REVIEW: Stone Cold Murder, The Customs House, South Shields, Until April 1

TENSE MYSTERY ... Stone Cold Murder is at the Customs House, South Shields.
TENSE MYSTERY ... Stone Cold Murder is at the Customs House, South Shields.
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A GOOD mystery will keep you guessing right until the very end – and Stone Cold Murder is a brilliant one.

The never-ending twists and turns will have your head spinning as you try to figure out who did what.

The play, by James Cawood, takes place in the Langstrath Country House Hotel, in the Lake District, where the doors are closed for the winter.

Olivia (Freya Copeland) runs the establishment with her new husband, Robert (Nick Barclay).

The pair tied the knot after only one month, but seem blissfully happy together in their simple country life.

But all is not as it seems. Olivia is hiding some dark secrets from her past involving her ex-boyfriend, Sam (Gary Turner).

The enigmatic plot is absolutely fantastic. Every time you think you’ve got it figured out, something else comes along to leave you baffled – even the most determined sleuth would have trouble keeping up.

Robert is attempting to get her to open up one night when a mysterious man, Ramsay (David Callister) turns up at the hotel seeking refuge, claiming he was climbing a nearby mountain when the weather caught him out.

They agree to put him up for the night – despite the hotel being closed – and the mysteries of Olivia’s past begin to unravel.

The enigmatic plot is absolutely fantastic. Every time you think you’ve got it figured out, something else comes along to leave you baffled – even the most determined sleuth would have trouble keeping up.

The cast of soap and stage stars is fantastic – they pull you so deeply into the story that you feel the chill in the air on the cold and eerie winter’s night.

The set looks great and even though the show takes place entirely in one room, it somehow feels like you walk miles in the characters’ shoes.

Music is used brilliantly to create tension, and the production, by Talking Scarlet, is gripping and atmospheric.

But it’s not all about the suspense, the play is also wickedly funny, with clever writing and a witty script that is delivered impeccably.

Timing is everything in a show like this, and the actors got it spot on.

The show really does keep you guessing until the very end.

It provided a fantastic night of tense theatre and I defy anyone to figure it out.

Head along tonight to see if you can out-smart this clever show.

Stone Cold Murder runs again tonight. Click here to book tickets.

Twitter: @ShieldsGazVicki