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Wallace and Gromit’s Musical Marvels – The Lowry, Salford

Reviewer: Jay Nuttall The 2012 BBC Proms included Wallace and Gromit’s Musical Marvels. It proved so popular that it was resurrected as a theatre tour. For anyone that has dreamed of a grand day out this is a toe-tapping trip into Bristol-based Aardman Animation’s back catalogue of Wallace and his faithful dog, Gromit. Presented by musician and singer Matthew Sharp this ...

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The Worst Witch – Birmingham Hippodrome

Writer: Emma Reeves from the novel by Jill Murphy Director: Theresa Heskins Reviewer: Nicole Craft Jill Murphy’s The Worst Witch has been entertaining children for the best part of three generations. Continuing to go full circle, the television series (two versions of!) inspire yesterday and today’s youngsters to seek out the books; the books inspiring those who haven’t discovered the ...

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Yellow is the Colour of Sunshine – Carriageworks Theatre, Leeds

Writer: Brendan Murray Director: Wendy Harris Designer: Kate Bunce Composer: Christella Litras Movement: Holly Irving Reviewer: Ron Simpson Leeds-based company tutti frutti always manages to combine a playful style with serious intent in its widely-toured productions for young children – in this case, from as young as three years old. It’s surprising to find that, in a colourful, apparently simple ...

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Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat – WMC, Cardiff

Music:  Andrew Lloyd Webber Lyrics: Tim Rice Director: Bill Kenwright Reviewer: Barbara Michaels Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat the musical returns to the stage con brio, with a plethora of well-known musical numbers, refreshed and rejuvenated with all its original pizzazz still in place.  The Biblical story of Joseph, betrayed by his jealous brothers and sold into slavery in ...

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Annie – Theatre Royal, Plymouth

Book: Thomas Meehan Music: Charles Strouse Lyrics: Martin Charnin Director: Nikolai Foster Reviewer: Kelyn Luther Who doesn’t need the optimism of plucky orphan Annie in a doubtful political climate? Whilst the show can be transported to other eras (such as the recent film adaptation), its spirit and many of its references - the play on name of Warbucks (war profiteering), ...

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Madagascar The Musical – Grand Theatre, Wolverhampton

Book: Kevin Del Aguila Music and Lyrics: George Noriega and Joel Someillan Director: Kirk Jameson Reviewer: Clare White The musical stage version of Dreamworks animation Madagascar is in safe hands with Selladoor, the theatre production company behind Shrek the Musical. The family favourite is a vibrant and fun-filled animal adventure, packed with laughs for all ages. Marty the Zebra is disillusioned with ...

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The Worst Witch – Belgrade Theatre, Coventry

Writer: Emma Reeves based on the novel by Jill Murphy Director: Theresa Heskins Reviewer: Tim Harding Panto season may have ended a few months ago, but The Belgrade Theatre in Coventry was packed with families tonight, many cheering and booing along with the antics on stage. They are here to welcome the arrival in Coventry of the girls and staff from Cackle’s ...

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Zara – The Piece Hall, Halifax

Director: Joyce Lee Reviewer: Jay Nuttall On the courtyard of Halifax's eighteenth-century textile trading headquarters, The Piece Hall, are protesters with placards demanding Zara's rights. Cherry pickers, heavy plant machinery and even a tank lie in wait for their cue as fake rolling news coverage ramp up the expectation of the birth of Zara's baby. Part narrative, part light installation ...

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