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The (curious case of the) Watson Intelligence - Full Length Play, Drama

The (curious case of the) Watson Intelligence

Madeleine George

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Full Length Play, Drama

2m, 1f

ISBN: 9780573703010

Please Note: The ePlay currently for sale cannot be used for productions. Please purchase the Acting Edition for performance. 

More Information Below:

Description | Characters | Media | Author | Now Playing | Reviews
: Acting Edition
: Large Print
: Stage Manager

Minimum Fee: $75 per performance


Full Length Play



120 minutes (2 hours)

Time Period - Contemporary, Present Day, New Millennium/21st Century, 19th Century

Settings Of Play - A wood-paneled sitting room with a desk, chair, coffee table, credenza, and fireplace, never lit.


Unit Set/Multiple Settings

Contemporary Costumes / Street Clothes, Period Costumes


Mild Adult Themes


Adult, Teen (Age 14 - 18)


College Theatre / Student, Community Theatre, Dinner Theatre, Professional Theatre, Large Stage, Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups


Pulitzer, From Off-Broadway

Finalist! 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Drama 
Winner! 2014 John Gassner Award 
The 2014 Kilroys List

Please Note: The ePlay currently for sale cannot be used for productions. Please purchase the Acting Edition for performance. 

Watson: trusty sidekick to Sherlock Holmes; loyal engineer who built Bell’s first telephone; unstoppable super-computer that became reigning Jeopardy! champ; amiable techno-dweeb who, in the present day, is just looking for love.

These four constant companions become one in this brilliantly witty, time-jumping, loving tribute (and cautionary tale) dedicated to the people—and machines—upon which we all depend.


"MARVELOUS AND FILLED WITH MARVELS. In the Stoppardian world of The Watson Intelligence, Madeleine George's human, dramatic play takes surprising turns." - New York Magazine, Read More

"[Madeleine George] juggles several deep themes with grace, wit and intellectual verve" - Time Out New York, Read More 

"Thoughtful and ambitious" - Entertainment Weekly


Playwrights' Perspective: Madeleine George onTHE (CURIOUS CASE OF) THE WATSON INTELLIGENCE
by Madeleine George
April 15, 2015

The (curious case of the) Watson Intelligence premiered in New York City at Playwrights Horizons in December of 2013, under the direction of Leigh Silverman. 



2m, 1f

WATSON - 20s to 60s
ELIZA - 30s 

On February 16, 2011, IBM’s natural-language-processing supercomputer, Watson (designed by a team of over twenty programmers and named after Thomas J. Watson, founder of IBM), beat the two winningest champions in Jeopardy! history, Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter, on the third night of a televised Jeopardy! tournament.

On March 10, 1876, Alexander Graham Bell placed the first telephone call to his assistant, Thomas A. Watson, in a nearby room over roughly twenty feet of cable. The famous words of this first communication by wire (“Mr. Watson – come here – I want to see you!”) were remembered by Watson himself in an interview some 50 years later as “Mr. Watson – come here – I want you.”

Sherlock Holmes is a fictional detective who solved mysteries using his signature form of rational deductive analysis and the help of his friend and chronicler Dr. John H. Watson in London from 1887 to 1914. He was killed twice by his creator, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, once in 1891, by a fatal fall off a cliff into Reichenbach Falls, and again in 1930, by the death of the creator himself.
  • George on The (...) Watson Intelligence pt. 2

  • The (...) Watson Intelligence - Playwrights Horizons

  • Teaser Trailer

Madeleine George

Madeleine George

Madeleine George's plays The (curious case of the) Watson Intelligence (Pulitzer Prize finalist), Seven Homeless Mammoths Wander New England (Susan Smith Blackburn finalist), Precious Little, and The Zero Hour (Jane Chambers Award, Lambda Literary Award finalist), have been produced by Playwrights Horizons, 13P, Clubbed Thumb, Shotgun Players in Berkeley, City Theatre in Pittsburgh, Theater Wit in ... view full profile

Now Playing
Kenneth Laboy Vazquez 12/6/2015 8:53 PM
An ambitious play by Madeleine George which focuses on three people Eliza, Merrick and Watson in three very different circumstances.

The play uses time and character to parallel the three strands that comprise her plot: the present, 19th century America and the fictional England of Sherlock Holmes. As the plot progresses we see these three individuals struggle with the idea of meaningful interpersonal connections. A theme explored next to that of technology and its effect on human relationships.

The trap in this play lies within character. Since reading, for example, Eliza’s British character as a separate individual from her contemporary equivalent makes both seem undeveloped. Seeing them as the same individual unites these three thematic strands of plot, leaving space for character growth.
Doug Schutte 9/22/2015 8:08 PM
Along with Hunter's "A Bright New Boise" and Gionfriddo's "Rapture Blister Burn," George's "Watson Intelligence" is one of the finest works of the last 5 years.  The depth, the rhythm, the fun...it's a beautiful play.  

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