EVER since Tsar Nicholas II, his family and servants were assassinated by the Bolsheviks in 1918, rumours have circulated that one of his daughters, Princess Anastasia, survived and escaped to Berlin.

The Anastasia File, beautifully written by Royce Ryton, looks into these claims.

Could the woman who was dragged from a canal in 1920 after a failed suicide attempt really have been The Grand Duchess Anastasia?

When she is taken to a German asylum, she fails to communicate.

Kathyrn Fennell, who plays her, indicates well how she gradually begins to open up.

She successfully convinces the inspector who interviews her that she is, indeed, the woman in question and sticks to her story as age catches up with her.

When things go wrong, she shows great emotion.

The Anastasia File is not an easy play for amateurs because it swiftly switches in time and location, but the Altrincham Little Theatre rises to the challenge.

Malcolm Cooper, as the Inspector, probes the case carefully, even on one occasion playing his own son.

I am impressed with the other three members of the cast ­— Stephen Moss, Christine Perry and Cherrrill Wyche ­— who seamlessly perform multiple roles never, for one moment, showing any lack of clarity as to who they are personifying.

With perfect timing, they switch wigs, clothes and accents.

The directing skills of Lisa Barker ensure a speedy and easy to follow play.

You’ll have to go to Altrincham Little Theatre to discover whether the woman in question actually was Anastasia or at least to reach your own conclusions, but the plot does prove one thing ­— that money is the root of all evil.

* The Anastasia File is at Altrincham Little Theatre until Saturday at 7.40 pm. For tickets, telephone 0161 928 1113 or email alt.theatre@msn.com.

Star rating: * * * *.*