JULY 21-23 2022
FEBRUARY 24-25 2022

Inspired by Hitchcock's classic tale and performed as a live period radio play, this romantic thriller is a fast-paced ride through the signature world of the Master of Suspense. Richard Hannay is visiting 1930s London when he meets Annabella Smith, who is on the run from foreign agents, after a disturbance at a music hall. Later that night, Annabella is murdered and Hannay must then try to break the spy ring and prove his innocence. From an epic train chase to a feisty love interest, Hannay has his work cut out for him as he searches for the truth about The 39 Steps.

Back in 2019, Chidham & Hambrook Players performed its first radio play – “Murder at Chidham Manor”. This style of show allows us to tap into some vintage charm while showcasing engaging stories and talented performers.

The basic premise is that the actors you see on stage are “radio actors” who portray the characters in each story using their voice and facial expressions. It is similar to a staged reading where the actors have the scripts in front of them, for reference, but still deliver fully nuanced performances. They stand in front of microphones, rather than moving around on a set. They dress in costumes to represent each character. When an actor is playing more than one character, they will make slight changes to their appearance (in addition to altering their voice and physicality) to indicate the new persona. This can be as simple as removing glasses, switching coats, or donning a hat. 

While these shows are not actually recorded or broadcast over the radio waves, audience members watching and listening to the show are transported to a time when the whole family would gather around the radio to catch their favourite program and go on their next grand adventure. The minimal staging suggests enough of the environment and tone to set a spark to fully realise the action in your imagination.