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Reasons to be Cheerful – Liverpool Everyman

Writer: Paul Sirett Music: Derek Hussey, Chaz Jankel and John Kelly Director: Jenny Sealey Reviewer: Jamie Gaskin Are you sitting comfortably … then forget it. Feeling comfortable is the last thing you’ll find with this show, which is billed as a raucous musical. Raucous does not begin to cover the foul-mouthed, hot-tempered and politically strident show featuring the hits of ...

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Crazy For You – King’s Theatre, Glasgow

Music and Lyrics: George Gershwin & Ira Gershwin Book: Ken Ludwig Director: Paul Hart Reviewer: Lauren Humphreys Based on the 1930 musical Girl Crazy, (where Ethel Merman made her stage debut and turned Ginger Rogers into a star overnight) and utilising the glorious back catalogue of the Gershwin brothers, Crazy For You was reworked in the 1990s by Ken Ludwig ...

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The Threepenny Opera – The Octagon, Bolton

Book and Lyrics: Bertolt Brecht Music: Kurt Weill and Elizabeth Hauptmann Director: David Thacker   Reviewer: Harriet Mallion Adapted from John Gay’s 18th-century ballad opera, The Beggar’s Opera, Bertolt Brecht’s iconic play The Threepenny Opera traditionally offers a socialist critique to a struggling world. The latest production from The Octagon transforms the dominant themes of poverty and corruption into a ...

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Syncing Ink – The Flea Theater, New York, NY

(Syncing Ink) (The Flea Theater) (NYC) (c)Joan Marcus

Writer: NSangou Njikam Director: Niegel Smith Reviewer: Carrie Lee O’Dell In a July episode of NPR’s Code Switch podcast, Hip Hop DJs Stretch Armstrong and Bobbito describe the genre in the mid- to late-1980s as evolving into something “political and wonderfully Black-conscious.” NSangou Njikam’s play Syncing Ink, playing at The Flea’s new space The Sam, taps into that energy of ...

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All or Nothing: The MOD Musical – Aylesbury Waterside Theatre

Book: Carol Harrison Music and Lyrics: The Small Faces Director: Carol Harrison Reviewer: Scott Matthewman Another month, another tour of a jukebox musical that explores the back catalogue of a famous artist or band. In the case of All or Nothing, it is the turn of the Small Faces, following in the footsteps of the Kinks (Sunday Afternoon), the Four Seasons ...

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Godiva Rocks – Belgrade Theatre, Coventry

Writer: Alan Pollock Director: Hamish Glen Reviewer: Selwyn Knight Coventry has a rich pop heritage and Godiva Rocks seeks to mine that looking at two periods in particular – the mid 1960s and early 1980s when Coventry-based performers like Vince Hill, Frank Ifield, Beverley Jones in the 1960s and, later, the whole 2 Tone phenomenon of the 1980s as well ...

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The Addams Family – King’s Theatre, Glasgow

child in skull onesie with noose around neck

Book: Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice Music and Lyrics: Andrew Lippa Director: Matthew White Reviewer: Lauren Humphreys Whatever has happened to The Addams Family? What kind of world do we live in where bitter and twisted Wednesday Addams has fallen in love with a thoroughly ordinary young man? That's the premise of Marshall Brickman, Rick Elice and Andrew Lippa's musical ...

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The Wedding Singer – Grand Theatre, Wolverhampton

Book: Chad Beguelin and Tim Herlihy Music: Matthew Sklar Lyrics: Chad Beguelin Director: Nick Winston Reviewer: Clare White Set in the era of pitchy synth pop, big hair and even bigger shoulder pads, The Wedding Singer is a light-hearted dose of 80s kitsch. This musical adaptation of the 1998 rom-com starring Adam Sandler brings together the sweetness and fun of the ...

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