Ghost- The Musical closes current UK tour at The Lowry

Ghost – The Musical closes current UK Tour at The Lowry

Mon 24 – Sat 29 April 2017

Bill Kenwright’s production of the timeless story of love, despair and hope, Ghost – The Musical, will close its current UK tour with a visit to The Lowry, Salford from Mon 24 – Sat 29 April 2017. Taking its inspiration from the classic movie, this innovative reimagining features an expanded book, new music and original staging.

Carolyn Maitland will star in the role of Molly alongside Andy Moss as Sam.  Carolyn’s musical theatre credits include ‘Ellen’ in Miss Saigon (Prince Edward Theatre), ‘Joelle’ in Groundhog Day (Old Vic), ‘Rose’ in From Here to Eternity (Shaftesbury Theatre) and ‘Kate’ in Kiss Me Kate (Old Vic, West End & Chichester).

Musician and actor Andy Moss, best known for the role of Rhys Ashworth in Channel 4’s Hollyoaks, one he played for 8 years, will continue to wow audiences around the UK as ‘Sam’. His credits also include Cutting It, Coronation Street and most recently he appeared as Paul Cuthbert in the long running BBC soap opera Doctors.

West End musical theatre star Jacqui Dubois (original London cast of Rent and Children of Eden, other credits include The Lion King, Fela and most recently People, Places and Things ) plays ‘Oda Mae Brown’, the part made famous in the film by Whoopi Goldberg. Sam Ferriday (Jersey Boys, Blue Man Group, The Prodigals) plays ‘Carl’, alongside Leo Sene as ‘Willie’, James Earl Adair haunting proceedings as the ‘Hospital Ghost’, and Gary Lee Netley as the ‘Subway Ghost’. Tarisha Rommick plays ‘Louise’ and Simbi Akande ‘Clara’. Completing the cast is Lori Baker,Ethan Bradshaw, Lauren Drew, Matthew Vinetot, Mike Ward andKelly Hampson.

The Double Academy Award winning movie is a huge success story, both critically and at the box office, where it was the highest grossing film in the year of its release. It starred the late Patrick Swayze, Demi Moore, Tony Goldwyn and Whoopi Goldberg and was directed by Jerry Zucker. Bruce Joel Rubin’s script won the Oscar® for Best Original Screenplay and Whoopi Goldberg won the Oscar® for Best Actress in a Supporting Role. The film’s most iconic and moving scene was famously performed to The Righteous Brother’s Unchained Melody, which also features in the musical version.

Walking back to their apartment late one night a tragic encounter sees Sam murdered and his beloved girlfriend Molly alone, in despair and utterly lost. But with the help of a phony storefront psychic, Sam, trapped between this world and the next, tries to communicate with Molly in the hope of saving her from grave danger…

Bill Kenwright said; “Ghost is a story full of hope, and is one of those films which never leaves you. The book by Bruce Joel Rubin and score by Dave Stewart and Glenn Ballad come together wonderfully in one of my favourite new musicals in years.”

Bruce Joel Rubin said; “This is a show with such a strong emotional and musical life that it can mould to many visions and interpretations.  It can be performed on any scale, and its vibrant heart will still captivate an audience and allows the imagination to flourish. It is purely theatrical in the greatest sense.  We are very excited by the potential that the new version holds”.

Listings Info
Ghost- The Musical
The Lowry
Mon 24 – Sat 29 April 2017
7:30pm, Wed & Sat 2pm
Box office: 0843 208 6000
Website

“A phenomenal interpretation of one of Shakespeare’s most famous plays”

The Discarded Nut Theatre Company is touring their acclaimed production of Hamlet – a contemporary, visceral exploration of love, power and insanity.

WEDNESDAY 10TH MAY 2017

THE LIGHTS, ANDOVER

7PM

Based in Winchester, Discarded Nut have created a dynamic small-scale repertory company touring around the South of England reawakening audiences to classic texts and tales through new adaptations, new writing and new music. In addition, our work seeks to breathe life in to curriculum based books, freeing them from the restrictions of the classroom and inspiring a life-long passion in young people for English, live theatre and the performing arts.

We believe that Hampshire and the surrounding area has a rich source of artistic talent so we are committed to engaging local actors and practitioners, newly-qualified or returning to the profession after a career break, both on-stage and as part of our production team. We also offer work-experience placements to young people still in education who are hoping to make a career in the performing arts. This leads to a rich and vibrant company of highly motivated and intensely talented people bringing, emotionally engaging and thought provoking performances to the stage.

“Ed Morris as Hamlet was nothing short of mesmerising,

laugh-out-loud funny and utterly terrifying all in one.”

Full tour list:

WEDNESDAY 10TH MAY THE LIGHTS, ANDOVER

SATURDAY 20TH MAY MICHELDEVER NORTHBROOK HALL

SATURDAY 27TH MAY POUND ARTS, CORSHAM

SUNDAY 4TH JUNE THEATRE ROYAL, WINCHESTER

All shows to commence at 7pm.

Producers of Cilla The Musical start their search for Cilla

COULD YOU BE THE NEXT BIG MUSICAL THEATRE STAR?

THE PRODUCERS OF THE WORLD PREMIERE OF

CILLA THE MUSICAL ARE ON THE HUNT FOR THEIR CILLA

WITH NATIONAL OPEN AUDITIONS CONFIRMED DURING MAY

IN LIVERPOOL, EDINBURGH, BIRMINGHAM AND LONDON

 

The producers of Cilla – The Musical have confirmed the dates and locations for their search for Cilla, with open auditions taking place around the country.

The search is on for a charismatic and talented actress with a great voice to portray the title role, starting in Cilla’s hometown of Liverpool.

The dates and locations for the auditions are as below:

 

Tuesday 2 May                               Liverpool Empire

Monday 8 May                               Edinburgh Playhouse

Tuesday 9 May                               Birmingham New Alexandra Theatre

Friday 12 May                                 London Dominion Theatre

 

Robert Willis (Executive Producer and Cilla’s son), said:

“My Mum Ioved singing and performing ever since she was a young girl and she was determined to do what she loved. Having performed at the clubs around Liverpool, including the famous Cavern Club, she got her big break when Brian Epstein spotted her and signed her. It was the start of everything that was to follow. She was a natural born performer who lived to entertain her audience. We are hoping to find that person who also dreams big and has the talent to match but just needs the chance to show it. We can’t wait to meet you!”

For full information about the auditions and to register please go to:https://www.cillathemusical.com

Bill Kenwright and Laurie Mansfield present this new musical about the life and legend of Cilla Black, which will open in her hometown at the Liverpool Empire from Thursday 7 – 16 September before embarking on a nationwide tour.

Cilla The Musical, is a spectacular and heart-warming musical adaptation of the critically acclaimed ITV mini-series based on the early life of Cilla Black, by BAFTA award winner, Jeff Pope (The Moorside, Philomena, From The Cradle To The Grave, Mrs Biggs).

The story follows the extraordinary life of the ordinary teenage girl from Liverpool, Priscilla White, and her rocky, yet incredible, rise to fame. By the age of just 25 she was recognized as international singing star Cilla Black. By the age of 30 she had become Britain’s favorite television entertainer headlining series’ of Blind Date, Surprise Surprise and many more.

The musical score will be the ultimate soundtrack to the 60’s including Cilla’s greatest hits Anyone Who Had a Heart, Alfie and Something Tells Me,alongside a backdrop of the legendary “Liverpool Sound” including theBeatles’ Twist and Shout, and American influences like California Dreaminby The Mamas and The Papas and many more.

Cilla The Musical is produced by Bill Kenwright and Laurie Mansfield, alongside Executive Producer Robert Willis

 

CILLA – THE MUSICAL

WRITTEN BY JEFF POPE

DIRECTED BY BILL KENWRIGHT & BOB TOMSON

 

 

Liverpool Empire Theatre                                                                                         atgtickets.com/Liverpool

7 – 16 September                                                                                                                0844 871 3017

Edinburgh Playhouse                                                                                               atgtickets.com/Edinburgh

19 – 23 September                                                                                                             0844 871 3014

Milton Keynes Theatre                                                                                               atgtickets.com/miltonkeynes

26 – 30 September                                                                                                          0844 871 7627

               

Mayflower Theatre, Southampton                                                                          mayflower.org.uk

3 – 7 October                                                                                                                       023 8071 1811

New Alexandra Theatre Birmingham                                                                        atgtickets.com/Birmingham

10 – 14 October                                                                                                                   0844 871 3011

Blackpool, Opera House                                                                                                wgbpl.co.uk

17 – 21 October                                                                                                   0844 856 1111

New Theatre, Cardiff                                                                                                   newtheatrecardiff.co.uk

31 October – 4 November                                                                                                 029 2087 8889

New Wimbledon Theatre                                                                                          atgtickets.com/Wimbledon

7 – 11 November                                                                                                                 0844 871 7646

Regent Theatre, Stoke                                                                                                     atgtickets.com/stoke

14 – 18 November                                                                                                              0844 871 7649

Palace Theatre, Manchester                                                                                    atgtickets.com/Manchester

21 – 25 November                                                                                                              0844 871 3019

Bradford, Alahambra Theatre                                                                                 bradford-theatres.co.uk

28 November – 2 December                                                                                             01274 432 000

 

More tour dates to be confirmed soon.

 

Visit cillathemusical.com for all the latest tour and audition information

Twitter: @CILLAMUSICAL

MAMMA MIA! New Cast & Booking Period on Eve of 18th Birthday

SARA POYZER, KATE GRAHAM & JACQUELINE BRAUN TO PLAY DONNA, TANYA & ROSIE IN

“MAMMA MIA!”

AT LONDON’S NOVELLO THEATRE

FROM MONDAY 12 JUNE 2017

AS “MAMMA MIA!” CELEBRATES ITS 18TH LONDON BIRTHDAY

BOOKING EXTENDS TO 3 MARCH 2018 –

TICKETS ON SALE FROM FRIDAY 7 APRIL 2017

 

Fresh from playing Donna Sheridan in the first ever UK Tour of global smash hit musical MAMMA MIA!, Sara Poyzer is delighted to be playing the role at London’s Novello Theatre from Monday 12 June 2017, along with fellow Dynamos, Kate Graham as Tanya and Jacqueline Braun as Rosie.

 

Creator/Producer Judy Craymer is also delighted to be able to announce, on the eve of the musical’s 18th birthday in London (6 April 2017), that the booking period in London will extend to 3 March 2018, with tickets on sale from Friday 7 April 2017.

 

Sara Poyzer’s other recent stage work includes Janet in Northern Broadsides’ UK Tour of Jonathan Miller’s production of Rutherford & Son and Billy’s Mum in Billy Elliot (Victoria Palace Theatre, London).  Kate Graham’s other West End credits include Cherry in Sam Mendes’s production of Charlie and the Chocolate Factor (Theatre Royal, Drury Lane) and Mrs Wilkinson in Billy Elliot(Victoria Palace Theatre).  Jacqueline Braun previously  played Rosie in the first UK Tour of MAMMA MIA!.  She has also played the key roles of Eponine in Les Misérables and Mary Magdalene in Jesus Christ Superstar in Germany and Killer Queen in We Will Rock You in Switzerland.

 

From Monday 12 June, Georgina Castle will be promoted from the ensemble and First Cover Sophie Sheridan, to playing the role in her own right.  She will be joined by Christopher Jordan-Marshall, making his West End debut as Sky.  Also new to the cast of MAMMA MIA! from 12 June will be Bobbie Little as Ali, Harriet Bunton as Lisa, Damian Buhagiar as Pepper and Nye Rees as Eddie, with Caroline Deverill playing the role of Donna Sheridan at certain performances.  They will be joining Richard Trinder, who plays Sam, Alasdair Harvey who plays Harry and Dugald Bruce-Lockhart who plays Bill.

 

From West End to global phenomenon, MAMMA MIA! is Judy Craymer’s ingenious vision of staging the story-telling magic of ABBA’s timeless songs with an enchanting tale of family and friendship unfolding on a Greek island paradise.  To date, it has been seen by over 60 million people in 50 productions in 16 different languages grossing more than $2 billion at the box office.  In 2011, it became the first Western musical ever to be staged in Mandarin in the People’s Republic of China.  MAMMA MIA! is currently on its first ever UK Tour, receiving great critical and public acclaim.

MAMMA MIA! originally opened in London at the Prince Edward Theatre on 6 April 1999, before transferring to the Prince of Wales Theatre in 2004.  The musical re-opened at the Novello Theatre in 2012. 

 

The London production of MAMMA MIA!  has been seen by nearly 8 million people, played over 7,500 performances and has broken box office records in all three of its London homes.  

 

Produced by Judy Craymer, MAMMA MIA! The Movie, starring Meryl Streep and Pierce Brosnan, is the highest grossing live action musical film of all time.

 

With music & lyrics by Benny Andersson & Björn Ulvaeus, MAMMA MIA! is written by Catherine Johnson, directed by Phyllida Lloyd and choreographed by Anthony Van Laast. The production is designed by Mark Thompson, with lighting design by Howard Harrison, sound design by Andrew Bruce & Bobby Aitken, and musical supervision, additional material & arrangements by Martin Koch.

 

MAMMA MIA! is produced by Judy Craymer, Richard East & Björn Ulvaeus for Littlestar in association with Universal.

 

LISTINGS INFORMATION

 

Novello Theatre

Aldwych

London WC2B 4LD

 

Ticket Prices: From £15.00

 

A £2.25 per ticket booking fee applies to tickets booked online, and a £2.75 per ticket booking fee applies to tickets booked by phone. No booking fee on tickets purchased in person at the Novello Theatre Box Office.

 

All prices include £1.25 restoration levy.

 

Early Bird Pricing – anyone booking four months or more in advance of the performance they are attending (Monday to Thursday performances only) will save £20 on Band A and Premium tickets, but only through Delfont Mackintosh Theatres, either online, in person at the theatre, or by calling the Novello Theatre Box Office.

 

Performance Times:

Monday – Saturday 7.45pm

Matinees – Thursday & Saturday 3.00pm*

*extra Tuesday matinees on 8 & 22 August, 24 October 2017 and 13 February 2018

 

Christmas 2017/18 Performance Schedule

 

Monday 25 December           NO PERFORMANCE

Tuesday 26 December          7.45pm

Wednesday 27 December     3.00pm and 7.45pm

Thursday 28 December         7.45pm

Friday 29 December              3.00pm and 7.45pm

Saturday 30 December         3.00pm and 7.45pm

Monday 1 January 2018        7.45pm

Tuesday 2 January                3.00pm and 7.45pm

Wednesday 3 January           7.45pm

Thursday 4 January               3.00pm and 7.45pm

Friday 5 January                    7.45pm

Saturday 6 January               3.00pm and 7.45pm

 

Currently booking to 14 October 2017
New booking period 16 October 2017 to 3 March 2018 opens 7 April 2017

The performance lasts 2 hours and 35 minutes (including a 15-minute interval)

Box Office: 0844 482 5115

http://www.mamma-mia.com/
http://www.facebook.com/mammamiamusical
http://twitter.com/MammaMiaMusical

Jane Eyre cast in Haworth at the Bronte parsonage.

NEW PICTURES RELEASED OF

ACTORS PLAYING

JANE EYRE &  ROCHESTER

ON NATIONAL THEATRE TOUR

Nadia Clifford and Tim Delap, the actors playing Jane Eyre and Rochester in Sally Cookson’s energetic and imaginative new adaptation of Charlotte Brontë’s masterpiece Jane Eyre took time out of rehearsals this week to visit the atmospheric Brontë Parsonage Museum in Haworth in Yorkshire prior to opening a major UK tour at the Lowry in Salford on 8 April.  Jane Eyre, a co-production between the National Theatre and Bristol Old Vic, will tour the UK from April – September 2017.

Manchester born Nadia Clifford and Tim Delap were in costume as Jane Eyre and Rochester outside the famous Parsonage where Charlotte Bronte wrote the much loved story.

 

Rebecca Yorke, from the Brontë Parsonage Museum said: ‘We are delighted to be working in partnership with the National Theatre on their tour of Jane Eyre and are thrilled to be welcoming the actors to Haworth for a glimpse at the house where the novel was written.’

 

2017 marks the 170th anniversary of the first publication of Jane Eyre – a significant time to be touring Charlotte Brontë’s classic and much loved story. The highly acclaimed co-production between the National Theatre and Bristol Old Vic opens at The Lowry in Salford on 8 April 2017 and will continue its journey around the country to Sheffield, Aylesbury, Plymouth, Southampton, Edinburgh, York, Woking, Glasgow, Richmond, Canterbury, Cardiff, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Milton Keynes, Norwich, Brighton, Leeds, Belfast, Aberdeen, Birmingham and Hull, where it will be part of the City of Culture programme from 18-23 September 2017.

This exciting new stage version of Jane Eyre was originally presented in two parts at Bristol Old Vic, and then transferred to the National Theatre, re-imagined as a single performance, playing to sold out houses at the NT’s Lyttelton Theatre.  The production was devised by the original company, with set designs by Michael Vale, costumes by Katie Sykes, lighting by Aideen Malone, music by Benji Bower, sound by Dominic Bilkey, movement by Dan Canham and dramaturgy by Mike Akers. 

Jane Eyre Tour Dates

The Lowry, Salford                                                    8-15 April, 2017

Lyceum Theatre, Sheffield                                        18-22 April 2017

Aylesbury Waterside Theatre                                    24-29 April 2017

Theatre Royal Plymouth                                           1-6 May 2017

Mayflower Theatre, Southampton                            9-13 May 2017

Festival Theatre, Edinburgh                                      15-20 May 2017

York Grand Opera House                                          22-27 May 2017

New Victoria Theatre, Woking                                   29 May-3 June 2017

Theatre Royal, Glasgow                                            5-10 June 2017

Richmond Theatre                                                     12-17 June 2017

Marlowe Theatre, Canterbury                                   19-24 June 2017

Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff                              27 June-1 July 2017

Theatre Royal, Newcastle-upon-Tyne                     3-8 July 2017

Milton Keynes Theatre                                              10-15 July 2017

Norwich Theatre Royal                                             17-22 July 2017

Brighton Theatre Royal                                             24-29 July 2017

Grand Theatre, Leeds                                                31 July-5 August 2017

Belfast Theatre Royal                                                21 – 26 August 2017

His Majesty’s Theatre, Aberdeen                              28 August-2 September 2017

Birmingham Repertory Theatre                                4-16 September 2017

Hull New Theatre                                                       18 – 23 September 2017

Further dates and venues to be announced

www.janeeyreonstage.co.uk

Jimmy Carr

CHAMBERS TOURING LTD PRESENTS:

JIMMY CARR

‘THE BEST OF, ULTIMATE, GOLD, GREATEST HITS TOUR’

NEW LIVE TOUR FOR 2016-17

“A comedy hero for our times’”

The Guardian

“Jimmy Carr is a world-class comedian”

The Independent

 

GRAND OPERA HOUSE YORK

Wednesday 14 June

One of the most prolific joke-tellers of recent times, Jimmy Carr announces a mammoth UK tour like no other.

With an astonishingly vast repertoire and lightning-sharp delivery honed from fifteen years at the top, Jimmy is gathering a selection of his very best jokes along with brand new material for the ultimate comedy show.

A man who has devoted his life to crafting perfect jokes and has left a trail of laughter in his wake, Jimmy Carr’s new tour will distil everything we love to laugh at and be shocked by, into one incredible, unparalleled night of entertainment.

Jimmy Carr has been on the stand-up scene for a decade and a half. In that time he’s performed 9 sell-out tours, playing nearly 2,000 shows to over 2 million people across 4 continents. He’s won the British Comedy Award for ‘Best Live Stand-Up Tour’ and been nominated for the Perrier Award. Now all that experience is being put to good use – you can see all the greatest material from his extraordinary career in one show – this is the very best of Jimmy Carr.

‘The Best Of, Ultimate, Gold, Greatest Hits Tour’ kicked off in May 2016 and will visit every corner of the UK all the way up to December 2017.

Tickets: £31.65

Box Office: 0844 871 3024

Online: www.atgtickets.com/york

For more information and to book tickets visit www.jimmycarr.com

MR BLOOM AND HIS VEGGIES ARE HITTING THE ROAD

MR BLOOM AND HIS VEGGIES ARE HITTING THE ROAD
 
GRAND OPERA HOUSE YORK
Monday 24 April at 11am & 2pm
 
Mr Bloom, as seen on CBeebies, is about to embark on his first ever live UK theatre tour in February 2017. ‘Tiddlers’ of all ages are invited to come and see their favourite gardener and his veggie friends in their brand new stage version of Mr Bloom’s Nursery. As well as featuring Mr Bloom himself (Ben Faulks) the show will also star Colin the Runner Bean, Margaret the Cabbage, Joan the Fennel, Raymond the Butternut Squash, Sebastian the Aubergine and the Wee McGregors, not forgetting Mr Bloom’s trusty Compostarium too. Mr Bloom and his Veggies are getting ready for a very special occasion – a member of the Royal family is paying them visit. Can you lend a hand and help them get the Allotment ready in time? They certainly hope so! Come and sing along to all your favourite songs: ‘This Is My Allotment’, ‘Meet The Veggies, ‘The Compo Song’ and’ Night Night Veggies’.
 
Using song, play and interaction Mr Bloom’s Nursery is a fun and inspiring show with strong educational values which will entertain parents and Tiddlers alike. Performances start on 10th February 2017 and the show will visit over 50 venues nationwide until 28th April 2017.
 
Ben Faulks says:- ‘I know all of the Tiddlers out there like watching Mr Bloom on the television, but this is the first time they will be able to come and see me and the Veggies in their local theatre in our very own live show! I am so excited, so are The Veggies, Colin is packing his suitcase already! It’s going to be a great show so make sure you all come along and say ‘Ello.’
 
Mr Bloom needs no introduction to children under the age of seven.  Since 2011 he has appeared regularly on BBC’s pre-school TV channel CBeebies. The character evolved from an original concept created by Ben Faulks called the Vegetable Nannies, an innovative piece of street theatre consisting of real fresh vegetables being dressed in nappies and looked after by their friendly gardener!  The BBC picked up the idea, and the first episode of Mr Bloom’s Nursery was transmitted in 2011 – the show was an instant success.  Since then there have been five further series, establishing Mr Bloom as a popular CBeebies character. This live version of Mr Bloom’s Nursery is being produced by Munchkin Entertainment, a brand new theatrical production company.
For dates, venues and tickets please visit the website www.mrbloomlive.co.uk
Follow us on Twitter @MrBloomLive and Facebook /MrBloomLive
 
 

York Theatre Royal – Liz Wilson Steps Down

TRANSFORMATIONAL CHIEF EXECUTIVE PREPARES TO LEAVE

YORK THEATRE ROYAL

The Chief Executive, who oversaw the multi-million pound transformation of York Theatre Royal and is credited with helping to reinvigorate the city’s cultural offer, has announced her intention to step down from her role this year.

Liz Wilson, who has led the popular theatre for seven and a half years, is planning to pursue new opportunities, leaving a legacy of multiple cultural and community activities that have raised the profile of theatre in the city across local, national and international audiences.

During Liz’s time as Chief Executive, the theatre successfully embarked on a number of major initiatives to bring it closer to the local community. The York Mystery Plays series, launched in partnership with York Museum Trust in 2012, saw a cast of 500 perform to 33,000 people in a custom-made outdoor theatre. The annual TakeOver Festival has achieved national recognition for enabling young people aged 13–25 to develop confidence and leadership skills by taking over the theatre, whilst the creation of the De Grey Cultural Hub has created a popular space for theatre, the arts and events at the heart of the city centre.

Reflecting on the decision to step down Liz Wilson said:

“The last seven and a half years have been the most memorable journey and I feel very fortunate and proud to have worked with an exceptionally talented and dedicated team. It is through their creative vision and ambition that we’ve been able to maintain a 270 year tradition of theatre-making and keep it relevant and responsive to a 21st century audience.

All of the big things we’ve done have been built of strong and mutually supportive partnerships. Our Artistic Director Damian Cruden and I have placed great emphasis on being rooted in the local community. That community has given so much back that I am sure the theatre’s role and impact will continue to grow.

It’s the right time for a change and I’m looking forward to new opportunities, but I would like to thank everyone who has supported me and I shall always remain a great friend, fan and advocate of York Theatre Royal.”

Damian Cruden Artistic Director said:

“Working with Liz has been a pleasure as she has been a true believer in the work and value of our theatre in this community. In particular, her determination to see the capital programme completed and in so doing to have created a theatre space fit for a city of York’s stature, is clear evidence that she has left her mark.”

Between 2015 and 2016 the theatre was closed for more than a year to enable a full £6 million refurbishment. Seeing the closure as an opportunity to do something different, Liz’s team worked with the National Railway Museum to build a 1000 seat venue and stage the award-winning production of The Railway Children, plus a major community production, In Fog and Falling Snow and continuing our commitment to the annual pantomime so beloved by the people of York and recognised as the best pantomime in the country.

With growing confidence, the theatre has also broadened its horizons, working with partners from nine European countries on the innovative active citizenship project Be SpectACTive.

Commenting on Liz’s decision, Chair of the Board of Trustees, Ann Green CBE said:

“On behalf of all the trustees I would like to express our thanks to Liz for the talent, tenacity and tireless energy she has dedicated both to York Theatre Royal and to the city throughout her tenure as our Chief Executive.

Liz has brought the theatre closer to the people of York, raised our profile across the country, overseen some essential structural and operational developments and ensured we stage countless outstanding productions.

She leaves a legacy of successful initiatives from which the public and our partners alike will continue to benefit. As we wish Liz well for the future, we look forward to finding our next Chief Executive, who can build on everything that has been achieved.”

Plans are in place for the recruitment of a new Chief Executive. The theatre will work closely with the Arts Council to progress this.

 

Principal Cast Announced for European Premiere of WORKING

PRINCIPAL CASTING ANNOUNCED FOR

EUROPEAN PREMIERE OF

WORKING

A MUSICAL

AT SOUTHWARK PLAYHOUSE

 

Gillian Bevan, Dean Chisnall, Krysten Cummings, Siubhan Harrison, Peter Polycarpou and Liam Tamne will lead the cast of the European Premiere of WORKING, directed by Luke Sheppard, with choreography by Fabian Aloise. WORKING will open at Southwark Playhouse on 7 June 2017, with previews from 2 June, for a strictly limited season ending 8 July 2017. Further casting to be announced.

Gillian Bevan played regular Clare Hunter in the Channel 4 series Teachers. Her other TV credits include recurring roles in Holby City (BBC1) and Doctors (BBC 1). Gillian recently played the title role in the RSC’s production of Cymbeline. Her previous theatre credits include the Witch in Into the Woods (Manchester Royal Exchange), Mrs Wilkinson in Billy Elliot (West End), Polonia in Hamlet (Manchester Royal Exchange) and Road Show (Menier Chocolate Factory).

 

Krysten Cummings originated the role of Mimi Marquez in the West End production of Rent, for which she received an Olivier Award nomination. She also played the role on Broadway. She most recently appeared in the Arena Tour of Jesus Christ Superstar.

 

Dean Chisnall is currently playing the Narrator in Blood Brothers (UK Tour). His previous theatre credits include the title role in Shrek the Musical (Theatre Royal Drury Lane & National Tour), LoveNever Dies (Adelphi Theatre), La Cage Aux Folles (Playhouse Theatre) and Never Forget (Savoy).

 

Siubhan Harrison most recently starred as Sarah Brown in Guys and Dolls (Savoy and Phoenix Theatres). Her other notable theatre credits include Lorene in From Here to Eternity (Shaftesbury Theatre), Sally Simpson in Tommy (Prince Edward Theatre) and Rizzo in Grease (Piccadilly Theatre).

 

Peter Polycarpou has a wide range of theatre, TV and film credits to his name. He recently appeared as Buddy Fiddler in City of Angels (Donmar Warehouse), Nathan Detroit in Guys and Dolls (Chichester Festival Theatre) & Inspector Messiter in The Magistrate (National Theatre). Peter was part of the original casts of Claude-Michel Schönberg and Alain Boublil’s Les Misérables and Miss Saigon and played Ali Hakim in the National Theatre’s Olivier Award-winning stage and film production of Oklahoma! alongside Hugh Jackman and Maureen Lipman. Peter played regular Chris Theodopolopodous in BBC 1’s Birds of a Feather from 1990-1994 and appeared in the film adaptation of Evita starring Madonna, as well as the 2004 musical film De-Lovely.

 

Liam Tamne most recently starred as Frank N Furter in Rocky Horror Picture Show (UK Tour). His other theatre credits include Raoul, in The Phantom of the Opera (Her Majesty’s Theatre), Enjolras in Les Misérables (The Queen’s Theatre) and Link Larkin in Hairspray (Shaftesbury Theatre). Liam was part of team Will.I.Am on BBC’s The Voice in 2013.

    

WORKING is the extraordinary genre-defining musical from Grammy and Academy Award-winner Stephen Schwartz (Wicked, Godspell) based on Studs Terkel’s best-selling book of interviews with the American workforce: Working: People Talk About What They Do All Day and How They Feel About What They Do. The show has been adapted by Stephen Schwartz and Nina Faso, the creators of Godspell and Rags, with additional contributions by Gordon Greenberg.

 

This highly original and universal portrait of the American workday is told from the perspective of those that the world so often overlooks – the schoolteacher, the housewife, the fireman and the waitress amongst many – whose daily grind and aspirations reflect the truths of the people that make up a nation.  WORKING employs a range of musical styles and genres from contributing composers, including five-time Grammy Award-winner James Taylor and Pulitzer Prize-winner Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton, In The Heights) as well as Craig Carnelia, Micki Grant, Mary Rodgers & Susan Birkenhead.

 

WORKING first opened on Broadway in 1978, under the direction of Stephen Schwartz, with a cast including Patti LuPone, Bob Gunton, Joe Mantegna, David Patrick Kelly and Rex Everhart. The show has since undergone several revisions, with additional songs by Lin-Manuel Miranda being introduced in 2009. WORKING was last performed off-Broadway in December 2012, under the direction of Gordon Greenberg (Holiday InnGuys and Dolls, Jacques Brel Is Alive and Well and Living in Paris).

 

WORKING will have Set Design by Jean Chan, Costume Design by Gabriella Slade, Lighting Design by Nic Farman and Sound Design by Tom Marshall with Musical Supervision by Alex Parker, Musical Direction by Isaac McCullough and Casting by Will Burton CDG.

 

The new production at Southwark Playhouse is performed by arrangement with Music Theatre International (Europe) Limited.

 

WORKING is produced by Jack Maple, Ramin Sabi & D.E.M. Productions.

 

LISTINGS INFORMATION

2 June – 8 July

 

Southwark Playhouse

77-85 Newington Causeway

London SE1 6BD

 

Performance Times:

Monday – Friday 7.30pm

Saturday 3.00pm & 7.30pm

N.B Tuesday 4 July – Additional matinee at 3pm

 

Tickets: £25 and £20 concessions (from £14 during previews) 

Box Office:  020 7407 0234

Website:  southwarkplayhouse.co.uk  / www.workingthemusical.co.uk
Facebook: www.facebook.com/SouthwarkPlayhouse
Twitter: @swkplay

West Side Story Review

Princess Alexandra Auditorium, Yarm – Until 8 April 2017.

Darlington Operatic Society presents West Side Story at the stunning Princess Alexandra Auditorium.

Unquestionably one of musical theater’s most beloved, iconic classics, West Side Story—the stirring Broadway musical that features a book by theater titan Arthur Laurents, music by the incomparable Leonard Bernstein, and lyrics by living legend Stephen Sondheim—remains a still-resonant masterpiece of song, dance and story that explores themes still quite relevant even in modern times. Loosely inspired by William Shakespeare’s tragic drama about star-crossed lovers, “Romeo and Juliet,” the musical is cleverly reset in the tough mean streets of early 20th Century New York City, where two warring teenage street gangs—the Jets, a Caucasian gang, and their rivals, the Sharks, comprised of Puerto Rican immigrants—clash for dominion over their working-class neighborhood.

As the doomed gang members Jason Slater (Bernardo) and Ben Connor (Riff) do nice work, although Connor is more easily able to organically incorporate Riff’s street cred. Karen Stone shines as Anita. Her wonderful voice is matched by her strong emotional, and sometimes comedic, performance.  And while Rhiannon Walker is a ideal Maria with her beauty, sensitivity, touching playfulness and the yearning soar of her soprano, Neil Harland’s Tony is vocally sublime.

As the authority-abusing (and creepily racist) Lt. Schrank, Julian Cound gives his role a convincingly towering, eerie presence that easily justifies why both the Jets and the Sharks hates him. Beside him is Rob Van Vlijmen who does a great job playing Schrank’s lackey, the plump, bumbling Officer Krupke. On the less threatening side is Norman Rudd, who plays super-square, out-of-touch school official Glad Hand, who tries in vain to curb the conflict at the school dance by forcing a co-mingling of the two factions. Poor guy just gets insulted for this efforts. And finally, there’s Doc, owner of the local drug store where Tony works and the one true ray of reason and compassion in the narrative. Played with heart and endearing empathy and a wonderful yorkshire accent by Dougie Clayton, Doc watches helplessly as the teens implode all around him.

This monumental piece of stage craft—originally directed and choreographed by Jerome Robbins—is buoyed by its gorgeous, enchanting score, believably vivid characters, important socio-political motifs, and timeless, inescapable songs like “I Feel Pretty,” “Maria,” “America,” “Tonight,” “Somewhere,” (and many more) that all contribute to the show’s enduring brilliance.

There were a few sound issues last night and maybe a few first night nerves, the band however wonderful could do to be turned down to help the vocals stand out.   But, problems aside,  this still came across as a reasonable production by an amateur group.