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Tag Archives: Theatre Royal Wakefield

Bouncers – Theatre Royal, Wakefield

Writer/Director: John Godber Designer: Graham Kirk Composer: Joey Firth Music Choreographer: Lynette Pickering Reviewer: Ron Simpson It’s over 40 years since the first version of Bouncers was staged at the Edinburgh Festival, some 35 years since, in its mature form, it set out on the road to international success. For a play that reflects the contemporary world so acutely, that’s ...

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Cinderella – Theatre Royal, Wakefield

Writer: Daniel O’Brien Director: Rhiannon Hannon Musical Director: Jim Lunt Choreographer: Louise Denison Designer: Mark Walters Reviewer: Ron Simpson Wakefield Theatre Royal pantomimes come with a guarantee of good quality traditional fun, with a successful formula that delivers every time. Daniel O’Brien (aka Colin Blumenau) does the words, locally sourced and not too naughty, Rhiannon Hannon directs unshowily, and with ...

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The Last Seam – Grove Hall, South Kirkby

Writer: Garry Lyons Director: Daljinder Singh Set Designer: Kevin Jenkins Reviewer: Ron Simpson The Last Seam is a fine example of the community spirit which it celebrates. Commissioned by CAST in Doncaster and originally staged there, it is now making its way around the clubs and community halls of the former pit villages of Doncaster, Barnsley and Wakefield with the ...

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The Scary Bikers – Theatre Royal, Wakefield

Writer/Director: John Godber Co-Director: Neil Sissons Designer: Foxton Reviewer: Ron Simpson Initially, John Godber made his name with ensemble plays, often based around an activity, rugby league or night-clubbing or school or whatever, with an expertly managed switching of role rather than character development, but some of his best work has been in rather more restrained two-handers. As he has ...

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Wuthering Heights – East Riding Theatre, Beverley

Writer/Director: Jane Thornton From the novel by: Emily Brontë Designer: Lucy Weller Reviewer: Ron Simpson How do you condense a novel of over 250 pages, with a dense and complicated story-line, into less than 100 minutes of stage time? In the case of Wuthering Heights, with its generational split halfway through, a common method, used in the famous 1939 film, ...

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The Ruck – Theatre Royal, Wakefield

Writer: Kevin Fegan Director: Joyce Branagh Designer: Olivia de Monceau Music: Rebekah Hughes Reviewer: Ron Simpson This project began life with Kevin Fegan’s residency with the Batley Bulldogs rugby league team. He decided to focus on the club’s highly successful girls’ under-16 team for his play and even accompanied them on their ground-breaking tour of Australia in 2015. The result ...

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Partly Political – Theatre Royal, Wakefield

Performers: Rory Bremner, Jan Ravens & Jo Caulfield Reviewer: Ron Simpson Times are hard for a satirical political impressionist. In his Wakefield show Rory Bremner himself quoted the great Tom Lehrer: “Political satire became obsolete when Henry Kissinger was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize,” and things, he claimed, have got worse since 1973 – and who would disagree? So, although his Donald ...

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Stand Up Stand Up – Theatre Royal, Wakefield

Two men forcing smiles

Writer/Director: Jim Cartwright Reviewer: Ron Simpson It is a wonderful achievement for a theatre of the size of Wakefield’s Theatre Royal to have companies devoted to the work of playwrights as popular and successful as John Godber and Jim Cartwright. Moreover, these are playwrights who can guarantee a succession of entertaining premieres which they can direct themselves and which, in ...

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