The talented troupe behind the hugely-popular Adventures of the Sherlock Holmes Series is about to unveil the latest chapter – The Final Problem – Feb. 21st in the Nickle Studio.
Additional shows run through to Feb. 23rd with curtain at 7:30 p.m. each night.
A matinee runs Feb. 23rd at 2:30 p.m. as well.
Adapted and directed by Albertus Koett, the series first started in the Fall of 2017 with a brilliant interpretation of A Study in Scarlet.
The series, which has seen constant sell-out performances, has continued since, wrapping up the 2017/18 season with The Sign of Four and kicking off the 2018/2019 season with The Second Stain.
Originally set to run through to the end of the 2020 season, Koett has decided that this June will mark the final performance of the series, and he promises the storyline will finish up in a logical and satisfying way.
“The series can definitely come to a proper and satisfying ending in June, so we aren’t rushing things,” he explained.
“We’re still telling the story the way it was intended to be told, so the audiences will still get the full story arch for these characters.”
Koett also signed on as the new artistic director for Tree House Youth Theatre last Fall, so he’s got his hands full guiding along a gifted set of young actors for a production of Alice In Wonderland for next month as well.
In the meantime, The Final Problem promises to take audiences on another exciting journey with the iconic sleuth.
“In this one, it takes place a few months after The Second Stain. Moriarty’s grand plan is coming to fruition, so Holmes and Watson are in a race against time to stop Moriarty from wreaking havoc over London, Europe and eventually the whole world.
“That’s where we are at,” he explained. “It’s going to end at a spot where we won’t be missing out on anything. If I were to do it a whole other year, it would have only been stretching out what is happening,” he added. “So I think really that condensing into two seasons makes every moment count in the show – we aren’t adding anything extra just to ‘pad out’ three years. This makes it much more concise and succinct.”
Born and raised in Red Deer, Koett has been acting, writing, directing and producing theatre for the last 25 years.
Taking the reigns of Treehouse Youth Theatre is an ideal move for him where he can and will have such a tremendous impact.
“I’ve quite enjoyed it,” he said. “I’m taking all of the skills I’ve learned over the past two and a half years of producing Sherlock Holmes shows, and directing two or three other shows for Central Alberta Theatre (CAT) – all of that experience, I think, is serving me well in this new role.
“And I’m just enjoying working with youth,” he said of the troupe, whose ages range from nine to 17. “Alice in Wonderland is unique in that this show by Jason Pizzarello offers up the opportunity for our cast of 12 to take on 38 different parts,” he explained.
“It gives the young actors the opportunity to really work on character development and things like that.”
But back to Sherlock.
For Koett, adapting the classic material and directing the shows has been a joy from day one.
But there’s a bittersweet feeling as he sees the last production in the series approaching this June.
“It is bittersweet because it’s been an absolute blast working with the people that I’ve been able to work with,” he said. “But the intention all along was also to utilize this opportunity with Central Alberta Theatre to really craft these plays so that eventually I could send them out into the universe to see if other theatre companies would like to produce these shows.
“It’s been a great opportunity as a playwright to see these shows up on their feet, workshop them in rehearsals, get actors’ feedback – that’s been a great part of it.”
Over the past couple of years, cast and crew have also really bonded into something of a ‘Sherlock Holmes family’, he added.
In the principle roles, Jason Steele has been starring as Sherlock with Paul Sutherland as Dr. Watson, Lorraine Stuart as Mrs. Hudson and Trysten Luck as Inspector Lestrade.
Written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the Sherlock stories hold an almost timeless and universal appeal.
Interestingly, when Conan Doyle had Sherlock Holmes killed off in one of the stories, people in and around London in particular were devastated and outraged. Some even wore black arm bands as a symbol of grief in losing such a beloved character.
To their relief, Holmes re-appeared about six years later in further tales.
For ticket information, check out www.blackknightinn.ca.