Friday, January 6, 2012

'The Mousetrap': 60 Years in London's West End

Agatha Christie's 'The Mousetrap' at St. Martin's Theatre, London
(image: Snapperz/flickr)
In the past couple of years, the West End musicals 'Les Miserables' and 'The Phantom of the Opera' celebrated 25 years on the London stage and still counting. But there is one show that has run 35 years longer. Running on the West End since November 25, 1952 Agatha Christie's 'The Mousetraip' is currently celebrating 60 years and the show's producers are the marking the diamond jubilee with events through the year.

Seen by 10 million people and running over 23,000 performance, the play is currently presented at St. Martin's Theatre. Marked by its brilliantly intricate plot where murder lurks around every corner, the whodunit has become of the greatest pieces of theatrical history. It's title as long run champion in London was first attained on 1958.

During the record-breaking run, almost 300 actors and actresses have appeared in the play, 86 miles of shirts have been ironed and over 320 tons of ice cream sold at the show. The set had to be replaced in 2000 but it still has the same design as the original and the task completed over a weekend without the loss of a single performance.

Performance on 'The Mousetrap' set.
The show has seen the Cold War, Queen Elizabeth II's coronation and survived 12 British Prime Ministers. For the year-long 60th year celebration, the show producers announced it will begin its first ever tour of the UK in September 2012.

Another interesting fact about 'The Mousetrap': Agatha Christie gave the rights to her grandson Matthew Prichard as a birthday present and she stipulated that only one version could be performed outside of the West End annually.

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