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The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time – Simon Stephens


Theatre Royal Bath

 

This is a rare treat to be able to catch this extraordinary production on tour. It is groundbreaking in so many ways and certainly a memorable theatrical event.

Based on the novel by Mark Haddon, it is the story of Christopher, a high functioning autistic teenager who goes in search of the person responsible for killing their neighbour’s dog; Unfortunately this uncovers family secrets and stories which lead to huge challenges and epic opportunity for display of technical wizardry.

Behind the script is the Frantic Assembly team whose use of physical theatre to tell stories is now legendary. The use of projection propels us through the confusion and bewilderment of Christopher’s world in a way that words just seem fail.

As Christopher, Scott Reid creates a world of vulnerability which is highly engaging. The entire company work tirelessly multi role playing to effect. The characters are strong and the humour is always prevalent.

It is easy to see how this has become such a popular show. The transitions between diagloue and movement are seamless and the vision of Scott Graham and Steven Hoggett is inspiring. Many schools use this production as a set text and rightly so, the script without the technical support would be relatively linear which reflects Christopher’s vision of the world around him. The literal misunderstandings are both humorous and yet a reminder of how difficult some people find life.

If you have never seen it go, it is a great achievement and one that has left a huge impact on contemporary theatre.

  

  

  

**** – 4 Stars

  

  

Petra Schofield