The Murder of Roger Ackroyd – Play – Book-It Repertory Theatre

Elevator Thoughts (aka Tweet): The Murder of Roger Ackroyd play by Agatha Christie at Book-It Repertory Theatre w/ opening night cheesecake/wine reception. Diverse/blind casting. I’m proud to have finally correctly guessed the murderer in this whodunnit! #AgathaChristie #HerculePoirot #Poirot

Synopsis from the Theatre: “Always Bear in Mind That the Person Who Speaks May Be Lying” Gossip, blackmail, deception and betrayal unsettle the peaceful English village of King’s Abbot. After a pair of mysterious deaths — including one from inside a locked room – the famous detective Hercule Poirot is pulled out of retirement to solve the case. Despite his desire to relax and grow vegetable marrows, the ingenious sleuth is compelled to snoop around this quaint hamlet and its surrounding countryside. Will this sleepy 1930s village ever feel quite so cozy again? Will Poirot be able to unravel the knots of this mystery? It’s a mystery! Book-It and local playwright Danielle Mohlman (author of Nexus and a renowned theatrical adaptation of Frankenstein) are crafting this brand-new script based on one of Dame Agatha Christie’s most innovative, clever, and mind-bending mysteries. The original book has been lauded as the best crime novel of all time by the Crime Writers’ Association. This play will be directed by Seattle-based director Jasmine Joshua (director of Irma Vep at Intiman in 2022, and has also directed at Reboot Theatre, Cafe Nordo, 5th Avenue, and Village Theatre). The creative team is taking a modern approach to staging of this show, include modern music remixed and re-recorded in vintage styles, and nontraditional gender casting. We love a good whodunnit! This classic murder mystery was revolutionary for its time, and it still hits all the right notes today. It’s sinister but also fun; fast-paced but still detailed; and thrilling without being frightening. Agatha Christie is one of the best-selling authors of all time, a master of her genre, and this story shows us why. Her subtle skewering of society and her delectable characters keep her work feeling fresh almost a century on. We want you to share time with us this winter, having some good ol’ fashioned fun!

Reviewed Performance: 2/11/23 on a packed opening night

Type: Play

World Premiere: Yes

Film/Book: Based on the popular book by Agatha Christie

Defined Plot/Storyline: Yes, but like many “whodunnit” plays, it is not linear.

Recommendation: See it especially if you like mystery or “whodunnit” plays

Was This the First Time I Saw a Production of this Show: Yes

Would I See It Again 3 Years from Now: Probably not since I now know the ending. Half the fun in watching a whodunnit is guessing who the killer is!

Rating Compared to Other Shows with the Same Production Value:
4.5 Stars (Out of 5 Stars)

Equity Actors: 1 but they were all good

Total Number of Actors: 7

Length (Including Any Intermission): 2.5 hours – The second act felt slightly long

Intermission: Yes

Other Rave(s) Not Mentioned in Elevator Thoughts

  • Intermission Voting: It was a nice touch that the audience could vote for the murderer’s identity at intermission. As the audience exited the theatre after the second act, they could read a sign which showed the character who “won” from the intermission vote tally. It’s the first time I’ve seen this audience involvement game at a whodunnit play and I’m surprised more productions don’t implement it as well.
  • Diction: There was something about the way that Brandon J. Simmons (Dr. James Sheppard), Lisa Viertel (Roger Ackroyd), and Megan Ahiers (Cecil Ackroyd) delivered their lines that was very pleasant and made me think of good breeding.


  • Corpse: After the killer murdered Roger Ackroyd in a chair, the actors draped the chair under a white sheet instead of leaving the actor under the sheet or replacing the actor with a stuffed dummy. A stuffed dummy would have been a cheap prop to make the scene more realistic.
  • Motivation: When the murderer was revealed, the motivation wasn’t adequately explained.

Other Musing(s) and Observation(s)

  • Cecil Ackroyd: Why wasn’t the sister (or sister-in-law?) interrogated?
  • Killer Identity: I’m proud to have finally guessed the murderer correctly. If I’ve learned anything about whodunnit plays and Agatha Christie, the murderer is always who you least expect!

Theatre Company: Book-It Repertory Theatre

Venue: Center Theatre at Seattle Center Armory

Venue Physical Address: 305 Harrison St, Seattle, WA 98109

Price: Medium

Ticket Affordability Options: Check out the discount section of their ticketing page. Goldstar usually offer good options too.

Dates: February 11 to March 5, 2023

Seating: Assigned Seating

Parking: Paid street parking or paid lot/garage parking. I usually like to park on the street near the skating park (313 Taylor Ave N, Seattle, WA 98109) East of the theatre. It’s more expensive on Climate Pledge Arena event days though so I ended up parking in South Lake Union since I’m cheap!

Like/Comment/Share my Social Media Posts About this Performance:
Instagram | TikTok | Twitter | Facebook | Youtube

Buy a Ticket or Learn More:

Other Video +/- Pictures: Pictures in video and under video by Anthony Floyd Photography.

Cast and Production Team: See after pictures and video below

@showsiveseen "The Murder of Roger Ackroyd" #play by #AgathaChristie & @daniellemohlman at Book-It Theatre w/ opening night cheesecake/wine reception. Diverse/blind casting. I'm proud to have finally correctly guessed the murderer in this #whodunnit! Review: Photos by Anthony Floyd. #theatre #HerculePoirot #Poirot ♬ Freak – Moliy
Riley Gene photographed by Anthony Floyd
Brandon J. Simmons and Aaron Pitre photographed by Anthony Floyd
Brandon J. Simmons, Sydney Maltese, and Lisa Viertel photographed by Anthony Floyd
Brandon J. Simmons and Aaron Pitre photographed by Anthony Floyd
Aaron Pitre and Brandon J. Simmons photographed by Anthony Floyd
Hercule Poirot Aaron Pitre*
Dr. James SheppardBrandon J. Simmons
Roger Ackroyd Lisa Viertel
Mrs. Cecil Ackroyd, Inspector Raglan, and Miss RussellMegan Ahiers
Captain Ralph Paton and Major Hector BluntRhys Daly
John Parker and Ursula BourneSydney Maltese
Miss Flora Ackroyd, Geoffrey Raymond, and Charles KentRiley Gene
UnderstudiesBenjamin Elias Nickols, Jessica Robins, Jordan-Michael Whidbey
Director Jasmine Joshua
AuthorAgatha Christie
PlaywrightDanielle Mohlman
Stage Manager Nicola Krause
Assistant Stage Manager / Covid Safety OfficerSelina Senn
Assistant Director & Assistant DramaturgAdrian Prendergast
DramaturgSara Keats
Scenic Designer & Props Designer Robin Macartney
Costume DesignerJocelyne Fowler
Lighting DesignerRichard Schaefer
Sound DesignerJohanna Melamed
Dialect Coach Marena Kleinpeter
Production ManagerDan Schuy
Assistant Production & Company ManagerMax Koh
Technical DirectorBenjamin Radin
Poster Design Tyrell Waiters
*Member of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in USA

Leave a Reply