Stewart Burke

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Thriller. M4 F3. A Living room

ANDREW: strong, silent, fit; 40s. SANDRA: nosy, rather silly; 30s-40s. BRUCE: quiet; 30s-40s. LIPTON: apparently polite, mild; 30s-40s. ANN: attractive, kindly; 40s. INSPECTOR EVANS: pleasant, quietly shrewd; 40s-50s. MEDODY: pretty teenager.

Panic grips the Green Belt village of West Lynstead when a famous dress designer is raped and strangled one night in Bracken Woods. The police suspect a local man and the enigmatic INSPECTOR EVANS is drafted in from Scotland Yard to lead the search. ANDREW WINGATE, headmaster of the local school, convinced the killer is trying to blame him, sets up his own "neighbourhood watch" and, disguised as a woman, walks the woods at night, laying himself open as bait for the killer. ANDREW'S wife, returning from New Zealand, discovers his secret and begs him to stop his vigilante activities. Suspense builds in this exciting play as ANDREW is accused by an anonymous caller of attempted rape. There is another near-tragedy when a schoolgirl is lured into the hands of the killer, but she is saved when ANDREW performs the ultimate "neighbourhood catch"!

PARTY TO MURDER by Olive Chase and Stewart Burke

RAY LEWIS: brash; 20. SHEILA HILTON: pretty, trendy; l8. TONY MARSHALL: good-looking; late 30s. NORMA BRENT: sophisticated, attractive, wealthy, blonde; 30s. STEPHEN BRENT: mature, strong personality, charming; about 40. CLIVE PRIOR: rugged; early 40s. JOAN PRIOR: homely, early middleage. DIANE WINSLOW: attractive, intelligent, dark; this character is doubled with NORMA BRENT. When the attractive, but not altogether admirable NORMA BRENT is killed (by the unusual method of a manipulated hair-dryer) there are a number of people who would seemingly have reason to welcome her departure. The cold eye of suspicion glances from one member of the cast to another, not excluding STEPHEN himself, and the appearance of mysterious typed notes hidden in - of all places - a copy of Plato's Republic - adds to the general unease. For one frightening moment it seems NORMA may have come to life again, but the apparition turns out to be her cousin DIANE, who strongly resembles her. At the climax of the play STEPHEN makes good use of this resemblance in a carefully staged and eerie scene which leads to the unmasking of the killer.


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