The Red Circle is Sherlock's home in Washington DC. Now in our eighth decade, we continue to celebrate his immortality and enjoy each other's company. All are welcome to join us and share our interest in all things Sherlockian and Doylean.

Next Meeting

Saturday, March 16, 2024
Alfio's La Trattoria

4515 Willard Ave., Bethesda
Drinks at Noon -- Lunch at 1:00

Guest Speaker: Curtis Armstrong
The "B" List


Inner Circle Meeting Notes Wrinting and Videos Quezzes and Puzzles


Curtis Armstrong to examine the Canon's "lesser" villains at March Red Circle luncheon  Every Sherlockian is familiar with The Great Detective's most notorious opponents: Moriary, Moran, Milverton (his collection of "M"s is a fine one!) and the venomous Baron Gruner. But what of the lesser lights? What of all those run-of-the-Canon miscreants? Are they worthy of closer examination? Actor, writer and Sherlockian Curtis Armstrong will join the Red Circle on March 16 to unpack "The B List," taking a detailed and possibly irreverant look at the villains who didn't quite reach the top (or is it the bottom?) of the ignoble heap. Curtis has appeared in numerous stage, television and film productions including Risky Business, Revenge of the Nerds, Supernatural and Ray. He has written extensively on Sherlock Holmes, P.G. Wodehouse and Washington Irving. We look forward to having Curtis with us to give "The B List" its due. The festivities will begin at noon on Saturday, March 16 at Alfio's La Trattoria with drinks at noon followed by lunch at 1:00. The cost will be $55, including tax and tip. Valet parking is free. As usual, payment in advance is neither requested nor required, but reservations are. Secure your place by emailing Peter Blau here, or calling him at 301-229-5669. 2/16/24 AR
Can it possibly be 40 years?  It seems like yesterday that Jeremy Brett burst onto our TV screens as a Sherlock Holmes for the ages. . .a fine actor appearing in scripts that are notoriously faithful to the Canon. May 25 marks the date for a one-day 40th anniversary celebration of Brett's turn in Granada's The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. Dubbed Brettcon, it will happen in Guildford, Surry, and is the brainchild of Gus and Luke Holwerda, proprietors of the 40+ episode podcast called--what else?--Sherlock Podcast. Whether or not you listen to the podcasts, and whether or not you can make it across the pond for the doings in May, you'll want to spend two minutes with the lovely trailer Gus and Luke have put together for the event. Watch it here. 2/27/24 AR

The Thing’s a Play!  What really happened when Holmes returned from The Great Hiatus and greeted Mrs. Hudson at 221B? Sherlockian Ray Betzner has penned a seven minute solution to that question in the form of a suitably irreverant drama, performed at the 2024 William Gillette Luncheon in New York. Carrying on Gillette’s pioneering work as Sherlock Holmes was Curtis Armstrong, himself a celebrated actor (Revenge of the Nerds, Risky Business). Opposite Curtis as Mrs. Hudson was Dr. Ashley Polasek, possibly the only Sherlockian who holds a Ph.D. in Holmes adaptations. Rounding out the cast in the role of the dummy (OK, the bust) was multi-award-winning playwright Ken Ludwig, who proved conclusively that there really are such things as small roles. Thanks to the recording made by the Red Circle’s Matt Hall, and permission to use the “intellectual” property from all involved, you’re invited to enjoy Mrs. Hudson and the Return of Sherlock Holmes here. Have fun! 1/31/24 AR

The Red Circle met on December 16, with Harrison "Terry" Hunt as guest speaker. Carla Coupe's meeting notes are here.
Getting Away with Murder in "The Red Circle"  The amiable Michigan lawyer and avid Sherlockian Rich Krisciunas devotes his December "Sherlockian Law 101" talk to our namesake story, and discusses how the law might treat the devilry described therein. Rich looks at the story through an attorney's eyes for an enjoyable 12 minutes of video. You're invited to view the video here.
Screening a Masterpiece  Whenever we watch William Gillette as Sherlock Holmes in the 1916 film that was lost until it was found in Paris almost a decade ago, we're transfixed by the remarkable screen presence of this pioneering Sherlockian actor. And when we watch it projected perfectly on the big screen at the American Film Institute's Silver Theatre, enriched by a live score played by Donald Sosin and Joanna Seaton, the package could not be more complete or more enjoyable. Great thanks to the AFI's Todd Hitchcock for scheduling the film on November 4 and for inviting your webmaster to introduce it, which I was very happy to do. The AFI is always looking for good Sherlock to showcase, so watch this space for more news! 11/6/23 AR
Sherlock Walk debuts in Toronto  The superb collection of priceless Sherlockian books is reason enough to visit the Toronto Reference Library, but now everyone can "tread in the footsteps" of the Great Detective on the brand new Sherlock Walk next to the stunning building. Our friend Peggy MacFarlane sends along this photo of the new mural that lines the walk, the work of multiple Toronto artists. Kudos to Cliff Goldfarb and Peggy for championing the project! 12/9/2023 AR

The Show Must Go On    A throng of Red Circle stalwarts was on hand at the Arts Barn in Gaithersburg for the September 30 performance of R. Hamilton Wright’s play Sherlock Holmes and the American Problem. Even so, the meeting of the Red Circle, scheduled to coincide with the performance, was cancelled at the last minute. Peter Blau was under the weather (nothing serious) and was unable to attend. Upon learning this, Carla Coupe and your webmaster made a dramatic decision just before the house lights dimmed: we formally cancelled the Red Circle meeting, thereby preserving Peter’s record of never having missed one since he reconstituted our merry band more than a half century ago. Despite our decree, the Kentlands Community Players proceeded with the performance, and all in attendance were very glad they did, agreeing unanimously that both the play and the performance were very enjoyable indeed. After the curtain calls, the evening concluded with a lively talkback among the cast, director Vanessa Markowitz and the enthusiastic audience. 10/2/23 AR

Red Circle Pins Available  The pin has been proudly worn all over the Sherlockian world, from Rockville to the Reichenbach, so Red Circle members (which includes everyone who's ever been to a meeting) will treasure having their own. The price is $14.95 each, which includes shipping anywhere. Send an email to Tom Fahres to order.
Scuttlebutt: One Fixed Point in a Changing Age  Our own Peter E. Blau's monthly Scuttlebutt from the Spermaceti Press has endured for more than 50 years, and has a permanent home right here on our website. It's the most remarkable collection of Sherlockian news and notes anywhere, and your webmaster recommends a monthly visit. The very latest edition is available now, as are past numbers. It's just a click away--use the "Scuttlebutt" button at the top of the page.
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