Audiences are being treated to a captivating production of one of the world’s greatest thrillers, Anthony Shaffer’s timeless classic, Sleuth.

Starring television soap actors Todd Boyce from ITV’s Coronation Street and Neil McDermott from BBC’s Eastenders, the award-winning murder-mystery play was originally turned down by many theatre producers when it was published in 1970.

The plot is simple: acclaimed detective story novelist Andrew Wyke invites his wife’s lover to his home to offer him the offer of a lifetime.

It involves a jewellery heist, an insurance fraud and the ultimate revenge of the cuckholded husband turns into a dangerous cat-and-mouse game between the older man and his younger rival.

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: Sleuth:Todd Boyce as Andrew Wyke and Neil McDermott as Milo Tindle. Photo: Jack MerrimanSleuth:Todd Boyce as Andrew Wyke and Neil McDermott as Milo Tindle. Photo: Jack Merriman (Image: Jack Merriman)

Set against the backdrop of a lavish English manor, Boyce embodies the upper-crust Andrew Wyke with effortless sophistication, while McDermott brings to life the charming and cunning Milo Tindle, in a production that's as gripping as it is entertaining.

Directed by Rachel Kavanaugh, from the moment the lights are dimmed, Boyce and McDermott command the stage with their magnetic presence.

Despite the occasional stumble over the substantial dialogue, the chemistry between the two actors is palpable, creating an electric atmosphere that holds the audience in rapt attention throughout.

Boyce's portrayal of Andrew Wyke is nothing short of masterful. With impeccable timing and a commanding presence, he effortlessly embodies the arrogance and cunning of the wealthy novelist, drawing the audience into his intricate web of deception and intrigue.

His delivery of Shaffer's razor-sharp dialogue is pitch-perfect, eliciting both laughter and gasps of astonishment from the audience and his physical presence during the scene where he commands Milo to dress up as a clown to commit a burglary is as hilarious as it is scary.

Opposite Boyce, McDermott shines as Milo Tindle, the charming and ambitious travel agent entangled in Wyke's elaborate game. McDermott brings a youthful energy and charisma to the role, perfectly complementing Boyce's more refined demeanour.

His scenes with Boyce crackle with tension and wit, as the two characters engage in a battle of mind-games and wits that keeps the audience guessing until the very end.

Directorial choices, such as the minimalist set design and atmospheric lighting, serve to enhance the suspense and drama of the play, allowing Boyce and McDermott's performances to take centre stage.

The tension builds steadily throughout, culminating in a series of shocking twists and revelations that leave the audience on the edge of their seats.

 Despite its status as a classic of the thriller genre, Sleuth remains as fresh and engaging as ever, thanks in no small part to the stellar performances of Boyce and McDermott.

With its intricate plot, sharp dialogue, and unforgettable characters, this production is a must-see for theatre lovers of all ages who love the murder-mystery genre.

Sleuth appears at the Theatre Royal Bath until Saturday, February 17. To book tickets call the Theatre Royal Bath Box Office on 01225 448844 or visit