Date of Award

5-2012

Thesis Type

Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Liberal Studies

Advisor(s)

Dr. Daniel Crozier

Second Advisor

Dr. Edward Cohen

Abstract

The relationship between Sherlock Holmes and John Watson is complicated and certainly untraditional. Some theorize that Holmes is merely using Watson while Watson desperately seeks his affection. Others theorize that they have an unrequited homosexual relationship. However, it is Holmes’ unemotional nature paired with Watson’s fierce loyalty and admiration that creates a new and unique type of relationship. Many would define friendship as an emotional bond, but with Holmes, this is impossible. That does not mean, however, that he is incapable of deeply caring for Watson. It means that the relationship looks different than the traditional friendship. Watson and Holmes’ friendship is the depiction of a genuine intimate friendship with an unemotional man. My Dear Watson is a full-length musical including 15 original songs plus overture, entr’acte, and instrumental interludes orchestrated for a 12-piece orchestra that explores the complexity, eccentricity, and beauty of Holmes’s and Watson’s friendship. The plot is based mainly on A Study in Scarlet, The Valley of Fear, and “The Final Problem,” though other stories are also incorporated, and much of the dialogue is original. In addition to this dramatic work, I have also written a scholarly essay entitled “Sherlock and John: A Redefined Friendship,” which explores Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s stories and utilizes them to redefine the very nature of friendship through the lens of this unusual friendship with an unemotional man. Use of the Sherlock Holmes characters created by the late Sir Arthur Conan Doyle is by permission of the rights owner, Conan Doyle Estate, Ltd.

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