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Down an Alley Filled With Cats

Down an Alley Filled With Cats
Your Price: $17.95 CDN
Author: Warwick Moss
Publisher: Samuel French (cover may change)
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 74
Pub. Date: 1987
Edition: Acting
ISBN-10: 0573690545
ISBN-13: 9780573690549
Cast Size: 2 male

About the Play:

Winner of the 1983 Best New Australian Play award at the Canberra Festival
Winner of the 1984 New South Wales Premier's Literary Award for Theatre

Down an Alley Filled with Cats is a full-length mystery thriller by Warwick Moss. Hailed as a 'lost Australian classic', this two-hander is a suspenseful and satisfying thriller about a ceramic vase, a red carnation, old books and good old-fashioned cat-and-mouse games that pits two men in a battle of wits to gain control of an invaluable book.

Down An Alley Filled With Cats is a suspenseful tale of greed, guile and gullibility set in a Sydney second hand bookstore scheduled to be demolished. Frantic and flustered Simon, a young street-smart con artist, enters the book shop at closing time desperately hoping to buy a copy of The Napoleonic Wars he had on reserve. But Timothy, the shop's elderly, cultured proprietor, has already sold the book to the young man's rival in a case of mistaken identity. As Simon leaves to pursue the book and his nemesis, he discovers that Timothy's vindictive landlord has locked them in with the oversized mice and bloodthirsty tomcats. As the men settle in for the night, the cause for Simon's anxiety is uncovered. It soon becomes obvious that the book contains a code which identifies the whereabouts of an invaluable artifact that Simon has been chasing around Asia whilst Timothy sees the opportunity for adventure away from his rather sedate monotonous life. As they share a taste for scotch, it gradually becomes clear that nothing and no one is what they seem as Simon and the seemingly kindly old man maneuver for position. The revelation that the artifact is in the shop creates a climax that allows the two men to discover themselves through each other. Full of plot twists and turns, Down An Alley Filled With Cats is a delicious and claustrophobic mystery in which a series shocking truths are unearthed, ultimately leading to the play's climactic revelation.

Down An Alley Filled With Cats premiered in 1983 at The Stables Theatre in Sydney, Australia and won the New South Wales Premier's Literary Award for Theatre in 1984. Since then the play had premieres in the US at The Plaza Theatre in Dallas in 1984, in the UK at the Mermaid Theatre in the West End of London in 1985, Off-Broadway at the Quaigh Theater in 1987, in Canada at the Gypsy Theatre near Niagara Falls in Fort Erie, Ontario in 2003. The show was revived in Sydney at King Street Theatre in 2017 and remains a popular choice for college and community theatre productions.

Cast: 2 male

What people say:

"The sort of old fashioned suspense drama calculated to raise the fur on the back of your neck.... A nice, creepy dramatic adventure." — The New York Post

"A tight, bright play." — The New York Times

"Classy and timeless." — The Dallas Times Herald

"Popular entertainment of a very high order." — The Daily Mail (London)

"Down An Alley Filled With Cats is a fun potboiler, with a rousing final five minutes. Bad motives can make for good theatre." — The Review (Niagara Falls)

"The play is reminiscent of the Maltese Falcon and just like the film has the right mix of tension and humour. It is like watching a chess match play out with each character getting the advantage then losing it." — 89.7 Eastside FM (Sydney)

"A crafty, beguiling guessing game." — Sydney Morning Herald

"Out Agatha's Christie in twists and turns that delight." — The Australian

"A puurrfect play." — Sydney Daily Telegraph

About the Playwright:

Warwick Moss is an Australian actor, filmmaker, and award-winning writer for the stage. He has had a diverse career from playing first-grade rugby union, to owning restaurants, charter yachts and fashion boutiques, to being an advertising executive and television presenter. He is best known as the writer of the play Down an Alley Filled with Cats.