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Inside Job at Melville Theatre

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Mystery thriller keeps ’em guessing with world of intrigue
Inside Job Brian Clemens Melville Theatre thriller play performing arts murder diamonds intrigue The Avengers The Professionals plot bluff
Max Maxville, left, Kirstie Francis and Wayne Cant enter into an intricate web of deceit and deception in Inside Job.

Murder, diamonds, bluffs and double-bluffs – all the ingredients for Melville Theatre's latest show, Inside Job.

Written by Brian Clemens OBE and directed by Joan Scafe, the play is set in Spain where a professional safe-cracker enjoys a hedonistic life until the stunning Suzy sweeps into his world for a secret rendezvous. But what starts out as an assignation rapidly spirals into an intrigue of diamonds, plots, counter-plots and an intricate web of deceit and deception.

Playwright Clemens, who died last January, was related to Mark Twain and best known for his work on the TV shows The Avengers and The Professionals.

"Inside Job has a cast of only three and takes place in a converted farmhouse that is leased to tourists," Joan said. "At any given time, the action is mostly between combinations of two people so, whoever's not there, is oblivious to many things. The main challenge was finding a cast that gelled together well and looked right with each other."

Inside Job Brian Clemens Melville Theatre thriller play performing arts murder diamonds intrigue The Avengers The Professionals plot bluff
Larry (Max Maxville, left), Suzy (Kirstie Francis) and Alex (Wayne Cant) are involved in a series of bluffs and double-bluffs in Inside Job.

Initially performing while at school in the UK, Joan has more than 35 years' theatre experience in WA after she first took to the stage in a Murdoch University production of The Bacchae at Dolphin Theatre in 1977. She appeared in Melville Theatre's inaugural show Not Now Darling in 1982 and has appeared in a plethora of plays since – and was nominated for best actress for her role in Three Tall Women at the 2009 Finley Awards.

More recently, Joan has appeared in Calendar Girls at Garrick Theatre and On Golden Pond at Harbour Theatre while also directing several shows at Melville Theatre.

"Having directed a very successful comedy in 2014, I was looking for a different genre," she said. "I liked the sound of Inside Job, bought the script and found it was a 'keep 'em guessing' play – just what I like."

Inside Job Brian Clemens Melville Theatre thriller play performing arts murder diamonds intrigue The Avengers The Professionals plot bluff
The stunning Suzy (Kirstie Francis) finds diamonds are a girl's best friend in Inside Job.

Kirstie Francis plays the stunning Suzy and said Inside Job appealed because of all the twists and turns in the script. "I also relish working with a smaller cast, which challenges each of us as actors," she said.

"Suzy is a woman who has found herself in a situation that, although she initially started it, she wasn't fully prepared. She's a little conniving and aware of what's happening but doesn't realise the impact it would have on her emotionally."

Inside Job plays at 8pm February 19, 20, 25, 26, 27, March 3, 4 and 5 with a 2pm matinee February 28. Tickets are $20, $15 concession – book on 9330 4565 or at www.meltheco.org.au. Melville Theatre is on the corner of Stock Road and Canning Highway, Palmyra.

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Why? It's one of those classic games of bluff and double-bluff that will keep you guessing right until the very end.
When: 8pm February 19, 20, 25, 26, 27, March 3, 4 & 5; 2pm February 28.
Phone: 9330 4565
Where: Melville Theatre, corner of Stock Road and Canning Highway, Palmyra
Cost: $20, $15 concession
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