/autumn due to The 39 Steps which I will be re-booking some time in the New Year and I will be doing whole month of August 2016 in the Pleasance at the Edinburgh Festival. I'm also booking more venues for next year. Check the website  or like the Facebook page for event information.

Can you tell us about Between the Crosses, what inspired it?
I wanted to continue to produce shows after the success of A Regular Little Houdini. I knew a First World War piece would be apt because of the centenary, and I started to pursue a story to develop. An actor/writer friend of mine, Will Huggins, had a personal story to tell about his Great Uncle Edgar who went from Stable-Hand to Soldier to Survivor through four years of the Great War including Ypres and the Somme.

Edgar was present at the first use of Chlorine gas as a weapon and he lead a ragtag troop of men out of the green cloud with only urine soaked rags over their faces to protect them. He also witnessed the first appearance of tanks in the battlefield. But the interesting thing about Edgar's story is what he didn't tell, his family and loved ones back home. We only know of his story through the Imperial War Museum's interviews with him in his 94th year. What we were fascinated with was why were so many survivors silent? And what effect has that had on the subsequent generations? In the name of sparing our loved ones, how can we learn if we don't know? I really wanted Will to develop the story into a one man script for him to play, which he then did and I have now directed it and produced it.

You are directing this time instead of acting, how different have you found that?
I've always wanted to direct as I'm fascinated with "process". I analyse everything. It suits the way I think. I'm also a lover of communication and when someone has a great story to tell, the way you connect to an audience is paramount. Clarity is everything. Working with other people (writers, actors, musicians, choreographers and designers) to help them make their story clearer to an audience excites me. I am an advocate of simple and effective drama.

How inspirational were Edgar’s recollections when putting the play together?
Edgar's life post War seemed on the outside to be brutally normal and his voice recordings as a 94 year old appeared to be that of a sweet, elderly gent. But the inspiration comes from between the lines, his words unsaid, and the knowledge of what he actually did, influences the listener and makes for a compelling journey.

How has that experience being for Will?
Cathartic and a great honour I imagine.

Who do you hope will come to see Between The Crosses?
Firstly everyone who has an interest in a human story of realism and truth. Then everyone with an interest in history and finally everyone who loves a good story. Friday 4th July, Caerleon Arts Festival 7.30 PM

Is it suitable for all the family?
I would say this one is for 16 and over.

You’ve also recently been cast as Richard Hannay in The 39 Steps in the West-End. How did you come by that role?
Since winning the Theatre Wales Award, I've had a lot of companies interested in me. They called me which was nice. I think it's hilarious though that a Welsh speaking Newport boy is playing the most quintessentially English literary character. Hannay is sort of the pre Bond, but in tweed. He's a colonial adventurer and a gent.

Were you a fan of the original book?
To be honest I found the original stories a bit hard going. All about the thrill and the suspense but without the humour. The stage version, thank god is a wonderful thriller parody which will have you on the edge of your seats but also in fits of laughter.

The 39 Steps popularity has continued to endure in film and television adaptations over the years, why do you think that is?
Because of Richard Hannay himself probably! He is such a likable English twit / hero. He's very "Tally ho pip pip! Jolly good! Fry me a kipper I'll be back for breakfast". What's not to like?

Of all the Richard Hannay’s on screen do you have a particular favourite yourself?
Robert Donat probably although I like Robert Powell and Rupert Penry Jones too. I have to say I think Kenneth More was miscast.

How long will you be in The 39 Steps?
Till this Autumn.

Are you developing any other projects for the future?
Not at present. I'm busy enough right now.

  • For further information on Daniel Llewellyn-Williams projects visit his official website
  • For more information on A Regular Little Houdini visit the official website
  • For more information on The 39 Steps, visit the official website.
  • A version of this Q&A by Andy Howells appeared in The South Wales Argus entertainment supplement The Guide on July 3, 2015.

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

On Stage: And Then There Were None, New Theatre, Cardiff

Big Brother isn’t such a new concept. Years before reality TV was putting B-list celebrities into enclosed spaces and jungles while analysing every characteristic, good or bad of individuals, it had already been done on the printed page.

Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None even preceded George Orwell’s 1984 by a decade when it was published in 1939, showcasing the concept of an all-seeing, all-hearing eye, exposing the hidden truths of characters they would rather others didn't know about.

This current stage adaptation is a star-studded whodunit which follows ten individuals that are lured to a secluded island by a mystery host. After their individual murderous secrets exposed, they are then eliminated one by one by persons unknown in accordance with the poem Ten Little Soldiers.

Featuring the acting talents of Paul Nicholas, Colin Buchanan, Susan Penhaligon, Frazer Hines, Mark Curry, Verity Rushworth, Ben Nealon and Eric Carte, watching the play is like experiencing a classic film brought to life on the stage. The producers have elected to keep the tale close to the author’s original intentions by having the characters trapped on a remote island during the 1930s time period, giving the tale a very authentic feel.

The audience, escaping the onslaught of a heat wave outside Cardiff’s New Theatre on Tuesday evening still found themselves in a cool environment but feeling the heat of the excitement as the drama unfolded. Whoops and screams from the audience occurred as the set went dark and a gun shot was released on stage.

Whodunit? I’m not spoiling the fun! I can only say my first Agatha Christie experience was an absolute delight to savour! Don’t miss this chance whatever age you may be to experience And Then There Were None. The production continues at The New Theatre until Saturday