A touring theatre company in New Zealand forms the basis of one of Marsh's most ambitious and innovative novels.New Zealand theatrical manager Alfred Meyer wanted to celebrate his wife's birthday in style. The piece de resistance would be the jeroboam of champagne which would descend gently into a nest of fern and coloured lights on the table, set up on stage after the performance.But something went horribly wrong. Chief Detective Inspector Alleyn witnessed it himself. Was Meyer's death the product of Maori superstitions? Or something much more down to earth?
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Dame Ngaio Marsh was born in New Zealand in 1895 and died in February 1982. She wrote over 30 detective novels and many of her stories have theatrical settings, for Ngaio Marsh's real passion was the theatre. She was both actress and producer and almost single-handedly revived the New Zealand public's interest in the theatre. It was for this work that she received what she called her `damery' in 1966.From AudioFile:
Ngaio Marsh is undeservedly one of the least appreciated writers of the British Golden Age of mystery. This early adventure of Inspector Roderick Alleyn is read with magnificent force and versatility by British stage and television star James Saxon. Set in the author's native New Zealand, where the Scotland Yard detective is on holiday, VINTAGE MURDER follows a traveling English theater company whose manager is killed when a rigged champagne bottle falls on his head. Saxon effectively captures the personalities, the ethnicities and the social strata of the many characters. His smooth and effortless reading adds to the colorful characters, theatrical background, and New Zealand setting of Marsh's novel. S.E.S. © AudioFile 2000, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine
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