Category Archives: What’s on / Listings

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:

http://www.eastwoodparktheatre.co.uk/boxoffice

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

www.beaconartscentre.co.uk

  • Assembly Roxy, Edinburgh

Wednesday 15 November – 7.30pm

www.assemblyroxy.com

  • Scottish Youth Theatre, Glasgow

Thursday 16 & Friday 17 November – 7.30pm

www.rcs.ac.uk/box-office

  • Eastwood Park, Giffnock

Monday 20 November – 7.30pm

www.eastwoodparktheatre.co.uk

  • Eden Court, Inverness

Wednesday 22 November – 7.30pm

www.eden-court.co.uk

  • Woodend Barn, Banchory

Thursday 23 November – 7.30pm

www.thebarnarts.co.uk

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 – https://vimeo.com/231564915

To book tickets  – www.renfrewshireleisure.com/arts 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).

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)

info@platform-online.co.uk

http://www.platform-online.co.uk

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)

http://www.platform-online.co.uk/whats-on/event/391

NEWS: EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL HIT GREEK COMES TO GLASGOW

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

NEWS: STING’S MUSICAL THE LAST SHIP COMES TO GLASGOW STARRING JIMMY NAIL

The Last Ship – the acclaimed musical by the internationally renowned musician Sting – is to play in Glasgow next summer.

The production, which will star British singer-songwriter Jimmy Nail, has a TONY-nominated original score and lyrics composed by Sting. It will run at Theatre Royal from Monday 18 until Saturday 23 June.

Tickets are on sale to ATG Theatre Card holders now and go on general sale this Friday (3 November).

The Last Ship is inspired by Sting’s 1991 album The Soul Cages and his own childhood experiences. It tells the story of a community amid the demise of the shipbuilding industry in Wallsend, Tyne and Wear, with the closure of the town’s Swan Hunter shipyard.

When Gideon Fletcher returns home after seventeen years at sea, tensions between past and future flare in both his family and his town. The local shipyard, around which Wallsend has always revolved, is closing and no-one knows what will come next, only that a half-built ship towers over the terraces.

The show is directed by Lorne Campbell, the artistic director of Northern Stage, with set design by the Tony Award-winning 59 Productions.

One of the country’s most exciting and acclaimed theatre directors, Edinburgh-born Lorne Campbell had his first professional job as an assistant director at Northern Stage, before returning as artistic director in 2013. A graduate of Channel 4’s Young Theatre Director scheme, he has previously worked with the Liverpool Everyman Playhouse, Bath Theatre Royal, Traverse Theatre and Greyscale theatre company, which he co-founded. Productions for Northern Stage include Get Carter, Dr Frankenstein and A Song For Ella Grey

This personal, political and passionate new musical from multiple Grammy Award winner Sting, is an epic account of a family, a community and a great act of defiance. With original music and lyrics by Sting, The Last Ship also features a few of his best-loved songs Island of Souls, All This Time and When We Dance.

This is the proud story of when the last ship sails.

LISTINGS

The Last Ship

Theatre Royal, Glasgow

Monday 18-Saturday 23 June 2018

Mon-Sat eves, 7.30pm

Wed & Sat mat, 2.30pm

www.atgtickets.com/glasgow

0844 871 7647 *calls cost up to 7p per minute plus your phone company’s access charge

INTERVIEW: Paul Grant-Reason on playing his idol George Michael

The winner of 2017 ‘Best Male Tribute Act’ is set to appear as George Michael after 18 years of performing as Robbie Williams – and his show comes to Glasgow in November.

Award-winning performer Paul Grant-Reason will play his personal icon George Michael in the UK tour of ‘Beyond Faith’, celebrating 30 years of FAITH, which launched George’s incredible solo career. Glasgow Theatre Blog had the chance to talk to Paul about the show.

The show is coming to Glasgow’s Eastwood Park Theatre on 17th November 2017 and will take you back to ‘Wham Days’ and ‘Beyond FAITH’ to all the incredible number ones from George’s later catalogue. A real must for all George fans, bringing the passion and energy of George in the 80s and beyond, that made him such a loved, global megastar.

Tickets are priced at £22.50 and if you bring a group of ten people, one person can go free. Available now: www.eastwoodparktheatre.co.uk/boxoffice

Why do you think George’s music still has such an enduring appeal?

He was just born with an incredible gift for melody. Even the early Wham songs that were viewed as throw away, fun pop at the time are seen as classics. He continued to write and produce songs that both touch people and make them want to dance – a rare talent .

How long has it taken for you to perfect your portrayal of George.

My career started professionally in the same year that Faith was released. I was massively influenced by George then, and we covered many of his songs at the time. Although I’ve been involved with paying tribute to other artistes over the years, George has always been my biggest influence as a singer. I guess I’ve spent all of my professional life studying him and finally putting a show on to celebrate his legacy has been a life’s dream. Hard work, but a real joy to keep this music out there for fans like me.

Tell us what we can expect from the show?

We have an incredible band and singers, visuals from his long career and all his biggest hits. I myself aim to capture the late 80s George, but the show takes a loving and fun look at his whole, incredible legacy.

Do you find audiences differ as you travel around the country? 

Depends on the venue, but out job is to bring people what they want. We are lucky that if people are coming to see us, they want what we want: to celebrate this great icon and his music. That travels as a feeling wherever you go.

How do you keep the show fresh when you’re touring?

We keep a similar formula but swap the odd song around. We all love to play and perform and this music is a real gift. It’s so good to perform that we are always on 110% and we feed off the crowds reacting to the songs they love.

What’s your personal favourite song to perform?

It varies from night to night. Praying For Time would have to be up there as a powerful song that’s great to sing and a timeless message .

What song gets the biggest reaction every night?

With so many classics it’s hard to say. You struggle to beat the buzz of a Wham song though.

What’s next for 2017 and beyond?

We’re are enjoying seeing the amount of love there was for George and his music. He knew how much his fans loved him in his life and he is very missed by myself and millions of others. We will play this music with the passion and attention to detail that has taken so much work and deliver a fitting and fun tribute to our hero, George Michael.

At Eastwood Park Theatre on 17th November 2017 ticket details above.

WHAT’S ON NOVEMBER: New choral ensemble Acquire presents In the Beginning: A Musical Journey Through Time

Acquire is a new creative choral ensemble, based in Glasgow. This November they’ll be taking to the stage in The Merchant’s House of Glasgow to perform their inaugural concert, ‘In the Beginning: A Musical Journey Through Time’.

The concert repertoire has been designed to take audiences through history’s most iconic eras, as told by some of musical theatre’s finest songs. The music is varied, challenging, and an absolute joy to perform — and should feature something for everyone.

‘In the Beginning’ will be performed from the 23-25 November in The Merchant’s House.

Tickets for all three nights are available via acquire.org.uk/tickets, but are selling fast — particularly for the Friday and Saturday performances! (Seating is not allocated.)

To find out more, you can visit Acquire’s website at http://www.acquire.org.uk, or follow them on Facebook or Instagram (@AcquireGlasgow).

Header design by Frances Plant.

NEWS: Scottish actor, West End star and singer-songwriter John McLarnon releases debut EP

Glaswegian singer-songwriter and actor John McLarnon releases his much anticipated debut EP Thirty Two Winters on the 20th of November 2017.

Combining soaring melodies and raw vocals Thirty Two Winters acts as an exciting follow up to John’s debut single Snow Angels which reached number four on the iTunes chart upon release.

Influenced by fellow Celtic songwriters Glen Hansard, Damien Rice & Foy Vance, Thirty Two Winters weaves thoughtful powerful lyrics with sweeping folk inspired instrumentation to produce an honest and exciting debut.

As an actor John has most recently appeared as Killick in Season Three of Amazon’s epic drama Outlander and in West-End play Apologia alongside Tony and Emmy award winner Stockard Channing. He also played guitarist Outspan Foster in Roddy Doyle’s hit show The Commitments in London’s West-End and earlier this year was part of the 40th Anniversary production of Abigail’s Party with Sherlock and Mr Selfridge star Amanda Abbington.

John will soon be playing the villain in the Glasgow SEC Pantomime this Christmas alongside Greg McHugh’s Gary Tank Commander.

He will be officially launching his EP with a gig at Drygate Brewery in Glasgow on the 23rd November followed by an intimate acoustic set at Above The Arts Cabaret Club in London’s West End on the 24th.  Tickets available now.

https://www.drygate.com/whats-on/events/john-mclarnon—thirty-two-winters-ep-launch

Thirty Two Winters  will be out on the 20th of Nov and available from all major music platforms and streaming services.

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