Mysterious Circumstances

Mysterious Circumstances

June 11 - July 14, 2019
Gil Cates Theater

Featuring Hugo Armstrong, John Bobek, Austin Durant, Leo Marks, Ramiz Monsef, Helen Sadler & Alan Tudyk

Inspired by The New Yorker article Mysterious Circumstances: The Strange Death of a Sherlock Holmes Fanatic by David Grann, the play centers around the true story of the mysterious death of Richard Lancelyn Green, the world’s foremost scholar on Sherlock Holmes. After spending two decades searching for the missing papers of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Green came close to unlocking the secrets behind Holmes’ creator when he tracked down an elusive box which was said to be cursed.

What is fact and what is fiction? With multiple suspects and competing motives, Green’s death raises questions that may be answered only by Holmes himself. Mysterious Circumstances uses breathtaking theatricality and magic to uncover the mystery behind this true crime, featuring Emmy nominee Alan Tudyk (Spamalot, Firefly, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story) as Richard Lancelyn Green & Sherlock Holmes.

Mysterious Circumstances Rehearsals





Meet The Artists

Michael Mitnick’s plays include Sex Lives of Our Parents directed by Davis McCallum (Second Stage Theater), The Siegel directed by Casey Stangl (South Coast Repertory), Ed, Downloaded directed by Sam Buntrock (Denver Center for the Performing Arts) and Spacebar: A Broadway Play by Kyle Sugarman directed by Maggie Burrows (The Wild Project). He cowrote the musical Fly by Night directed by Carolyn Cantor (Drama Desk-nominated for Best Musical, Playwrights Horizons). His songs have been sung at Lincoln Center, The Guggenheim, Joe’s Pub, 54 Below and on HBO. Films include The Giver directed by Phillip Noyce, The Staggering Girl directed by Luca Guadagnino and The Current War directed by Alfonso Gomez-Rejon. Upcoming: Scotland, PA at Roundabout Theatre Company this fall. M.F.A. in Playwriting from The Yale School of Drama. He was born and raised in Pittsburgh.

DAVID GRANN (Author of The New Yorker article "Mysterious Circumstances")
David Grann is a #1 New York Times bestselling author and a staff writer at The New Yorker magazine. He is the author of The Lost City of Z and a National Book Award finalist for Killers of the Flower Moon, both of which were chosen as one of the best books of their respective years by The New York Times, The Washington Post and other publications. He is also the author of The Devil and Sherlock Holmes: Tales of Murder, Madness, and Obsession and Old Man and the Gun: And Other Tales of True Crime. Several of his stories, including The Lost City of Z and Old Man and the Gun, have been adapted into major motion pictures. And his work has garnered several honors for outstanding nonfiction, including a George Polk Award, an Edgar Award, and a Spur Award.

Matt Shakman has directed three acclaimed productions for the Geffen Playhouse: the West Coast premiere of David Lindsay-Abaire’s Good People, the world premiere of Jeffrey Hatcher’s new adaptation of Wait Until Dark and Joshua Harmon’s Bad Jews. Matt founded and was the artistic director of the Black Dahlia Theatre in Los Angeles, which was named “one of a dozen young American companies you need to know” by American Theatre magazine and “Best Small Theatre” by Los Angeles magazine. Matt is a director & producer for FX’s It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and has directed episodes of Game of Thrones (DGA nomination), Mad Men, Fargo, Good Wife and Succession. He recently helmed the pilot episode for Hulu’s The Great starring Elle Fanning and Nicholas Hoult, airing in 2020.

This play was commissioned as part of the Geffen Playhouse's New Play Development Program thanks to the generosity of The Harold & Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust. Recipient of the Edgerton Foundation New Play Award. Major support for this world premiere production provided by the Edgerton Foundation New Play Production Fund.

Upcoming Shows & Events

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Performance Info

This production contains loud music, strobe effects and theatrical haze.

Due due to some language and violence, Mysterious Circumstances is not recommended for children under 12.

2 hours, including one 15 minute intermission.