TV cop fronts all-star thriller adaptation

Antony Costa and Andrew Lancel in A Judgement In Stone
Antony Costa and Andrew Lancel in A Judgement In Stone
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There’s an all-star casting for the latest murder mystery lined up at the Grand Theatre.

The Classic Thriller Theatre Company brings Ruth Rendell’s A Judgement In Stone to the resort in the autumn.

Among the cast will be former Coronation Street and The Bill actor Andrew Lancel, Sophie Ward of Heartbeat fame and Blue boy band chart-topper Antony Costa - who was last seen in Blackpool in the acclaimed 40th anniversary production of The Who’s rock opera Tommy.

Also appearing will be 60s pop idol and Venus In Blue Jeans singer Mark Wynter, Deborah Grant from Not Going Out and Bergerac, movie icon Shirley Anne Field - best known from her role opposite Sir Laurence Olivier in The Entertainer, and Soldier Soldier’s Ben Nealon.

A spokesman said: “Eunice struggles to fit in. When she joins a wealthy family as their housekeeper the very reason for her awkwardness, long hidden and deeply buried, leads to a terrible tale of murder in cold blood – on Valentine’s Day.

“Ruth Rendell’s brilliant plot unravels a lifetime of deceit, and cover-ups which, when revealed, brings a shocking revelation almost as grizzly as murder itself.”

The Classic Thriller company aims to build on the success of The Agatha Christie Theatre Company, which sold more than two million tickets and continually played to packed houses around the UK during the past decade.

A Judgement In Stone is a new production adapted from one of the most celebrated works of the writer often hailed as the successor to Agatha Christie.

Andrew Lancel, who played rapist Frank Foster in Coronation Street, returns to the beat as Detective Superintendent Vetch in the play.

“This is a whole new genre for me and the first time I have played a copper since The Bill,” he said. “It’s my fourth Kenwright production in three years.

“I love the company and they put on things people want to see.

“A Judgement in Stone is a real statement on our class system. A fascinating story, sad, shocking and real.

“It’s a ‘Why Done It?’ and ‘Who Done It?’.”

* A Judgement In Stone, Grand Theatre, Monday to Saturday, October 9 to 14. Call (01253) 290190 to book.