Author Archives: glasgowtheatreblog

NEWS: Christina Bianco Brings New ‘Diva-filled’ Show to Glasgow

Internationally acclaimed vocalist Christina Bianco is set to perform in Glasgow with an evening of music, comedy and hilarious impressions.

New Yorker Christina became a YouTube sensation with her ‘diva’ impression videos gaining over 25 million views worldwide and has since appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, The Paul O’Grady Show, This Morning and Graham Norton on BBC Radio 1.

The US singing sensation and impressionist will be performing for one night only and she’s thrilled about returning to Glasgow having missed the chance to play in the city on her last UK tour.

“It’s about time I came back to Glasgow! I didn’t get the chance to play there on my last tour and I sorely missed the wonderful, supportive and rowdy crowds I’ve come to know and love! I’m so excited to return and to play this beautiful venue for the first time, with my friend and music director Ryan MacKenzie by my side. We’re putting together a special, ‘diva’ filled show just for Glasgow. I can’t wait to share it with you all!” 

Direct from her celebrated star turn as Fanny Brice in the hit production of Funny Girl in Paris, Christina’s new show pays tribute to some of the world’s greatest stars and celebrities. Audiences can expect uncanny impressions and spontaneous musical mashups – a show all the family can enjoy.

From Ariana Grande to Celine Dion and Barbra Streisand, no celebrity is safe.

Fans can also take advantage of getting up and close and personal with Christina as she will be doing a ‘meet and greet’ before the show and hopes to play to a packed house for this one-off performance.

Tickets are on sale now from www.forteproductions.co.uk

Christina Bianco will appear at Cottiers Theatre,

93-95 Hyndland Street, Glasgow, G11 5PU

Sunday 31 May 2020. Show starts 8pm. Meet and Greet 7pm.

General tickets £26.50

Meet and greet tickets £36.50.

WHAT’S ON APRIL: The Spinners at Tron Theatre

THE SPINNERS

24th – 25th April 2020, 7.45pm

Spin. Measure. Cut. The Thread of Life… In an exhilarating ride into myth and imagination renowned Scottish director Al Seed and award-winning Australian choreographer and dancer Lina Limosani are set to plunge Tron audiences into the story of the Fates of Greek mythology as part of The Tron’s spring season.

Limosani is joined by dancers Kialea Nadine-Williams and Mara Hulspas to play the three Fates who spin, measure and cut the thread of life, creating an emotionally charged dance- theatre performance which weaves together themes of mortality, freewill and sisterhood.

The Spinners brings the Fates down to earth and re-imagines them living in the heart of a sprawling city. From their humble apartment they oversee the births and deaths of all human beings. Drawing thread from their own bodies they weave mannequins, imbuing them with the breath of life. When a human life is nearing its end the corresponding mannequin is committed to the ether…

The Spinners marks a continuation of Seed and Limosani’s exploration of cross-artform collaboration and demonstrates how contemporary dance can provide a vehicle for intelligent and provocative storytelling – so offering new perspectives on dance itself, as an artform. This project is also a celebration of female-centric dance-theatre and a timely exploration of the female figure in ancient mythology.

Lina Limosani commented: “When long-term friend Al Seed suggested to me the Moirai – Greek Goddesses of Fate and Destiny – as a theme for a collaboration, I did some research and could see that this – and related stories – were saturated with magical images which could be explored through dance and physicality.”

Seed has received Total Theatre, Fringe First and Herald Angel Awards for work presented at Edinburgh Fringe, and a Jerwood Foundation Award for such shows as Raw Beef, The Fooligan and Oog. Limosani has won a number of awards for her latest work Not Today’s Yesterdays, in particular, the 2018 Adelaide Fringe Award for Best Dance.

NEWS: Royal Conservatoire of Scotland perform City of Angels this month

Just about to open in the West End, RCS present City of Angels at the Royal Conservatoire from Sat 14th – Fri 20th March.

Set in the 1940s, against a backdrop of old Hollywood glamour and true-crime tales, a writer struggles to separate his real-life drama from what’s in the pages of his screenplay. A vibrant cast of characters are propelled by a brilliant jazz score through all the twists and turns of fame, fortune and film noire.

Tickets are available from: https://www.rcs.ac.uk/boxoffice-event/eventid/192405-City-of-Angels/

NEWS: Rarely seen musical Big Fish comes to Eastwood Park this May

Ever-innovative theatre company Runway, present the rarely seen musical Big Fish, based on the 1998 novel by Daniel Wallace and the 2003 film starring Albert Finney and Ewan McGregor.

Last seen at The Other Palace theatre in London starring Kelsey Grammer, the show will run at Eastwood Park Theatre from 13 – 16 May 2020.

See image below for more details:

NEWS: Eastwood Park Theatre Offers Backstage Skills School

East Renfrewshire Culture and Leisure is giving young people exclusive access and behind-the-scenes experience of working in a theatre with their new holiday workshops.

Eastwood Park Theatre has introduced technical theatre skills classes during their school holiday programme, offering the chance to develop skills and knowledge around operations, including sound, lighting, front of house, stage management and digital media.

Participants are invited to put their learning into practice at a live show or event.

The workshops are organised during selected school holidays by the team at Eastwood Park Theatre, who host over sixty shows every year, from live theatre productions and music performances to dance, comedy and theatre and film screenings.

Venue technician Laurel Hume, a Theatre studies graduate from the University of Glasgow who has worked at Eastwood Park Theatre for five years, said she wished the programme had been available when she was a pupil.

Laurel said: “Working in the theatre runs in the family – my brother is a Theatre Technician and my mum has appeared on stage in lots of shows,” she said.

“I appeared in several shows at Eastwood Park Theatre when I was a child, including musical plays and drama holiday camps.  I’ve worked as a steward here too and then started helping the technical staff. I always wanted to work in Theatre but there weren’t any behind the scenes or technical classes. It was more focused on those who wanted to be on stage and attend drama classes.

“We now offer both so this year during the Easter holidays, we offer Musical in a Week for those who want to develop their theatre and performance skills and we have Play in a Week – Tech Team, which helps young people learn the skills behind the scenes to make the magic happen.”

12-year-olds Mairead McKee and Dan Miller were two of the first pupils to take part in the course when it first launched last year. They were invited to assist with a show during the theatre’s busy pantomime season and an opera screening.

St. Ninian’s High School pupil Mairead, from Clarkston, said: “Getting a tour of backstage at the theatre and seeing how everything works has been incredible. First of all I went to see the pantomime Cinderella at Eastwood Park with my school and then got to come along and help out with the show one day too. Seeing the two sides to it has been amazing.

“I want to pursue a career in the theatre – probably in stage management.  I’m interested in acting and the technical side so this gives me all round experience.”

Mearns Castle pupil Dan said: “The summer week was really fun and we learned about how lighting cues work and setting everything up behind the scenes. I’m really interested in the technical side of theatre – my favourite subjects at school are IT and drama – so it’s been great experience.”

The technical classes run alongside East Renfrewshire Culture and Leisure’s popular drama classes for kids and teens and the next tech team school is scheduled during the Easter Holidays, from 14-17 April.

Laurel added: “I really enjoy working with the pupils who have a keen interest in learning about the skills they need to work in the theatre. I love my job – it can be hard work but it’s really rewarding.

“It’s a big industry and you learn lots of transferable skills – the pupils might go on to work at music festivals, Stage Management, make their own videos or films or even end up on stage.

“You never know where the experience will take you.”

Play in a Week – Tech Team is part of East Renfrewshire Culture and Leisure’s holiday activity programme. The classes are aimed at those aged 11-14, running from 14-17 April (10am to 3pm) and costs £82. Participants will practice new skills, working with young performers on staging their devised piece of theatre, leading up to a final showcase of all the skills they acquire.

East Renfrewshire Culture and Leisure has lined up a range of creative, imaginative and fun activities to keep kids busy during the Easter and summer holidays.  To find out more and book visit: https://www.ercultureandleisure.org/holidays2020 or call 0141 577 4956.

Images: Mairead McKee and Dan Miller with Laurel Hume from Eastwood Park Theatre.

INTERVIEW: Star of Taskmaster, Derek and Afterlife, Kerry Godliman

Kerry Godliman is a woman who gets things done, as anybody who saw the comic win series seven of Taskmaster in 2018 knows. And now she is touring her new stand-up show, BOSH, the title of which is inspired by that experience.

She explains: “Greg Davies [Taskmaster’s presenter] used to say, ‘Here comes Godliman, boshing along’. I wouldn’t describe myself as intellectual but I am quite a rational person and don’t over-complicate things. I work out what’s useful and then crack on, and that seemed to work on the show.”

She stops and recalls with a laugh: “I certainly didn’t overthink it, and one time Greg said I was like Phil Mitchell, which wasn’t very complimentary.”

She describes BOSH: “It’s just me talking about the last year or two, observations I’ve made and experiences I’ve had. I suppose it’s essentially about being in your mid-forties and being a parent and trying to be a good human being.

“One of the themes of the show is about what it is like living in 2020, trying to manage modern life, my slight bewilderment at consumerism and trying to be ethical.”

Much of Godliman’s material comes from her own life – “a cartoonish, exaggerated version of it” or “sometimes a line might come from something I’ve said on Twitter and it’s caused a response that I find interesting”. But she’s not the kind of comic who listens to other people’s conversations in cafes or on buses for material. “Oh no, I don’t do that,” she says, laughing. “People can chat away with no fear of turning up in my show.”

Godliman admits she can be a bit of a worrier, and reads a lot of lifestyle books and articles, taking “positives from some and discarding others that are less helpful. The trick is in knowing which is which, of course”.

She reserves scorn for the modern profusion of parenting books, many of which she finds judgmental or downright unhelpful. “There used to be just one parenting book and now there are whole sections of bookshops with them.

“I talk a lot about parenting in the show, although it’s not specifically about my kids [a son and daughter aged 12 and nine] because they didn’t ask to be on stage.

“It’s more about my failings as a parent, of always trying to do the right thing. I read a lot of parenting books and I always seem to fall short of what they expect – I think for a lot of people parenting is just managing guilt to varying degrees.”

Aside from her stand-up, many will know Godliman through her extensive acting CV, including starring in two of Ricky Gervais’s comedy dramas, Derek and After Life. “I had met Ricky at gigs and had bit parts in his other shows before he asked me to appear in Derek,” she says.

“I’ve been lucky that I’ve always done both acting and comedy, and I love what I do so none of it is arduous or a pain. But the work-life balance is something I always have to keep an eye on, and I’m getting better at saying no to some work.”

That means Godliman can spend more time at home with her husband and children in south London. She’s a homebody nowadays, she says. “When I was younger I went travelling and was out all the time and did a lot of partying, but now I want to be at home as much as I can. I miss the kids and try not to be away for more than a couple of nights.”

She did have to be away for a few weeks last year [2019] to film Treadstone, a US television series based on the Jason Bourne films. She loved the experience.

“It was so out of my comfort zone,” she says, “but that was good. For a start I was playing an American, the first time I’d done that. It was a big, high-production-values, flashy US TV series. It was unlike anything else I have ever done.”

She adds drily: “Most parts I’ve played as an actress have involved a tabard, and here I was on set watching this amazing fight scene being put together. It was a like a dance – the choreography was extraordinary – and it was amazing being part of this world.

“I love acting because I get to work with other people, it’s storytelling and I can play a character I’ve never played before. But in a big Hollywood production like Treadstone you are a small cog in a very big machine. I had something like 20 recalls before I got the part and although I loved it, it made me grateful that I do stand-up as well.”

Stand-up brings different rewards, Godliman says, and she made her debut in the Royal Variety Show in December [2019]. “I enjoyed it. It’s a long day doing teching and so on but it’s fun. It’s always difficult to find some appropriate material, but I did some stuff about parenting because the Cambridges can relate to it. They seem nice people, it was a nice gig and it’s for a good charity.”

We get back to BOSH. “I’m bringing my kids up in the 21st century and we have to wrestle with social media and smart phones,” the comic says. “But I was brought up in the 20th century, when I was allowed to be bored, and kids now don’t get much opportunity for that. It feels now that you have to be engaging with your children all time, which is ludicrous.”

One of the ways she would like to engage more with her children, though, is camping, which they now think is boring. But Godliman loves it and is sad they have already outgrown it. “My parents used to take me and I suppose it’s in my bones,” she says. “I have a bizarre love of camping; it starts with concertina’d colanders and goes from there.”

Veronica Lee

Kerry Godliman’s new show  BOSH  reaches  The Stand, Glasgow  on  Wednesday, 25th March.

WHAT’S ON MARCH: Kerry Godliman’s BOSH comes to The Stand Glasgow this month

Kerry Godliman’s new show BOSH reaches The Stand, Glasgow on Wednesday, 25th March. 
Kerry Godliman is back on tour after what she thought would be a little ‘she’ time. No chance. Her bosh-like nature will never let her rest. Well, that and a needy cat, a constantly disappointing camper van, and ever-raging feelings of mum guilt and bewilderment at the phasing-out of thimbles. All will be explained!
As seen on Derek, Bad Move, Mock The Week, Live at the Apollo, Taskmaster, Michael McIntyre’s Big Show, 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown and Call The Midwife, and heard on The News Quiz, The Now Show and I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue. Kerry has performed stand-up throughout her
comedy career, encompassing national tours and successful runs at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Following on from a successful first series, Kerry will again star in Ricky Gervais’ After Life on Netflix – and series two hits the screens on 24th April. The show’s first series was hugely popular on both sides of the pond, so the second is eagerly awaited – and Kerry will return as the protagonist’s deceased wife, Lisa.

 

Besides this, in summer 2019 Kerry joined the cast of Adult Material, a new Channel 4 drama about the porn industry – in which she plays the part of MP Stella Maitland. It will air in the spring. And in April, Sky Atlantic viewers will see Kerry reprise her role as Teens in the mystery Drama Save Me.

 

Kerry also performed a hilarious set at the 2019 Royal Variety Performance from the London Palladium, which aired in December.

NEWS: A brand new musical launches in Glasgow

“My Big Fat Crazy Musical” tells the story of Sophie, a young Glasgow girl who dreams of becoming a star. Constrained by her mother’s opposing view of pursuing an education and a real job rather than a ‘pipe-dream’, Sophie begins to resign to the fact that maybe it’s just not meant to be.
26 – 28 March at Clarkston Hall, Clarkston 
However, after another ‘one of those talks’ with her mother, her world gets thrown into musical mania as a very familiar but incredibly unexpected face appears to her one evening. In Charles Dickens-esque fashion, Sophie and her celebrity companion delve deep into the wild world of musicals, meeting the crème de la crème from past and present, each prepared with their own tale of life, love and stardom.
With her dream starting to feel like a possible reality, Sophie’s relationship with her mother begins to bear the pressure as the cracks rapidly rise to the surface.
Can musical royalty help Sophie claim the throne of theatreland? Or will the relationship with her mother fizzle out the fame flame for good?
Get your tickets here or contact us on theatresouthproductions@hotmail.com for more information.

NEWS: New tour dates and full cast announced for 2020 revival of The Cheviot, The Stag, and the Black Black Oil

Following the sold-out success of its 2019 tour, John McGrath’s legendary The Cheviot, The Stag, and the Black Black Oil returns for a new Scottish tour in 2020.

One of the country’s most iconic and influential plays, The Cheviot, The Stag, and the Black Black Oil was first staged by the 7:84 Theatre Company in the 1970s, becoming a cornerstone of contemporary Scottish theatre. Successfully restaged by director Joe Douglas in 2015, the show was produced by the National Theatre of Scotland in 2019, visiting art centres and rural communities across Scotland before the play’s English premiere at Newcastle’s Live Theatre.

The 2020 tour will open in Glasgow with a two-week engagement at the city’s famous Pavilion Theatre. It marks the first time that a National Theatre of Scotland production has visited the historic venue, one of the oldest theatre buildings in the city.

The production will then embark on the first leg of a rural tour, visiting venues in Achiltibuie, Rogart, St Andrews, Musselburgh, Peebles, and Dumfries, as well as returning to Dundee Rep Theatre, where director Joe Douglas’s revived production broke box office records in 2015. It will then tour across the Highlands and Islands, including visits to Lochawe, Uist, Tarbert, Caithness, Tain, Findhorn, Drumnadrochit, Strontian, Ballachulish, and Gartmore.

Cast members from the successful 2019 revival Stephen Bangs, Jo Freer, Christina Gordon, and Billy Mack are reunited and joined by Cameron Barnes and Charlie West for the 2020 tour. Returning cast member Calum MacDonald will also perform as part of the ensemble for the first half of the tour, from 30 April to 29 May, before Sally Swanson joins for tour dates from 01 to 20 June.

More than forty-five years on from its original tour, John McGrath’s pivotal political play has lost none of its vitality and relevance. A multi-talented ensemble cast of actor/musicians chart a rousing and rollicking course through Scotland’s history, expertly weaving, songs, poems, scenes and sketches into a piece of theatre with the feel of a freewheeling Highland ceilidh.

From the ruthless croft clearances of the 18th century to the fashionable Victorian game hunts, and the scars left by the ‘70s North Sea oil boom right up to the political upheaval of the current day, The Cheviot, The Stag, and the Black, Black Oil presents the stories and experiences of Scotland’s land, sea, and the people that work on them across the centuries.

The Cheviot, the Stag and the Black, Black Oil is the most famous production of the 7:84 company, set up by John McGrath alongside his wife Elizabeth MacLennan and her brother David in 1971. Avowedly socialist in its outlook, its aim was to take popular, political theatre to the working classes and they performed in alternative venues throughout Scotland, England and Wales. The title of the company derived from a 1966 statistic that 7% of the population of Great Britain owned 84 % of the wealth.

Opening at the Pavilion, Glasgow (30 April to 09 May); Coigach Hall, Achiltibuie (12 May); Pittentrail Hall, Rogart (14 May); The Byre, St Andrews (16 May); Brunton Theatre, Musselburgh (19 May); Eastgate Theatre, Peebles (20 May); Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival (22 & 23 May); Dundee Rep Theatre (26 to 29 May); Dalmally Community Hall, Lochawe (01 June); Southend Community Hall, South Uist (03 June); Tarbert Community Centre, Isle of Harris (05 & 06 June); Latheron Village Hall, Caithness (09 June); Edderton Village Hall, Tain (10 June); Universal Hall, Findhorn (12 &13 June); Craigmore Centre, Drumnadrochit (15 June); Sunart Centre, Strontian (17 June); Ballachulish Village Hall, Glencoe (18 June); Gartmore Village Hall, Gartmore (20 June)

Information:

The Pavilion, Glasgow – Thursday 30 April – Saturday 02 May; Thursday 07 – Saturday 09 May @ 7.30pm; Saturday 02 & 09 May @ 2pm & 7.30pm

Tickets – £17.50-£21.50

Access Information:

Thursday 07 May @ 7.30pm BSL interpreted & captioned performance

 

Coigach Hall, Achiltibuie – Tuesday 12 May @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £10 – £12

 

Pittentrail Hall, Rogart Thursday 14 May @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £10 – £12

 

The Byre, St AndrewsSaturday 16 May @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £16 – £18

 

Brunton Theatre, Musselburgh – Tuesday 19 May @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £16 – £18

 

Eastgate Theatre, Peebles– Wednesday 20 May @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £16 – £18

 

Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival

Friday 22 May @ 7.30pm and Saturday 23 May @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £16

 

Dundee Rep – Tuesday 26-Friday 29 May @ 7.30pm; Tuesday 26 & Thursday 28 May 2.30pm & 7.30pm

Tickets: £22-£12 (£20-£9)

Access Information:

Wednesday 27 May @ 7.30pm BSL interpreted, audio described & captioned performance

 

Dalmally Community Hall, Lochawe – 01 June @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £10 – £12

 

South End Community Hall, South Uist – Wednesday 03 June @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £10 – £12

 

Tarbert Community Centre, Isle of Harris – Friday 05 & Saturday 06 June @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £10 – £12

 

Latheron Village Hall, Caithness – Tuesday 09 June @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £10 – £12

 

Edderton Village Hall, Tain – Wednesday 10 June @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £10 – £12

 

Universal Hall, Findhorn – Friday 12 & Saturday 13 June @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £12 – £14

 

Craigmonie Centre, Drumnadrochit – Monday 15 June @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £10 – £12

 

Sunart Centre, Strontian – 17 June @ 7.30pm

Tickets – £10 – £12

 

Ballachulish Village Hall, Glencoe – Thursday 18 June @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £10 – £12

 

Gartmore Village Hall, Gartmore – Saturday 20 June @ 7.30pm

Tickets: £10 – £12

 

Box Office information

 

Box Office Brunton Theatre: thebrunton.co.uk

Box Office Dundee Rep Theatre: dundeerep.co.uk

Box office Byre Theatre: byretheatre.com

Box office Pavilion Theatre: paviliontheatre.co.uk

 

Box office for all other dates: nationaltheatrescotland.com

 

Recommended Age Guide: 14+

 

All performances are autism friendly and all venues are fully accessible.

 

Full tour dates and booking info: natinaltheatrescotland.com

 

Theatre for a Fiver –£5 ticket deals and discount codes for 14 to 26 year olds for many National Theatre of Scotland production. Full info here

NEWS: West End star and Sunday Times bestseller Carrie Hope Fletcher reveals title of Ballet Shoes inspired children’s book endorsed by Noel Streatfeild estate

Carrie Hope Fletcher, West End star of Les Mis and the forthcoming Andrew Lloyd Webber version of Cinderella, has today announced the title of her forthcoming book inspired by the much-loved classic Ballet Shoes by Noel Streatfeild and created with the official endorsement of her estate.

INTO THE SPOTLIGHT is a timeless yet contemporary tale of three adopted children who live in a rickety-old-theatre with their eccentric Great Aunt Maude; told throughout with exquisite humour, heart and warmth.

Inspired by the much-loved classic Ballet Shoes by Noel Streatfeild and created with the official endorsement of her estate, Fletcher’s middle grade debut is a timeless yet contemporary tale of three adopted children who live in a rickety-old-theatre with their eccentric Great Aunt Maude; told throughout with exquisite humour, heart and warmth.

Carrie Hope Fletcher is an actress, singer and vlogger with over a million subscribers. Her first book, All I Know Now, and first novel, On the Other Side, were both released to critical and commercial acclaim and each became No.1 Sunday Times bestsellers.  On Stage, Carrie won a WhatsOnStage Award for the role of Eponine in Les Misérables at the Queen’s Theatre in London’s West End, was acclaimed as Truly Scrumptious in a six-month run of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, toured the UK as Wednesday Addams in the national UK theatre tour of The Addams Family musical and was part of the original West End cast of the musical Heathers.

Carrie Hope Fletcher said: ‘Writing my first children’s novel is exciting enough but to be writing a Ballet Shoes inspired novel with the endorsement of Noel Streatfeild’s estate? It’s more than I ever could have imagined. When I was growing up, books were pure magic. A sense of escapism when the world got a bit too loud and scary. It feels very special to now be able to provide that escapism for other children.’

The Noel Streatfeild Estate said: ‘By a leap of imagination, Carrie uses Ballet Shoes as the backdrop in this tale of the theatre and inspiration.’   Carmen McCullough, Commissioning Editor at Penguin Random House Children’s said: ‘I could not be more thrilled to have acquired this very special book from Carrie in conjunction with the Noel Streatfeild estate. Carrie is a powerhouse of talent – I have long been a fan of her writing and her innate ability to balance contemporary settings with a classic nostalgic feel and a touch of magic. Writing for children is such a natural next step for Carrie and we are incredibly excited to welcome her to the Puffin family.’

To accompany this release and in celebration of the 125th anniversary of Noel Streatfeild’s birth, Puffin will also reissue the original Ballet Shoes in a beautiful new package.

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