The Waterville Opera House will present a mystery that shines a new light on favorite characters when “Miss Holmes” opens Jan. 24 in Waterville.

Performances are set for 7:30 p.m. Jan. 24, 25, 31 and Feb. 1, and at 2 p.m. Jan. 26 and Feb. 2.

Inspired by the works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, it’s not just another mystery — it’s a reexamination of the Victorian world of Holmes and Watson that explores the added obstacles that these two iconic characters would have faced if they had been women.

In a time and place where gender roles are rigidly defined, Miss Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Dorothy Watson dare to challenge societal norms by providing an unusual, but necessary, service. When an anonymous note sends a newlywed wife looking for help, Miss Holmes and Dr. Watson work together to uncover the secrets surrounding a corrupt police inspector whose wives have a habit of turning up dead.

But this Holmes and Watson face far greater challenges than bringing the cunning criminal to justice. Miss Holmes possesses one of the greatest deductive minds of her generation, but she chafes at the restraints imposed upon her by society and family. Dr. Watson struggles to make a difference at the only hospital in London that will hire female doctors.

The cast of community actors performing in “Miss Holmes” are: Phoebe Sanborn at Miss Sherlock Holmes, Maggie Wachtl as Dr. Dorothy Watson, Erik Hyatt as Edwin Greener/passerby, Joe Blackwell as superintendent/passerby, Bart Shattuck as Mycroft Holmes/vagrant, Jeralyn Shattuck as Dr. Elizabeth Garrett Anderson/Peggy/Martha, Eve Blackwell as Mrs. Hudson, Marie Cormier as Eudora Featherstone, John DeWitt as Inspector Geoffrey Lestrade/Orderly #1, Hannah King as Lizzie Chapman, Tim Croce as Thomas Chapman/Orderly #3, Melvin Morrison as Dr. Michael Stamford/Passerby, and John Buys as Reginald/Orderly #2.

The production team includes: Christopher M. Walsh, writer; Director Debra Susi; Scenic and Lighting Designer Tony Gerow; Sound Designer Ben David Richmond; Costume Designer Candace Chase; and Stage Manager Isaac Tardy.

Tickets cost $21-$24, group discounts are available.

For more information or tickets, call 873-7000, or visit operahouse.org.

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