Review: The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time

Joshua Jenkins. Pic: Phil Wilkinson
Joshua Jenkins. Pic: Phil Wilkinson
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MARK Haddon’s novel The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time was published just over a decade ago and immediately won seventeen literary awards.

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Festival Theatre, Nicolson Street

It took until 2012 though before playwright Simon Stephens adapted the story for the stage.

Director Marianne Elliot (War Horse) then staged the play for the National Theatre in the West End before it took Broadway by storm.

This new National Theatre tour now brings the spectacle to the Capital for a short season.

In theory a long wordy title and no ‘name’ stars should spell flop but quite the reverse has happened.

Seven Olivier Awards, however, including Best New Play, ensure that even the occasional theatre goer will be just a bit more than curious about this particular incident.

The stage, a huge ruled cubed blackboard, is the basis for Christopher’s life and journey.

He is just 15 when he finds his neighbour’s dog murdered, impaled on a garden fork.

Christopher determines to find the culprit and in doing his family and social problems emerge .

Along the way we witness his difficult relationship with his father; his support from an understanding school teacher; and his difficulty in communicating in the outside world.

As he need overcomes his fears we learn to love Christopher. Willing him to succeed and sharing his frustrations and perhaps therein lies the huge success this production.

Stark but effective, minimal but spectacular, the staging and characters amuse and amaze.

Joshua Jenkins is outstanding as Christopher, and it is his narrative that flows through the play.

Already attracting a cult following a standing ovation rewarded this incredible ensemble company on opening night.

Run ends 9 May