Sheringham Little Theatre

It's a brave author who calls his play Shock. Someone a little less confident of his work might have called it Startle or Surprise but this one certainly lives up to the author's promise.

There is a gruesome shock halfway through the first act followed by a real stunner which fortunately came just before the interval so we could have drink to get over it. And then there is an aftershock at the end but perhaps we were getting a bit shockproof by then.

The play centres on Maggie an air hostess who invites her friends and neighbours to celebrate her birthday.

The men invited have all been, or currently are, her lovers and as they are at the party with their wives or girlfriends we have a recipe for disaster.

As the guests arrive they find a birthday cake, an incriminating tape recording and a blood-stained Samurai sword and very soon a dead guest.

After this first big shock, Ann, another air hostess, composes herself surprisingly quickly (perhaps not too surprising as she had been the sole survivor of an air crash so after that she could probably take most things in her stride) and sets about discovering who had wielded the Samurai sword.

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This is a very clever thriller presented with flair by a skilled young cast.

Nicola Raby is just right as the truth-seeking air hostess as is Sarah Gale as the twitchy neighbour who suspects husband Peter, played by Tim Machin.

Sebastian Armesto's upper class twit of a pilot brings an added sparkle to the play's subtle humour.

Andy Flewin (nothing to do with airlines despite the name!) is played by Vidar Nelson with panache and a dodgy Salford accent.

Emma Jones was a bit stiff as Maggie but, all in all, this is a splendidly well-presented exciting modern thriller which does exactly what it says on the label.