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Fascinating Facts About Agatha Christie's The Mousetrap As It Enjoys A 70th Anniversary UK Tour

Fascinating Facts About Agatha Christie's The Mousetrap As It Enjoys A 70th Anniversary UK Tour Including A Visit To The Famous Floral Pavilion In New Brighton

Fascinating facts about The Mousetrap, written by internationally acclaimed author, Agatha Christie, is currently in the midst of its 70th Anniversary Tour. The longest running play in the worldis making its way around the UK and Ireland and will be stopping this week at The Floral Pavilion in the Liverpool City Region's Borough of Wirral.


For a full tour schedule, further information, theatre listings and to purchase tickets, you can do so via the Floral Pavilion's website or Box Office on 0151 666 0000, as well as through The Mousetrap Tour website.


Here are some fascinating facts about the play which many consider to be a national treasure.


Fascinating Facts About Agatha Christie's The Mousetrap

  1. When Queen Mary, wife of King George V, was approaching her 80th birthday she was apparently asked by the BBC how she would like to celebrate the event. She responded by saying an Agatha Christie play. The writer responded by writing a thirty-minute radio play for the BBC in 1947 called Three Blind Mice. It was this that would form the basis for The Mousetrap

  2. The play was loosely based on the real-life death of Dennis O'Neill, a 12-year-old boy who died while in the care of a Shropshire farmer and his wife in 1945. The trial and committal of his foster parents shocked the country, and inspired the author in her writing of the work.

  3. When The Mousetrap opened on 25th November 1952 with Richard Attenborough and his fellow film-star and beloved wife Sheila Sim in the leading roles, it was only seven years since Hitler died. Much essential food was still rationed, Mr Winston Churchill was Prime Minister, Harry Truman was President of the United States, and Stalin was ruler of Russia. There was fighting in Korea, and Princess Elizabeth began her long reign as Queen. The last tram ran in London, television programmes ended at 10.30 p.m., and the entire TV listings only occupied three and a half lines.

  4. The Mousetrap became the world’s longest running production on 12 April 1958, exceeding the run of 'Chu-Chin-Chow', on its 2,239th performance.

  5. Agatha Christie became a Dame of the British Empire in 1971; her books have sold billions of copies around the world – many more than any other author except Shakespeare and The Bible. She died on the 12th January 1976 aged 85. At one point she had three plays running at the same time in the West End, a feat never matched by any other woman. She was as successful as a playwright as she was as a novelist. Her most famous characters are Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple.

  6. On 25 November 2002, The Mousetrap celebrated its golden jubilee with a Birthday Gala performance attended by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh. Lord (Richard) Attenborough gave the famous curtain speech exactly 50 years since he first delivered it in London: 'Now you have seen The Mousetrap you are our partners in crime, and we ask you to preserve the tradition by keeping the secret of whodunit locked in your hearts.'

  7. In 2010, Wikipedia agreed to compromise on its policy of presenting information after fans and Christie’s family petitioned the website to take down a spoiler which revealed the identity of the murderer on the Wikipedia page. As a result, the final twist remains in the article, but is set apart from the rest of the synopsis under the large bold heading 'Identity Of The Murderer'.

  8. In November 2012 Agatha Christie’s grandson, Mathew Prichard, welcomed the audience to the Diamond Jubilee celebratory evening, which was also the 25,000th performance of The Mousetrap. Phyllida Lloyd directed this one-off gala performance starring Julie Walters, Patrick Stewart, Iain Glen, Tamsin Greig, Nicholas Farrell, Hugh Bonneville and Miranda Hart. All of the proceeds from the night were donated to Mousetrap Theatre Projects, the leading theatre education charity seed-funded by the play.

  9. In April 2015, the West End production celebrated 26,000 performances.

  10. Agatha Christie gave her grandson, Mathew Prichard, the royalties from The Mousetrap for his ninth birthday. In recent years he has donated them to the benefit of charities for the arts and other causes especially in Wales. Mathew Prichard CBE is Chairman of Agatha Christie Ltd.

  11. The Mousetrap has four entries in the Guinness Book of Records, including: for the ‘longest continuous run of any show in the world’; ‘most durable’ actor (David Raven, who played Major Metcalf for 4,575 performances from 22nd July 1957 until 23rd November 1968); and ‘longest serving understudy’ (Nancy Seabrooke, who stood by as Mrs Boyle 6,240 times until 12th March 1994, and actually did so 72 times).

  12. The Mousetrap Challenge Cup horse race took place at the Devon and Exeter Races from 1967 to 1991 - Agatha Christie herself presented the trophy to the first winner – and at Sandown Park from 1995 onwards.

  13. Peter Saunders, the original producer of The Mousetrap and of many other Agatha Christie plays, married Katie Boyle in 1979, was knighted in 1982 for services to the theatre; and died in 2003.

  14. In March 1956, Peter Saunders sold the film rights, but shrewdly added the proviso that the film could not be released until six months after the end of the West End run. The film has yet to be made.

  15. In 1994 Sir Peter handed over his responsibilities to a new company, Mousetrap Productions, under the management of Sir Stephen Waley-Cohen.

  16. In March 2018, Adam Spiegel took over as producer of Agatha Christie’s The Mousetrap from Sir Stephen-Waley Cohen.

For a full tour schedule, further information, theatre listings and to purchase tickets, you can do so via the Floral Pavilion's website or Box Office on 0151 666 0000, as well as through The Mousetrap Tour website.

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