Tuesday, June 21, 2016
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time Review
Having seen countless theater productions in college and university, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, was the first production that I've seen outside of school. Based on Mark Haddon's novel by the same name, the theater adaptation of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time follows Christopher, a 15-year old boy living with Asperger's Syndrome. While investigating the death of the neighbor's dog, Christopher unravels secrets about his own family which lead him to depart on a trip to London.
The set design of the play at first seems odd and uninspired; just a grid patterned box. That is of course, until the lights go down because once they do the possibilities are endless. Design, sound, lighting and projections come together beautifully and work perfectly in conveying the plot and also projecting what is on Christopher's mind. All of these elements come together at certain parts in the play and overload the audience much in the same way an autistic child might see the world around them. Despite the imagery projected all over the stage, the play begs the audience to use their imagination since there are very little props as compared to other plays. Plain boxes are used as dinner table chairs, benches, and train seats. Additionally, the lack of big props allow the actors use the stage space in very unique ways. At one point, Christopher floats through outer space, carried by fellow actors of course. He later walks on the wall in very much the same way.
The play focuses on the way family members often lie to each other for various reasons and the complications of parenting. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is a must-see production for its unique representation of autism on-stage.