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Jason Manford: A Different Stage – The Lowry, Salford

Reviewer: Mel Duncan ’You’ll be out of here by 10 o’clock, eh – always good to know’ As a stand-up comedian, Jason Manford is no stranger to the Lowry. In fact, its home turf, and is always packed to the rafters with assorted friends, family and local supporters whenever the tour arrives. Given the venue’s very special place in Manford’s ...

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Simon Amstell:  What is this? – The Lowry, Salford

Reviewer: Paul McGuire Simon Amstell is a creative polymath, perhaps best known as a presenter of Popworld and Never Mind the Buzzcocks. He is also a prolific writer, actor, author, director, producer and as is seen in tonight’s incarnation, a stand-up comedian In the past, his comedy has successfully drawn parallels with Woody Allen, angst-ridden and therapy obsessed and also ...

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Welsh National Opera: Die Fledermaus – Liverpool Empire

Composer: Johann Strauss II Director: John Copley Conductor:  James Southall Revival Director: Sarah Crisp Reviewer: Daryl Holden “This evening, we will have a boring domestic comedy”. With this particular joke arising midway through the second act of Welsh National Opera’s Die Fledermaus, you would be forgiven for thinking that they are indeed talking about their own show. For the most ...

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Uncle Vanya – HOME, Manchester

Writer: Anton Chekhov Adapter: Andrew Upton Director: Walter Meierjohann Reviewer: Matthew Forrest Chekhov classic Uncle Vanya seems to be going through a bit of a renaissance at the moment, with the play being performed in various nation-wide productions. As part of HOME’s season marking the 100-year anniversary of the Russian Revolution, Andrew Upton’s adaptation of the play is certainly one ...

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Declining Solo – The Lowry, Salford.

Music: Tim Blazdell. Writers/Directors: Two Destination Language. Reviewer: Sam Lowe "Belonging neither here nor there", as the audience are told in the performance, Declining Solo is a show which fluctuates between the multiple layers of what makes up identity. It explores the father and daughter relationship, a woman's relationship to her culture, her home, how the past affects the present, ...

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The Snowman, Opera House, Manchester

Music: Howard Blake Director: Bill Alexander Reviewer: Andrea Allen Adults escorting little ones to the Opera House hoping for the magic of Raymond Briggs’ book and the festive charm of Dianne Jackson’s 1982 film adaptation may, unfortunately, be disappointed by Birmingham Repertory Theatre’s production of The Snowman. In Director Bill Alexander’s lengthy, bloated production, there’s a strong chance you’ll spend ...

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Things I Know to be True – Storyhouse, Chester

Writer: Andrew Bovell Directors: Geordie Brookman and Scott Graham Reviewer: Emma Boswell Andrew Bovell’s Things I Know to Be True is brought to life by Frantic Assembly and State Theatre Company of South Australia in Chester’s Storyhouse for a five-day run this week. The play tells the tale of Bob and Fran Price, a couple who have reached the autumn ...

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Spamalot – Palace Theatre, Manchester

Book/Lyrics: Eric Idle Music: John Du Prez & Eric Idle Director: Daniel Buckroyd Reviewer: Lizz Clark The legend of King Arthur is a cultural cornerstone, endlessly available to be reinterpreted and – naturally – spoofed. The Monty Python crew recognised this when they made 1975's Monty Python and the Holy Grail, and thanks to Eric Idle and John Du Prez, ...

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