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Daisy Pulls It Off – Park Theatre, London

Writer: Denise Deegan Director: Paulette Randall Reviewer: Scott Matthewman Denise Deegan’s tribute to 1920s adventures set in the sporty, spotty world of girls’ boarding schools went down a storm in the West End in the 1980s and has been revived regularly ever since. Part of the reason for that is that, at its heart, it’s a blank template. The basic ...

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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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The Good, The Bad and The Ugly Sisters – Belgrade Theatre, Coventry

Writer: Nick Walker Directors: Nick Walker and Emma Rabbits Reviewer: Nicole Craft Four women, I mean guys, about to have a shoot-out at high-noon to find out who gets to open the treasure chest that they found after digging up the Deputy Sheriff's wife's grave, the location of which is revealed by the actual Sheriff's sister who was tracked down in Bedworth ...

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Bang Bang – Bewleys Cafe Theatre @ Powerscourt, Dublin

Writer: Dermot Bolger Director: Mark O’Brien Reviewer: Saoirse Anton From Wyoming to Whitehall, the well known Dublin character Thomas “Bang Bang” Dudley kept the streets of Dublin safe with his “trusty, rusty key,” for decades. Travelling on the trams and buses of the city, Bang Bang would leap out, point his Colt ’45 key at passers-by and shoot them with ...

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Around the World in 80 Days – The Lowry, Salford

Writer: Jules Verne Adaptor: Laura Eason Director: Theresa Heskins Reviewer: Sam Lowe All eight actors play over 125 characters. No easy task. Around the World in 80 Days is a fast-paced production, based on the classic adventure novel by the French writer Jules Verne. This production has a Christmas residency at The Lowry as part of an adventurous sixth month ...

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The Little Matchgirl and Other Happier Tales – Bristol Old Vic

Writer: Joel Horwood Director: Emma Rice Designer: Vicki Mortimer  Composer: Stephen Warbeck Choreographers: Etta Murfitt & Annie-Lunette Deakin-Foster Reviewer: Leah Tozer On a cold Christmas Eve, a little match girl lights her last matches for warmth; imagining a home full of love, she keeps hope and herself alive for a little while longer. There are little match girls – alone, homeless, hopeless – all over ...

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A Christmas Carol – Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford upon Avon

Writer: David Edgar, from the book by Charles Dickens Director: Rachel Kavanaugh Reviewer: James Garrington When Dickens wrote A Christmas Carol in 1843, he lived in a country full of great poverty. The Poor Laws allowed people to be sent to the Workhouse to claim relief, debtors were imprisoned – including, for a period, his own father – and even ...

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A Christmas Carol – Hull Truck Theatre

Writer: Charles Dickens Adaptor: Deborah McAndrew Director: Amy Leach Reviewer: Ron Simpson Yorkshire’s second version of A Christmas Carol to open this Christmas proves, above all, the wonderful dramatic qualities of the original story. The two productions – by Front Room Productions and, now, by Hull Truck Theatre – have very different production concepts, both extremely successful, but despite the ...

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