Theatre Royal, Glasgow, Mon 26–Sat 31 May



Since Anthony Shaffer’s Sleuth first appeared in 1970, its countless revivals and two film versions attest to its capacity to intrigue audiences. But will the much-hyped, though ultimately slightly disappointing 2007 film version overshadow this touring production? Michael Praed, the former Dynasty star feels that this latest version, a 70s-set production of Shaffer’s original, has the edge over the film. ‘In fairness, the remake set itself a monumental task in updating a classic play,’ he says. ‘By doing that, they had to change it a lot. People coming to see this version will see a very different show.’

The story of the young, entrepreneurial Milo visiting the country home of Andrew, an ageing novelist has, notoriously, more twists in the tail than a 40ft anaconda. The former’s affair with the latter’s wife is the starting point for a memorably brutal series of encounters. Praed maintains that it is the endless shifts in sympathy that create fascination for an audience. ‘What’s really interesting is the way power shifts. We start off sympathetic to Andrew, who, it seems, has been cuckolded by this younger man, but then his response to this is so nasty that we start to feel sorry for Milo. But after that Milo behaves so nastily that we switch back again. These are two men who really are out to settle scores in a nasty way. By their actions they are making a monumental gesture, saying: “You fucked with me, and you’re going to pay”.’


Simon MacCorkindale ('Casualty') stars in the award-winning West End psychological 'thriller about thrillers' written by Anthony Shaffer.


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