I read The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time many moons ago when I was about 13 and I loved it, but it completely slipped my mind until it arrived on the West End in 2013. The announcement brought back fond memories of a heart-warming and emotional story and the play went straight on my West-End bucket list. The original story was written by Mark Haddon and focuses on Christopher Boone, a young boy with Asperger’s Syndrome, and the journey he embarks upon in order to solve the mystery surrounding the murder of his neighbours dog, Wellington.
When it comes to theatre, I’m much more of a musicals fan. I’ve really only just started branching out into the world of plays and so far, so good. This play is clever. Everything about it from the staging to the choreography is clever. The set is minimal but effective, with the same 3 walls transforming to reveal trap doors, stairways, and even a London Undergound Station – I was impressed as I watched the transformations. The stage is utilised to reveal the thoughts inside Christopher’s head without distracting from the story; he illustrates his feelings on the floor and constructs a train track piece by piece until it bursts into life signalling the next step of his journey. As part of the audience, you feel like you are thrust into Christopher’s world and you can begin to understand the way his mind ticks and the cogs turn. You are invested in his relationships with the people he meets and you will him along, hoping for a happy ending. The story is fast paced and heart-rending but there are enough funny moments to keep it upbeat on the whole. It’s deep, but not draining – I left with a smile on my face, especially after the added bonus at the end (HINT: Don’t leave your seats right away).
Thomas Dennis was on as Christopher when I saw the performance and I would never have guessed that he was the alternate. He gave everything he had to this role and it certainly paid off, giving a truly remarkable performance. He was completely believable and never faltered in his portrayal of the role. The rest of the casting was just as strong and together they formed a team to be reckoned with.
I would highly recommend this play, even to those who aren’t super keen on plays like I was! It has definitely converted me and i’ll be branching out and seeing more plays in the future! You can catch Curious Incident at the beautiful Gielgud Theatre in London until the 3rd June and it is also currently touring the UK – Find out more on the Curious Incident Website! For tips on where to sit, stay tuned for my Seat Review.
Have you seen this play or are you planning a visit? Let me know in the comments down below!