Simon Stephens has effectively “theatricalized” the book with a play-within-a play device, where Christopher’s teacher reads from the book he wrote. The sound/light/staging sweep us into the brilliant, literal mind of autistic math genius Christopher who does not like loud noises or being touched or the color yellow. In his quest for the killer of Mrs. Shears’ dog, Wellington, he unveils a further plot involving his parents, their relationship to him and to each other.
Adam Langdon was excellent as Christopher, lovable but difficult. (Benjamin Wheelwright will play the role on Thursday evening, Saturday matinee and Sunday evening.) This demanding role involves intense acting and also some unique gymnastics, as there are scenes where the ensemble cast members practically juggle him through his alternate-reality experience.
Maria Elena Ramirez, Gene Gillette and Felicity Jones Latta play Christoper’s teacher, father and mother, respectively — and we can identify with them and their frustrations as well as with Christopher and his mathematical, literal world.
The stage is a black box grid that is capable of many tricks and surprises as it whirls us along on Christopher’s adventure. Be warned that the show literally starts and ends with a bang.
Curious Incident continues through April 16 in Wharton’s Great Hall.