Witness for the Prosecution

by  Agatha Christie

Full Length Play, Drama  /  9m, 4f

A thrilling courtroom drama of murder and passion in three acts.

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Witness for the Prosecution

by  Agatha Christie

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    9m, 4f
  • Duration

    Duration

    More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • SubGenre

    Subgenre

    Mystery/Thriller
  • Accolades

    Accolades

    From Broadway, From West End
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Appropriate for all audiences

Additional Info

Leonard Vole stands accused of murdering a rich widow. The stakes are high with shocking witness testimony, impassioned outbursts from the dock and a young man’s fight to escape the hangman’s noose. Generally regarded as one of Christie’s most accomplished plays, this suspenseful thriller keeps audiences guessing until the very end.

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Accolades

  • Winner! New York Critics Circle Award

Reviews

REVIEWS

"Once more the Christie conjuring trick has come off. Once more we have been led down the garden path. Apart from being a clever puzzle, this is an extremely actable play." - The Daily Telegraph

“The sole exception is Dame Agatha, who managed to write not one, not two, but three of the great stage mysteries: And Then There Were None, Witness for the Prosecution, and The Mousetrap.” - Ira Levin, novelist, playwright

"The play has all the usual advantages of Counsel in conflict, agonised outbreak in the dock, and back-answers from the witness-box. To these are added an ingenious appendix; the jury's verdict is only the beginning of a story that has as many twists as a pigtail." - Ivor Brown, The Observer

Considerations

Performing Groups

  • High School/Secondary
  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Dinner Theatre
  • Professional Theatre
  • Senior Theatre
  • Reader's Theatre
  • Large Stage

Cautions

  • Caution Mild Adult Mild Adult Themes

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $100 per performance

Production

Details

  • Time Period: Present Day, 1950s
  • Duration: More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Setting: The action takes place between the Chambers of Sir Wilfred Robarts, Q.C and the Old Bailey at the Central Criminal Court.
  • Additional Features: Not Applicable
  • Features / Contains: Contemporary Costumes / Street Clothes, Period Costumes

Music

  • Musical Style: N/A (Not a musical)

Casting

9m, 4f

GRETA 
CARTER
MR. MAYHEW 
LEONARD VOLE 
SIR WILFRED ROBARTS
INSPECTOR HEARNE
ROMAINE
MR. JUSTIC WAINWRIGHT
MR. MEYERS, Q.C.
DR. WYATT
JANET MACKENZIE
MR. CLEGG
THE OTHER WOMAN

SUPERNUMERARIES

CLERK OF THE COURT
COURT USHER 
FOREMAN 
WARDER
WOMAN JUROR
A POLICEMAN
PLAIN-CLOTHES DETECTIVE 
ALDERMAN
COURT STENOGRAPHER 
THE JUDGE’S CLERK 
1ST BARRISTER
2ND BARRISTER
3RD BARRISTER
4TH BARRISTER
5TH BARRISTER
6TH BARRISTER
MALE JUROR

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Cast Attributes

  • Reduced casting (Doubling Possible)

Casting Notes

Doubling approved as follows, all other doubling requests can be considered for approval with application:

CARTER – Can double as the Judge
INSPECTOR HEARNE – Can double as Policeman at end of last act
PLAIN CLOTHES DETECTIVE – Can be doubled by Warder
CLERK OF THE COURT – This part can be combined with Court Usher
ALDERMAN – Can be dispensed with
COURT STENOGRAPHER – Can be dispensed with 
JUDGE’S CLERK – Can be dispensed with
SIX BARRISTERS – Four can be dispensed with
THREE MEMBERS OF THE JURY – These can be dispensed with and the ‘taking of the oath’ and ‘returning the verdict’ can be done by a voice ‘off’
MR. MYERS, Q.C. – Can double plain-clothes Detective 

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Authors

Agatha Christie

Agatha Christie (1890-1976) is the author not only of The Mousetrap, the longest running stage production in history but also Witness for the Prosecutio ...

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Produced by Peter Saunders at The Winter Garden Theatre, London 28th October 1953

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