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Alice in Wonderland – Grosvenor Park Open Air Theatre, Chester

Open Air Theatre - with Wonderland lettering adorning the space

Writer: Lewis Carroll Adaptor: Glyn Maxwell Director: Derek Bond Reviewer: John Roberts Family shows at the Grosvenor Park Open Air Theatre have always had a strong stamp of originality and following the success of last year’s production of Stig of the Dump, the same creative team Glyn Maxwell (adaptor) and director Derek Bond have once again brought magic to city ...

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Double Bill: Contractions and North of Providence – 53Two, Manchester

Writer: Mike Bartlett and Edward Allan Baker Director: Sam Redway and Daniel Bradford Reviewer: Jo Beggs As part of the Greater Manchester Fringe, Play With Fire Productions present two short plays in the cosy 53Two Pod, tucked away – like all good fringe spaces should be – under a railway arch. It’s a great space that feels like a place ...

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The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time – Liverpool Empire

Writer: Mark Haddon Adaptor: Simon Stephens Director: Marianne Elliot Reviewer: John Roberts  Having just finished its run in the West End, Marianne Elliot’s highly acclaimed production of Mark Haddon’s best-selling book continues on its second UK Tour, as it stops over for a week long run in Liverpool, the production shows no sign of losing any of its originality and ...

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The Railway Children: The Lowry, Salford

four children stare at a boy lying in a railway tunnell

Writer: E Nesbitt Adaptor: Dave Simpson Director: Paul Jepson Reviewer: Dave Cunningham Trains, as you would expect, are a central feature of The Railway Children. It seems appropriate; therefore, that tonight there are technical glitches and the show starts late. When their father disappears under mysterious circumstances Roberta (Millie Turner), Phyllis   (Katherine Carlton) and Peter (Vinay Lad) are reduced to ...

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The Mikado – The Lowry, Salford

Three Men Laughing

Music: Arthur Sullivan Lyrics: W S Gilbert Director: Sasha Regan   Reviewer: Jo Beggs From the moment the piano strikes up for the brief overture and the curtain opens to reveal three white canvas tents, it’s clear that this is not your traditional Mikado. Creating a whole new setting for this popular, but rather dated Gilbert and Sullivan operetta not ...

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Sister Act the Musical – Palace Theatre, Manchester

Music: Alan Menken Lyrics: Glenn Slater Book: Bill and Cheri Steinkellner Director: Craig Revel Horwood Reviewer: Tate James Beneath the arches of Matthew Wright’s simplistic gothic church set, Alexandra Burke leads a company of actor-musicians in Craig Revel Horwood’s touring production of Sister Act The Musical. It's an iconic movie brought to the stage with an original score by Alan ...

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MIF 2017 : 10000 Gestures – Mayfield, Manchester

Choreographer: Boris Charmatz Reviewer: Jo Beggs French Choreographer Boris Charmatz creates highly ambitious and experimental dance performances across the world – from Sadler’s Wells to the New York’s Museum of Modern Art. Breaking out of traditional theatre spaces, he makes work that breaks all the rules. For 10000 Gestures his first work for Manchester, Charmatz set out to make a ...

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MIF 2017: Cotton Panic! – Upper Campfield Market Hall, Manchester

Music: Jane Horrocks, Nick Vivian and Wrangler Writer: Nick Vivian Director: Wils Wilson Reviewer: Lizz Clark A show with 'cotton' in the title is clearly rooted in the history of Manchester and Lancashire's mill-towns. The panic referred to is the Cotton Famine of the 1860s, when the American Civil War halted supply, devastating whole communities. Huddled in the post-industrial shell ...

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