Do you want a clue how to spend an entertaining night this weekend? It’s elementary.
Cherwell Theatre Company’s Holmes and Watson; The Farewell Tour is on its way to Edinburgh.
But first, the show is coming home to Banbury’s Mill where the production brought the house down last September.
And few people are more buzzing about its return than its director, Nasser Mermarzia.
He said: “I feel so fortunate to have landed this play, like a music producer coming across an exceptional song! “It ticks so many boxes and has such broad appeal with the potential to feature on the national and international scene. “It is brilliantly written and the way it combines murder mystery with comedy is ingenious! There are so many layers to the play; it’s a rich tapestry that immerses the audience from the first minute.”
Starring James Snee as the infamous detective Sherlock Holmes and Liam Nooney as his faithful sidekick Dr Watson, the plot is based on a theatre tour the two undertake to mark Holmes’ retirement. They plan to share with the audience a previously untold chapter in their partnership, an episode improbably called The Case of the Prime Minister, The Floozie and the Lummock Rock Lighthouse – upon whose outcome the security of Europe once hung by a thread... Naturally, Nasser points out that there are other intrigues, not least the theft of the priceless Satsuma Stone gem and the question of Prof Moriarty’s dramatic death at the Reichenbach Falls.
You might know Nasser from numerous films including Ridley Scott’s The Kite Runner and this year’s The Devil’s Double. He is also responsible for writing and presenting Britain’s most successful theatre-in-education, drugs awareness play The Buzzed, toured annually by the company.
And Nasser, who has also worked with Steven Spielberg and man of tthe moment, Danny [Olympics supremo] Boyle has the highest praise for his CTC colleagues.
He added: “I read Holmes nearly two years ago and decided not to rush into production. I needed the right cast and CTC needed to be in a good position to take on such a project.
“It was the perfect vehicle to launch CTC as a national touring company. When James and Liam returned from London and New York respectively, we started rehearsals. “Unbelievably, we’ve only had four performances, yet the play already has a following! The audience loves it and people want to see it again. I’m sure we’ll sell out at The Mill which has, as always, been greatly supportive of the play and the company.”
Banbury’s only professional theatre company, CTC has enjoyed huge success with shows such as Shakespeare’s Soiree, A Christmas Carol, Arabian Nights, Pinocchio, Alice In Wonderland and The Snow Queen.
It played to a sellout audience at The Mill last September and received a wonderful welcome at The Courtyard Theatre, London earlier this month.
It returns to The Mill on Saturday, August 4, before leaving for a two-week run at the Edinburgh Fringe. Mr Memarzia said a national tour was planned next year including more London shows and some international performances. Holmes And Watson – The Farewell Tour is at The Mill Theatre, Banbury, on Saturday at 7.30pm – tickets £10-12. Call the box office on 01295 279002.