Tag Archives: NEWS

NEWS: Full casting for What’s In A Name confirmed

Full casting has been confirmed for the witty, razor sharp What’s In A Name which is to play at Theatre Royal, Glasgow next month.

Joining the previously announced Joe Thomas, best known for his role in E4’s The Inbetweeners, are Bo Poraj (Miranda, Musketeers), Laura Patch (Afterlife, Star Stories), Summer Strallen (Top Hat, Young Frankenstein) and Alex Gaumond (Company, Dirty Rotten Scoundrel, Matilda).

What’s In A Name? is adapted and directed by Jeremy Sams from the award-winning French film and stage sensation, Le Prènom, by Matthew Delaporte and Alexandre de La Patellière. The production will visit Guildford’s Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, from 5-14 September, before touring to Glasgow, York, Aylesbury, Cambridge, Windsor, Richmond and Southampton.

Father-to-be Vincent and his partner Anna are invited to dinner by his sister Elizabeth and her husband, Peter. They are joined by childhood friend Carl for a mature and sophisticated gathering.

The meal is lovingly prepared, and wine carefully selected. The friends are prepared for the usual humorous exchanges they’ve come to expect.

But tonight, a startling revelation about the name chosen for Vincent’s and Anna’s expected child becomes the catalyst for a destructive argument which spirals hysterically out of control. Tonight no one is holding back! Egos, childish resentment and unspoken feelings are relentlessly and hilariously exposed for the first time.

Playing Vincent is Joe Thomas, an actor and writer best known as Simon in the multi-award winning E4 show The Inbetweeners. Following the success of The Inbetweeners (and the two eponymous films that followed) Joe starred as Kingsley in all four series of Fresh Meat, and as George in Chickens, which he also co-wrote. Most recently Joe starred as Nick in the 2018 feature film The Festival and as Martin Lavender in the BBC2 sitcom White Gold. Joe has script development deals with Channel 4 and Fudge Park/BBC and was on the latest series of Dave’s Taskmaster.

Bo Poraj is playing Peter. He is perhaps most well-known for his role as Mike in the ever popular BBC comedy series Miranda. He played a regular role in Musketeers (BBC) and has been seen in The Thick Of It and Boomers (also BBC). On stage his most recent credits include Rasheeda Speaking (Trafalgar Studios 2, nominated for Best Supporting Male in a Play Award, Off-West End Theatre Awards), Gloria, Acceptance (Hampstead Theatre) and Blithe Spirit (Theatre Royal Bath, UK Tour, West End). Film credits include The Boat That Rocked.

The role of Elizabeth is played by Laura Patch, a comedy performer and actor known for playing various roles in Star Stories. Most recently Laura appeared in Ricky Gervais’ Netflix series Afterlife. Further television credits include A Brief History of Tim, New Tricks, Dol & Em, Youngers, Holby City, Starlings, Being Human and The IT Crowd, along with the web series Bad Mother. Film credits include Songbird alongside Cobie Smulders and Jessica Hynes.

Playing Anna is Olivier Award-nominated actress Summer Strallen. She most recently starred as Alice in Alexis Michalik’s Intra Muros at Park Theatre and she is best known for leading West End stage roles in Top Hat, The Sound of Music, Young Frankenstein, The Drowsy Chaperone, Guys and Dolls, The Boy Friend, Love Never Dies, Cats, and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. On TV, her credits include Hollyoaks in which her character Summer Shaw auditioned for and won the role of Maria Von Trapp in The Sound of Music which Strallen went on to play on stage.

Carl is played by Alex Gaumond, who most recently received critical acclaim for his role as Paul in Marianne Elliott’s multi-Olivier® award-winning revival of Stephen Sondheim’s Company in the West End. Further stage credits include A Christmas Carol (Old Vic), Caroline, Or Change (Chichester Festival Theatre), The Taming of the Shrew (Shakespeare’s Globe), The Trial of Jane Fonda (Park Theatre), Into the Woods (Manchester Royal Exchange), Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), Sweeney Todd (ENO) and Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, RSC’s Matilda: The Musical, Top Hat and We Will Rock You (all West End). Film credits include The Hustle, My Dinner with Hervé and Hampstead.

Highly respected director Jeremy Sams has adapted and directed multiple celebrated productions. As a director his credits include Oklahoma! (Chichester Festival Theatre), The Wizard of Oz (West End and World Tour), The Sound of Music (West End and Toronto), Noises Off (National Theatre, West End, UK Tour and Broadway) and Benefactors (UK Tour and West End). His credits as an adaptor include The Park (Royal Shakespeare Company), The Rehearsal (Almeida and West End), Beckett (West End) and Les Parents Terribles (National Theatre and Broadway).

The original play premiered in 2010 at the Théâtre Édouard VII in Paris, France, where the production received six Molière Award nominations and ran for over 300 performances. Matthew Delaporte and Alexandre de La Patellière then wrote the screenplay for the film (2011) which played to over 3.25 million people in France alone. It received widespread critical acclaim, and won several César awards from the French Academy of Cinema Arts and Techniques, along with the Grand Prix Hydro-Québec at the Festival du cinéma international en Abitibi-Témiscamingue, and the Radio Canada Audience Award at the Cinéfranco International Francophone Film Festival in Toronto. The Italian translation of the movie went on to receive several prestigious Italian National Syndicate of Film Journalist awards. The play has now been translated into over 22 languages, and has had incredible box office success around the world.

What’s In A Name? is written by Matthew Delaporte and Alexandre De La Patellière with adaptation, translation and direction by Jeremy Sams. Set will be designed by Francis O’Connor and lighting design is by Rick Fisher.

LISTINGS

What’s in a Name?

Theatre Royal, Glasgow

Tue 1 – Sat 5 Oct 2019

Tue-Sat, 7.30pm

Thu & Sat, 2.30pm

www.atgticckets.com/glasgow

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

 

NEWS: CASTING CONFIRMED FOR QUEEN AND BEN ELTON’S GLOBAL PHENOMENON WE WILL ROCK YOU

Casting has been announced for Queen and Ben Elton’s smash hit musical We Will Rock You, which will storm Theatre Royal, Glasgow this December as part of a UK tour.

Taking on the role of Galileo is Olivier Award nominee Ian McIntosh (Beautiful – The Carole King Musical / The Commitments), who will be joined by Elena Skye (Les Misérables / Kinky Boots) in the role of Scaramouche. Playing Killer Queen is Jenny O’Leary (Heathers The Musical / Rent), with Michael McKell (Macbeth / Blood Brothers) as Buddy. Adam Strong (Jesus Christ Superstar / Rock of Ages) will take on the role of Khashoggi, with David-Michael Johnson (We Will Rock You, Germany / Jesus Christ Superstar) reprising the role of Brit and Amy Di Bartolomeo (Bat Out of Hell / Priscilla Queen of the Desert) playing Oz.

Brian May said: “This is a stunning state-of-the art new-look production of WWRY – but of course the original story is now more relevant than ever. We’re confident WWRY fans will love revisiting the world’s first true Rock Theatrical, and a whole new generation will now discover the VIBE!”

Featuring 24 of Queen’s biggest hits and Ben Elton’s hilarious futuristic comedy writing, We Will Rock You boasts the scale and spectacle that marked the band’s legendary live performances. This global phenomenon will continue to be one of the most spectacular musicals to tour the United Kingdom & Ireland.

The show has seen unprecedented success in theatres and arenas around the world and the nine month tour will see the Rock Theatrical performed in front of thousands of rock fans in Bromley, Ipswich, Sheffield, Edinburgh, Newcastle, Derry, Dublin, Southend, Leeds, Nottingham, Plymouth, Glasgow, Blackpool, Hull, Southampton, Manchester, Aberdeen, Bradford, Canterbury, Oxford, Llandudno, Bristol, Milton Keynes, Liverpool, Cardiff, Birmingham, Norwich, Northampton, Bournemouth, Stoke and Reading.

Since 2002 over 15 million theatregoers in 17 countries have been thrilled by We Will Rock You’s awe-inspiring production showcasing a number of Queen’s finest hits, including We Are The Champions, Radio Ga Ga, I Want To Break Free, Somebody To Love, Killer Queen, Under Pressure, Bohemian Rhapsody, Another One Bites The Dust and, of course, We Will Rock You. Before closing its glorious 12 year run at London’s Dominion Theatre, the show was performed an astonishing 4600 times.

The touring production of We Will Rock You reaches theatres carrying with it an impressive legacy: when it first became news that one of Britain’s most phenomenally successful comedy writers Ben Elton was teaming up with legends of rock, Queen, for a musical there was much speculation on what such a unique collaboration would turn out. So impressed after attending the original workshop, screen icon Robert De Niro and his company Tribeca came on board as American partners. De Niro continues to support the show, even making a special visit to London in 2013 to help celebrate the 10th anniversary in style. The audience erupted with thunderous applause, as he joined the cast on stage after the landmark performance.

The announcement of the We Will Rock You UK & Ireland tour follows the smash hit release of the hugely anticipated Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody. The Oscar nominated film, celebrating the career of one of the greatest ever rock bands has wowed Queen fans all around the world, opening at the number one box office position in over 30 countries.

We Will Rock You

Theatre Royal, Glasgow

Mon 8 – Sat 28 Dec 2019

Mon-Sat: 7.30pm

Wed & Sat: 2.30pm

Tue 24 Dec: 2.30pm

No performance Wed 25 Dec

NEWS: Crowd-funder campaign to support spoof documentary FOH (Front of House) filming at King’s Theatre Edinburgh

CROWDFUNDER CAMPAIGN LAUNCHED TO MAKE NEW EPISODES OF SPOOF DOCUMENTARY ‘FOH’.

Tom Read Wilson, Harriet Thorpe, Grant Stott and Andy Gray join the cast of mockumentary series ‘FOH’, filmed at the iconic King’s Theatre Edinburgh.

FOH, the spoof documentary that charts the ups and downs of life working front of house in a theatre has started a Crowdfunder campaign to make three brand new episodes featuring a starstudded cast. Edinburgh writer and director Andrew Dyer filmed the pilot for FOH two years ago which quickly gained over 50,000 views online and developed a strong fan base.

The show was inspired by his time working front of house in London and at the King’s and Festival Theatres in Edinburgh. On how the pilot came to be:  “Working front of house is a great place for people watching as the audiences are completely different from one show to the next and there is always a brilliant mix of staff working. Over the years I started to take note of funny situations that would happen and characters that stood out and it seemed only natural that a fly on the wall comedy was the best way to share some of them!”

Dyer is an Edinburgh native, he studied acting at Queen Margaret University before training at the Royal Academy of Music in London. He turned his hand to writing and directing comedy in 2014 where he developed his first Edinburgh Fringe show with comedy partner Michelle Whitney who he met while studying at RAM. (Whitney also features in ‘FOH’ as Linda the Front of House Manager.)

The pilot proved so popular that he has decided to create more episodes, with some famous faces now joining the original cast, and is turning to crowdfunding where they need to raise £8,000 to make three short episodes. “We made our pilot on basically zero budget and pulled in a lot of favours to do so and as proud as we are of our pilot we are not able to produce more episodes in the same circumstances. We want to pay for our professional cast and crew as well as cover the various production expenses so any donations made would be greatly appreciated but even just a ‘like’ and ‘share’ to spread the word will go a long way!”

‘Celebs Go Dating’ star Tom Read Wilson is the latest to join the line up of star cameos that includes Harriet Thorpe (‘Absolutely Fabulous’, ‘The Brittas Empire’) and King’s Theatre panto stars, Andy Gray and Grant Stott. 

The King’s where ‘FOH’ is filmed (but not set) is an Edinburgh institution and has been welcoming audiences since 1906. The new episodes will be made in advance of the theatre’s major redevelopment in 2021.

You can find out more about ‘FOH’ and make a donation by visiting: https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/foh-the-mockumentary.

The original episode can be viewed on their Facebook page: https:// http://www.facebook.com/fohthemockumentary

“If you’re a theatre fan I hope you will enjoy ‘FOH’ but I also hope that anyone who has ever worked a customer service job can relate to the people in the show or recognise similar situations they’ve experienced!”

NEWS: The Overtones announce new band member Jay James and promise ‘best tour yet’ including Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow

Multi-platinum-selling vocal harmony group The Overtones are delighted to announce that Welsh singer & songwriter Jay James has joined the band. The announcement heralds the start of an exciting new era for the group which has had 5 top 10 albums, 9 sold out UK tours and will now embark on a UK tour this December. The band will be in Glasgow on the 11th December.

Tickets for The Overtones Christmas Party are on sale now from gigsandtours.com

We will be performing classic songs from yesteryear, favourites from our albums and plenty of surprises” says Mike Crawshaw. “Over the last 10 years we’ve learnt a thing or two about throwing a Christmas party! People come to our shows to let their hair down, get their spirits up and dance their hearts out. We want everyone to leave an Overtones concert with a huge smile on their face and a spring in their step. This year will be our best tour yet!”

A former Royal Navy serviceman, Jay James had enjoyed a varied recording career working with the likes of Booker T Jones, John Legend, Naughty Boy and the Jonas Brothers (amongst others) before rising to prominence as Simon Cowell’s tip on the X Factor. Since then Jay has continued to record music and perform as well as becoming an established broadcaster.

“We met Jay 9 years ago when we all performed on the charity record (Songs To Save A Life) for The Samaritans, and our paths continuously crossed over the years” explains Darren Everest. “When we thought about a new member joining the band he was the first, and only, name that came to mind. Everything about Jay says ‘Overtone’. He has a classic style and is inspired by the same great artists as we all are. Jay has fitted in seamlessly and we can’t wait to push on and get to work.”

Speaking about joining The Overtones Jay says “I’ve known the boys and been a fan for many years now and it has always been clear what they were all about – making great, timeless music, putting on incredible shows and enjoying life! Over the years that has never changed. I’ve been blessed to support them on a number of occasions, and I’ve witnessed the joy they bring and felt the warmth of some of the best fans I’ve ever met. To now join the group is absolute magic and I cannot wait to stand beside Darren, Mike & Mark in creating some more brilliant nights & continuing to make people smile, sing and dance for many moons to come!

The first song to be recorded with this new line up is Earth Wind & Fire’s ‘September’ “We’ve been busy over the last few months and it’s been so exciting being back in the studio with Jay” says Mark Franks.  “The new music is very much ‘classic Overtones’ but with a twist. This song is a taster of what’s to come, Jay’s voice adds a new dimension as you can hear and, as soon as we recorded it, we knew that it was the perfect fit for us four boys – feel good and uplifting… an absolute gem of a song.”

LISTEN TO NEW TRACK ‘SEPTEMBER’ HERE  https://listnin.co/September

With their innate charm and adherence to vintage-modernist style, and a devotion to the timeless appeal of male vocal harmonies, The Overtones are a bridge between pre-rock’n’roll classicism and lively 21st Century entertainment. They’ve sold over a million albums, made countless TV appearances and filled venues to capacity on tour after tour, all the while building a relationship with their fans that has real depth and devotion.

In 2018 the group released their sixth album ‘The Overtones’, the accompanying sold-out UK tour took their trademark sense of celebration and party on the road with the group living up to the promise of “a night to remember”. That’s the tradition they come from and they’re certainly not about to stop now.

Day Show Date Venue Name
Mon 02 Dec 19 Gateshead Sage
Tue 03 Dec 19 Birmingham Symphony Hall
Wed 04 Dec 19 Leicester De Montford Hall
Thu 05 Dec 19 Southend Cliffs Pavilion
Sat 07 Dec 19 Liverpool Philharmonic
Sun 08 Dec 19 Salford Lowry
Mon 09 Dec 19 Sheffield City Hall
Wed 11 Dec 19 Glasgow Royal Concert Hall
Thu 12 Dec 19 Harrogate Royal Hall
Fri 13 Dec 19 Nottingham Royal Concert Hall
Mon 16 Dec 19 Cardiff St David’s Hall
Tue 17 Dec 19 Guildford G Live
Wed 18 Dec 19 London Indigo

NEWS: Much-Loved Sitcom Star John Challis Set for Scottish Stage

Eastwood Park Theatre is set for some serious sitcom nostalgia this September, welcoming Only Fools and Horses star John Challis as he brings his one man-theatre show to Scotland for the first time.

Glasgow fans of ‘Boycie’ can catch the award-winning actor and writer at Eastwood Park Theatre on 29 September 2019 – and he has even promised to stop for some selfies after the show.

John, who has also appeared in ITV comedy Benidorm, and headlined the Only Fools spin-off comedy The Green Green Grass, will be visiting more than 30 theatres as part of the autumn tour.

‘Only Fools and Boycie’ draws on anecdotes and behind-the scenes secrets from his colourful career which spans more than 50 years in theatre, television and film.

John said: “In the show, I talk about my Only Fools and Horses co-stars like Sir David Jason and Nicholas Lyndhurst, my memorable encounter with The Beatles, and recall tales from my time in Dr Who, Coronation Street and other TV classics. And afterwards, I stop to sign autographs and pose for selfies.

“I’ve been so lucky to be part of something like Only Fools and Horses, and I never forget that it’s the people who turned their tellies on, who put us where we are.

“It’s great to get the chance to go out on the road and meet the people who have been following us for so long. Even after all this time there is still such a huge love for the show, and it’s rarely off our TV screens.

“I have also been lucky enough to appear in Benidorm, which has turned into another cult show, and one of my fondest TV memories was appearing alongside Tom Baker in what has become one of the famous Doctor Who stories.

“So there are no shortage of tales to tell from my career – but I also like to open up part of the second half of the show to the audience, so they can ask me questions.”

The show also includes a chance to meet and greet John at the end of the performance, for autographs and pictures.

John also has his two autobiographies – Being Boycie, and Boycie & Beyond, on sale, alongside several other books which he has written.

NEWS: EASTWOOD PARK THEATRE HOSTS A ‘GOLD’ GIG FOR 80s MUSIC FANS

Eastwood Park Theatre will host a nostalgic night for fans of 80s music in Glasgow next month, featuring two of the UK’s most iconic bands from the era.

From Gold to Rio, celebrates the music of Spandau Ballet and Duran Duran and comes to the Giffnock theatre next month, on Saturday 7th September and is the show’s only Scottish date.

With over 20 top 10 hits, the show will feature 2 hours of non-stop, classics including Gold, Rio, True, Save A Prayer and Girls on Film performed by a full live band.

Anna Meldrum from Eastwood Park Theatre said: “From Gold to Rio will take you on a nostalgic journey back to the New Romantic era, which ruled the charts for over a decade.

“For the very first time the music from two of the UK’s most iconic bands will be celebrated in one power packed show and we can’t wait to host it for Glasgow fans.

“So if you’re a Duranie, a Spandy, a Wild Boy or a Soul Boy, then this is something you don’t want to miss.”

The live band has more than 30 years’ professional experience, featuring Lee James who is widely recognised as the most authentic performer to Tony Hadley, playing across the UK and Europe for over 10 years. Lee has performed with Tony on various occasions, including BBC’s The One Show and is endorsed by Gary Kemp and Tony himself.

Lee James said: “I’ve been fronting my own tribute to Spandau Ballet for almost 14 years. Over the years, I’ve asked the audience who they liked best, Spandau or Duran? On many occasions it’s been pretty much 50/50 but the biggest response was always when I asked if they secretly liked both bands.

“A few years ago, I met my business partner Andy Fox and I was looking for a drummer for my Spandau songs and mentioned the idea to form a Spandau and Duran Duran tribute. We got our heads together and after a lot of hard work, we started From Gold to Rio.”

Tickets are priced at £22 standard/ £20 concession and if you bring a group of ten people, one person can go free – available at www.eastwoodparktheatre.co.uk or by calling the box office on 0141 577 4956

NEWS: Interactive Theatre International’s Big Three, return to Fringe: fan-favourite Faulty Towers The Dining Experience, comedy spectacular Confetti & Chaos, and newest show Only Fools The (cushty) Dining Experience

These three, top-of-the-range, critically acclaimed, immersive theatre/dining experiences are all running 1-26 August 2019 in one 4-star central location for The Fringe at The Principal Edinburgh George Street, 19-21 George Street, Edinburgh EH2 2PB (v119). 

Faulty Towers The Dining Experience

A strong dollop of mayhem invites you into the heart of Faulty Towers The Dining Experience. This internationally acclaimed show is the most sought-after show of its kind, a fully immersive, highly interactive, and hugely improvised original piece that appears year-round in London’s West End and tours the world constantly. Basil, Sybil and Manuel bring food, fun and fumbles in the 5-star, 2-hour, 3-course extravaganza that’s been celebrated internationally for over 21 years.

Times: 

– 2pm lunch performances daily ex Mondays.
– 7:30pm dinner performances daily ex Mondays. 

Tickets – all tickets include 3-course meal and 2-hour show: 

– £57.50 Friday, Saturday & Sunday dinner (peak).
– £52.00 all other shows (off-peak).
– Premium tickets: additional £10.00 includes a programme and a wine glass if booked through www.torquaysuitetheatre.com

www.torquaysuitetheatre.com

Confetti & Chaos

Back for its fourth Fringe, this immersive comedy is throwing caution (and confetti) to the wind, preparing for another year of utter pandemonium! Audiences are welcomed to a very surprise, not-so-civilised wedding reception in this classic take on an English celebration gone wildly wrong. Secrets come spilling out as families bust in, bust up and bust-a-move. In this fabuloustheatrical dining experience, four performers play nine characters in a whirlwind of laughter, love and tears, and a 3-course meal. 

 Times: 5:00pm dinner performances daily ex Tuesdays.

Tickets – all tickets include 3-course meal and 2-hour show: 

– £47.50 Friday, Saturday & Sunday (peak).
– £45.00 all other shows (off-peak).

www.confetti-chaos.com

‘A mad-cap, interactive, who-knows-what’s-coming-next evening of adventure’

★★★★★ Glasgow Theatre Blog, Eastwood Park

Fools The (cushty) Dining Experience

Wheeling, dealing and non-stop laughing are all on the cards at ‘The Nags Head’ in this fully immersive and highly interactive brand new show serving up nothing but the best (and a 3-course meal). Join your Only Fools faves in a knees-up of brokered deals, questionable quizzes and a scheme or two, and be sucked you into the madness and magic of a Fools experience. One-off improvisation, side-splitting humour, and an expertly-crafted, completely original script come together to make this a night to remember. A Fringe debut.

Times: 8:30pm dinner performances daily ex Wednesdays. 

Tickets – all tickets include 3-course meal and 2-hour show: 

– £52.00 Friday, Saturday & Sunday (peak).
– £47.50 all other shows (off-peak).

 www.interactivetheatre.com.au/onlyfools

INTERVIEW: Duncan James on stepping into Frank-N-Furter’s platforms this month in Glasgow

What made you say yes to playing Frank-N-Furter in The Rocky Horror Show?

It’s been a dream role of mine for a long time. I heard they were doing The Rocky Horror Show and I think Frank-N-Furter is one of the best roles you can play in musical theatre. It’s such an iconic role and the show has such a loyal following. It’s such a wonderfully written show and I thought ‘Wouldn’t it be great to play Frank?’ I rang my agent and said: ‘I hear they’re casting The Rocky Horror Show can you get me an audition?’ He did and so I went in, did the audition and got a recall. When I went back, I said to myself ‘I’m gonna get this’ and I did. I was really lucky because I fought off lots of competition from other well-known actors who were up for the part. I was like ‘No, no, no, this is my part!’ so when I got it, I was really proud of myself.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show
©The Other Richard

What are most enjoying about playing Frank?

Everything! And of course, he has one of the best entrances in musical theatre. The reaction you get from his opening number Sweet Transvestite is amazing because it’s such a great song and you come out in a cloak, then take the cloak off to reveal his really out-there outfit. It’s a great moment.

Can you relate to him in any way?

For me it’s more about having fun rather than relatability. The part of Frank-N-Furter is so twisted and so dark and that’s such fun to play. I mean, he’s essentially a psychopathic doctor who wants to create a man for his own pleasure and he’ll kill whoever gets in his way. Coming from Hollyoaks where I got to play a serial killer I thought it’d be great to then go and play Frank – to explore that dark, twisted mind again of someone who is living on the edge, someone who isn’t afraid to do what he has to do to get what he wants. That kind of character is really fun to play.

Credit : Johan Persson

Presumably with this role you’re very comfortable in heels?

I am, yes, and I love getting dressed up every night, putting on the corset, the fishnets and heels. It’s such an empowering moment because when I walk out on that stage, I feel huge compared to the other cast members. I feel like I’m towering above everybody and instantly I get that sense of command that Frank has. [Laughs] And of course I’m not shy so I love strutting round. I’m really embracing it. Also, I have a bit of a fascination with drag queens and drag artists. I’ve become a huge fan of RuPaul’s Drag Race. It’s like my number one guilty pleasure. I cannot miss an episode of any of RuPaul’s stuff.

Do you do much ad-libbing in response to the audience shout-outs?

There’s none of that from me. The only person who’s allowed to do that is The Narrator. They are the only ones who get to heckle back. I can do an eyebrow raise or a little smirk because, apart from The Narrator, Frank is the only one who’s allowed to acknowledge the audience.

What sort of shout-outs have you had so far?

There’s a lot of rude stuff and I got to do a scene in bed with Ben Adams from A1 when he was in the show. So it’s two boyband members in a bed, which is quite funny and prompts quite a few amusing shout-outs.

Why do you think The Rocky Horror Show has endured?

I think it’s down to the genius of Richard O’Brien. He created The Rocky Horror Show back in the 70s when it was really taboo to talk about certain subjects and having a man dressed up as a transvestite was unheard of. It was like ‘What on earth is this Tim Curry guy doing?’ It was banned in some countries because they thought it was completely wrong and it had a tough start because a lot of people didn’t know how to take it. A lot of people found it in bad taste but that was a sign of the times, of course. As attitudes towards sexuality, sex and transgender issues have changed we’ve become a lot more open-minded and liberal, haven’t we? It’s fantastic that we now embrace shows like The Rocky Horror Show. It’s great that this show in particular has stood the test of time. It seems to be getting bigger and bigger, with more and more people getting dressed up to come see it as well as knowing the story and shout-outs. The show gains more and more fans every time it goes out on tour.

When it comes to musical theatre, what have been your favourite roles?

I’m really lucky that I’ve gotten to do so many great shows. I loved playing Billy Flynn in Chicago. That’s a great role and I was lucky enough to play him again in the West End revival last year. I got to work with Alexandra Burke, who I adore, and we had great chemistry together. I loved playing Tick in Priscilla because it’s one of the most incredible, most liberating roles. Me having a child and being a gay man, I really related to the character. And The Rocky Horror Show is really good fun. It’s one of those shows where you get on stage every night and just have a really good time. It doesn’t feel like having to go to work and the audiences love it. The music is great, Frank’s words are so delicious and the way the story is told is just brilliant. I’m living my best life right now.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show
©The Other Richard

Do you have any plans to work with Blue again?

Definitely. As long as people want to come see us there’ll always be Blue. We’re very lucky that we get to travel all over the world. We get to play sold-out arenas wherever we go and we get to have these amazing trips away. We were in Bahrain recently then we went to Singapore and Malaysia, which was wonderful – to be able to travel to these countries with my friends and get up on stage and sing songs that everybody knows.

When it comes to theatre, do you have any pre- or post-show rituals?

This show consumes quite a lot of preparation with the make-up, the wig and everything. I have my little routine of doing my make-up, getting the wig put on, getting into the costume and then I’m on stage. There’s not a lot of time to think or prepare. After a show I take it all off then spend up to an hour at the stage door signing stuff and having pictures with everybody. There are always so many people at the stage door, which is lovely and I always want to make sure to give time to everybody. By the time I get home after that it’s like 11.30pm and I’m knackered.

What’s the one thing you couldn’t be on tour without?

My pillow goes everywhere with me. I cannot sleep in a hotel room without it because I can’t stand those horrible synthetic pillows you usually get. I have a proper old-school, feathered, heavy pillow which goes with me everywhere.

You’re bringing the show to the King’s Theatre, Glasgow. Does it have any significance for you?

Me and the Blue boys performed in Glasgow when we were on tour with Wet Wet Wet and we were the first act to ever play in their brand-new arena, which was great. The audiences were great too. I do find that the further north you go the rowdier they get.

The Rocky Horror show is coming to the Kings Theatre August 12 – August 17 2019 starring Duncan James (Blue) and Joanne Clifton (Strictly Come Dancing).

NEWS: SCOTTISH OPERA’S AMADEUS & THE BARD EXPLORES AND CELEBRATES THE WORK OF MOZART AND BURNS

Touring this Autumn is Amadeus & The Bard: 18th Century Cosmic Brothers, a brand new show from Scottish Opera created and directed by Mary McCluskey, former Artistic Director of Scottish Youth Theatre. Amadeus & The Bard celebrates the lives of two much-loved men, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Robert Burns, through storytelling and song, honouring the many and sometimes surprising similarities between them.

Opening on 9 September in Earlston High School, the production tours to schools in Kirkcudbright, Annan, Auchinleck, Ayr, Largs and Paisley, as well as the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh and Scottish Opera Production Studios in Glasgow.

Karen MacIver is the Music Director and pianist on this dramatic and emotive show, which features a talented cast including soprano Stephanie Stanway, a Samling Young Artist and Arthur Bruce, The Robertson Trust Scottish Opera Emerging Artist, alongside actor Andy Clark and violinist Shannon Stevenson. They are joined by an ensemble of four singers from Scottish Opera Young Company: Cara Blaikie, Ross Fettes, James McIntyre and Erin Spence.

Set in Poosie Nansie’s Inn, a favourite haunt of Burns, the cast blend traditional folk songs with some of Mozart’s most popular work, from ‘Tam O’Shanter’ and The Magic Flute, to ‘A Red, Red Rose’ and The Marriage of Figaro. Amadeus & The Bard invites audiences to enjoy a night of entertainment in celebration of these two brothers of the Enlightenment.

Director Mary McCluskey said: ‘It is our intention for our merry band of talented performers, singers, actors and musicians to give you an insight into the work of Mozart and Burns. We hope to entertain and inform you, in order that you will leave knowing more than you did when you came along to see the production, and that we will have whetted your appetite for the work of these two talented men.’

Jane Davidson, Scottish Opera’s Director of Outreach and Education said: ‘Amadeus & The Bard affords us some fascinating glimpses into the (often parallel) lives of Robert Burns and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart; cultural icons of the eighteenth century whose musical and literary ‘voices’ have inspired people through the generations down to the present day. So, the warmest of welcomes is extended to everyone to join our dynamic young company of performers around the fireside in Poosie Nansie’s hostelry for an hour of songs, ensembles, arias and poetry.’

Director/Creator        Mary McCluskey

Music Director          Karen MacIver

Soprano                     Stephanie Stanway

Baritone                     Arthur Bruce*

Storyteller                  Andy Clark

Ensemble                   Cara Blaikie, Ross Fettes, James McIntyre & Erin Spence (Scottish Opera Young Company)

Violin                          Shannon Stevenson

Piano                          Karen MacIver

Performance diary

 

Earlston High School

Mon 9 Sep, 7pm

 

Kirkcudbright Academy

Wed 11 Sep, 7pm

 

Annan Academy

Fri 13 Sep, 7pm

 

Auchinleck Academy

Mon 16 Sep, 7pm

 

Ayr Academy

Wed 18 Sep, 7pm

 

Largs Academy

Thu 19 Sep, 7pm

 

National Museum of Scotland

Sat 28 Sep, 12pm & 3pm

 

Paisley Grammar School

Fri 4 Oct, 7.30pm

 

Scottish Opera Production Studios

Fri 11 Oct, 7.30pm

Sat 12 Oct, 3pm & 7.30pm

 

Tickets are available online now for all venues at www. scottishopera.org.uk/amadeus

NEWS: OPERA HIGHLIGHTS TOURS TO 17 VENUES ACROSS SCOTLAND THIS AUTUMN

On September 12, Scottish Opera’s hugely popular Opera Highlights tour kicks off with four singers and a pianist journeying to 17 venues the length and breadth of Scotland, from Kirkwall in the north to Stranraer in the south.

Travelling the highways and byways by land, sea and air, the Autumn tour begins in Motherwell before heading to Stirling, Stonehaven, Tain, Ullapool, Stornoway, Portree, Oban, Galashiels, Perth, Dunfermline, Thurso, Kirkwall, Ellon, Stranraer, Greenock and Musselburgh.

The setting for director Roxana Haines’ production of Opera Highlights is a beautiful garden party, and features a playlist of operatic classics and must-hear rarities, curated by Scottish Opera’s Head of Music Derek Clark. Highlights include Delibes’ ‘Flower Duet’, Vaughan Williams’ ‘Blue larkspur in a garden’ and many more from the likes of Mozart, Lehár and Scottish Opera Composer in Residence, Samuel Bordoli.

Pianist/Music Director Ian Shaw is joined by Scottish Opera Emerging Artist soprano Charlie Drummond; mezzo-soprano Martha Jones; tenor Alex Bevan and baritone Mark Nathan, who is also a Scottish Opera Emerging Artist this Season.

The same show returns in Spring 2020, with a different cast: soprano Zoe Drummond; mezzo-soprano Jade Moffat; tenor Andrew Irwin and baritone Arthur Bruce, The Robertson Trust Scottish Opera Emerging Artist who is a former member of Scottish Opera Young Company. It will tour another 17 venues around Scotland from February 4: Bathgate, Birnam, Markinch, Campbeltown, Bowmore, Arrochar, Bunessan, Arisaig, Beauly, Cumnock, Castle Douglas, Callander, Lerwick, Peebles, Fochabers, Alford and Rutherglen. In total, this Season’s Opera Highlights is visiting 34 venues.

Roxana Haines, who is directing Scottish Opera’s Fox-tot! at Edinburgh Festival Fringe this summer, said: ‘This year’s Opera Highlights cast cordially invite you to a party on your doorstep, set throughout luscious gardens and magical flora and fauna of Opera. The stage has been set, decorations unpacked and the guests have all arrived but, the only problem is, no one quite knows who or why we’re celebrating…

‘As the evening progresses, the connections between our characters unravel through music from the likes of Handel, Donizetti and Mozart, and lighter pieces from Gilbert & Sullivan and Vaughan Williams as well as a new work by Samuel Bordoli. Prepare for charm, magic and love in all its operatic forms.’

Scottish Opera’s General Director, Alex Reedijk, said: ‘I am delighted that Scottish Opera will be touring what promises to be another sensational Opera Highlights to 34 venues across Scotland in the Autumn and Spring. This longstanding and much acclaimed commitment by the Company to presenting work across Scotland is part of what makes us Scottish Opera, and is welcomed by our far-flung audiences as a lovely operatic tonic! Opera Highlights also serves to introduce young singers to our audiences, and greatly assists their development as artists alongside presenting the joys of opera and singing to our widely spread audience.’
You can follow Scottish Opera on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @ScottishOpera

Opera Highlights Autumn Tour Cast and Creative Team

Soprano Charlie Drummond*
Mezzo-soprano Martha Jones
Tenor Alex Bevan
Baritone Mark Nathan*

Pianist/Music Director Ian Shaw
Director Roxana Haines
Composer in Residence Samuel Bordoli*

*Scottish Opera Emerging Artist

Performance Diary

Motherwell Theatre, Motherwell
Thu 12 Sep, 7.30pm

Albert Halls, Stirling
Sat 14 Sep, 7.30pm

Stonehaven Town Hall, Stonehaven
Tue 17 Sep, 7.30pm

Duthac Centre, Tain
Thu 19 Sep, 7.30pm

Macphail Centre, Ullapool
Sat 21 Sep, 7.30pm

An Lanntair, Stornoway
Tues 24 Sep, 7.30pm

Aros Centre, Portree
Thu 26 Sep, 7.30pm

Corran Halls, Oban
Sat 28 Sep, 7.30pm

Volunteer Hall, Galashiels
Tues 1 Oct, 7.30pm

Perth Theatre, Perth
Thu 3 Oct, 7.30pm

Carnegie Hall, Dunfermline
Sat 5 Oct, 7.30pm

Thurso High School, Thurso
Tue 8 Oct, 7.30pm

Orkney Theatre, Kirkwall
Thu 10 Oct, 7.30pm

Haddo House, Ellon
Sat 12 Oct, 7.30pm

Ryan Centre, Stranraer
Tues 15, 7.30pm

Beacon Arts Centre, Greenock
Thu 17 Oct, 7.30pm

The Brunton, Musselburgh
Sat 19 Oct, 7.30pm

« Older Entries