top of page
  • Writer's pictureIzzy Siebert

Curious Incident Is A Must-See At The Palace Theatre!

Solve a mystery, journey to outer space, and discover the story of Christopher: a brilliant and resilient young boy in a world that doesn’t understand him. Don’t miss The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, directed by John Gerry and Laurie Blackley, at the Palace Theatre. Read on for our rave review and catch it before it closes on February 25th!


Curious Incident opens with a bang! Christopher finds himself at the scene of a crime. Photo by Ross Davidson.

The show begins with the tolling of a bell and a sudden spotlight on the scene of a crime. A neighbour's dog has just been murdered and 15-year-old Christopher (Isaac Szoldatits) is instantly accused. This striking beginning sets the bar for an emotional intensity that refuses to let up. 


The audience is invited into Christopher’s world: expansive, exciting, and often overwhelming and confusing. As a young neurodivergent boy, Christopher faces settings that largely fail to support him. He is determined to solve the dog’s murder, despite being warned against investigating it. Christopher soon uncovers more questions than he expected.


Christopher's difficult relationship with his father is portrayed with heartbreaking depth. Photo by Ross Davidson.

I went into this play almost entirely unfamiliar with the source material: a book published in 2003 and subsequently turned into a Tony-winning play. Although the play is billed as a mystery, it is so much more than that. At its heart, this is a story about a fractured family.


Christopher’s father (Rob Deman) is too busy coping with his own baggage to meet his son’s needs, and Christopher informs the audience that his mother (Sarah Taylor) died two years earlier. His closest relationships are with Toby, his beloved pet rat, and Siobhan (Melissa Metler), a school mentor who encourages his potential. As one of the few people who sees Christopher, Siobhan helps narrate his story, creating many beautiful moments between the two characters.


Siobhan is a beam of light in Christopher's often dark world. Photo by Ross Davidson.

As well, a talented six-person ensemble brings to life dozens of different people throughout the play. Each character brims with depth and realism, even if they only appear for a minute or two. The collection of actors includes Heather Weitzel, Dan Curtis, Alex Bogaert, George Jolink, Makayla Ashenden, and Jo-Anne Bishop.


The ensemble’s brilliant physical performances add life to the show and expand Christopher’s world into something concrete that the audience feels part of. They act out his thought processes, from fulfilling Christopher's dreams of outer space to aiding in his frantic search for a notebook.


The ensemble supports Christopher in one of the most beautifully choreographed scenes. Photo by Ross Davidson.

A rich underlying soundscape also elevated the production. The sounds ranged from wind and waves to haunting notes and unsettling hums. Precise shifts in sound mirrored the action onstage to amplify Christopher’s emotional state. This effect was at its most powerful in scenes where he was overstimulated. Uneasy sounds unsettled us as listeners, allowing the audience to feel along with Christopher in a uniquely immersive and emotional experience.


Christopher's journey to London is an exciting adventure. Photo by Ross Davidson.

While Act I sets mysteries in motion, Act II finds Christopher on a journey unlike anything he’s braved before. In the span of a few scenes, the stage transforms into a train, a busy street, and a tube station. Once Christopher reaches his destination, the plot takes turns that are both heartbreaking and harrowing. You’ll definitely want tissues on hand. 


As soon as the curtain call began, the audience was on their feet with a well-deserved ovation. At times, this was a difficult show to watch, but the cast handled the subject matter with grace. I’m very glad I experienced this story, and I know Isaac’s portrayal of Christopher will live in my mind for a long time.


A standing ovation for the team behind Curious Incident! Photo by Ross Davidson.

Don’t miss this powerful production put on by an incredibly talented cast and crew! Get your tickets now for one of the four remaining performances of Curious Incident. Evening shows run from February 22-24, with a closing matinee on Sunday, February 25. Learn more on Curious Incident London’s Facebook page.


Comments


bottom of page