Set in a country house in Wales, this Agatha Christie thriller opens on  a foggy night when the unexpected guest stumbles across a murdered man – and  his wife standing over him with a gun. It seems a clear-cut case but her confession is unconvincing.

An eerie thriller from the team that brought you Irving’s successful production of And Then There Were None on 2013, this play features and outstanding plot and a denouement to cherish.

An amateur production presented by special arrangement with Samuel French Ltd

See the gallery below for photos of Angela Smith as Laura Warwick and Nic Metcalfe as Michael Starkwedder, taken by Andy Abbott.

Review from the East Anglian Daily Times by Russell Cook:

The plot and intrigue is compelling and acted with great aplomb … this was a wholehearted performance by the cast.

Review from Theatreworld Internet Magazine by Robert Wright

You can always be sure that an Agatha Christie play will hold your attention and this well performed production by The Irving Stage Company of The Unexpected Guest certainly lived up to that.

Michael was played by Nic Metcalfe and he looked and sounded the part of the mysterious guest.  His stage presence throughout was a true pleasure to watch.  … He was immediately attracted to Laura (Angela Smith) and their stage chemistry despite the two characters ups and downs was remarkable.   Angela caught the mood of the grieving confused widow mixed in with the cunningness of a cheating wife, and the attractive damsel in distress.

Stuart McLellan’s portrayal of the steady and methodical Inspector Thomas really captured the moment of what it was like on those bygone days. Nick Bennett seemed a natural as the smoothie Major Farrar whose backbone was seriously compromised when push came to shove. Hugh Weller-Poley gave a most convincing and enjoyable depiction of Jan’s limited yet excitable and innocent takes on life.

It was great there were no set changes, although some fine tuning on a couple of items might assist the viewing angle.   The use of the forestage in this unique Georgian theatre made the whole experience one of intimacy as the cast were so close to you.  This allowed you see and feel the tension of the plot and how the characters reacted to this.

 So there were a few skeletons in the cupboard, but not too many that would distract you from unravelling the plot.  The pace of the production was just right and the flow was excellent. The Unexpected Guest will definitely keep you on your toes and proved to be a most enjoyable experience.


Laura Warwick Angela Smith

Michael Starkwedder Nic Metcalfe

Jan Warwick Hugh Weller-Poley

Miss Bennett Christian Jenner

Angell Adam Thurkettle

Mrs Warwick Joyce Amtower

Major Julian Farrar Nick Bennett

Inspector Stuart McLellan

Sergeant John Hills

Richard Warwick Darian Vomund


Director Kathryn Smith

Stage Manager Tess Smith

Lighting Dan Scarlett

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