The Play That Goes Wrong


Writers: Jonathan Sayer Henry Lewis Henry Shields


Show Information

Number of Acts
First Produced
Comedy, Farce
Unit/Single Set
Time & Place
The opening night of the Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society’s production of the murder mystery play ‘Murder at Haversham Manor’, Present Day
Cast Size
Ideal for
College/University, Mostly Male Cast, Professional Theatre, Regional Theatre
Casting Notes
Mostly male cast
Includes adult characters


The Play That Goes Wrong begins before the curtain has even been raised, as the audience are present while the Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society prepare to stage their new production – the 1920s murder mystery 'Murder at Haversham Manor'. However the set is not yet complete and there is no time to finish it off…..the show must go on!

With a murder (and a moving corpse) established from the beginning, the murder mystery gets into full flow. However, the props start to disappear, actors go missing and the set begins to collapse around, and often on, the cast. Mayhem ensues, the acting gets worse, and the set becomes increasingly dangerous, but the company struggle on regardless. The question is whether any of the cast and crew will remain standing, or conscious, by the final curtain?!

Lead Characters

The Play That Goes Wrong guide sections