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North East & Yorkshire Reviews

A Brief History of Women – Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough

Writer & Director: Alan Ayckbourn Designer: Kevin Jenkins Lighting: Jason Taylor Composer: Simon Slater Reviewer: Ron Simpson Ingenious, mischievous and ultimately humane, A Brief History of Women is proof that, in his 58th year of writing plays, Alan Ayckbourn is still able to find new ways of entertaining us for two hours and making us think a bit as well. ...

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The Suitcase – Hull Truck Theatre

Writer: Es’kia Mphahlele Adaptor and Director: Sibongeleni James Ngcobo Composer: Hugh Masakela Designer: Nadya Cohen Lighting: Wesley France Reviewer: Ron Simpson Hull Truck deserves huge credit for bringing to the North of England this production by one of the world’s iconic theatre companies. The Market Theatre of Johannesburg was founded in 1976 and built a reputation equally for artistic excellence ...

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The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas – West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds

The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas

Writer: Based on the book by John Boyne Music: Gary Yershon Director and Choreographer: Daniel de Andradge Reviewer: Laura Stimpson By special arrangement with Miramax, Northern Ballet brings to the stage John Boyne’s New York Times best seller, The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas at the West Yorkshire Playhouse. A story which needs little introduction, the 2006 novel The Boy ...

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Mel Brooks’ Young Frankenstein – Theatre Royal, Newcastle

Book: Mel Brooks & Thomas Meehan Music & Lyrics: Mel Brooks Direction & Choreography: Susan Stroman Reviewer: Mark Clegg It’s been ten years since Mel Brooks debuted his sophomore musical Young Frankenstein on Broadway. Greeted with mixed reviews and living in the shadow of its predecessor The Producers, the musical lasted just over a year before touring the US and ...

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Tosca – Royal Hall, Harrogate

Composer: Giacomo Puccini Librettists: Luigi Illica, Giuseppe Giacoso Artistic Director: Konstantin Balakin Music Director: Valerii Voronin Reviewer: Ron Simpson Russian State Opera’s tour of the UK is a heroic affair, just over six weeks of two popular Puccini operas (Madama Butterfly the other), with six or seven performances a week, only one or two performances per theatre. The principal parts ...

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Alfred – Left Bank Opera Festival, Leeds

Composer: Thomas Arne Librettists: David Mallett, James Thomson Director: David Ward Conductor: Christopher Pelly Reviewer: Ron Simpson The first Left Bank Opera Festival consists of three opera performances on the theme of Great British Opera, plus a network of supporting free events, held in the splendidly spacious converted church in Burley which operates as Left Bank Leeds. The festival is ...

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The Comedy of Errors – Harlow Carr Gardens, Harrogate

Writer: William Shakespeare Director: Peter Stickney Musical Director: Alex Beetschen Choreography: Darren Royston Reviewer: Janet Jepson There’s something special and magical about watching a theatrical production in the open air, and there are few better places to do it than Harlow Carr Gardens near Harrogate. The setting is perfect: a level area for the stage surrounded by an assortment of ...

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The Wedding Singer – The Grand, Leeds

Writer:  Chad Beguelin & Tim Herlihy Music: Matthew Sklar Lyrics: Chad Beguelin Director: Nick Winston Reviewer: Stephen Brennan There’s a repeated joke towards the end of The Wedding Singer where fake versions of 1980’s icons are introduced, each time with a knowing wink to the audience inviting them to accept the pale imitation as the real thing. Unfortunately, for a ...

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