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Greater Manchester Fringe

Funny Women Awards 2016 Regional Final – The Lowry, Salford

Reviewer: Donna Kelly The Lowry played host to the regional final of the 2016 Funny Women Awards as nine comedy acts took to the stage compete for a place in the coveted final. Launched in 2003, the Funny Women Awards aims to find the best new female comedy performers by offering the winner a career developing cash prize of £2000 ...

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Hamlet – Joshua Brooks, Manchester

Writer: William Shakespeare Director: Anne Davies Reviewer: Jim Gillespie Truly Outrageous Productions first staged their adaptation of Hamlet at Manchester Central Library in April. Three months on, the show now plays as part of the Greater Manchester Fringe in the underground performance space provided at Joshua Brooks on Princess Street. Trimmed to barely 90 minutes, this half-weight Hamlet has been ...

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The Trial – Hope Mill Theatre, Manchester

Writer: Franz Kafka Adaptor: Evelyn Roberts and Matt Holt Director: Craig Sanders Reviewer: Donna Kelly Considering Franz Kafka wrote The Trial more than half a century ago, its uncanny prediction, both in subject matter and form, is eerily disturbing. In today’s world of mass surveillance and Islamic State brutality, this timeless tale of ordinary terror is as relevant today as ...

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The Chamber of Beheaded Queens – Chapter One Books, Manchester

Writer: KT Parker Director: Kate O’Leary Reviewer: Jo Beggs In one of many windowless rooms in an alternative afterlife, four beheaded queens are thrown together. Their one thing in common? Their gruesome and untimely demise. Anne Boleyn (Christine Corser) sits and sews..and..sews..and sews, while Mary Stewart (Ashleigh Barton) fritters away their ‘tokens’ trying to relive memories of the past. They’ve ...

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Concrete Jungle – Whitefield Garrick Theatre, Manchester

Writer: Sarah O’Connell Director: Naomi Jones Reviewer: Jo Beggs Natalia can get the best out of people. That’s why she’s getting sent out as the sole journalist for a fly-on-the-wall TV documentary set in the dark world of drug dealing. Not that her boss, upper middle-class media man James, would touch this assignment with a barge pole. The idea of ...

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Love Letters To Asia – King’s Arms, Salford

Written and Directed by: popbox Reviewer: Jo Beggs Josh Cannon, Tom Morris and Georgie Sykes (popbox) have all done the gap year Asia trail. They've carted their backpacks across the world, Instgramming the hell out of everything and storing away some of the quirkiest moments for their experimental show Love Letters To Asia. It’s a perfect fringe offering, ideally suited ...

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War Stories – King’s Arms, Salford

Writers: Emma Gibson and Rob Johnston Director: Benedict Power Reviewer: Jo Beggs Theatre spaces like the King’s Arms were made for intense little dramas like War Stories, an affecting two-hander that translates a vast and terrible story into an intimate conversation. Played on a simple set with a paired back, but beautifully lit, set by Meriel Pym, this first world ...

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MANC MINI: Truly Outrageous Productions – Hamlet

Our Manc Mini series offers short, witty and slightly tongue-in-cheek insights into the offerings at the North West’s largest arts festival. Anne Davies of Truly Outrageous Productions, tells us about their showHamlet, which they will be performing at Joshua Brooks.   How would you describe your show in one sentence? Denmark’s a prison – can Hamlet ‘Shawshank’ his way out? ...

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