Review: Agatha Christie’s ‘Love From a Stranger’ heads to The Lowry *


Love from a Stranger is thriller drama play based on Philomel Cottage, a short story by British mystery writer, Agatha Christie. The play which was first brought to life in 1936 just two years after it was written. After heading to broadway and seeing its success, the play was twice turned into a film. First in 1937 starring Basil Rathbone and Ann Harding in the US as A Night of Terror and the second film in 1947 starring John Hodiak and Sylvia Sidney, released in the UK as A Stranger Walked In.  This thrilling production has arrived at The Lowry in Manchester and will be shown from 10 to 14 July 2018.

We were invited to the opening night to The Lowry watch the whirlwind romance between Cecily Harrington played by Helen Bradbury with a handsome and charming stranger Nigel Lawrence played by Justin Avoth. Just like in the book, Nigel sweeps Cecily off her feet and she recklessly abandons her old life to settle in the remote and blissful surroundings of a country cottage. However, her newfound love is not all that he seems…the play is filled with electric suspense and with a shocking twist, this edge-of-your-seat, rarely seen thriller by the UK’s greatest crime writer is rediscovered in a brand new production directed by Lucy Bailey and designed by Mike Britton.


What we thought of the show?

The plot was filled with moments of drama, comedy and intense thrills. All made possible with the effects from the light given to the compact space on the stage that had been furnished as the front room of a London flat,  and then a country cottage. The feeling of cosy was contrasted with eerie lighting and dramatic music that at times gave you chills.
The characters were played well especially that of Micheal, who although was not in the play throughout, had a particularly strong presence on stage. Cecily was played beautifully frumpily (if that’s even a word). She had the right amount of dullness and intrigue that made you want to know what she found so interesting in Bruce; who was creepy and charming at the same time. He had a sort of Leonardo Di Capprio look to him. Very much like Di Capprio in the film Shutter Island with even more of a mysterious and at times worrying edge.
I don’t want to miss any characters as they were all great and had real depth, Aunty Lulu was cringeworthy and funny, Gardener Hodgson was annoying yet helpful, the house keeper Ethel (his niece) was clumsy and naive and Dr Gribble seemed typical of one of the era in which the play had been written.
If you’re familiar with Agatha Christie you know she loved a good twist and this doesn’t disappoint. I am familiar with some of her books and plays, and have actually seen this play in its movie format – I love old films and watched it one summer. But this didn’t spoil the play in anyway – I was still waiting to see what would take place!

Here are the list of talented cast being featured in the play

Cast Biographies 

Justin Avoth plays Nigel Lawrence 
Helen Bradbury plays Cecily Harrington
Sam Frenchum plays Bruce Lovell
Alice Haig plays Mavis Wilson
Molly Logan plays Ethel
Crispin Redman plays Dr Gribble
Nicola Sanderson plays Louise Garrard
Gareth Williams plays Hodgson


When is :Love From a Stranger being performed?
10 to 14 July 2018

Where will the performance be held?
The Lyric Theatre
Pier 8
The Quays
M50 3AZ

How much are the tickets?
Prices can range anywhere from £19.50 to £32.50, depending on the location of your seat. There are side / centre / rear stalls, side / front upper /rear upper /centre / middle upper circle, restricted view as well as boxes.

How do I book the tickets ?

To book tickets please call The Lowry at 08432086000 or via their website here.


About Dame Agatha Christie (1890 – 1976)

Agatha Christie is known throughout the world as the Queen of Crime and is the most widely published author of all time and is outsold only by the Bible and Shakespeare. She is the author of 66 crime novels and 150 short stories, six novels written under the name Mary Westmacott and over 19 plays including The Mousetrap, the longest running play in West End history. Christie’s most famous literary creations include the detectives Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple and Tommy & Tuppence. For further information about Agatha Christie visit the website.

About Lowry

The Lowry is a registered charity committed to using visual and performing arts to enrich people’s lives. They present audiences with a diverse programme of theatre, opera, musicals, dance, music, comedy and visual art as well as events and activities to expand the horizons of audiences and artists alike.  At the heart of their work is a commitment to the local communities and young people. Tapping into the work on their ur stages and in their galleries, they offer thousands of free creative participation opportunities each year. They are passionate about nurturing talent, developing creative professionals of the future and raising aspirations.

Things to note: 

  • The Lowry welcomes all visitors regardless of their disability and strive to meet all individuals needs where possible.
  • They welcome access and assistance dogs.
  • The Lowry website is fully accessible and features BrowseAloud. Browsealoud adds speech, reading and translation support, facilitating access and particpiation for those people who need support reading print, dyslexia, low literacy, mild visual impairments and those with English as a second language. To use this feature, simply click on the grey ear logo located in the footer.
  • If you are driving to the show, we would recommend for you to park at The Lowry Outlet which is opposite the theatre, but be aware as there is lack of signage from the car park area to the theatre, so best to ask someone or use google maps to find your way.

You may also want to read

Review: Opera North’s Madama Butterfly Arrives at The Lowry, Manchester

Review: Legally Blonde The Musical arrives at The Regent Theatre


* We were provided with press tickets in exchange for a review. All opinions are our own.


  1. July 12, 2018 / 8:35 am

    Great review and these photos shown here make me feel like watching the show. I like how these actor and actress are dress in this way, just so oldies.

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 12, 2018 / 10:14 am

      Yes exactly! To bring us to yesteryears of Agathe Christie’s great story

  2. July 12, 2018 / 12:23 pm

    ah I love Agatha Christie! Looks like an amazing show! x

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 12, 2018 / 1:22 pm

      Yes she is such an amazing writer!! So talented, yes it was a fab show

  3. July 12, 2018 / 2:56 pm

    Sounds like an interesting production. I don’t remember having read this Agatha Christie story – I think I’ll have to seek it out.

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 12, 2018 / 3:03 pm

      Yes you must if you love thrillers and romance and some excitment

  4. July 12, 2018 / 5:12 pm

    I need to see more show’s but whenever I look at our local theatre it’s just full of musicals, this is something that is much more up my street and that I would probably really enjoy. I hope it comes closer to me.

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 12, 2018 / 8:53 pm

      Hope it does Jade, if it does not, its worth taking a trip here

  5. July 12, 2018 / 5:15 pm

    I love Agatha Christie book, this play sounds very entertaining.

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 12, 2018 / 8:53 pm

      It sure was Jenny, we totally loved it

  6. July 12, 2018 / 6:54 pm

    I would really love to see this if I’m able to. I watch every single British movie I can find and prefer them to most. I’m sure this play would be something I’d really enjoy.

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 12, 2018 / 8:53 pm

      We are sure you would have loved this Terri and the setting and props as well was complimentary

  7. July 12, 2018 / 7:46 pm

    Now this sounds like such an amazing production – I bet it is wonderful to get to see it live and experience it on stage.

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 12, 2018 / 8:52 pm

      Absolutely! We were totally thrilled with the performance on opening night

  8. July 12, 2018 / 8:15 pm

    Oh I love Agatha Christie, sounds like a great piece!

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 12, 2018 / 8:51 pm

      Yes it certainly was entertaining Eva, hope you can still catch it

  9. July 12, 2018 / 8:15 pm

    Oh that sounds like an interesting performance! Im not really a fan of Agatha Christie but I am always open to new things at the theatre!

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 12, 2018 / 8:51 pm

      Fab to hear the Laura! You would have loved the show!

  10. Emma Riley
    July 13, 2018 / 5:32 am

    I have never had a chance to watch a theater show but this one looks like a good one and have an interesting performance. Kudos to all who give their all for a beautiful show like this.

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 13, 2018 / 5:59 am

      Absolutely! The actors were all top class and performed the play so well

  11. Tara
    July 13, 2018 / 5:50 am

    This is a great review of the Agatha Christie’s Love from a Stranger. Makes me want to see the play.

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 13, 2018 / 5:58 am

      Lovely to hear that Tara, hope you can catch it too x

  12. July 13, 2018 / 7:07 am

    It’s a great review! Haven’t read and watched the play but based from your photos and your review I can say that it was very beautiful. Kudos to everyone who made the play possible!

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 13, 2018 / 4:46 pm

      Thanks Christina, yes everyone has only said good things about the play and we loved it x

  13. July 13, 2018 / 7:24 am

    Sounds like a super performance! It’s been such a long time since I’ve been to the theatre. I really ought to remedy this!

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 13, 2018 / 4:46 pm

      Hope you do get the chance to catch a theatre performance soon Elizabeth x

  14. July 13, 2018 / 11:34 am

    It sounds like a great show. I love when there is lots of drama and suspense. No wonder you enjoyed watching it! 🙂

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 13, 2018 / 4:45 pm

      Absolutely! We can’t rave about it enough

  15. July 13, 2018 / 7:16 pm

    What a fun time. I am always in awe of people who not only do theatre, but do it well. That is not one of my talents.

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 13, 2018 / 9:06 pm

      Well these actors are super talented, and they make it seem so real as they get into character

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 13, 2018 / 9:05 pm

      Thank you Bella and Dawn, yes it was really fabulous watching the show

  16. Becca Wilson
    July 13, 2018 / 9:26 pm

    This looks like it would be such a great way to enjoy the story from such an already brilliant author. I love her books so much!

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 14, 2018 / 2:37 pm

      She is timeless Becca and the production team and cast have done a fabulous job featuring the book in the play

  17. Ruth I.
    July 14, 2018 / 3:15 am

    Love this review! It makes me want to see this show! If only this will be available here. The photos are awesome!

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 14, 2018 / 2:36 pm

      Thanks Ruth, glad you enjoyed reading the review

  18. July 14, 2018 / 3:52 am

    Oh I am jealous! This must have been so fun to go and see. I need to get out to see shows more often, I miss them!

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 14, 2018 / 2:36 pm

      Hope you do Lydia, its worth catching this show for sure

  19. July 14, 2018 / 4:16 am

    What a great review! Thanks for recommending this show, I am a big fan of Agatha Christie, so I so want to watch this.

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 14, 2018 / 2:36 pm

      If you are a fan of the books then its worth heading to the theatre to relive every moment in the book

  20. July 14, 2018 / 6:58 am

    It’s been a long time since I have been to the theatre. This looks like a good shows with good reviews. I remember how much I enjoyed the last one I went to. It’s time I went again.

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 14, 2018 / 2:35 pm

      Yes hope you do get the chance to visit a theatre show Tina, so worth watching this

  21. July 14, 2018 / 12:06 pm

    Ooh, this sounds right up my street! I wonder if it will be coming to Nottingham?

    Louise x

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 14, 2018 / 2:34 pm

      Not too sure if they are touring Louise, at the moment they are in Manchester, do keep the eye out for it if it does x

  22. Bryanna Skye
    July 14, 2018 / 2:45 pm

    wow the price for the show is so reasonable! sounds like a great one to go see

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 14, 2018 / 4:44 pm

      Yes absolutely, the price is totally affordable

  23. July 15, 2018 / 1:09 pm

    This definitely sounds like my sort of play, I love Agatha Christie!

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 15, 2018 / 6:05 pm

      Glad to hear that Rebecca. We love her too x

  24. July 15, 2018 / 3:57 pm

    This looks like an amazing theatre production!

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 15, 2018 / 6:05 pm

      It sure was Mayah!

  25. July 15, 2018 / 5:27 pm

    I love the theatre, and this sounds amazing. I’m so jealous.

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 15, 2018 / 6:04 pm

      Oh dont be Nicola, hope you can catch it too otherwise The Lowry has so many cool performances lined up

  26. July 16, 2018 / 4:50 pm

    I love seeing shows on the stage! This one definitely sounds like one I would love to see someday. Thanks for sharing.

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 16, 2018 / 5:02 pm

      Your welcome Shannon

  27. July 18, 2018 / 12:49 am

    I love going to the Theatre although haven’t been in ages and this has reminded me how much I love it and need to make time to go over the summer. This show sounds fantastic

    Laura x

    • yeahlifestyle
      July 18, 2018 / 1:24 pm

      It is Laura, so much suspense, romance and drama

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