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Writing

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FULL-LENGTH PLAYS

Miss Holmes

Drama – 2 acts – 4 women, 5 men
Based on the collected novels and short stories of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

*Available through Dramatic Publishing

In a time and place where gender roles are rigidly defined, Dr. Dorothy Watson and Miss Sherlock Holmes dare to challenge societal norms by providing a necessary, if unconventional, service. Inspired by the works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, this theatrical “fan fiction” re-examines the world of Holmes and Watson, exploring the added challenges and risks faced by these two iconic characters if they were women.

  • 2016 – Lifeline Theatre, Chicago, IL

Soon I Will Be Invincible

Musical – 2 acts – 5 women, 4 men
Adapted from the novel by Austin Grossman
Music and Lyrics by Christopher Kriz

Fatale: Cyborg super-soldier. Newest member of the world’s most elite team of superheroes, the Champions. She has enhanced vision, super strength, and a tactical computer hardwired to her brain. Also, awkward in social situations, and can’t use a chair if it isn’t steel-reinforced.

Doctor Impossible: Supervillain. Smartest man in the world. Suffers from a condition known as Malign Hypercognition Disorder, better known as Evil Genius Syndrome. He’s tried to take over the world twelve times… and counting.

  • 2015 – Lifeline Theatre, Chicago, IL

A Tale of Two Cities

Drama – 2 acts – 6 men, 4 women
Adapted from the novel by Charles Dickens

*Published by Sordelet Ink and available for purchase at Amazon and Barnes & Noble

Set against the backdrop of the French Revolution, A Tale of Two Cities follows the lives of Charles Darnay, a virtuous French ex-patriot who falls victim to the indiscriminate wrath of the revolution; and Sydney Carton, a dissolute English barrister who struggles to redeem his ill-spent life through his unrequited love for Darnay’s wife. It ranks among the most famous works in the history of English literature.

  • 2017 – GreenMan Theatre Troupe, Elmhurst, IL
  • 2014 – Lifeline Theatre, Chicago, IL

The City and The City

Drama – 2 acts – 7 men, 4 women
Adapted from the Hugo Award-winning novel by China Miéville

In a place where seeing what is right in front of you can be a serious crime, Inspector Tyador Borlú of the Besźel Extreme Crime Squad must solve the mystery of a young woman’s murder. His investigation will bring him face to face with the fringe groups who simmer with hatred for each other beneath the surface of Besźel and her sister city, Ul Qoma, all the while risking retribution from the secretive entity that maintains the border between the two.

  • 2013 – Lifeline Theatre, Chicago, IL

The Count of Monte Cristo

Drama – 2 acts – 7 men, 4 women
Adapted from the novel by Alexandre Dumas

*Published by Sordelet Ink and available for purchase at Amazon and Barnes & Noble

The lives of three powerful families are thrown into chaos with the arrival of the mysterious Count of Monte Cristo, a man of untold wealth who carries with him secrets from the past which may destroy them all.

  • 2014 – College of DuPage Theatre, Glen Ellyn, IL
  • 2013 – Mob Hit Productions, Calgary, AB
  • 2011 – Lifeline Theatre, Chicago, IL

ONE-ACT PLAYS

The Hunters

Drama/Horror – 15 minutes – 2 women, 2 men

Ghost hunters Leslie and Richard are out of their depth when they arrive to investigate the strange history of “Motel 666.”

  • 2015 – WildClaw Theatre, Chicago, IL, as part of Motel 666, a live horror anthology

RADIO PLAYS

Fracture Zone

Drama/Horror – 10 minutes – 2 actors

After an unexpected discovery on the ocean floor causes all hell to break loose on board a submarine, a pair of sailors hurry to record one last warning before it’s too late.

  • 2014 – Deathscribe International Festival of Horror Radio Plays

Comparing Notes at the End of the World

Drama/Horror – 10 minutes – 2 women, 1 man

Three survivors discuss their experiences after the laws of the universe abruptly change, bringing about a bizarre sort of apocalypse.

  • 2012 – Deathscribe International Festival of Horror Radio Plays

AWARDS AND NOMINATIONS

2015 Bloody Axe Award (winner): Deathscribe International Festival of Horror – Fracture Zone
2014 Non-Equity Joseph Jefferson Award (nominee): New Adaptation – A Tale of Two Cities
2012 Bloody Axe Award (finalist): Deathscribe – Comparing Notes at the End of the World


PRESS

Miss Holmes

“Christopher M. Walsh’s ‘Miss Holmes’ offers a cunning and highly enjoyable gender-bent take on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s maddeningly brilliant detective. … Walsh manages the tricky task of providing both old-school fan service … and feminist insight. If you peek into the narrative corners, you can see shadowy suggestions of everything from the Jack the Ripper slayings to Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s ‘The Yellow Wallpaper.'” – Kerry Reid, Chicago Tribune

“A wildly winning world premiere from Lifeline Theatre that injects fresh life into the Arthur Conan Doyle oeuvre through the simple expedience of making Holmes and Watson both female. … Playwright Christopher M. Walsh unearths new resonances in familiar aspects of the Holmesian world, all while remaining loyal to what the world has found compelling about Doyle’s stories for so many years. … It’s fun, it’s thoughtful, it’s compelling and empowering and unexpected.” – Allison Shoemaker, Time Out Chicago

“Courtesy of Christopher M. Walsh, whose adaptation of ‘A Tale of Two Cities’ was sublime, ‘Miss Holmes’ never overplays its feminist politics, preferring instead to slowly build how disadvantaged Holmes and Watson are as intelligent, independent women in a society that so clearly does not value such attributes.” – Peter Thomas Ricci, Chicago Theatre Review

“The playwright, Christopher M. Walsh, should particularly be commended. He has captured both Holmes and Watson’s characteristic ways of speaking and translated them to an entirely new mystery. One that is engaging and contains a twist or two and uses the fact that the main characters are now women to further the action and the plot. The gender-swap is not a bug, it’s a feature.” – Suzanne Magnuson, Splash Magazines

“Walsh’s script carefully balances the need to establish the female characters’ place in the world with the particulars of the mystery, and he is able to connect the themes of sexist oppression with the case quite smoothly. Of course, this being a Sherlock Holmes story, the truth of the case is quite a bit more complicated than any easy, pat didactic. For the many fans of the great detective, Miss Holmes is a true delight – expanding and commenting upon the original, while adding its own twist.” – Jacob Davis – Around the Town Chicago

“Walsh creates a female Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson that were not simply females playing the men but new characters who were burdened with most of the prejudices, societal limitations, and female rebellion were not tolerated in 19th Century England. … Playwright Walsh weaves all the smart observations by Holmes with the unique observations by Watson that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle would appreciate to establish a new mystery. Add a Holmes-style plot and this new work appeals to mystery lovers.” – Tom Williams, Chicago Critic

“Without banging the audience over the head with Feminism 101, playwright Walsh creates two intelligent, empathetic female leads who don’t subscribe to traditional ideas of happiness.” – Lauren Whalen, Chicago Theater Beat

“Walsh’s detective story is smart, sophisticated and droll. Even without the female slant, we would be more than satisfied with this Sherlock adventure. Yet, looking at lady sleuthing from a 19th century perspective cleverly adds layers of depth to these familiar characters. … There is so much to love in MISS HOLMES that I want more! Encore! Series! When is the next installment, my dear Walsh?” – Katy Walsh, The Fourth Walsh

Soon I Will Be Invincible

“Striking and original… I had a great time watching all these needy super whatnots act out their angst… a very fun and fresh night.” – Chris Jones, Chicago Tribune

“A summer treat not to be missed.” – Carole Moore, Around the Town Chicago

“There is a lot to love about this show… I want to see it again!” – Katy Walsh, The Fourth Walsh

“Christopher M. Walsh’s adaptation, directed by Paul S. Holmquist, hits the ground running… Walsh demonstrates his grasp of voice, a deft hand with dialogue as exposition and the ability to poke fond, good-natured fun at some of the excesses and tropes of a beloved genre.” – Christine Malcolm, Edge Chicago

A Tale of Two Cities

“A taut, suspenseful adaptation that captures the romantic idealism, dark humor, and social outrage that drive this ripping good yarn.” – Albert Williams, Chicago Reader

“Walsh skillfully condenses Dickens’ masterpiece into a riveting tale of love and hate. He finds the romance, the evil and even the humor in this tightly woven redemption and resurrection story.” – Katy Walsh, thefourthwalsh.com

“Lifeline Theatre’s latest page-to-stage triumph. … Walsh’s new version “rereads” the work into stirring action.” – Lawrence Bommer, Stage and Cinema

“Adapter Christopher M. Walsh skillfully reduced Charles Dickens’ sprawling 1859 novel into a fine stage production.” – Tom Williams, Chicago Critic

“This Tale is something to behold.” – Suzanne Scanlon, Time Out Chicago

The City and The City

“4 STARS… Several fans of the book have asked me with incredulity in recent weeks how it could possibly work onstage; the answer is, pretty impressively. Adapter Christopher M. Walsh smartly compresses the cast of characters so they can be embodied by ten versatile actors… An enjoyable potboiler with a unique twist, The City & the City is a great place to visit.” – Kris Vire, Time Out Chicago

“Everything from the way characters walk and do or do not make eye contact with each other to the way the illusion of various languages being spoken is evoked has been well thought out, contributing to an overall effect of both cerebral thrills and visceral danger… The play draws us so deeply into this world that at times we feel an absolute chill at the way our own perceptions have been altered.” – William Shunn, Gapers Block

“Bringing this cross-hatched manhunt to the stage was initially the work of adapter Christopher M. Walsh, who has distilled – or perhaps the word is processed – Miéville’s novel with a sure sense of cohesion amid the froth of complexities and the punctuation of surprises.” – Lawrence B. Johnson, Chicago on the Aisle

“Smart and richly wrought.” – Chris Jones, Chicago Tribune

The Count of Monte Cristo

“Walsh’s stellar adaptation [is] a guilty theatrical pleasure you don’t have to atone for afterward. It’s zesty, good fun – colorful theatrical comfort food with enough philosophical seasoning and emotional heat… The cogs and wheels of Holmquist’s ensemble make this contraption hum like a well-tuned Bugatti” – Kerry Reid, Chicago Tribune

“Walsh wisely intercuts the title character’s past with scenes from his present-day mission of vengeance… By gradually revealing the transformation of naive sailor Edmond Dantes into the cunning Count of Monte Cristo, Walsh builds the suspense leading into the action-packed second act.” – Oliver Sava, Time Out Chicago

“4 Stars … a complex and concise masterpiece … Walsh successfully contains the multiple storylines within a solid framework. He boils each scenario down to its essence. Every word is utilitarian in the tight dialog.” – Katy Walsh, Chicago Theater Beat

“I think Christopher M. Walsh did a very good job writing this play. This play makes me want to read the book. People should see this play. It is awesome.” – Ada Grey, Ada Grey Reviews for You


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© 2016 Christopher M. Walsh