The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time left me wanting to run out to buy the book!
Being the winner of seven Olivier Awards including Best New Play, we were excited to have The National Theatre production visit Aylesbury Waterside Theatre. The play is about a boy trying to find his place in the world, a world that he sees differently from the rest of us.
As you walk into the auditorium, the scene is set with a dead dog lying in the middle of the stage, speared by a garden fork, which straight away gets you thinking. From the opening scene you’re on an emotional journey, which I can only assume lives up to Mark Haddon’s masterpiece.
Christopher Boone (Joshua Jenkins) is a 15-year-old boy with Asperger Syndrome, he goes on a quest to solve a mystery of who killed Wellington, his neighbour Mrs Shears’ dog. He records all the facts that he uncovers in a book as suggest by his teacher Siobhan (Geraldine Alexandera) who seems to understand him, as well as having a calming effect on him. The first half shows us the relationships he has with his parents and how his father Ed (Stuart Laing) struggles to bring Christopher up with the absence of his wife Judy (Gina Isaac).
Christopher has an extraordinary logical brain. His security lies in mathematics as he sees patterns in numbers, enabling him to work out complex maths problems. He also uses his logic to work out how things happen, like playing detective. It’s eye opening to see how he sees the world.
From the moment Joshua Jenkins steps onto the stage he was incredible having total control of his character, mentally, emotional and physically. I couldn’t think of anyone more fitting for the role. The whole cast blend effortlessly, each having a strong role, purpose and presence on the stage.
The second half is much more emotional as we watched Christopher travel to London with his pet rat Toby. The stresses and stains of London effects most of us, this therefore allowing us to connect with the ordeal he was going through.
The set is a huge mathematical grid that not only maps out the story but Christopher’s mind. The use of the space and technology blew me away, I have never seen anything put together that flowed so well, it was clever, futuristic and magical.
I don’t know how any review could possibly do this play justice. It is truly uplifting and will get you thinking. Fact.
Showing until Saturday March 21 at Aylesbury Waterside Theatre.