Classic detective story gets a musical twist
Once again the fate of the British Empire lies in the hands of the greatest crimefighting team in literature.
But this time there’s a twist.
The two-man musical Holmes & Watson Save the Empire! chronicles the faithful friends who have until midnight to solve the fiendish Moriarty’s deadly puzzle.
With comedic twists and turns and more than one song along the way, the best buddies do everything to prevent a royal assassination.
Written by Arthur Conan Doyle, the fictional detective story was first published in 1887 and quickly became a classic.
“All CSI shows take their cue from Holmes and Watson. It’s the first forensic investigation story,” says Damon Calderwood, who plays Sherlock Holmes in the play, which runs at Deep Cove’s Shaw Theatre from Feb. 27 to March 16.
Calderwood grew up in North Vancouver and started acting while at Queen Mary elementary with a role in Charlie Brown.
“We have a nice variety of music from beautiful ballads to silly songs and everything in between,” he tells The Outlook while flipping through the script.
Holmes and Watson must save England, but along the way important questions pop up: What is Victoria’s secret? How did Holmes end up on the Gaiety Music Hall stage? Who is the mysterious Nightingale of Nuremburg? And why is Watson wearing her dress?
Calderwood and Gordon Roberts, who plays Watson, aren’t new to two-man shows. They created Chaps!, Dogpark and They Came From Way Out There, taking some plays on the road. The veteran actors have each been in around 50 musicals.
“It’s very tongue-in-cheek and one of a kind,” says Calderwood, singing sections of his favourite songs. “Watson and I even have a duet.”
The family-friendly play runs Feb. 27 to March 16 Wednesday to Saturday at 8 p.m. at the Deep Cove Shaw Theatre at 4360 Gallant Ave., North Vancouver. Tickets are $18 for adults and $16 for seniors and students. Call 604-929-9456 or go to firstimpressionstheatre.com.