Emerald Necklace Conservancy's Exhibition Fog x FLO Presents New Sherlock Holmes Audio Plays

Inspired equally by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's iconic detective and the ephemeral fog sculptures by artist Fujiko Nakaya, Huntington Playwriting Fellow Walt McGough has written Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Emerald Necklace, a series of free, downloadable original audio plays that correspond with - and play out along - the Emerald Necklace Conservancy's free exhibition, Fog x FLO: Fujiko Nakaya on the Emerald Necklace.

Produced by the Huntington Theatre Company - in collaboration with the Conservancy - and told in five parts, the play finds Holmes strolling through Frederick Law Olmsted's designed landscapes with Miss Wayfair, who has engaged him to solve the mystery of her missing brother Wilbur. These plays reference spots along the Emerald Necklace parks and respond to environments created in Nakaya's five installations. The plays are available for streaming or download through October 31 at huntingtontheatre.org/fog.

"Writing a Sherlock Holmes story can feel like staging Shakespeare: the source material is compelling, finely wrought and so culturally ubiquitous that any new attempt is as much about what's different as the same," says the Boston-based McGough. "Setting the story among Fujiko's evocative sculptures helped immensely, because my first exposure to Sherlock was as a kid, reading of his exploits on the foggy Baskerville moors."

Here's how the story rolls out across the five episodes:

  • In Part One: "The Fens," while walking among the reeds and listening to the story of her brother, Sherlock Holmes accuses Miss Wayfair of not being truthful about the case.
  • In Part Two: "Leverett Pond Overlook," Along the Riverway, Wayfair comes clean about Wilbur and brings Sherlock deeper into the mystery - and deeper into the fog.
  • In Part Three: "Jamaica Pond," the pair walks the shore as Holmes recounts a king's visit to Boston, and makes a discovery in an unusual place.
  • In Part Four: "The Arboretum," Holmes reveals the discovery and details about the missing Wilbur, causing Miss Wayfair to feel faint and seek an interval on their walk.
  • In Part Five, "The Overlook Shelter," near Franklin Park's stone ruins, Holmes muses on love and Wayfair reveals one final twist on the mystery.

Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Emerald Necklace is directed by Rebecca Bradshaw, and features Stewart Evan Smith as Sherlock and Kiara Pichardo as Miss Wayfair. The series was recorded by Ben Emerson and Paula Halpern; sound engineering and design is by Julian Crocamo.

The audio plays coincide with the Huntington's upcoming production of Charles Marowitz's play Sherlock's Last Case, directed by Maria Aitken, in which alliances among the familiar characters are tested, rivalries are raised from the dead, and long-simmering grudges play out with equal parts hilarity and intrigue. Sherlock's Last Case plays at the Huntington Avenue Theatre from September 28 - October 28.

Information about the Huntington's production of Sherlock's Last Case is available here.

More information on playwright Walt McGough is available here.

More information about the Emerald Necklace Conservancy's presentation of Fog x FLO is available here.

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