Sherlock Holmes may be from the 1880s, but he seems to be popping up everywhere lately. He’s on CBS bantering with a modernized Watson and traipsing around London on the BBC. And now he’s solving mysteries right here in Chicago—with a little help from his friends at Filament Theatre.
If you go
Sherlock Holmes & The Mystery of Portage Park
11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturdays, July 9-23
4041 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago
Sherlock and his trusty sidekick are joining up with the Portage Park Irregulars, a group of amateur sleuths, and other adventurous Chicagoans to crack the case of The Mystery of Portage Park. Audiences gather at Filament Theatre, then break into four groups—two on foot, two on bicycles—to canvass the area, gathering clues and interviewing suspects. Along the way, they’ll stop at spots like a neighborhood bakery or a little-known bowling alley. Later, all four groups join up again at the theater to share information and figure out the culprit … all leading to a final confrontation.
The walking route is about a half-mile, while the biking route is just under two miles. All of the actors traveling with the groups have been trained in safety measures. The show is recommended for ages 8 and up, largely due to the active nature of the experience.
And while Sherlock Holmes and The Mystery of Portage Park is described as “immersive and participatory,” each audience member can participate at the level they feel most comfortable, whether that’s taking the lead with Sherlock and Watson or quietly looking for the more easily missed clues. The folks at Filament just want to make sure audiences are having fun, exploring the neighborhood and learning at least a bit of the science of deduction.
When it comes down to it, it’s pretty “elementary,” indeed.