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Tag Archives: TRH

Hairspray – Theatre Royal, Plymouth

Director: Paul Kerryson Book: Mark O’Donnell and Thomas Meehan Music / Lyrics: Marc Shaiman / Scott Wittman and Marc Shaiman Reviewer: Helen Tope Hairspray is a musical that moves to its own beat. Born rebellious, the musical derived from John Waters’ 1988 film, is a tale of inequality, difference and why we should care. In 2018, against a background of ...

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Punk Rock – Lantern Theatre, Bristol

Writer: Simon Stephens Director: Lisa Gregan Reviewer: Julia Beasley A group of sixth formers hangs out in the library of a private school. They’re facing mock A-level exams and feeling under pressure to perform.  Personality cracks soon begin to develop. Ultimately the weakest link will break, with devastating and gory consequences. This dramatic piece by the Bristol Old Vic Young ...

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Jack and the Beanstalk – Lawrence Batley Theatre, Huddersfield

Writer: Andrew Pollard Director: Joyce Branagh Musical Director: Rebekah Hughes Choreographer: Rachel Gee Designer: Mark Walters Reviewer: Ron Simpson The Lawrence Batley Theatre’s Jack and the Beanstalk is billed as “a traditional family pantomime” which is fair enough. Audiences in the middle-sized theatres in this area – Wakefield, Harrogate, Huddersfield, etc. – know that they are in safe hands come ...

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The Little Mermaid – The Grand, Leeds

Writer: Hans Christian Anderson Director, Choreographer & Costume Designer: David Nixon Composer: Sally Beamish Reviewer: Holly Spanner Originally published in 1837, the Hans Christian Anderson fairy story has been adapted on countless occasions for film, television, print and theatre over its 180-year history. The most famous of these, of course, being the Disney 1989 animated movie. David Nixon’s version with ...

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A Christmas Carol – Kirkgate Market, Leeds

Writer: Charles Dickens, adapted by Olivia Race Director: Olivia Race Producers: Olivia Race, Alice Barber Musical Director: Claire-Marie Seddon Reviewer: Ron Simpson A Christmas Carol seems to be everywhere this year. Fortunately, there seems every chance that the adaptations will all have their own individuality – and that’s certainly the case with this version by Front Room Productions. Early in ...

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The Bundle – Carlton Hill Meeting House, Leeds

Writers: Dave Morris, Lynn Morris Directors: Lynn Morris, Dave Morris Reviewer: Ron Simpson Journeymen Theatre is a husband-and-wife team touring short, self-written, issue-based plays round non-theatre venues throughout the UK. By the time of the Leeds performance, The Bundle was coming towards the end of a series of approximately 80 performances in 2017. The Bundle is a 65-minute two-hander presenting ...

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Aladdin – Theatre Royal, Wakefield

Writer: Daniel O’Brien Co-Directors: Louise Denison, Chris Hannon Musical Director: Jim Lunt Designer: Mark Walters Reviewer: Ron Simpson Pantomimes are all about tradition, not only the stories and the time-honoured routines, but also the traditions that are created within each theatre. This year’s Aladdin is a typical Wakefield pantomime, with all the elements securely in place, even if – early ...

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Robinson Crusoe – The Gala, Durham

Writers and directors: Neil Armstrong and Paul Hartley Reviewer: Anna Ambelez The Gala uses the central character in Defoe’s classic, Robinson Crusoe and places him in a whole new adventure. We have pirates, high seas, a treasure island, mermaids, a giant parrot and many more ingredients for an original pantomime. The opening scene finds Captain Blackheart (Neil Armstrong) throwing his ...

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