Saturday, September 18

Tag: Leeds Playhouse

Dangerous Liaisons – Leeds Playhouse
Yorkshire & Humber

Dangerous Liaisons – Leeds Playhouse

Sexual power, cruelty and deceit. There surely can’t be a better mix for a ballet, and Northern Ballet’s artistic director David Nixon’s dynamic choreography makes the most of the antics of two French aristocratic sociopaths playing games with people’s minds and bodies because they can. This is Pierre Choderlos de Laclos’ timeless tale of upper class amorality as the cunning Marquise de Mertueil sets her sparring partner Vicomte de Valmont the task to seduce the godly Madame de Tiourvel just for sport. But Valmont’s head is turned by de Tourvel with deadly results. Unlike some of their sumptuous productions Northern have gone for a stark stage with minimal period furniture that allows the eye to focus on Nixon’s sensitive and emotional choreography which manfully resists going ov...
Leeds Playhouse’s Alexander Ferris talks about telling refugee stories in Freedom Project
Interviews

Leeds Playhouse’s Alexander Ferris talks about telling refugee stories in Freedom Project

The desperate scenes at Kabul Airport, or people paddling in inflatables across the English Channel, act as a stark reminder we live in a very unstable world and Leeds Playhouse’s Freedom Project aims to highlight the experiences of unaccompanied minors coming to this country. Leeds has a proud history of welcoming people fleeing oppression, and the Playhouse was the UK’s first Theatre of Sanctuary. The programme offers a range of creative spaces for refugees and people seeking asylum to express themselves and create networks of support as they find their feet in a new country. There are now at least 20 similar projects across the country, and this challenging production is performed by Theatre of Sanctuary alumni Hossein Ahmadi and Mohammadreza Bazarbashi, who themselves came here ...
Piaf – Leeds Playhouse
Yorkshire & Humber

Piaf – Leeds Playhouse

Imagine if instead of Beyonce the world’s biggest female star was a foul-mouthed Parisian street urchin who was blessed with a golden voice that lifted her out of the slums to global fame. That’s the story of Edith Piaf – aka The Little Sparrow – and this raucous revival of Pam Gems’ musical biography pulls no punches telling the tale of a damaged woman who flew high before crashing back to earth as like Lady Day she was totally unequipped for the price of fame. If anything, Gems tries too hard to pack in too much of Piaf’s rich life, overegging her rough beginnings, and the second half feels a touch padded. This is not an evening for the faint hearted as the C bomb is dropped a couple of times, among an impressive array of expletives, drawing gasps from some of the more genteel ...
An onstage garden paradise is promised at Leeds Playhouse
Interviews

An onstage garden paradise is promised at Leeds Playhouse

During the pandemic precious time spent in the great outdoors has kept many people safe as they strolled round parks or tended their allotments and gardens. In response a team of older performers have decided to create a new botanical paradise on the vast Quarry space at Leeds Playhouse where they will share their personal stories, visions and dreams of times past, present and future creating a garden out of nothing The Promise of a Garden is a show that will blend performance, dance, music, film and photography to create blossoming moments of joy and reflection. Our Yorkshire Editor Paul Clarke asked Alan Lyddiard who is directing The Promise of a Garden to find out what audiences might expect The Promise of a Garden is billed as an unusual hybrid production so what audiences...
Leeds Playhouse announce Autumn/Winter season
NEWS

Leeds Playhouse announce Autumn/Winter season

Leeds Playhouse have announced their Autumn-Winter season including Wendy & Peter Pan as their blockbuster festive show. Families will be taken on an unforgettable trip to Neverland from 18th November to 22nd January as the cast fly around Ella Hickon’s adaptation of the J M Barrie classic retelling the story from the unique viewpoint of Wendy Darling. This year’s Leeds West Indian Carnival has been cancelled because of the pandemic, but the King & Queen event is still taking place on 27th August, and for the first time the Prince & Princess is staged a week before. Both shows will be a celebration of emancipation set to sweet sounds of the socabeats and steelpans as the carnival chronicles its 54-year history. Freedom Project from 10th – 18th September melds lived ex...
A Little Night Music – Leeds Playhouse
Yorkshire & Humber

A Little Night Music – Leeds Playhouse

A hot July evening in West Yorkshire proved to be the perfect backdrop for a musical set at the Scandinavian midsummer, as the theatregoers of Leeds joyfully returned to a stunning adaptation of Stephen Sondheim's puckish, satirical operetta from Leeds Playhouse and Opera North. Written in 1973, during a golden period of his gilded career, 'A Little Night Music' shows Sondheim at the peak of his powers, utilising his tongue twisting lyricism and complex musicality to stunning effect, against the backdrop of a country weekend in 'fin de siecle' Sweden. Sondheim always chooses arcane subject matter around which to base his work, everything from a Seurat painting (Sunday in the Park with George) to homicidal pie making (Sweeney Todd), have been used by him as source material and 'Night Mu...
Leeds Playhouse’s James Brining talks about staging A Little Night Music with Opera North
Interviews

Leeds Playhouse’s James Brining talks about staging A Little Night Music with Opera North

Most people have heard the haunting Send In The Clowns but how many could say which musical it is from? Well, it’s just one of a bunch of brilliant tunes penned by Oscar and multiple Tony winner Stephen Sondheim for A Little Night Music that traces the complicated and interlocking relationships of several Swedish couples at the dawn of the twentieth century. Inspired by Bergman’s film Smiles of a Summer Night, Sondheim’s challenging score and an intelligent book by Hugh Wheeler offers genuine insights into the high and lows of human relationships. Leeds Playhouse’s Artistic Director James Brining was gearing up to direct A Little Night Music as his latest coalition with Opera North, but then the pandemic struck. Now the company including the legendary Dame Josephine Barstow ar...
The Damned United – Leeds Playhouse
Yorkshire & Humber

The Damned United – Leeds Playhouse

The last time I saw this Leeds United were in the midst of one of their regular comedic play offs collapse, but now they are riding high in the Premier League this punchy tale of hubris at Elland Road has extra resonance. It’s nominally the tale of Brian Howard Clough’s disastrous 44 day reign at Yorkshire’s biggest club after taking unfancied Derby County to the First Division title, but it is a story about obsession and  madness that will reach non football fans too. The Damned United is based on David Peace’s semi-fictional novel tracing Clough’s descent into a personal hell. Anders Lustgarten’s tight adaptation captures all the psychological demons swirling round Ol’ Big Head’s fractured psyche as he takes on a team of seasoned pros loyal who he hates as ‘cheats’, but they ...
Casting announced for Dracula: The Untold Story
NEWS

Casting announced for Dracula: The Untold Story

Leeds Playhouse and imitating the dog have announced the casting for their premiere of Dracula: The Untold Story. It’s a typically radical new adaptation of Bram Stoker’s classic gothic horror novel told from the perspective of Mina Harker, the novel’s heroine. Leona Allen will play Mina Harker joined by Matt Prendergast and Adela Rajnović who play all the other roles. Just before midnight on New Year's Eve in 1965, as revellers in London celebrate the beginning of another year, a young woman enters Marylebone Police Station and confesses to a brutal murder. She claims to be Mina Harker, the last living survivor of the intrepid group that brought about Count Dracula’s destruction some 70 years before. But Mina Harker has not been seen since 1901. And if she were alive, she wou...
The Not So Ugly Sisters – Leeds Playhouse
Yorkshire & Humber

The Not So Ugly Sisters – Leeds Playhouse

The producers of Wicked have made a fortune retelling a classic story and now Wrongsemble are subverting a much loved children’s tale for younger theatre goers. They have great fun through song, dance, some corny gags and lots of physical comedy challenging what we think we know about Cinderella’s so called ugly sisters. Dolly and Barb are rattling round their hairdressing salon watching their baby sister getting married to Prince Smarming, and they’ve not been invited due to endless tabloid battering portraying them as the panto villains of this royal love story. Sound familiar? The demonising has left them with a phone that only rings for blow dry cancellations, so they take the time to tell their version of the classic story. The energy and inventiveness of this pacey two hand...