The Unexpected Guest

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The Unexpected Guest [1] (1958) is a two-act crime drama by Agatha Christie (1890-1976) [2]. The first production opened in the Duchess Theatre in London in 1958.

Translations and adaptations

Translated into Afrikaans under the title Die Onverwagte Besoeker by Louis van Niekerk.

Performance history in South Africa

1961: Presented by The Leonard Schach Cockpit Players, opening 9 March.

1980: The Afrikaans translation Die Onverwagte Besoeker was staged by PACT, directed by Bobby Heaney, with Ben de Koen (Richard Weyers), Rika Sennett (Laura Weyers), Pierre van Pletzen (Michael Strauss), Riana Wilkens (Swanie), Gerben Kamper (Jan Weyers), Tilana Hanekom (Mev Weyers), Andre Jacobs (Herman Acker), Eric Nobbs (Konst Calitz), Klaas de Boer (Speurder Du Toit) and Chris du Toit (Julian Fourie). Decor by Johan Badenhorst and costumes by Jennifer Andrew. During April and May 1980 this production toured the Transvaal and Natal - it was Heaney's first production with PACT's Afrikaans company.

1981: Directed by Charles Hickman for Pieter Toerien Productions and staged at the Baxter Theatre in Cape Town in December. The cast consisted of Bert Wyllie (Richard Warwick), Yvonne Banning (Laura Warwick), Eckard Rabe (Michael Starkwedder) , Bess Finney (Miss Bennett), Gavin van den Berg (Jan Warwick), Joyce Bradley (Mrs. Warwick), Dennis Folbigge (Henry Angell), Jonathan Rands (Sergeant Cadwallader), Norman Coombes (Inspector Thomas) and Tim Plewman (Julian Farrar). The set was designed and lit by Jannie Swanepoel and the costumes were by Noreen Sterling. This production opened at the Alhambra Theatre, Johannesburg, in January 1982.

2007: Directed by Malcolm Terrey at the Montecasino Theatre starring himself, James Alexander, Christine le Brocq, Tessa Jubber, Paddy Canavan, Jan Ellis, Darryl Evans and others. This production was seen in Cape Town in late 2006.


Theatre programme (Cockpit Players) held by NELM: [Collection: ASCH, Valda]: 2005. 65. 1. 10.

Theatre programme (Pieter Toerien production) held by Amazwi: CAMPBELL Location: [Collection: MARKET THEATRE]: 2014. 7. 223.

PACT theatre programme, 1980.

Barrow, Brian & Williams-Short, Yvonne 1988.

Theatre programme (2006) held by Amazwi: CAMPBELL Location: [Collection: KORT, Maurice]: 2012. 379. 37. 5.

Beeld 23 January 2007.

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