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North East & Yorkshire

Austen’s Women – Theatre Royal, Wakefield

Writer: Rebecca Vaughan Director: Guy Masterson Producer: Elton Townend Jones Reviewer: Ron Simpson “Small is beautiful” seems to be the motto of a growing number of companies which represent one of the most welcome trends in theatre today. With minimal sets and props, equally little administrative back-up outside the performers and directors, and tiny casts (sometimes as few as one), ...

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Kiss Me Kate – The Grand, Leeds

Writer: Bella and Samuel Spewack  Music and Lyrics: Cole Porter     Directors: Jo Davies/Ed Goggin Reviewer: Dawn Smallwood Opera North’s Kiss Me Kate returns to the Leeds Grand Theatre after its successful revival back in 2015.  This acclaimed production, in collaboration with Welsh National Opera, makes a short stop in Leeds before transferring to the London Coliseum.  Kiss Me Kate premiered ...

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84 Charing Cross Road – Darlington Hippodrome

Based on the novel by Helene Hanff Adaptor: James Roose-Evans Director: Richard Beecham Reviewer: Mark Clegg In an age of emails, Skype and instant messaging it’s now difficult to remember the not-to-distant past when the main way of people communicating over long distances was writing letters. Such trans-Atlantic correspondences provide the basis for Helene Hanff’s autobiographical book as the New ...

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Monogamy – Theatre Royal, York

Writer: Torben Betts Director: Alastair Whatley Designer: James Perkins Reviewer: Ron Simpson Monogamy is far from a wasted evening in the theatre – there are too many good lines and dramatic situations for that, plus three fine performances – but it is a disappointment for those who anticipated more solid and consistently entertaining fare, given the strength of the casting ...

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Hard Times – West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds

Writer: Charles Dickens Adaptation: Deborah McAndrew Director: Conrad Nelson Reviewer: Dawn Smallwood Charles Dickens wrote the novel Hard Times in 1854. Set in Coketown, the North of England, he outlined the society at the time and criticised the social and economic conditions.  Northern Broadsides brings Deborah McAndrew’s colourful stage adaptation to the West Yorkshire Playhouse, as part of a UK ...

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Leeds Piano Festival: Sunwook Kim – Howard Assembly Room, Leeds

Soloist: Sunwook Kim (piano) Reviewer: Ron Simpson The first Leeds Piano Festival runs from May 14th to 23rd, celebrating the famous Leeds International Piano Competition with concerts at the Wigmore Hall, London, and the Howard Assembly Room, Leeds. Sunwook Kim, who won the “Leeds” in 2006 at the age of 18, presented a varied programme at the Howard, technically spectacular ...

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Titanic – The Musical – Sheffield Lyceum

Music and Lyrics: Maury Yeston Writer: Peter Stone Director: Thom Southerland Musical Director: Mark Aspinall Reviewer: Dawn Smallwood The sinking of the RMS Titanic in April 1912 is one of the most tragic maritime events on record, where sadly 1517 souls were lost.  Many will know and have watched James Cameron’s 1997 Oscar-winning film, Titanic, starring Kate Winslet and Leonardo ...

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The Girl on the Train – West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds

Director: Joe Murphy Based on the novel by: Paula Hawkins Adapted by: Rachel Wagstaff and Duncan Abel Reviewer: Ruth Jepson Have you ever looked out of the train window on your way to work, and made up stories about the homes you see, and the people inside them? Given them names, characters and stories? Have you tried to work out ...

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