Review: The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time at the Bristol Hippodrome
PUBLISHED: 11:32 14 June 2017 | UPDATED: 11:32 14 June 2017
The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time is one of the nation’s favourite books and has been faultlessly turned into an evocative, and emotional show, currently playing at the Bristol Hippodrome.
Mark Haddon’s bestselling novel is about Christopher Boone, a 15-year-old boy who excels in maths, and whose bravery is put to the test when he discovers his neighbour’s dog has been killed with a garden fork.
He has Asperger Syndrome, which means he finds certain situations difficult – not least going door-to-door and questioning his neighbours as he plays detective to uncover the culprit of the dog’s killing.
But truly, his AS is incidental, because thematically, at its heart, The Curious Incident is about family, not his condition.
The story is told in such an immersive way, that not only is the action taking place in front of you, but you are pulled into Christopher’s mind.
When Christopher finds a situation difficult, because it is too loud, or there are too many people, you too feel the confusion and frustration he feels.
The lighting, sound, and the claustrophobic staging all blend seamlessly around the central characters – for two hours, you are in his world.
Perhaps the most powerful elements of The Curious Incident come in the moments of stillness.
Through uncomplicated and yet moving and poignant staging, we learn how Christopher sees the world – that to him, it can be truly chaotic as he wades through a cacophony of noise and metaphors he does not understand.
But when he stands still, when the action around him slows, we are shown simple and yet powerful moments of family interaction which resonate for hours after you have seen the show.
Fans of the book will not be disappointed by the clever staging which seamlessly transforms the novel into a two-hour show.
And those who have not read it will be rushing to their nearest book store or library to do so.
The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time is at the Bristol Hippodrome tonight (Wednesday) to Saturday at 7.30pm. There are also 2.30pm matinees on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
Tickets, priced £19.40-39.90, are available from the Bristol Hippodrome’s website.
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