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North East & Yorkshire Reviews

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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All Hands on Deck: A Tale of Two Wrens – Lawrence Batley Theatre, Huddersfield

Writer: Vashti Maclachlan Director: Marianne McNamara Composer/Lyricist: Kieran Buckeridge Musical Director: Rebekah Hughes Reviewer: Ron Simpson One of Arts Council England’s better decisions was to award Mikron Theatre Company National Portfolio Organisation status which means that funding is secure for at least four years. Though pretty low on glamour, Mikron is a totally individual company, offering an indispensable service, a ...

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Huddersfield Choral Society Spring Concert – Town Hall, Huddersfield

Choirs: Huddersfield Choral Society, Huddersfield Choral Society Youth Choirs Orchestra: Orchestra of Opera North Conductor: Paul Daniel Choral Director: Gregory Batsleer Reviewer: Ron Simpson The Huddersfield Choral Society’s final concert of the 2018-2019 season had several unusual features. It was only the second time that the society had presented a major concert without vocal soloists. The major work was, to ...

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Rotterdam – Theatre Royal, York

Writer: Jon Brittain Director: Donnacadh O’Briain Designer: Ellan Parry Reviewer: Ron Simpson Rotterdam, winner of the 2017 Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre, is a strange mix of sitcom, genuinely moving scenes and serious consideration of issues of gender. It’s a tribute to both Jon Brittain and Donnacadh O’Briain that, for the most part, all these fit ...

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Around The World In 80 Days – Leeds Playhouse

Writer: Jules Verne Adapter: Toby Hulse Director: Alexander Ferris Reviewer: Jay Nuttall There’s a split in the Leeds Playhouse ensemble! As their season draws to a close the female members are in rehearsal for Be My Baby whilst their male counterparts perform a lightning speed version of Jules Verne’s 1873 globe-trotting novel and race against the clock. With just four ...

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The Time Machine – Washington Arts Centre

Writer: Elton Townend-Jones Director: Elton Townend-Jones Producer: Rebecca Vaughan Reviewer: Anna Ambelez It's often said that less is more, that simple is best, and so is the set for Dyad Production's The Time Machine. Extremely minimalist, with the minimum of props. The overload comes from the text as a constant rush of words flood the stage. The audience are verbally ...

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Kinky Boots – Leeds Grand

Writer: Harvey Fierstein Composer: Cyndi Lauper Director and Choreographer: Jerry Mitchell Reviewer: Ruth Jepson Ladies, gentlemen and those who have yet to make up their minds, Kinky Boots is finally touring and it’s time to strap on your stilettos and sashay to the theatre! Based on the 2005 film, Kinky Boots the musical is pretty much a direct retelling of ...

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Reflections – Town Hall, Huddersfield

Orchestra: Orchestra of Opera North Conductor: Dalia Stasevska Soloist: Ana Maria Labin (soprano) Reviewer: Ron Simpson For the final concert in the Kirklees 2018-2019 season, the Orchestra of Opera North presented a programme under the title “Reflections”. Given that it started with Lutoslawski’s Musique funebre, continued with Richard Strauss’ Four Last Songs of which the final line translates as “Is ...

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