As many of you know, I am fond of Sherlock Holmes stories. Not the first fictional detective, he is the most popular and has the honor (sometimes dubious) of having been written as a character more times by authors NOT his original author than any other character. Sherlock also holds the Guinness World Record as the “most portrayed movie character” – more than 70 actors in more than 200 films!
So I was intrigued when I learned that Park Square Theatre was doing The Hound of the Baskervilles this summer. From looking at the website I could see that Holmes and Watson would be played by women and it didn’t look like it was being billed as a serious production. A woman playing Sherlock didn’t bother me; if Ghostbusters and Dr. Who can be women, why not the most famous fictional detective.
Park Square is known for occasionally messing with your expectations but I was really unprepared for the audacity of the production, the sheer silliness. There were just five actors; if you’ve ever read or seen Baskerville, you know there are many more characters than that. Normally this bugs me a little when actors play multiple roles, but I quickly got over it and in fact, they used it for comic fodder. At one point towards the end, the actor playing Lestrade and Henry Baskerville did a “half and half”, turning from one side to the other – hysterical.
There was a lot of laughter; a few times so much so that I needed to wipe my eyes. Of all the different ways that I have seen or read Holmes, I have never experienced him as “camp” and I loved it.
If you have the chance, the production is playing for another week or so and I highly recommend it.. ESPECIALLY if you’re a Holmes fan.
When have you ever laughed until you’ve cried?