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Five Reasons To See ... The 39 Steps

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The highly successful comedy, The 39 Steps returns to Manchester next week. Currently playing in the West End, it returns to the Manchester Opera House and we asked Richard Ede (who stars as the dashing hero Richard Hanny) - for five reasons why you should see it.

1. It's ingenious.
Before I auditioned I watched the show and was struck by the clever use of minimal props to create enormous effects. In a world where we are bombarded by CGI trickery, it can be refreshing to use your imagination once in a while!

2. The production values.
We are a cast of just four, but we rely on a phenomenal creative team. The lighting, sound and design on the show provide such a rich backdrop that can be all too easily overlooked - but without it the show simply wouldn't work.

3. It's enduring popularity.
Not only is the source novel a classic piece of adventure literature, and the Hitchcock film (on which the show is based) a brilliantly executed example of clever story-telling - but the play has now been running in the West End for 6 years, and had several successful tours.

4. It's hilarious.
From the numerous movie references and clever visual gags, to the moments of broad slapstick and occasional fake chicken, the play is a laugh a minute - yet the adventure story is never compromised and provides a real backbone for the laughs to hang on. My character needs to remain serious throughout and I still find that a genuine challenge amongst the madness!

5. There's something for everyone.
Whether you're an old romantic, a thrill-seeker, or you just want an evening of light-hearted escapism - The 39 Steps doesn't disappoint. Its wonderfully nostalgic take on "Britishness" appeals to a wide audience because what it has in abundance is charm - but if all that fails, you can always just marvel at my spiffing pencil moustache!

The 39 Steps is at the Manchester Opera House from 4 - 9 March

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