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North East & Yorkshire Reviews

The Ruck – Theatre Royal, Wakefield

Writer: Kevin Fegan Director: Joyce Branagh Designer: Olivia de Monceau Music: Rebekah Hughes Reviewer: Ron Simpson This project began life with Kevin Fegan’s residency with the Batley Bulldogs rugby league team. He decided to focus on the club’s highly successful girls’ under-16 team for his play and even accompanied them on their ground-breaking tour of Australia in 2015. The result ...

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Opera North’s Pagliacci and L’enfant et les sortilèges – The Grand, Leeds

Pagliacci Music and Libretto: Ruggero Leoncavallo Director: Charles Edwards L’enfant et les sortilèges Music: Maurice Ravel Libretto: Colette Director: Annabel Arden Reviewer: Dawn Smallwood Both operas are part of The Little Greats festival which is made up of six short operas presented by Opera North this autumn.  This gives an opportunity for those new to opera as well as seasoned ...

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A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Carriageworks Theatre, Leeds

Writer: William Shakespeare Director: Scott Bellas Designer: Sam Curwen Reviewer: Ron Simpson In Northern Spark Theatre and Bite My Thumb’s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream we are promised a late 1960s staging, complete with comedy, sensuality and physicality. The period is potentially an excellent fit with Shakespeare’s  most druggy play, but the match-up works intermittently, though, pleasingly, much more ...

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It’s Different for Girls – East Riding Theatre, Beverley

Director: Becky Hope-Palmer Musical Director: Rachel Barnes Set Designer: Ed Ullyart Costume Designer: Tiffany Wilkinson-Morris Reviewer: Ron Simpson  East Riding Theatre in Beverley has made great progress in less than three years, with a remarkable number of impressive home-grown productions. Resident company, She Productions, a collective of talented young female actors and musicians, has had much to do with that, ...

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Partition – West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds

Writer: Nick Ahad Director: Stefan Escreet Reviewer: Sue Collier Partition is a highly creative 60-minute one act play about the lasting effects surrounding the partition of India into two separate states (India and Pakistan - East Pakistan has since become Bangladesh). This seminal moment in history occurred 70 years ago on 15 August 1947 and is joint West Yorkshire Playhouse ...

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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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