Sunday, April 18

Interviews

Spotlight on David Shopland and Shereen Roushbaiani, Co-writers of Saving Britney and Saving Britney: Prologue
Interviews

Spotlight on David Shopland and Shereen Roushbaiani, Co-writers of Saving Britney and Saving Britney: Prologue

A few months ago, Britney Spears superfan Jean was ready to tell the world her story Saving Britney, live from The Old Red Lion Theatre in the heart of Islington... until the government placed the country in lockdown.  Jean has agreed to host a very special and exclusive Facebook Live session only available digitally via The Old Red Lion Theatre website. Join her as she attempts to make sense of the pop princess in the age of conservatorship, cyberbullying and the #MeToo movement in the pre-show Saving Britney: Prologue in advance of the live show co-devised by David Shopland and Shereen Roushbaiani.  We caught up with David and Shereen to shed some further light on this exciting new play. Please follow the link for Saving Britney: Prologue tickets https://www.oldredliontheat...
Spotlight on Kristin Milward
Interviews

Spotlight on Kristin Milward

In August 2020, playwright Andrei Kureichik witnessed the harrowing scenes of violence that unfolded following the protests against the rigged election results that enabled Alexander Lukashenko to be re-elected.  Kureichik (who is a member of the Co-ordination Council of Belarus) decided to document events very much as things happened; in his play, that can be live streamed at home on Saturday 27th March at 7pm.  This event is part of a series of monthly readings at The Cockpit giving voice to dissident writers past and present.  To book tickets for ‘Insulted’ go to https://www.thecockpit.org.uk/show/dissident_voices.  We talked to Kristin Milward who is co-directing and performing in the play, to learn more about it. Kristin, what inspired you to get involved with ...
Spotlight on Lucie Jones – Treason The Musical
Interviews

Spotlight on Lucie Jones – Treason The Musical

We were delighted to catch up with Lucie Jones ahead of the online filmed concert of ‘Treason The Musical’ which runs from 12th March to 14th March 2021.  Follow the link to buy tickets https://treasonthemusical.com/ The gunpowder plot and its celebratory derivative Bonfire Night is so popular in Britain.  Can you tell us about your character Martha Percy and how she fits into the overall gunpowder plot? Martha is the wife of Thomas, one of the plotters.  She is a simple woman who wants nothing more than to live a humble Catholic life with her husband and children.  Martha doesn’t recognise Thomas when he returns from a trip to London (when the plot was hatched) and we see her battle with her emotions about this and her husband’s new ‘gang’, led by Catesby. ‘T...
Spotlight on Ricky Allan, Composer and Co-writer of Treason The Musical
Interviews

Spotlight on Ricky Allan, Composer and Co-writer of Treason The Musical

Remember, remember the 5th of November, for its gunpowder, treason, and plot We're here to tell you the rest of the tale, the one that history books forgot Guy Fawkes remains an anonymous figure, we have more to bring to the table It's time to meet the rest of the plotters, in our fiery musical fable We caught up with Ricky Allan to find out more about his new musical ‘Treason The Musical’.  Filmed at Cadogan Hall, this concert version is available to watch from 12th March to 14th March 2021.  To buy tickets go to https://treasonthemusical.com/ What inspired you to write/compose ‘Treason The Musical’? I have always been fascinated by the story and felt it had a natural theatrical flair to it which deserved to be explored. Whilst working on the Stran...
Daniel Bye takes to the road with a new play about running and freedom
Interviews

Daniel Bye takes to the road with a new play about running and freedom

Daniel Bye made his name with a series of challenging interactive works he wrote and appeared in, but now he’s teamed up with musician Boff Whalley to create These Hill Are Ours that’s nominally about their shared love of running. Daniel and the former Chumbawamba songwriter are also using songs and words to explore who should own the land they run on, and thanks to the virus they’ve been waiting for a year to perform it in front an audience. The idea began life when they were working together on projects around the country. “We go for a run from wherever we were out of the town, or city, towards the peak overlooking the place and that kind of grew into a project,” recalls Daniel about a work that developed as they put the hard miles in over the last three years.  “But as we re...
My Voice Was Heard But It Was Ignored
Interviews

My Voice Was Heard But It Was Ignored

Nana-Kofi Kufuor discusses his debut play My Voice Was Heard But It Was Ignored Fair play to Nana-Kofi Kufuor who has decided to take on an interrogation of black identify in modern Britain for his debut play. My Voice Was Heard But It Was Ignored began life during a year-long writing commission for Manchester based Box of Tricks. Misha Duncan-Barry is teacher Gillian who finds herself in a tricky situation with student Reece played by Jelani D’Augilar. “It sounds a bit heavy, but to me the themes are race, gender, black masculinity black femininity, toxic masculinity” says Nana-Kofi.  “It’s a two hander about a teacher and student, both black, and she sees the student stopped and searched outside of work. “He calls for her to help, and she doesn’t, so the next day with a...
Dreamgirls and Hairspray star Marisha Wallace releases her debut album
Interviews

Dreamgirls and Hairspray star Marisha Wallace releases her debut album

One of the staples of musical theatre is the rags to riches story and Marisha Wallace is living proof of that making her way from a rural farm in North Carolina to starring in the West End. Then when she was recovering from COVID-19 her home recorded version of Tomorrow went viral and Decca Records signed her to make an album.  But her first really big break came in this country after she’d just finished Something Rotten on Broadway when she was asked to understudy Effie White in the West End version of Dreamgirls. “I had five days to rehearse and go on for the role because Amber Riley had gotten pneumonia,” recalls Marisha.  “You know, usually when Effie comes out everyone goes ‘Yeah’ and my first night they go ‘oh’ as they didn’t know who I was.  I'm telling you eve...
Imitating the dog are the first company to get back on the road
Interviews, NEWS

Imitating the dog are the first company to get back on the road

If you had to put your money on any company having the balls to get back on the road in the midst of a pandemic a strong favourite would be imitating the dog. Over the last 20 years they have never been afraid of a challenge and they have been busy devising a new outdoor show Dr Blood’s Old Travelling Show that kicks off a national tour at Leeds Playhouse. Co-Artistic Director Pete Brooks is hard at work with the cast at the Playhouse but says that a company famed for their innovative use of technology are taking inspiration from an ancient theatrical tradition for their latest adventure. “It’s not set in mediaeval times, but it’s a sort of mediaeval morality tale when groups of traveling players told stories,” says Pete in a break from final rehearsals. “The idea is that there i...
Derby Theatre is back with a show all about community
Interviews

Derby Theatre is back with a show all about community

Like many spaces Derby Theatre is dipping its toe back into live shows with a socially distanced performance bringing together voices in the local community and professional performers. Their Artistic Director and CEO Sarah Brigham says they could have just thrown on a murder mystery one hander for their return, but instead they have gone for something deeper to reopen their stage with a community devised event billed as Derby Rises on Sunday 27th September. “When we were thinking about reopening the theatre we were all expecting this big grand opening, standing ovations, massive shows and it’s become clear that’s not going to happen,” observes Sarah in the midst of pulling the show together and deep cleaning the venue. “We felt the most important thing was that the first thing o...
Josephs Assemble……for a special online production of a timeless classic!
Interviews

Josephs Assemble……for a special online production of a timeless classic!

In the same way the Avengers assemble to fight baddies a crack squad of Josephs have come together to perform an online megamix version of that classic musical for showbiz charity Acting For Others. As well as Darren Day, Jess Conrad and Jaymi Hensley, who have all played the man with the multi coloured coat over the last 52 years, the Josephs are joined by a team of 30 former ensemble performers. The original idea of this charity event came from Jordan Doolan who runs a Facebook fan site. His suggestion caught the attention of West End performer and producer Adam Lacey who decided he wanted to help turn the idea from a concept into a production. “Jordan had this idea that everyone is in lockdown and the London production we saw with Sheridan Smith, Jac Yarrow and Jason Donovan w...