Category Archives: What’s on APRIL

NEWS: New Glasgow theatre group Green Door Theatre present Stephen Sondheim’s Assassins at Websters

A rare treat is coming soon for Glasgow-based fans of musical theatre, as new performing arts company Green Door Theatre bring the darkly comic and rarely-performed musical Assassins to Websters Theatre from 4th-6th April.

A five-time Tony Award-winner, Assassins takes a look at the men and women of American history who took their shot at the big time and tried to assassinate a sitting President — with varying degrees of deadly success. Brought together by Stephen Sondheim’s signature style and a phenomenal script by Emmy and Tony-winning writer John Weidman (Pacific Overtures, Anything Goes, Sesame Street), nine villains take aim in the name of love, rage, patriotism and the promise of the American Dream.

With time periods, gunshots and executions aplenty, Assassins is a complex and intriguing show that’s not often attempted, let alone tackled by a new company. So why have Green Door picked it as their first?

“All of our founding members have been making amateur theatre in Glasgow in some capacity over the last eight years,” producer Rachel Thomson explains, “and when we came together to start Green Door, there was just something about the challenge and excitement of Sondheim’s shows that made them feel like the right place to start. Couple that with being able to do something that nobody in Glasgow has done for years, in the crazy political time we’re now living in, and we thought it would be a great way to start with a… bang. Pun intended!”

New in name they might be, but those in charge of steering this complex production are far from inexperienced. Musical director Erik Igelström has been at the helm of multiple recent acclaimed Glasgow productions including On The Town (Glasgow Music Theatre) and Spring Awakening (Glasgow Live Productions). Assistant director and choreographer Marion Baird is the owner of the thriving Dance Glasgow studios in the west end and city centre, and has over ten years of experience choreographing for high quality theatre and dance shows across Glasgow.

Bringing their combined experience together, Green Door promise audiences for Assassins an evening that’s equal parts gripping and entertaining. Bold, original, and alarmingly funny, it might be the most timely musical for a Western world this divided, and for a Scotland trying to grasp it all from the side lines.

Assassins runs from 4th-6th April at Websters Theatre, Kelvinbridge. Tickets can be purchased via the theatre box office on 0141 357 4000 or at https://webstersglasgow.com/events/assassins-2019-04-04/.

For more information see www.greendoortheatre.com or follow Green Door Theatre on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter at @wearegreendoor.

 

NEWS: SCOTTISH OPERA YOUNG COMPANY PRESENTS GLUCK’S ORFEO & EURIDICE

Scottish Opera Young Company (formerly Connect Company) is returning to The Beacon in Greenock this April to perform one of Gluck’s most popular and enduring works: Orfeo & Euridice.

The Company, which celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2018, takes to the stage at The Beacon on April 6 and 7, following the success of its production of Dido and Aeneas there in 2017.

New Artistic Director Jonathon Swinard conducts the young performers, who are aged 16 to 23, and professional singers Daniel Keating-Roberts (The Cabinet of Dr Caligari 2016) as Orfeo and Jessica Leary (Pop-up Opera 2018) as Euridice. A dancer from Dance Studio Scotland at Glasgow Clyde College also joins the cast. Opera and theatre director Caroline Clegg makes her Scottish Opera debut, and designer Finlay McLay (Dido and Aeneas 2017) returns as designer.

Based on the myth of Orpheus, Gluck’s Orfeo & Euridice — at one moment full of fury, the next clear and pure — tells the tale of one man’s determination to defy the gods and rescue his lover from Hades. But can he resist temptation long enough to save her?

Jane Davidson, Scottish Opera’s Director of Education and Outreach said: ‘Gluck’s Orfeo & Euridice was a real game changer in terms of the narrative development of the art form of opera, as we recognise it today. As artistically revelatory and thought-provoking for audiences in 1774 as Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton is for contemporary theatre-goers, and featuring one of the loveliest and best known arias in the operatic repertoire (‘Che farò senza Euridice’), this might just be the ultimate, universal tale of boy meets girl, boy loses, and then finds girl again.’

Jonathon Swinard, Scottish Opera Young Company Artistic Director said: ‘It is a privilege to be the new Artistic Director of the Scottish Opera Young Company and I’m hugely looking forward to conducting Gluck’s Orfeo & Euridice this April. Curiously, this piece was actually the first opera I ever worked on as a young repetiteur at the age of 18. Fast-forward a few years, and it is a lovely feeling to be rehearsing this work with the exceedingly talented members of the Scottish Opera Young Company, many of whom are also gaining their first real stage experience through this wonderful piece.’

The Beacon Arts Centre, Custom House Quay, Greenock, PA15 1HJ

Sat 6 Apr, 7pm

Sun 7 Apr, 2pm

NEWS: Outlander, The Musical writer pays homage to fellow Scottish writer in upcoming theatre tour of Doorways in Drumorty

Born and raised in Strichen, Aberdeenshire, Lorna Moon was an author, poet and leading Hollywood screenwriter. For years, she was its highest paid female scriptwriter writing screen plays for movies starring the biggest film stars of the era; Norma Shearer, Gloria Swanson, Lon Chaney Jr, Lionel Barrymore, Douglas Fairbanks Jr and Greta Garbo. Yet her book of short stories ‘Doorways in Drumorty’ was banned from the local Strichen library for 50 years because the town’s inhabitants were horrified at recognising themselves in the book’s characters.
First staged in 2010, this new production of Mike Gibb’s hugely successful play, ‘Doorways in Drumorty’ – based on a book of Moon’s collected short stories – will tour to 18 venues across Scotland between 18 April – 18 May 2019 supported by North East Arts Touring and Aberdeenshire Council. This updated version is produced by Awkward Stranger in association with Hame Productions, and directed by Andy Corelli.

Speaking about this latest tour, Mike Gibb said, “The question I get asked most about my stage work is ‘when are you doing Doorways in Drumorty again?’ and I am therefore delighted that Andy Corelli has put together this amazing tour that will introduce the wonderful world of Drumorty to so many people the length and breadth of Scotland.”

Set in a 1920s gossipy, rural Aberdeenshire community, this witty play is laugh-out-loud funny. Yet it steers through a sharply satirical observation of the personal agonies that individuals endure when beset by the strict observance of moral codes and prohibitions, all for the sake of outward appearance. It is as moving as it is amusing.
‘Doorways in Drumorty’ follows the story of Jessie McLean who seemed destined to become a spinster when at 16 the young man she fell in love with left town never to return, leaving her alone and unfulfilled. 35 years later, a girl in a similar though more extreme version of her own circumstances, helps her discover an inner courage which she uses to foil the myopia of those around her. Set alongside Jessie’s tale, are six vignettes depicting the experiences of other characters in the town.
Playwright and author Mike Gibb has been writing for the theatre since the late nineties and has produced a stream of Scottish-themed musicals and plays including the internationally acclaimed Outlander the Musical.

2019 is the 90th anniversary of Lorna Moon’s critically acclaimed novel ‘Dark Star’ which provides one of the stories for the play.

 

 

Doorways in Drumorty | 1hr 40 minutes plus interval.

Images: Colin Lindsay

NEWS: EASTWOOD PARK PRESENTS NATIONAL THEATRE LIVE

Eastwood Park Theatre will bring the National Theatre to Giffnock as part of their project ‘NT Live’, which broadcasts world-class theatre across the UK.

Three NT Live performances are lined up this season, featuring renowned, award-winning actors including Gillian Anderson, Sally Field and Bill Pullman.

First on the line-up will be All About Eve, starring Gillian Anderson (X Files) and Lily James (Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again), streamed live to Eastwood Park Theatre on Thursday 11 April, followed by Arthur Miller’s All My Sons on 28 May and Andrea Levy’s Small Island on 11 July.

Anthony McReavy from East Renfrewshire Culture and Leisure, said: “National Theatre Live has been experienced by over five million people around the world so we’re excited to bring this concept to our local audience, featuring some of the best productions, with top class casts and performances. We have upgraded our cinema screen and technology with a new Panasonic Laser projector, screen and surround sound system to maximise the viewing experience of the National Theatre productions.

Each broadcast is filmed in front of a live audience in London’s West End with cameras positioned around the auditorium to ensure that our audience at Eastwood Park will enjoy the best possible experience of the show.

All About Eve will broadcast live from the West End in London, lifting the lid on a world of jealousy and ambition. This new production is from one of the world’s most innovative theatre directors, Ivo van Hove and asks why our fascination with celebrity, youth and identity never gets old.

Arthur Miller’s All My Sons will be filmed live at The Old Vic in London, starring Academy Award-winner Sally Field (Steel Magnolias, Brothers and Sisters) and Bill Pullman (The Sinner, Independence Day) and comes to Eastwood Park Theatre on 28 May.

The third show, Small Island, is a new theatre adaptation of Andrea Levy’s Orange Prize-winning novel featuring a company of 40 actors who will be filmed live on stage as part of National Theatre Live’s 10th birthday, coming to Eastwood Park on 11 July.

Tickets cost £15 standard and students can attend for £12 for All About Eve and All My Sons. Tickets for Small Island are priced at £12 standard and students can attend for £10. Visit www.eastwoodparktheatre.co.uk/boxoffice or call 0141 577 4956. 

Pictured: Lily James, Gillian Anderson.

Photograph: Jan Versweyveld.

FEATURE: Ayr Gaiety’s Young Company explore the age divide and stereotypes with their brand-new drama Young Blood

The Gaiety’s Young Theatre Company (comprising of 22 young people aged 16-25 years from across Ayrshire) are collaborating with The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland’s Young Company and groups of elderly people in Glasgow and Ayrshire to create this original performance piece.

Based on experiments in the U.S.A in 2014 where scientists found a way to take the blood of young mice and inject it into old mice to make them faster, stronger, and healthier, resulting in the young mice being worn out and used up. The Young Company question the ideas that this could work for humans and the perceived implications for young people, using this as the basis of their original play, and part live experiment that will be showcased on The Gaiety stage on the 2nd April.

Tackling and questioning the societal views of age, they are aiming to create conversations that will challenge us to become a more tolerant society. Since January 2019 our participants have been researching, writing and debating the views around ageing, and how these views cause unnecessary divides between generations.

With laughter, music, and ‘Young Blood’, expect your ideas of age to be challenged in this unique play written and performed by 35 of Scotland’s young people.

Listing Information

Young Blood

2nd April, 7:30pm

Main Theatre

£4.00 – £8.00

Phone: 01292 288235

Online: www.thegaiety.co.uk

Box Office: The Gaiety, Carrick Street, Ayr

NEWS: SCOTTISH PREMIERE OF MASCAGNI’S SILVANO IN APRIL

In April, Scottish Opera’s 2018/19 Opera in Concert series concludes with the Scottish premiere of Silvano by Pietro Mascagni.

Audiences have two opportunities to see this passionate seafaring tale; at City Halls in Glasgow on Sunday 14 April at 3pm, and Usher Hall, Edinburgh on Tuesday 16 April, at 7.30pm.

Scottish Opera Music Director Stuart Stratford conducts a cast that features acclaimed soprano and former Kathleen Ferrier Award-winner Emma Bell (above) as Matilde, making her debut with Scottish Opera. Emma is joined by Alexey Dolgov (Iolanta 2017), David Stout (The Burning Fiery Furnace 2018), Leah-Marian Jones (Rusalka 2016), with chorus and The Orchestra of Scottish Opera. The semi-staged performances are directed by Roxana Haines (Edgar 2018).

The plot centres on a disastrous love triangle that ends in death and despair. Mascagni revels in this drama and the score, which includes the Barcarolle famously used in Scorsese’s Raging Bull, displays both his signature lyrical lines and a spicy chromaticism that echoes much of Wagner’s work.

Scottish Opera Music Director Stuart Stratford said: ‘One thing I was determined to do when I became Music Director at Scottish Opera was to champion lesser-known pieces by great composers. Mascagni is unjustly cast as a ‘one hit wonder’ and, with the roaring success of Cavalleria Rusticana, most of his other works get overlooked.

‘I was delighted we included his L’amico Fritz in the first Opera in Concert series in 2016, and now it is the turn of Silvano. Mascagni’s writing in this period is deliciously unique and I am sure will inspire you to explore his other neglected works.’

 

 

Silvano Cast and Creative Team

 

Conductor                                                                   Stuart Stratford

Director                                                                       Roxana Haines

Matilde                                                                        Emma Bell  

Silvano                                                                        Alexey Dolgov  

Renzo                                                                         David Stout  

Rosa                                                                           Leah-Marian Jones                         

Silvano  Performance Diary

 

City Halls, Glasgow

Sun 14 Apr, 3pm

 

Usher Hall, Edinburgh

Tue 16 Apr, 7.30pm

Image: Paul Foster-Williams

WHAT’S ON APRIL: Blackeyed Theatre bring Sherlock Holmes & The Sign of Four to Eastwood Park

Wednesday 24 & Thursday 25 April, 7.30pm at Eastwood Park Theatre

Adapted for the Stage by Nick Lane
Music composed by Tristan Parkes
Produced in association with New Theatre Royal Portsmouth and South Hill Park Arts Centre

“When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth”

Crammed full of adventure, romance, comedy and of course one or two rather brilliant deductions, The Sign of Four is Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s epic second Sherlock Holmes tale, a breath-taking yarn brought to life in this spectacular new stage adaptation.

Don’t miss Blackeyed Theatre’s stunning world premiere of Sherlock Holmes: The Sign of Four. Original live music, stylish theatricality and magical story-telling combine for an unforgettable theatrical experience. The game’s afoot!

Recommended for age 11+

Price

  • Standard £16.50
  • Concession £15.50

Bring a group of 10 people and one person can go free.

WHAT’S ON APRIL: Elio Pace presents ELVIS

Tuesday 02 April, 7.30pm at Eastwood Park Theatre

Acclaimed singer-songwriter Elio Pace is back by popular demand to perform a very special, intimate and completely unique concert to honour his childhood musical idol, Elvis Presley.

Never before will you have seen or heard Elvis’ catalogue presented like this, a personal and powerful performance featuring many Elvis Presley classics as well as some rarely-heard and forgotten gems.

Come and be part of this ground-breaking and unforgettable concert as Elio Pace presents Elvis Presley.

Price

  • Standard £24.50
  • Concession £22.50

Bring a group of 10 people and one person can go free.

BOOK HERE

NEWS: SCOTTISH OPERA YOUNG COMPANY PRESENTS GLUCK’S ORFEO & EURIDICE

Scottish Opera Young Company (formerly Connect Company) is returning to The Beacon in Greenock this April to perform one of Gluck’s most popular and enduring works: Orfeo & Euridice.

The Company, which celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2018, takes to the stage at The Beacon on April 6 and 7, following the success of its production of Dido and Aeneas there in 2017.

New Artistic Director Jonathon Swinard conducts the young performers, who are aged 16 to 23, and professional singers Daniel Keating-Roberts (The Cabinet of Dr Caligari 2016) as Orfeo and Jessica Leary (Pop-up Opera 2018) as Euridice. A dancer from Dance Studio Scotland at Glasgow Clyde College also joins the cast. Opera and theatre director Caroline Clegg makes her Scottish Opera debut, and designer Finlay McLay (Dido and Aeneas 2017) returns as designer.

Based on the myth of Orpheus, Gluck’s Orfeo & Euridice — at one moment full of fury, the next clear and pure — tells the tale of one man’s determination to defy the gods and rescue his lover from Hades. But can he resist temptation long enough to save her?

Jane Davidson, Scottish Opera’s Director of Education and Outreach said: ‘Gluck’s Orfeo & Euridice was a real game changer in terms of the narrative development of the art form of opera, as we recognise it today. As artistically revelatory and thought-provoking for audiences in 1774 as Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton is for contemporary theatre-goers, and featuring one of the loveliest and best known arias in the operatic repertoire (‘Che farò senza Euridice’), this might just be the ultimate, universal tale of boy meets girl, boy loses, and then finds girl again.’

Jonathon Swinard, Scottish Opera Young Company Artistic Director said: ‘It is a privilege to be the new Artistic Director of the Scottish Opera Young Company and I’m hugely looking forward to conducting Gluck’s Orfeo & Euridice this April. Curiously, this piece was actually the first opera I ever worked on as a young repetiteur at the age of 18. Fast-forward a few years, and it is a lovely feeling to be rehearsing this work with the exceedingly talented members of the Scottish Opera Young Company, many of whom are also gaining their first real stage experience through this wonderful piece.’

Cast and Creative Team

 

Conductor     Jonathon Swinard

Director          Caroline Clegg

Designer        Finlay McLay

Orfeo             Daniel Keating-Roberts

Euridice          Jessica Leary

Dancer            Kay Davis

 

Performance diary

The Beacon Arts Centre, Custom House Quay, Greenock, PA15 1HJ

Sat 6 Apr, 7pm

Sun 7 Apr, 2pm

NEWS: Casting announced for Annie at The King’s

Full casting for the musical ANNIE which runs at the King’s Theatre in Glasgow this spring as part of a UK tour, has been announced.

Joining the previously announced Anita Dobson as Miss Hannigan will be Alex Bourne as ‘Oliver Warbucks’, Richard Meek as ‘Rooster’, Jenny Gayner as ‘Lily’ and Carolyn Maitland as ‘Grace Farrell’. The title role of ‘Annie’ is shared by Faye Katsande, Ava Smith and Freya Yates. They are joined by three teams of young performers who play the girls in Miss Hannigan’s orphanage.

Completing the cast will be Michael Anderson, Thomas Audibert, Andy Barke, Caroline Bateson, Daisy Boyles, Blaise Colangelo, Gary Davis, Ashleigh Graham, George Rae, Anne Smith, India Thornton, Matt Trevorrow, Amy West and Samuel Wilson Freeman.

This production recently ran for an extended season in the West End following a sell-out tour of the UK and Ireland in 2015/16 as well as a recent sell-out season in Toronto.

As Angie Watts in EastEnders, Anita Dobson created one of the most popular characters in television winning numerous awards. Her West End theatre credits include “Madame Morrible’ in “Wicked”, ‘Mama Morton’ in “Chicago”, ‘Mrs Meers’ in “Thoroughly Modern Mille”, ‘Chris’ in “Calendar Girls”, ‘Joan Crawford’ in “Bette and Joan” and ‘Nancy’ in “Frozen” at the National Theatre for which she was nominated for an Olivier, Evening Standard and London Critics Award. Her film credits include “London Road”.

Alex Bourne reprises his performance as ‘Oliver Warbucks’ after playing the role in this production of “Annie” in the West End, Toronto and on the 2015/16 tour. His many other West End credits include ‘Danny’ in “Grease”, ‘The Beast’ in “Beauty and the Beast”, ‘Billy Flynn’ in “Chicago”, ‘Khashoggi’ in “We Will Rock You” and ‘Fred/Petruchio’ in “Kiss Me, Kate” for which he received an Olivier Award nomination for Best Actor in a Musical. His other credits include ‘Daryl Van Horne’ in “The Witches of Eastwick” and the Watermill Theatre, for which he received a TMA nomination for Best Actor, ‘Sam Michael’ in the national tour of “Mamma Mia!” and ‘Lex Hogan’ in “Eugenius!” at the Other Palace.

 Richard Meek’s many credits include ‘Trevor Graydon’ in “Thoroughly Modern Millie”, ‘Brad’, ‘Eddie’ and ‘Dr Scott’ in “The Rocky Horror Show” and ‘Sir Galahad’ in “Spamalot”, all on national tour. He has also appeared as ‘Leo Bloom’ in the international tour of “The Producers” as well as ‘Dustin’ and ‘Greaseball’ in the 25th anniversary cast of “Starlight Express” in Bochum, Germany.

Jenny Gayner’s West End credits include ‘Miss Wilson’ in the original cast of “The Girls” at the Phoenix Theatre, ‘Hunyak’ in “Chicago” at the Adelphi, Cambridge and Garrick theatres and “Spamalot” at the Palace Theatre. Jenny has also appeared as ‘Lina Lamont’ in “Singin’ in the Rain” and ‘Brooke Windham’ in “Legally Blonde”, both at Kilworth House.

Carolyn Maitland reprises her performance as ‘Grace Farrell’ after playing the role in this production of “Annie” in Toronto. Her West End credits include ‘Ellen’ in “Miss Saigon” at the Prince Edward Theatre, ‘Marian’ in “The Woman in White” at the Charing Cross Theatre and “Groundhog Day” and “Kiss Me, Kate”, both at the Old Vic. Her other credits include ‘Molly’ in the national tour of “Ghost”,  which ran at the King’s in 2017, and ‘Kathy Seldon’ in Singin’ in the Rain at Kilworth House.

Set in 1930s New York during The Great Depression, brave young Annie is forced to live a life of misery and torment at Miss Hannigan’s orphanage. Determined to find her real parents, her luck changes when she is chosen to spend Christmas at the residence of famous billionaire, Oliver Warbucks. Spiteful Miss Hannigan has other ideas and hatches a plan to spoil Annie’s search…

With its award-winning book and score, this stunning new production includes the unforgettable songs ‘It’s the Hard Knock Life’, ‘Easy Street’, ‘I Don’t Need Anything But You’ and ‘Tomorrow’.

ANNIE has Music by Charles Strouse, Lyrics by Martin Charnin and a Book by Thomas Meehan. ANNIE is directed by Nikolai Foster with set and costume design by Colin Richmond, choreography by Nick Winston, lighting by Ben Cracknell and sound design by Richard Brooker. ANNIE is produced by Michael Harrison and David Ian.

ANNIE

King’s Theatre, Glasgow

Mon 15 – Sat 20 Apr 2019

Mon-Sat: 7.30pm

Wed, Sat: 2.30pm

www.atgtickets.com

0844 871 7648

 

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