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Review: MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS at McCarter Theatre Center

MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS delighted a packed opening night house on Friday, March 17. Written by Agatha Christie, the show is adapted for the stage by Ken Ludwig. It is an exciting and gripping tale from beginning to end.

The play is set aboard the Orient Express as it travels from Istanbul to Western Europe in 1934. The cast is superior, and commands the complete attention of the audience until the mystery is solved. Allan Corduner, in the lead of Hercule Poirot, brings you along for the ride in this classic whodunit. Evan Zes excels as Monsieur Bouc, and displays wonderful comedic touches for his character as well. The script is enhanced by contemporary references that, at times, will simply make you laugh out loud. The superb direction by Emily Mann puts you right on the train with Orient Express' eclectic group of passengers. The costume design by William Ively Long is absolutely magnificent and draws you into the time period.

The talented cast (in order of appearance) includes Allan Corduner (Hercule Poirot); Maboud Ebrahimzadeh (Michel the Conductor/Head Waiter); Max von Essen (Col. Arbutnot/Samule Ratchett); Susannah Hoffman (Mary Debenham); Julie Halston (Helen Hubbard); Juha Sorola (Hector MacQueen); Veanne Cox (Princess Dragomiroff); Samantha Steinmetz (Greta Ohlsoson); Evan Zes (Monsieur Bouc); Alexandra Silber (Countess Andrenyi) and Ivy Cordle (Daisy Armstrong).

The Creative team has brought the show to life at McCarter Theatre. They include Ken Ludwig (adapter); Emily Mann (director); William Ivey Long (costume design); Ken Billington (lighting design); Darron L. West (sound design); Paul Huntley (wig design); Telsey + Company/William Cantler and Karyn Casl (casting); Cheryl Mintz (production stage manager); Samantha Flint (stage manager); David York (director of production); Debbie Bisno (resident producer) and Timothy Shields (managing director).

This is a production that everyone will enjoy. Get on your local or your express train, and head to Princeton for this fantastic show. MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS is being performed at the McCarter Theatre, 91 University Place, Princeton, NJ 08540, through April 2. For ticket information, call the Ticket Office, 609-258-2787, or visit

Photo Credit: T. Charles Erickson

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