Despite being described in the Fringe brochure as a ‘walk and talk exhibition’, the audience of the Arthur Conan Doyle Experience was sat in a lecture room upon arrival and a short film was played on a small television set that only a few audience members could see. The soundtrack was muffled and as it was the only footage of Arthur Conan Doyle himself, this was a shame. Ann Treherne, a trustee of the Arthur Conan Doyle Centre, then gave a lengthy account of the life of the prolific writer, detailing the wheres and the with-whoms of his life, but not the whys. We were then permitted to move about the building - a beautiful example of a Victorian town house - to view a handful of rooms, one of which displayed a collection of whimsical drawings and paintings by Conan Doyle’s father.
As the brochure places this event in the 18+ category, I was expecting a little more adult material - perhaps something on the paranormal/psychic/medium spectrum. Any amount whatsoever would have been good. One particularly noteworthy omission from this talk was any discussion of Conan Doyle’s famous experiments to prove life after death, which were merely mentioned in passing.
Whilst the content of the talk may have been interesting, there was nothing going on that could not be seen and learnt on a non-festival visit by just popping by and asking a few questions and subsequently saving the £7.50. A lot was left out of this event that could have made it fascinating and absorbing. Maybe next year they will do justice to this fascinating character.