SUNY Oswego to present taut, rapid-fire 'Sherlock Holmes'

Fast-paced suspense and intrigue will greet theatregoers for SUNY Oswego’s “Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure” as a student cast and veteran director bring to life the brilliant detective, his sidekick and a savvy love interest.

With the Baker Street sleuth seeing a revival of interest thanks to the big-screen versions, BBC series “Sherlock” (seen stateside on PBS’ “Masterpiece Theatre”) and a new CBS show titled “Elementary,” Oswego’s version reaches back to the original material.

Based in part on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s books “A Scandal in Bohemia” and “The Final Problem,” the show will preview at 8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 11, and run at 8 p.m. Oct. 12, 13, 19 and 20, with a concluding matinee at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 21. All performances are at Waterman Theatre in SUNY Oswego’s Tyler Hall. 

“Steven Dietz has adapted the 1897 play ‘Sherlock Holmes’ by Conan Doyle and William Gillette into a streamlined two-act version that preserves all the suspense and adventure of the original,” said Mark Cole, the director and a professor of theatre at SUNY Oswego. “Holmes and Watson pursue the nefarious Moriarty in order to save the reputation of the King of Bohemia.”

Holmes and MoriartyIn the theatre department’s production, a crowned head of Europe tries desperately to retrieve an incriminating photograph on the eve of his marriage. Holmes (Nicholas Pike) unravels a blackmail scheme and pursues the villains, including Moriarty (Tyler Eldred), with the help of the faithful Dr. Watson (Jacob Luria), who also serves as narrator. Opera singer Irene Adler (Jennifer Pratt) plays Holmes’ one and only love, a woman caught at the center of the intrigue.

‘Iconic role’

Luria said he looks forward to portraying Holmes’ famed sidekick, who comes in and out of scenes to talk with the audience about the next stage in resolving the mystery.

“Now, people are seeing Sherlock Holmes on television and film, so it’s nice to bring this back to the stage and show that it’s just as exciting and mesmerizing,” he said.

The cast is working with dialect coach Joan Hart Willard, an adjunct instructor of acting and directing at SUNY Oswego, to master the various accents their roles demand.

“This is an iconic role that you kind of have to fit into, and it’s a struggle,” said Pike, who aims to deliver a stimulating take on Holmes. “But at the same time the challenge is super-exciting.”

The play will clip along, keeping audience members on the edge of their seats, Luria said.

“The show is very, very fast-paced and we change the scene a lot, but there’s no stopping point,” he said. “It’s energizing and exciting.”

Other cast members include Carlos Clemenz as the King of Bohemia; Sam Berman as Adler’s husband, Godfrey Norton; Michelle Strauss as Madge Larrabee; Josh Jarvi as Sid Prince; and Jesse Lessner, who plays both a policeman and a clergyman.

Tickets priced at $13 ($7 for SUNY Oswego students) are available at all SUNY Oswego box offices, online at or by calling 312-2141. All tickets for the preview are $5. The production is suggested for ages 12 and above.

Patrons with disabilities who require assistance should call the Tyler Hall box office at 312-2141.

PHOTO CAPTION: Evil lurks—SUNY Oswego’s fall theatre department production “Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure” will feature the deductive skills of the famed 19th century detective (played by Nicholas Pike, right) pitted against the machinations of the ruthless Professor Moriarty (Tyler Eldred), previewing Thursday, Oct. 11, and running Oct. 12, 13, 19 and 20, with a concluding matinee at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 21, in Tyler Hall’s Waterman Theatre.

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(Posted: Sep 18, 2012)

Tags: theatre, theater, sherlock holmes