The Hollow

Friday, 8 April 1960 - 7:30pm
Saturday, 9 April 1960 - 7:30pm
Agatha Christie
Bessie Lamb
Hornby Institute, Main Street, Hornby
Henrietta AngkatellPhyllis Holt
Sir Henry Angkatell, K.C.B.Bill Yare
Lady AngkatellFreda Longbotton
Midge HarveySheila Halstead
GudgeonMichael Goth
Edward AngkatellEdward Hallam
DorisMargaret Hartley
Gerda ChristowJean Hallam
John ChristowEric Bentley
Veronica CrayeJean Whittam
Inspector Colquhoun, C.I.D.Peter Smalley
Detective Inspector PennyEric Halhead

Lady Angkatell, intrigued by the criminal mind, has invited Hercule Poirot to her estate for a weekend house party. The Belgian detective's arrival at the Hollow is met with an elaborate tableau staged for his amusement: a doctor lies in a puddle of red paint, his timid wife stands over his body with a gun while the other guests look suitably shocked. But this is no charade. The paint is blood and the corpse real!


HORNBY Drama Group’s production of Agatha Christie’s, ‘The Hollow”, their first attempt at a thriller, produced some interesting individual work and a few, brief moments of startling realism.

First night nerves were perhaps responsible for a little slowness at Friday evening’s performance and for the amount of prompting required. There was very little atmosphere and although the cast drew laughs in the right places there were some in the wrong places too. Hesitancy by the players resulted in strain in the production. This strain accounted for any inadequacy in acting and one felt that with a little extra effort from some members of the cast in learning lines, this could he a very exciting production.

One who seemed unaffected and unperturbed by the general forgetfulness was Freda Longbottom. She had very goon attack and her characterisation was amazingly credible. She did much to hold the play together.

Michael Goth did more with his comparatively small part than many other members of the cast whose parts offered greater scope. His performance was excellent.

In a difficult role, Jean Hallam did much to remind the audience that this was a thriller. Her restrained and expressive performance gave the play its few moments of excitement.

Sheila Halstead had charm and assurance and Phyllis Holt created a convincing character.

Jean Whittam had the right touch of arrogance as the film star and looked the part and Margaret Hartley made a fetching maid.

Eric Bentley’s was a nicely realistic performance and Bill Yare’s portrayal was a good foil. Others who made effective contributions were Edward Hallam and Peter Smalley and Eric Halhead who made an amusing team of detectives.

A particularly attractive set was designed and constructed by John McClements. Sound effects were intelligently used.

Stage electrician was B. Biddlestone; stage managers, M. Gibson, M. Lamb, D. M. Bracken and A. Wray and the prompt was J. Ashton.