Bruce Ormond

Sherlock Holmes comes to the Capitol in Nelson

Sherlock Holmes and the Hound of Buskerville, written and directed by Laurie Jarvis, features a cast of more than 40 volunteer actors.

London’s favourite fictional detective will come to life on the Capitol stage in Nelson’s 25th annual Christmas pantomime opening Thursday.

Sherlock Holmes and the Hound of Buskerville, written and directed by Laurie Jarvis, features a cast of more than 40 volunteer actors of all ages.

Donning the detective’s cap is panto veteran Bruce Ormond, who has been in about 15 pantomimes dating back to 1987, the year the local tradition started. His mother was director of the city’s first panto, Cinderladen (a combination of Cinderella and Aladdin), in which he played the prince.

Last year he was Tom Cobbler in The Elves and the Shoemaker. This year he returns to the spotlight as Sherlock Holmes.

Though he holds the lead role, Ormond says everyone contributes a lot to the show.

“It’s a group effort and there’s total commitment from everyone involved,” Ormond says. “Even people you don’t see on stage — the people sweeping the stage or controlling the lights — we need everybody to make the show possible.”

The lead actors have been rehearsing their parts twice a week since September, while chorus members are in rehearsals once per week.

Much of the cast is made of parent-child duos. It’s required that any child under the age of 13 also have a parent in the production.

Ormond’s kids joined him in pantomimes a couple times when they were younger, though most years he’s been solo. Still, he thinks young actors bring a lot of character to the show.

“For many of them, it’s their first time being involved with a community effort like this,” he says. “Often this is what gives the bug for community theatre, or community participation in general.”

Co-starring in the show as Dr. Watson is Dustin Cantwell, who has four pantomimes under his belt.

“I do one about every five years, when there’s a theme I like,” Cantwell explains.

He’s a huge fan of Sherlock Holmes, and British humour in general. He went into rehearsals gunning for the role of the detective’s trusted assistant.

“It’s a lot of fun to take someone so serious, like Sherlock Holmes, and spend the whole show making fun of him,” Cantwell says.

He’s looking forward to getting the show in front of an audience.

“This is really the Corvette of pantos; it’s a quicker, snappier version of this style of theatre” Cantwell says. “It’s really funny all the way through.”

Holmes and Watson don’t solve the crimes alone. They have the help of their hound dog Baskerville, played by pantomime rookie Eli Geddis.

A newcomer to Nelson, Geddis said he auditioned for the part because he wanted a way to get to know more people in the community.

“I haven’t been in a play since high school, but I’ve always loved dressing up and performing,” says the 25 year old, whose character has surprising crime solving ability given that he only speaks in woofs and howls. “It’s been amazing to be a part of this volunteer effort to support something so essential in the community.”

The pantomime is a fundraiser for the Capitol Theatre that helps fund its year-round operation.

Sherlock Holmes and the Hound of Buskerville runs November 29, 30 and December 1 at 7:30 p.m., with matinees on December 1 and 2 at 2 p .m. Tickets are $25 for adult, $10 for student and senior, and $45  for a family of four. Buy online at capitoltheatre.bc.ca or phone 250-352-2293.

Just Posted

Nelson Leafs humble Rockies 9-2

Leafs score 7 unanswered goals en route to win

Nelson Leafs fall in Kimberley 4-1

The Dynamiters took a 2-0 lead en route to the win

Nelson Legion to sell its building to tech company

Traction on Demand will purchase the building while the Legion will lease space

Climbing group launches fundraiser for Castlegar cliffs

TAWKROC wants to raise $60,000 to purchase the property from the owners

It’s the last day to vote in B.C.’s referendum on electoral reform

Ballots must now be dropped off in person to meet the deadline of 4:30 p.m.

VIDEO: This B.C. school leads country in vaccine donations to UNICEF

Federally funded Kids Boost Immunity uses quizzes to earn vaccinations

Boeser scores 3, Pettersson has 5 points as Canucks hammer Blues

Vancouver picks up impressive 6-1 win in St. Louis

B.C. police stop drunk driver who offered up burger instead of ID

Roadblock checks over the weekend found at least two other impaired drivers

In Canada, the term ‘nationalism’ doesn’t seem to have a bad rap. Here’s why

Data suggest that Canadians don’t see the concept of nationalism the way people do in the United States

Small quake recorded west of Vancouver Island

No injuries or tsunami warning after 5.4 rumble felt some 400 kilometres from Victoria

B.C. suspends Chinese portion of Asian forestry trade mission due to Huawei arrest

Huawei’s chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou was detained at the request of U.S. in Vancouver

Canadians spent $1.7 billion dollars online in December 2017

Online retail sales accounted for 3.4 per cent of total retail sales

2-year investigations nets $900,000 in refunds for payday loan customers

Consumer Protection BC says selling practices were ‘aggressive and deceptive’

New Kootenay East Regional Hospital District Board elected

Redeveloping East Kootenay Regional Hospital in Cranbrook a priority for new hospital district board

Most Read