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No. 413, May 2, 2010

Sherlock Holmes: The Melodrama
A Review
By Don Hobbs

Dallas’ Pocket Sandwich Theatre is an institution that manages to fly under the radar, year after year, yet staging some of the area’s best performances. The late Joe Dickinson (1932 -2010) and Rodney Dobbs worked together in the Dallas Repertory Theatre and decided to start a theatre of their own. The space they found was in a pocket sandwich shop on Lower Greenville Avenue. This was their location from 1980 until 1990 just shy of their tenth anniversary, when they moved to the spot where they are today on Mockingbird Lane.

From the earliest day, Pocket Sandwich Theatre has staged melodramas. Currently, they are staging another of their infamous audience-participation, popcorn-tossing, comedy spoof melodramas. Sherlock Holmes: The Melodrama, written by Joe and Brad Dickinson, uses various characters and situations from the Canon. With these elements blended together and including a wink-wink, nudge-nudge, this comedy/spoof is grand fun. The play is running weekends through May 15.

The Diogenes Club of Dallas, one of our local Sherlockian groups, attended Saturday night’s performance. Our treat was a wonderful evening of entertainment. Under Dennis Millegan’s direction the players glided through their lines and set changes flawlessly. Mrs. Hudson (Cynthia Mathews) opened the show with her very own sing-along. She led us in singing “Hello My Baby” and then the entire cast joined her for a hearty rendition of “I’m Looking Over a Four-Leaf Clover.”  She instructed everyone on the proper way to hurl dry, popped, popcorn at those on stage. This transitioned into Act I where immediately we witness the murder of Kitty Winter (Lauren Heard)  along with  a boisterous round of boos, hisses, and Orville Rickenbacker’s best.

When we finally meet Sherlock Holmes, played excellently by Matt Doden, he is verbally sparring with Dr. Watson (Christopher Briseno) who is peppering Holmes with extremely bad puns around the phrase ‘Elementary, Watson’. In this highly odd turn of events  Lestrade (Daniel White) seeks an alliance between Holmes and Professor Moriarty (Michael Roe) to work together in recovering a stolen treaty. Take Irene Adler, the King of Bohemia, the Prime Minister, and throw in Mary Watson for good measure, then mix them all together before throwing them out on a stage and this is what you end up with –Sherlock Holmes: The Melodrama.

This is great fun for the entire family. It was apparent as the theatre was completely sold-out. The number of young people many be a good sign for the future of the Sherlockian world. All we need to do is spark the interest in just a few young people and our Game will be fine for another generation.

The cast of Sherlock Holmes: The Melodrama with popcorn littering the stage.

Happy Collecting!!

 

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January 3, 2010
Happy New Year! A Sherlockian Potpourri

January 10, 2010
Sherlockian Nirvana

January 17, 2010
Sherlocking in New York City 2010

January 24, 2010
The Forgetful Sherlockian

January 31, 2010
Barcelona October 2010

February 7, 2010
Sherlocking in Southern California

February 14, 2010
Sherlocking in the Sun

February 21, 2010
The Don Hobbs Olympics

February 28, 2010
Sherlockian Potpourri

March 6, 2010
Six Degrees of Sherlockian Separation

March 14, 2010
Lake Sherlockbegon Revisited

March 21, 2010
Holmes!

March 28, 2010
Spring At Last

April 4, 2010
Another One Bites The Dust

April 11, 2010
The New Sherlock Holmes

April 18, 2010
Adventures of a Maniac Collector

April 25, 2010
More Sherlockian Potpourri

May 2, 2010
Sherlock Holmes: The Melodrama