Tuesday, May 28

REVIEWS

Rose – Hope Mill Theatre
North West

Rose – Hope Mill Theatre

Rose is sitting shiva, participating in the Jewish tradition of mourning someone who has died and sharing stories about their life. And this particular death turns out to be tangled up with her story in a way that is really quite unexpected. As she sits, she shares snapshots from her own life that sometimes seem a little disconnected, as she wanders through the images in her memory, trying to separate the things that actually happened to her from the movies she has seen over the years and the stories she has been told; recognising that there are some things that she just doesn’t want to remember. Rose begins by talking about growing up in a Jewish village in Ukraine, her relationship with her parents and siblings, and the civil war and its consequences. She talks about following her br...
My Beautiful Laundrette – Curve Theatre Leicester
East Midlands

My Beautiful Laundrette – Curve Theatre Leicester

Britain in the 1980’s – a time of division and change and this is the setting for an adaptation and stage revival of Hanif Kureishi’s screenplay from that era. First off, I must say that it hasn’t worn that well and suffers from some shameless stereotypical characterisations that modern audiences would find hard to accept. Having said that, the company under the direction of Nikolai Foster provide a lively and thoughtful rendition of Kureishi’s script and most of the acting is fine throughout. This is a recording of a dress rehearsal for the actual stage show from 2019 and it does show somewhat – the sound quality is poor and the staging does seem a little slapdash, which is a shame because I’m sure the actual performance would’ve been so much better (there is a fuller review in our...
Birmingham Hippodrome
West Midlands

Birmingham Hippodrome

The Birmingham Hippodrome is a theatre situated on Hurst Street in the Chinese Quarter of Birmingham, England. Although best known as the home stage of the Birmingham Royal Ballet, it also hosts a wide variety of other performances including visiting opera and ballet companies, touring West End shows, pantomime and drama. The Hippodrome is the venue for West End touring theatrical shows, such as Wicked, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, The Lion King, Matilda, Mary Poppins, Annie, Grease and We Will Rock You. The theatre's Christmas pantomimes are produced by Qdos Entertainment, over recent years attracting stars such as Brian Conley, Don Maclean, Julian Clary, Joe Pasquale, John Barrowman, Joan Collins, Nigel Havers, Keith Harris, Lynda Bellingham, Lesley Joseph, Gary Wilmot, Paul Zerdin...
Buxton Opera House
North West

Buxton Opera House

Buxton Opera House is in The Square, Buxton, Derbyshire, England. It is a 902-seat opera house that hosts the annual Buxton Festival and, from 1994 to 2013, the International Gilbert and Sullivan Festival, among others, as well as pantomime at Christmas, musicals and other entertainments year-round. Hosting live performances until 1927, the theatre then was used mostly as a cinema until 1976. In 1979, it was refurbished and reopened as a venue for live performance. History It was built in 1903 and designed by Frank Matcham, one of Britain's finest theatre architects. He also designed a number of famous London theatres, including the London Palladium (1910) and the London Coliseum (1904). The Opera House ran as a successful theatre, receiving touring companies until 1927, when...
Grand Theatre, Blackpool
North West

Grand Theatre, Blackpool

The Blackpool Grand was designed by Victorian theatre architect Frank Matcham and was opened in 1894 after a construction period of seven months, at a cost of £20,000 between December 1893 and July 1894. The project was conceived and financed by local theatre manager Thomas Sergenson who had been using the site of the Grand for several years to stage a circus. He had also transformed the fortunes of other local theatres. Matcham's brief was to build Sergenson the "prettiest theatre in the land". The Grand was Matcham's first theatre to use an innovative 'cantilever' design to support the tiers, thereby reducing the need for the usual pillars and so allowing clear views of the stage from all parts of the auditorium. Sergenson's successful directorship of the ...
Empire Theatre, Liverpool
North West

Empire Theatre, Liverpool

Liverpool Empire Theatre is a theatre located on the corner of Lime Street and London Road in Liverpool, Merseyside, England, United Kingdom. The playhouse, which opened in 1925, is the second one to be built on the site. It has the largest two-tier auditorium in Britain and can seat 2,348 people. During its time it has hosted many types of entertainment, including variety shows, musicals, operas, pop concerts, and plays. The Beatles appeared in the theatre in their early days. The theatre has hosted two Royal Command Performances and in 2007, a Royal Variety Performance to mark Liverpool's being designated a European City of Culture the following year. It is sited in the William Brown Street Conservation Area. History The site's first theatre, which was at that time was Liverpo...
Opera House, Manchester
North West

Opera House, Manchester

The theatre opened as the New Theatre in 1912, renamed the New Queen’s Theatre in 1915 and as the Opera House in 1920 when it came under the wing of John Hart and his associates of United Theatres Ltd. In 1931 it was bought by, and prospered under, Howard & Wyndham Ltd which had been formed at the Theatre Royal, Glasgow in 1895 by Michael Simons. The group`s managing director A Stewart Cruikshank, headquartered at the group's headquarters in the King's Theatre, Edinburgh was joined on the board by Charles B Cochrane who now became a visiting producer at the Opera House, premiering numerous musicals and revues. The theatre staged the full range of plays, musicals, opera, and pantomime. It closed in 1979 and for five years was a bingo hall. The Palace Trust acquired it in 1984 and re...
Palace Theatre, Manchester
North West

Palace Theatre, Manchester

The Palace Theatre, Manchester, is one of the main theatres in Manchester, England. It is situated on Oxford Street, on the north-east corner of the intersection with Whitworth Street. The Palace and its sister theatre the Opera House on Quay Street are operated by the same parent company, Ambassador Theatre Group. The original capacity of 3,675 has been reduced to its current 1,955. History The theatre, originally known as the Grand Old Lady of Oxford Street, opened on 18th May 1891, having been designed by the architect Alfred Darbyshire at a cost of £40,500. The Palace Theatre was redecorated and altered in 1896 to the designs of the renowned Theatre Architect Frank Matcham, and he again worked on some improvements to the Theatre in 1899 when he was commissioned to put in a pass ...
Fresh Blood – Arrival Festival 2020
REVIEWS

Fresh Blood – Arrival Festival 2020

Fresh Blood from Popbox is a reinterpretation of Bram Stoker’s classic gothic novel, Dracula, set in the modern world of social media, online influencers and live streamed workouts and video games. Created and performed by Josh Cannon, Tom Morris and Georgie Sykes, this surreal piece of theatre allows you to jump between three channels, each one focussing on one of the cast, creating a unique jigsaw of this much loved vampiric story. All three channels are very different, with Georgie’s consisting of dramatic readings of sections of the original novel, Josh’s focussing on the characters’ social media presence and Tom’s being an original peek into everyday life. The three cast members play various roles across the three channels bringing to life both modern versions of the original char...
Three Kings – Old Vic In Camera
London

Three Kings – Old Vic In Camera

The Old Vic celebrated 200 years of theatre in 2018 and even though its doors are closed to live performance, they have taken their expertise in producing high quality theatrical productions and transported this grandfather of London theatre into the digital age. In a striped back production due to many of the staff being furloughed, the Old Vic have taken on their second live screening, following on from the success of ‘Lungs’.  Written by Stephen Beresford, who began his career as an actor and then found quick success as a writer penning such films as ‘Pride’ and ‘Tolkien’ and for the stage, ‘The Last Of The Haussmans’.  ‘Three Kings’ was written for Andrew Scott who performs this dialogue alone on the stage at the Old Vic, and if you have been fortunate enough to have seen...