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Author Archives: The Reviews Hub - Yorkshire & North East

Beauty and the Beast – Tobacco Factory Theatre, Bristol

Writer: Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve Devised by: New International Encounter, Cambridge Junction and Alex Byrne Director: Alex Byrne Reviewer: Claire Hayes  Bristol’s Tobacco Factory has garnered a deserved reputation for the quality of its family Christmas shows and this year’s playfully quirky Beauty and the Beast is no exception. Think Disney unplugged; New International Encounter (NIE) and Cambridge Junction under the direction ...

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Jack and The Beanstalk – Times Square Pantodrome, Newcastle-upon-Tyne

Book, Music and additional Lyrics: Tom Whalley Director: Jamie Owen Gray Reviewer: Anna Ambelez The aptly named Fleshcreep (Stephen Sullivan) opens the show with lots of booing and hissing; a sparkling flask introduces kindly Mother Nature (Karleigh Wright), we are in panto land. Fearless Jack (Adam Thomas), and his feckless brother, Simple Simon (Sam Glen) live in a tiny cottage ...

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Jack and the Beanstalk – Lawrence Batley Theatre, Huddersfield

Writer: Andrew Pollard Director: Joyce Branagh Musical Director: Rebekah Hughes Choreographer: Rachel Gee Designer: Mark Walters Reviewer: Ron Simpson The Lawrence Batley Theatre’s Jack and the Beanstalk is billed as “a traditional family pantomime” which is fair enough. Audiences in the middle-sized theatres in this area – Wakefield, Harrogate, Huddersfield, etc. – know that they are in safe hands come ...

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Mother Goose – Lyceum Theatre, Sheffield

Writer/Director: Paul Hendy Musical Director: Nathan Jarvis Choreographer: Sarah Langley Reviewer: Janet Jepson Everybody kind of dreams of adopting the goose that lays golden eggs and the hapless Mother Goose is no exception. When seven feet of adorable picture-book perfect “Eggle” (don’t ask, just blame Marshall on the front row) comes into her life, she imagines that all her hopes ...

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A (Scarborough) Christmas Carol – Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough

Writer: Charles Dickens Adaptor: Nick Lane Music/Lyrics: Simon Slater Director: Paul Robinson Designer: Helen Coyston Reviewer: Ron Simpson A (Scarborough) Christmas Carol stirs up thoughts about the point when a play turns from being “by Charles Dickens adapted by Nick Lane” into “a new play by Nick Lane based on the story by Charles Dickens”. Despite amending the title Nick ...

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Festive Box of Delights – Leeds Town Hall

Choir: Leeds Festival Chorus Orchestra: Orchestra of Opera North Soloists: Lorna James (soprano), Victoria Sharp (mezzo-soprano), Stuart Laing (tenor) Reviewer: Ron Simpson The ever-busy Orchestra of Opera North has any number of festive concerts on its schedule – The Snowman, three Vienna-style New Year concerts and the always popular Dewsbury Christmas celebration – but this time the hosts were Leeds ...

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Beauty and the Beast – Harrogate Theatre

Writers: Phil Lowe and David Bown Music: Nick Lacey Director: Phil Lowe Choreographer: Sophie Zealand Reviewer: Sophie Dodworth Upon entering Harrogate Theatre, elegant Christmas decorations have been hung, and harmonic sounds from the Harrogate Theatre Choir fill the air. The grand decoration of the venue, following its 2011 refurbishment, contributes to the flamboyant energy emitted by this quintessential family pantomime, ...

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The Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe – West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds

Writer: C.S. Lewis Director: Sally Cookson Puppetry Director: Craig Leo Designer: Rae Smith Composer/MD: Benji Bower Reviewer: Holly Spanner The creative team at the West Yorkshire Playhouse are known for their spectacular Christmas productions (who can forget Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, a production so successful it went on to tour the UK), and Sally Cookson’s adaptation of The Lion, the ...

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