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North East & Yorkshire Reviews

La Strada – West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds

Original Script: Federico Fellini, Ennio Flaiano, Tullio Pinelli Director: Sally Cookson Writer in the Room: Mike Akers Music: Benji Bower Designer: Katie Sykes Reviewer: Ron Simpson La Strada was devised by the company, a largish ensemble with as many dancers and musicians as actors, under the direction of Sally Cookson and with Mike Akers on hand as ‘writer in the ...

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Shirley Valentine – Lyceum Theatre, Sheffield

Jodie Prenger as Shirley Valentine

Writer: Willy Russell Director: Glen Walford Reviewer: Janet Jepson It is a tribute to the writer Willy Russell that the phrase “doing a Shirley Valentine” has captivated the imagination of almost every middle-aged woman on the planet. Who doesn’t dream of escaping the drudgery of everyday life with a long-term husband who barely notices you’re there, and grown-up kids who ...

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Thoroughly Modern Millie – The Grand, Leeds

Joanne Clifton as Millie Dillmount in Thoroughly Modern Millie

Book: Richard Morris & Dick Scanlan New Music: Jeanine Tesori New Lyrics: Dick Scanlan Director: Racky Plews Musical Director: Rob Wicks Reviewer: Rob Atkinson On the face of it, the traditional “boy meets girl, they have issues, but end up happy ever after” musical theatre story is unlikely to be aided by the addition of a subplot around what they ...

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Jane Eyre – Lyceum Theatre, Sheffield

JANE EYRE UK Tour 2017 Royal National Theatre

Writer: Charlotte Brontë Director: Sally Cookson Music: Benji Bower Reviewer: Beverley Haigh 2017 marks the 170th anniversary of the first publication of Charlotte Brontë’s most famous work. Fittingly, Bristol Old Vic in collaboration with The National Theatre has brought Sally Cookson’s devised adaptation to the stage in a ground-breaking reimagining for modern audiences. As an enduring and landmark piece of ...

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September in the Rain – Theatre Royal, York

Writer: John Godber Director: Sheila Carter Designer: Graham Kirk Reviewer: Ron Simpson For 12 years Esk Valley Theatre, in the persons of co-founders Mark Stratton and Sheila Carter, has brought high-quality small-cast theatre to the North York Moors by taking over Glaisdale’s Robinson Institute for the month of August for its annual production. Now EVT has expanded its scale, in ...

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Running Wild – West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds

Writer: Michael Morpurgo Adapter: Samuel Adamson Directors: Timothy Sheader and Dale Rooks Reviewer: Ron Simpson The Children’s Touring Partnership is halfway through a four-month tour of the Chichester Festival Theatre/Regent’s Park Theatre production of Running Wild, a wonderfully elaborate production to take on the road. It is advertised as being for six-year-olds upwards, and Michael Morpurgo, Samuel Adamson and the ...

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Shirley Valentine – The Grand, Leeds

Jodie Prenger as Shirley Valentine

Writer: Willy Russell Producer: Adam Spiegel Director: Glen Walford Reviewer: Rob Atkinson There can be few theatrical challenges more daunting than a one-person show, the spectacle of a lone actor taking on the responsibility for the entertainment of a whole audience over the span of a couple of hours. When that show consists of what is essentially an extended monologue, ...

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The Full Monty – Lyceum Theatre, Sheffield

2016 UK Tour of The Full Monty

Directed by: Jack Ryder Written by: Simon Beaufoy Reviewer: Ruth Jepson If you have passed the back of the Lyceum in Sheffield in the past fortnight, you will have been treated to the sight of Gary Lucy’s pert, five-foot-tall bottom. Which can only mean one thing: The Full Monty has made its triumphant return to Sheffield following a hugely successful ...

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