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GUEST REVIEW: One Night Only – Westerwood Hotel, Cumbernauld by Fraser MacDonald

Musical Director: Fraser Morrison

Ensemble: Cumbernauld Musical Theatre Society

Reviewer: Fraser MacDonald

As a brand-spanking new company, Cumbernauld Musical Theatre Society waste no time in showcasing their talent in a number of One Night Only shows.

The intimate setting allows the audience to interact with its cast, whilst still keeping a strictly professional feel. Production values are high for an amateur company.

As musical revues go, One Night Only caters for all. It offers a selection of hit Broadway shows that are known to the masses as well as off-Broadway musical numbers. Combining the two offers a platform for less known standards that is refreshing to see in an amateur show.

Carousel’’s You’ll Never Walk Alone is a stand out piece, delicately arranged with the a cappella section ringing out to a dewy-eyed audience. Once We Were Kings from Billy Elliot is another gem in a packed set.

The extensive set may be lengthy, but it affords almost all of the ensemble a solo number. Each is of a standard far beyond expectations of a fledgling company on their first showcase.

The efforts of musical director president Fraser Morrison are rewarded in this first series of shows for the Cumbernauld Musical Theatre Society. If One Night Only is anything to go by, the Cumbernauld Musical Theatre society has a long and successful future ahead of it – this show certainly hits the right note!

Reviewed on 4 November 2017

Critic Contact: 


NEWS: Winterfest is coming to East Renfrewshire

East Renfrewshire Culture and Leisure is getting into the festive swing with ‘Winterfest’ – a packed programme of Christmas cheer for children and adults alike.

Sell-out success from last year, Elf Academy returns in December with Christmas craft, baking and wintery tales while Christmas Baby Discos will let your little ones get in the festive spirit with action songs, party games, classic tunes and festive hits on Sunday 17 December and Saturday 23 December.

Experience the story of the most inspirational film of all time, with ‘It’s A Wonderful Life’ brought to life as a Live Radio Play. Be transported back to the 1940s with this comic, dark and wonderful classic story, featuring live sound effects, live music and mulled wine and mince pies at Carmichael Hall in Eastwood Park on Saturday 9 December.

Chaos at Christmas panto for ages 2+ is touring various venues in East Renfrewshire, starting on 28 November at Clarkston Halls, while you can also catch some of the best festive family films with Elf, Home Alone, The Grinch, The Muppets and Nativity all lined up in the lead up to Christmas.

Join in the banter with Snow White and the Seven Muppets from 18-30 December, an all signing, all dancing trip to Pantoland. A must-see for all the family, the show is brought to Eastwood Park by Inside Out Theatre productions, following the success of last year’s smash hit A Belter of a Cinderella Story.

There are also Christmas craft classes for adults on offer, including lino-printing session to make your own cards and gift wrap, Make a Wreath and Tree Decorations as well as Winter Photography in the Park.

You can also catch some of the best festive family films with Elf, Home Alone, The Grinch, The Muppets and Nativity lined up for the big screen at Eastwood Park Theatre in the lead up to Christmas.

To see the full programme of winter events and to book tickets visit:

NEWS: Theatregoers encouraged to make their mark at the Edinburgh Playhouse

For more than eight decades the Edinburgh Playhouse has provided the backdrop for some of the most iconic shows and names in musical theatre and live entertainment. Now theatregoers are being given the opportunity to make their mark on the UK’s largest theatre by sponsoring a seat.

Members of the public can sponsor their favourite seat in the Stalls and Circle level areas of the A-listed auditorium for 10 years for £150. ATG Theatre Card holders can become seat sponsors for £110.

Each selected seat will carry a plaque bearing a name or inscription of the sponsor’s choosing. A unique way to mark a special moment, occasion or to be given as a gift, seats can be dedicated to family and friends or sponsored to mark that first trip to the theatre, or they can carry a quote from a favourite musical or even celebrate the life of a loved one.

As well as a plaque fitted to the back of their chosen seat, sponsors will also receive a year’s ATG Theatre Card membership, worth £40, entitling holders to priority booking and discounts, amongst many other benefits. A mention on the ATG website and an invitation to a special reception to view individual plaques and receive a guided, behind the scenes tour of the theatre are all included.

In addition to this everyone who sponsors a seat at the Playhouse before midday on Friday 15th December 2017 will automatically be entered into a grand prize draw. One person will win a pair of tickets to every show in 2018.

Jennifer Wallace, Sales and Development Manager at the Edinburgh Playhouse, which is an Ambassador Theatre Group (ATG) venue, said: “The Playhouse has been showcasing the best in live entertainment to audiences for more than 80 years. It’s been the stage for iconic West End musicals and sell-out gigs. With a wealth of entertainment history the theatre holds significant meaning for many performers and audiences alike. It’s only fitting that theatregoers have the chance to make their own mark on the Playhouse and sponsor a seat. “We really want to encourage people to celebrate their own special moments and occasions with this unique sponsorship opportunity – a chance to put their name on the best seat in the house.”

For more information or to sponsor a seat at the Edinburgh Playhouse, please visit:

NEWS: Students from UK’s only performance degree for deaf actors challenge perceptions and celebrate diversity in a dynamic new production

They are the actors breaking down barriers in Scottish theatre. The first cohort of students from the UK’s only degree course for D/deaf* performers will challenge perceptions, celebrate diversity and promote inclusion when they tour Scotland next week in an exhilarating new production that blends British Sign Language (BSL) and English.

The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, in association with pioneering Glasgow-based theatre company Solar Bear, present Love and Information by celebrated playwright, Caryl Churchill. It stars all ten students from the groundbreaking BA Performance in British Sign Language and English programme at Scotland’s national conservatoire, one of the world’s top three performing arts education institutions.

A series of short scenes about how we live in a world bombarded by information, Love and Information playfully explores different ways of making work for both D/deaf and hearing audiences. Some scenes will be in British Sign Language, some will be in English and others will be a mix of both. Captioning will be used extensively.

The tour opens at The Beacon Arts Centre in Greenock on November 14 and will visit Edinburgh, Glasgow, Giffnock, Inverness and Banchory.

The Royal Conservatoire’s three-year BA Performance in British Sign Language and English degree, which launched in 2015, was developed in association with Solar Bear with input from a range of theatre, education and D/deaf professionals. It teaches students to be both actors and makers of work, exploring innovative ways of creating performance through British Sign Language and English. Students have fully-qualified BSL interpreters in class, on stage and in rehearsal.

Claire Lamont, Head of the BA Performance in British Sign Language and English programme at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, said: “Love and Information showcases the talents of our final year students and also gives an insight into the exciting creative possibilities that exist when working between British Sign Language and English. The work being produced with these students marks a defining moment in our theatre history and we look forward to the impact they will have in Scotland and beyond.

“The Royal Conservatoire’s BA Performance in British Sign Language and English is breaking new ground. As well as delivering dedicated professional performance education for students, we are providing the industry with a new generation of talented and diverse performers.”

Since 2002, Solar Bear has established itself as a force of change within the arts sector. It works with D/deaf performers, D/deaf theatre makers and young D/deaf people to create new and inclusive theatre.

Jonathan Lloyd, Creative Director of Solar Bear, said: “I’m really excited to be working with such an extraordinary talented group of actors, especially as their work will be seen more widely around Scotland for the first time.”

To date, the BA Performance students have performed in an adaptation of Davey Anderson’s Scavengers, in a series of performances that they created for the On the Verge festival at the Citizens Theatre and they were part of New Dreams, the Shakespeare400 celebration with the University of Glasgow, Glasgow School of Art and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra. Students benefit from many professional and collaborative partnerships including the National Theatre of Scotland, Solar Bear and BBC.

The students will graduate in July 2018 and will showcase their work in Glasgow and London in March of next year. In order to further explore the opportunities that lie ahead for this group of artists and for the industry, the Now You See Me Symposium will be held in Glasgow on November 17. Co-produced by the Royal Conservatoire and Solar Bear, it will take place at Scottish Youth Theatre in the Merchant City. Tickets are free however limited places remain.

Applications are now open for the second cohort of D/deaf or hard of hearing performers for the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland’s BA Performance in British Sign Language and English programme, which will begin in September 2018.

*Deaf has many meanings; Deaf relates to the cultural community, deaf relates to someone who medically identifies with hearing loss. People who use Sign Language, have cochlear implants and wear hearing aids may all identify as D/deaf.

Tour dates and tickets:

  • The Beacon Arts Centre, Greenock

Tuesday 14 November – 7.30pm

  • Assembly Roxy, Edinburgh

Wednesday 15 November – 7.30pm

  • Scottish Youth Theatre, Glasgow

Thursday 16 & Friday 17 November – 7.30pm

  • Eastwood Park, Giffnock

Monday 20 November – 7.30pm

  • Eden Court, Inverness

Wednesday 22 November – 7.30pm

  • Woodend Barn, Banchory

Thursday 23 November – 7.30pm

WHAT’S ON NOVEMBER: The Hidden, an interactive, site specific theatrical experience designed especially for teenagers

In celebration of Paisley Arts Centre turning 30, Visible Fictions return to their Paisley roots to present a new site-specific piece at Paisley Central Library.  

Visible Fictions have been producing award winning creative experiences for young people since 1991 and it all started in Paisley Arts Centre where Visible Fictions had their first home. Since then the company has gone from strength to strength, touring the world and redefining what theatre is and where it can happen.

This November Visible Fictions are very excited to present a new experience in Paisley Central Library.  The Hidden is a dramatic, participatory event involving a series of complex clues, codes and puzzles designed to take the audience on a journey of discovery.

Someone has gone missing but have they left messages behind?  Hidden in books, written on index cards, scribbled on the back of an old photograph; there is a mystery waiting to be solved.

Played out in Paisley Central Library, your task is to piece the story together using all the clues you can find, but should you share your theory or keep it to yourself?

Work as a team to rewrite the history books, just be careful which path you chose to go down . . .

The Hidden is a dramatic, interactive experience for small groups of adults and teenagers.  The participants will work as a team to make sense of clues and come up with their own theory to solve the mystery.

Douglas Irvine, Artistic Director comments “Creating this dramatic experience has been both thrilling and challenging, there are many complexities, twists and turns and we can’t wait to see the decisions our audiences take.  Presenting this new piece in Paisley means a lot to our company and we are thrilled to be premiering this unusual performance in the town. “

View the trailer here –

To book tickets  – or call 0300 300 1210

What –                The Hidden, an interactive, site specific theatrical experience designed especially for teenagers. 

Where –              Paisley Central Library, 68 High Street, Paisley, PA1 2BB.

When –                Public Performances – 28 & 30 Nov @ 7pm (suitable for teenagers and adults).

Schools Performances – 27 Nov – 1 Dec (suitable for S5 & S6).

FEATURE: Peachy Brew Launched With the Appointment of Fallen’s New Lead Brewer

Our friends at Fallen Brewing, the craft brewery in the old Kippen railway station, has launched a 5.4% (ABV) Peaches and Cream Pale Ale designed and brewed by new Lead Brewer, Jamie Lockhart.

Formerly of Williams Bros, Lockhart has a degree in brewing and distilling from Heriot Watt and has been brewing beers for six years. He will be taking over the day to day brewing of the Fallen Brewing range comprising eight core craft beers, with responsibility for a further 16 special brews including his first creation a Peaches and Cream Pale Ale at 5.4% ABV.

Owner and MD Paul Fallen comments, “Jamie’s technical brewing knowledge will be a real asset to the team and it frees my time up to be able to focus on other areas of the ever-expanding business.”

“Since the installation of our new building and fermenters and implementation of our new canning line earlier this year our output has increased significantly, sales are growing week-on-week and it is the right time for Fallen Brewing to bring in a Lead Brewer to look after daily activities in the Brewhouse.”

“It’s an exciting time to be working at such a dynamic brewery. Paul is really committed to creating an interesting range of rich, full flavoured beers and I’ve been given the go-ahead to add to this range. My first brew is a Peaches and Cream Pale made with lactose, vanilla and the peach which goes in during conditioning. We used Magnum hops for bittering and Simcoe and Cascade which were added at the end of the boil and during fermentation.” Says Jamie Lockhart, Lead Brewer at Fallen Brewing.

Glasgow Theatre Blog had the chance to do a bit of reviewing of the new brew.

This cloudy ale poured with a good head, it has a gentle fruity aroma as befitting its peaches and cream origins, this is a smooth, easy drink with a pleasant, full, lingering aftertaste. Highly recommended.

The Peaches and Cream Pale Ale will be called Southbound, in line with Fallen Brewing’s railway station theme inspired by its location in the Old Kippen Brewery. And the reason it is south bound is that peaches and cream is a traditional dessert in the southern states of America.

It will be available in keg and cans, RRP from £2.80 for 330ml from independent stockists and off-licences across Scotland and the North of England, and online. For a full range of Stockists visit:

For our previous review see here

WHAT’S ON DECEMBER: Ricky McWhittington a Glasgow panto ideal for children (5yrs+) and adults alike!

Senga McWhittington’s Sweetie Shop in downtown Glasgow is over-run by a swarm of rats, led by the villainous verminous Queen Rat. Nothing can stop this plague until our hero Ricky McWhittington steps in to save the day, with the helping wand of Fairy Gallus Alice, and fearless feline Kitty.

Will good win out? Will Melody find her true love? Will Senga get a man? A festive show bursting with laughs, singalong favourites and family fun.

By Alan McHugh and presented by Glasgow Life.

Ricky McWhittington – Tue 19 – Sat 23 Dec (various times – see website for details)

Age 5yrs+

Tickets: £8.50 / £5 / £4.50 (Local Links)

Platform, The Bridge,

1000 Westerhouse Road

Easterhouse, G34 9JW

T: 0141 276 9696 (opt 1)

WHAT’S ON DECEMBER: Platform’s Festive Shows – Rudolph, for the over 3s

Rudolf aimed at everyone from age 3yrs and up and is ideal for a fun festive outing for all the family.

It’s Christmas, but it’s hard to celebrate with no cards, tree, presents or food. If only Esmerelda the chicken would agree to laying an egg…but Esmerelda just won’t be persuaded, unless she hears her favourite story – Rudolf. And so, using their imaginations, the objects in their tiny house and a strong sense of the ridiculous, our two unlikely storytellers attempt the tale of Rudolf, the reindeer that just doesn’t fit in.

Presented by Andy Manley and Platform, the show runs for 50 minutes with no interval – perfect for little ones.

Rudolf – Tue 5 – Sun 17 Dec (various times during day and evening)

Age 3yrs+

Tickets: £8.50 / £5 / £4.50 (Local Links)


The King’s Theatre and Theatre Royal have launched an initiative that will reward local heroes of Glasgow and beyond.

The city centre venues, which are operated by Ambassador Theatre Group, will offer 2 for 1 tickets on selected shows and performances running in January 2018 to those working for Scottish Fire and Rescue, Scottish Ambulance, Police Scotland, RNLI, RAF and the Armed Forces. The offer will also be available to Teachers and those working in the NHS.

The move came when the two theatres, who work closely with Tickets for Troops to provide tickets for Armed Forces, wanted to extend their offer to more of Scotland’s heroes.

James Haworth, Theatre Director, at the King’s and Theatre said: “I’m extremely proud that our venues are offering this as a way of thanks to those who have dedicated their lives to helping others.

“Whether you be a nurse; a firefighter; a lifeguard; police officer; armed forces member; teacher or doctor, I hope you will take advantage of this and enjoy a fabulous trip to our theatres on your very well earned night or afternoon off.”

To claim the offer, all heroes have to do is quote LOCALHERO when booking at the box office, over the phone or online then show a valid work ID badge or payslip when collecting tickets.


The main box office is based at Theatre Royal and handles sales for both venues. The box office at Theatre Royal is open Mon-Sat, 10am-6pm while the King’s box office opens 90 minutes before a performance for collections and on-the-night sales.


Phone: 0844 871 7648


Sleeping Beauty

Sat 2 Dec 2017 – Sun 7 Jan 2018

Selected January performances, please see box office for full details.


Someone Like You: The Adele Songbook

Tue 9 Jan 2018, 7.30pm


Vampire Rock: The Ghost Train

Thu 11 Jan 2018, 7.30pm


Queen of the Night

Fri 12 Jan 2018, 7.30pm


Tango Moderno

Tue 16 – Sat 20 Jan 2018

Local Hero available on Wed and Thu performances


The Sound of Music (tbc)

Tue 23 –Sat 27 Jan 2018

Local Hero available on Wed and Thu performances



Phone:  0844 871 7647

Scottish Ballet: The Nutcracker (tbc)

Thu 4 – Sat 13 Jan 2018


Hedda Gabler

Mon 15 – Sat 20 Jan 2018

Local Hero available on Tue, Wed and Thu performances


Strangers on a Train

Mon 22 – Sat 27 Jan 2018

Local Hero available on Tue, Wed and Thu performances


Greek, the modern re-telling of the Oedipus myth by Mark-Anthony Turnage, is coming to Glasgow on February 2 and 3 2017 following a critically acclaimed run at Edinburgh International Festival in August.

Based on the play by Steven Berkoff, this co-production with Opera Ventures, directed by Young Vic Artistic Associate Joe Hill-Gibbins is revived by Daisy Evans, and designed by Johannes Schütz.

Conducted by Scottish Opera’s Music Director, Stuart Stratford (2 Feb) and Finnegan Downie Dear (3 Feb), Emerging Artist Alex Otterburn (La traviata 2017), winner of an International Opera Award bursary, reprises the role of Eddy and is joined by a wealth of British talent: Susan Bullock, Allison Cook and Henry Waddington.Turnage’s anarchic, provocative opera exposes the seedy world of Eddy and his family. Stuck in a rut, Eddy longs for more, so when he is told of a prophecy that he will kill his father and bed his mother he is appalled, leaving home to seek a different life. But can he escape the plague that is coming, or is he, in fact, the source?

Joe Hill-Gibbins said: ‘I love Greek. It’s punky and irreverent, but beautiful and lyrical too. And it has an amazing contemporary resonance. Its air of discontent – of a black cloud hanging over society – really chimes with us today.’

Alex Otterburn said: ‘The role of Eddy is a dream come true. He goes through a lot at a young age, and it’s very traumatic, so you have a huge range of emotions to work with when playing him. Plus I get to wear a bright red tracksuit and trainers for most of the show! I can’t wait to play him again. Performing Greek at the opening weekend of Edinburgh International Festival felt surreal; a couple of months before I was still in college! I feel incredibly fortunate to have made my UK debut singing Eddy.’

Those who are visually impaired can enjoy the full opera experience at an audio-described performance of Greek on February 3, which has live commentary that describes the action on stage without compromising the music, as well as a free Touch Tour of the set, costumes and props before the show.

Theatre Royal Glasgow, Glasgow, 282 Hope Street, Glasgow G2 3QA

Fri 2 Feb, 7.15pm

Sat 3 Feb, 7.15pm

Events for those with visual impairment

Greek, Touch Tour

Sat 3 Feb, 6pm

Greek, Audio-described performance

Sat 3 Feb, 7.15pm

Images – Jane Hobson

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