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Fringe & Festivals

The Arsenal of Unlived Things – Lawrence Batley Theatre, Huddersfield 

Composer: Mayke Nas Musicians: Nieuw Amsterdams Peil Director: Ria Marks Lighting: Floriaan Ganzevoort Reviewer: Ron Simpson Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival didn’t get its international reputation by being solemn all the time and the afternoon concert on the second Saturday of the ten-day festival was witty, idiosyncratic, sometimes absurd and now and again laugh-out-loud funny. Even the programme note predicted that ...

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GUEST BLOG: Leigh Johnstone – All in the Mind Festival Director

When I was at secondary school, in Year 9, I took part in my first school play. It was Grease and I was playing Doody one of the T-birds. Apart from falling off the stage during the finale We go together I absolutely loved it and that experience really stuck with me. I then ‘got the drama bug’ and took part ...

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Latitude 2019 – On reflection

As the wet weather sets in and it seems summer may be over all too soon, reflections on the last day of Latitude, when we were slightly too tired to think straight, let alone produce any material that would make sense, and the festival weekend in general come to the forefront of our minds. As everything reached its conclusion on ...

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Latitude 2019 – Saturday evening antics and Sunday morning cool-downs

Heavy rain has just cleared, the lightening is no longer posing a threat and strolling past the Obelisk Arena the smooth sound of Irish rock band Walking on Cars tempt lost wanderers to sit for a while and listen to the round tones of lead singer Patrick Sheehy. The group have an appealing guitar pop sound, which feels vaguely eighties, ...

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Latitude 2019 – Friday night tunes and Saturday morning Waterfront idyll

Headlining Friday night is George Ezra. With his sunny demeanour and catchy tunes, he wows his young audience through the patters of the rain. Like a 21st-century Rick Astley with splashes of Johnny Cash and Talking Heads, his sing-along ditties rock the crowd as this English summer evening continues.  “This is one I sing on karaoke after four pints on ...

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Latitude 2019 – Friday Round-Up 

In contrast to the heatwave experienced here in 2018, this year’s festival has more typical British summer temperatures, with a glorious gentle breeze; how very civilised.  The Latitude line up is as strong as ever, with all manner of talks, theatre, comedy, music and dance awaiting the keen festival explorer looking to venture from one’s palatial canvas abode to the ...

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The Empathy Experiment – The King’s Arms, Salford

Writer/Director: Rose Condo Reviewer: Sam Lowe The Empathy Experimentis structured creatively and solidly, with titles borrowing from the scientific semantic field. It is that good, it has become the inspiration for the structure of this review. Observation Rose Condo is an award-winning poet from Canada. The objective of this spoken word, experimental performance about an experiment is whether or not ...

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MIF: The Fountainhead – The Lowry, Salford

Writer: Ayn Rand adapted by Koen Tachelet Director: Ivo van Hove Reviewer: Dave Cunningham The 2019 Manchester International Festival (MIF) has not been without controversy. There has been a dispute about authorship of one of the plays and an absent presenter literally phoned-in her address at the opening event.  Staging an adaptation of The Fountainhead– Ayn Rand’s epic tribute to ...

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