Review: Saddleworth Players Trap audiences with brilliance

IF YOU spot people leaving the Theatre at Delph’s Millgate Arts Centre looking backwards constantly or scratching their head, that will be because they have just been Trapped.

For Saddleworth Players’ production of Trap For A Lonely Man certainly provides enough twists to have any audience member second guessing themself.

Set in an Alpine chalet, the stage is laid out like the front room and theatregoers are treated to the story of Daniel Corban, whose wife Elizabeth has gone missing, or has she?

Daniel Corban with Malouche

For ‘Madame Corban’ is found and ‘reunited’ with her ‘husband.’ Only he is adamant the woman who has entered is not the one he married.

The Players’ cast then guides the audience through several emotions in several scenes. The warning about mobile phones before – this may confuse them and they are already confused – is actually a hint of what is to come, for those watching as much as anyone.

Issues referred to in the dialogue may have been set in the 1960s but they are just as applicable in the 2020s.

Who is in the right? Who is in the wrong? Are ‘Madame Corban’ – played by Rosemary Hoyle – and priest Maximin – played by Andy Hoyle – the bad guys? Are we feeling sorry for the right person? Just who is the victim here?

They certainly give the air of being in the wrong and the addition of Ian Lomas as the police inspector certainly adds to that feeling.

But just as you think ‘Line of Duty’ comes the final twist in the tale. One brilliantly played by the characters on stage.

A bluff is called but is it Daniel Corban’s as he is masterfully played by Peter Rigney? Or is it the people’s watching?

Saddleworth Players – with sensational parts from John Tanner as The Tramp, artist Malouche, and Gill Barham as The Nurse – have people guessing until the very end, but also thinking whether they have seen a tale that is firmly set in the past, or one that could easily be seen today?

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