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Sherlock Holmes visits Woodburn as local thespians take on new challenges for their winter production

EDIT: The Woodburn High School Theatre's production of "The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes" was originally scheduled to air Feb. 19-22, but was postponed due to inclement weather. COURTESY PHOTO: WOODBURN THEATRE - Woodburn HIgh School Drama will present Sherlock Holmes via streaming this week.A legendary detective has emerged around the COVID-19 cordoned-off Woodburn Arts and Communications Academy.

Woodburn High School Theatre announced their winter production will be "The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes," adapted by Jon Jory, which will stream online for four days only, Friday through Monday, Feb. 26-March 1.

Theatre director Caleb Thurston said the young thespians have applying a new creativity amid the pandemic scenario, much like their fellow students in other artistic pursuits.

Thurston noted that Woodburn student actors and designers have embraced the challenge of telling theatrical stories in unconventional ways.

This winter, inspired by the old radio dramas of the 1930s, students are building an immersive multimedia experience. Four different casts are featured in four mini mysteries in this 90-minute radio-style play.

"We are just wrapping up recordings this week so that we can begin streaming on the 19th," Thurston said on Thursday, Feb. 11. "We were excited to just do something fun -- the students have enjoyed playing with these larger-than-life characters in a dark, dramatic setting.

"Then the sound effects add so much to the whole experience," he added.

Expert mentors

To prepare for this unique project, students have been working weekly over Zoom with professional theatre mentors.

Student designers are learning the world of sound effects under the tutelage of Ryan Gamblin, a Brooklyn-based sound designer and composer.

Student actors are being guided through the process of building characters by Michael Ofori, a professional actor and director from Boston.

Cora Beeman, a designer hailing from Seattle, is overseeing the work of student technicians.

"I have especially been pleased with how the students have worked with the mentors," Thurston said. "It can be intimidating to have a professional come in that they've never met, but these sessions have let them go deeper and get a different perspective. I hope that is something they remember for a long time."

The production

This play reveals how the legendary friendship of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson is born. Together they face a quartet of the most confounding crimes to ever cross the threshold of 221B Baker Street.

Discover the truth about the surprising secret within an abandoned Christmas goose; the meaning of a coded message from an organization obsessed with the past; the danger that sends a family playing cards to madness; and the web of conspiracy surrounding a governess in an isolated country house.

Based on four classic short stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes is a thrilling reminder of why Sherlock Holmes remains eternal.

Thuston advises that the production contains moments of suspense and violence and is recommended for middle school students and older.

Tickets can be purchased online at the theatre department's website: https://tinyurl.com/woodburntheatre. Tickets will give patrons access to stream the production anytime between Feb. 26-March 1.

For information, contact Thurston at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; 503-980-6275.


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