Monday, April 22

Tag: Hull Truck Theatre

Animal Farm – Hull Truck Theatre
Yorkshire & Humber

Animal Farm – Hull Truck Theatre

When Snowball the angry, militant “pig” crept menacingly towards me, across the stage of Hull Truck Theatre on Thursday night, I began to think my front-row seat wasn’t such a good thing after all. I was at this popular local theatre to watch a powerful re-telling of George Orwell’s classic, Animal Farm - a book I had never read, but, it being a classic, knew the storyline of. Thankfully, Snowball (Samater Ahmed) spared me, directing his anger at the farm’s owner and his master, Mr Jones. The way Jones ran Manor Farm was not to the animals’ liking nor for their benefit, so they overthrow him, take over and create a new set of rules in which “all animals are equal”. However, it soon becomes apparent that the cleverest farm animals are the pigs - Squealer (Killian Macardle), Nap...
A Song For Ella Grey – Hull Truck Theatre
Yorkshire & Humber

A Song For Ella Grey – Hull Truck Theatre

Before sitting down to write my review of A Song For Ella Grey, a production I watched at the Hull Truck Theatre on the afternoon of Wednesday, March 6th, I felt the need to reacquaint myself with the ancient Greek legend of Orpheus and Eurydice, around which this play is centred. Orpheus, though invisible, features hugely in this darkly romantic tale and, never having read David Almond’s book from which this production is adapted, I had to ensure I understood proceedings before engaging my keyboard. As I took my seat on the front row, I was confronted by a stage setting of ceiling-high white voile curtains. Billowing gently, they draped over what appeared to be huge beds, again in white. Despite this abundance of white, Hull Truck itself was very dimly lit throughout, resulting ...
Pinocchio – Hull Truck Theatre
Yorkshire & Humber

Pinocchio – Hull Truck Theatre

Theatregoers braved freezing temperatures on Wednesday evening to see a production of Pinocchio at the Hull Truck Theatre. It never got much warmer inside, to be honest - so was glad I wore socks, scarf, gloves, but I never expected to keep them on once seated. But that’s my only gripe on what was a magical night of colour and energy. Everyone knows the age-old story of how poor, lonely carpenter, Gepetto, carved a puppet out of a piece of pine he found in the forest. In this thoroughly enjoyable adaptation by Mike Kenny, the pine was left behind by Stromboli (Patrick Dineen), ringmaster of a travelling circus, who was transporting his puppets, Colombine (Deb Pugh) and Harlequino (Niall Ransome). As Gepetto (James Clyde) picked up the pine log in the forest, it lit up, havi...
Pop Music – Hull Truck Theatre
Yorkshire & Humber

Pop Music – Hull Truck Theatre

You never know what stage design Hull Truck Theatre will surprise you with for any of its productions. And Tuesday evening was no exception. As we theatregoers took our seats in a very busy Stage 1, the regulars among us would instantly notice the stage was now the centrepiece of a theatre in the round. A very clever move as the production we were there to see, Pop Music, features just two actors, two small tables and chairs, plus loads of booze, meaning there was plenty of room for an all-round view. The alcohol theme carried on up to the ceiling, from which hung dozens of upside-down wine goblets, some disguised as lights. Opaque in colour, they added interest to an otherwise sparse stage setting. But who needed a fancy stage with actors of the calibre of Natalie Anderson (H...
Sully – Hull Truck Theatre
Yorkshire & Humber

Sully – Hull Truck Theatre

Take a bow Chris Bewers and Luke James of The Yorkshire Workshop for creating the most basic stage setting for a production of Sully, which came to the Hull Truck Theatre, on Tuesday evening. Basic, but genius. I loved it. Let me explain… Sully tells the story of Hull’s favourite adopted son, Welshman Clive Sullivan, who played for the city’s two rugby league teams in his amazing career - Hull Kingston Rovers (yay, up the Robins), and Hull FC (whatever). The red and white strip of Hull KR is supported by those Hullites living east of the river Hull; the “other team” wear black and white and enjoy the loyalty of those living to the west of the river. I’m east Hull born and bred; my dad (Arthur Lewis) played for Hull KR, so my loyalty has never been in doubt. Back to the afor...
Modest – Hull Truck Theatre
Yorkshire & Humber

Modest – Hull Truck Theatre

Elizabeth Southerden Thompson was a name unknown to me until I watched Modest, at Hull Truck Theatre, on Thursday evening. The year is 1874, and budding artist Elizabeth (Emer Dineen), dares to not only paint a portrait of fighting Crimean War soldiers (a very unladylike act at the time), but also to enter it into the Royal Academy's public art exhibition at a time when women were neither seen, nor heard. Titled The Roll Call, it is generally assumed the scene represented the aftermath of the Battle of Inkerman; but that fact wasn't the mean reason the members of the Academy were against accepting it. They just couldn't get it into their top-hatted heads that a woman could envisage such a barbaric scene when she should be at home doing needlepoint and sniffing her pomander. The m...
Around The World in 80 Days – Hull Truck Theatre
Yorkshire & Humber

Around The World in 80 Days – Hull Truck Theatre

Note to self: Be sure to wear waterproof mascara when you next review anything at Hull Truck Theatre in case it turns out to be as funny as Around The World In 80 Days was on Tuesday evening. Having never read the Jules Verne novel, first published in French in1872, all I knew was that a hot air balloon was involved in one man’s endeavour to travel around the globe in 80 days. The intrepid adventurer, a Mr Phileas Fogg (Stefan Adegbola) accepted a wager of £20,000 with fellow Reform Club members, that he could undertake such a journey. That sum is half of Fogg’s fortune, but he leads such a monotonous life in London - his daily habits being carried out with mathematical precision - the thought of such a journey excites him. Having fired his valet for some minor misdeed, he emp...
Showstopper! The Improvised Musical – Hull Truck Theatre
Yorkshire & Humber

Showstopper! The Improvised Musical – Hull Truck Theatre

I set off for Hull Truck Theatre, on Friday evening, knowing my worst nightmare - audience participation - is probably about to come true. Showstopper! The Improvised Musical invites audience members to create a musical comedy by shouting out their suggestions - suggestions the cast will endeavour to act out. My seat on the front row meant there was no hiding place. So, I determined not to make eye contact with anyone on the stage; keep my head down, be invisible and leave the suggestion-making to anybody - just not me. Billed as a “must-see”, this improvised comedy came to Hull Truck for one night only, as part of a nationwide tour (visit www.showstopperthemusical.com for future venues). Well, dear reader, my “keeping schtum” resolution lasted approximately 30 seconds - that’...
Mumsy – Hull Truck Theatre
Yorkshire & Humber

Mumsy – Hull Truck Theatre

The end of Hull Truck Theatre’s 50th anniversary year is being celebrated with a comedy drama, set in the city and written by homegrown talent, Lydia Marchant. Mumsy tells the story of an unplanned pregnancy which causes friction between mum-to-be Sophie (Jessica Jolleys), her mum Rachel (Nicola Stephenson) and Rachel’s mum Linda (Sue Kelvin). The well-written script of this world-premiere production was delivered so realistically and naturally by all three on stage on Tuesday night that, at times, you could hear a pin drop in the fullish theatre. Even before “curtain up” I couldn’t take my eyes off the impressive stage setting of a huge tower block, its many windows, open and shut, plus individual window lights flashing on and off - just like a real tower block would be. It’s...
First Look photos: world premiere of ‘Mumsy’, the finale of Hull Truck’s 50th anniversary programme
Interviews

First Look photos: world premiere of ‘Mumsy’, the finale of Hull Truck’s 50th anniversary programme

Hull Truck Theatre are marking the end of their 50th anniversary year programme with Mumsy, a new play written by homegrown talent and Hull Truck Youth Theatre alumni, Lydia Marchant. This brand-new world premiere comedy drama follows the story of three generations of women living under one roof, exploring the highs and lows of motherhood and intergenerational female relationships. Directed by Zoë Waterman, and with a full female creative team at the helm of the production, Mumsy will be on stage at Hull Truck Theatre from 2nd – 25th March 2023. This sparky new comedy has been developed by Lydia Marchant through Hull Truck Theatre’s Grow Artist Development Programme and is her first full-length play to feature in the theatre’s main auditorium: Stage 1. Lydia Marchant was selected fo...