Tag Archives: Theatre Royal

REVIEW: The Comedy About a Bank Robbery – Theatre Royal, Glasgow

The mighty Mischief Theatre return. Hoorah! On the heels of their world-wide success with The Play That Goes Wrong (Olivier Award-winning, a run on Broadway and around the globe and several UK tours) and Peter Pan Goes Wrong (West End, UK tour and a screening on the BBC), it’s now the turn of The Comedy About a Bank Robbery. Needless to say, this isn’t the Hatton Garden Robbery or Brink’s-MAT.

It’s summer 1958, Minneapolis, USA. A clutch of utterly clueless Canadian crooks attempt a diamond heist on Prince Ludwig of Hungary’s priceless jewel, cue the astonishing physical feats, witty wordplay and visual puns a-plenty with which this indefatigable theatre company are now synonymous.

The whole production plays out like a glorious 1950s, screwball B-Movie with harks back to the Golden Age of British comedy, there are nods to Morecambe and Wise and Two Ronnies sketches, and the wonderful stage adaptation of The 39 Steps (the show Mischief Theatre followed into the Criterion Theatre in the West End). The visual and physical gags are as jaw-dropping and inventive as ever (to state here what they are would ruin the effect).

The cast are universally top-notch, but it’s great to see Mischief founding member Dave Hearn (seemingly replacing Sean Carey) as con artist Sam, his pin-sharp timing is a joy, Julia Frith as bank manager’s daughter Caprice, is a glorious mix of Lucille Ball and Gloria Grahame, Jon Trenchard is hugely entertaining as the put-upon Warren and Ashley Tucker’s Mrs. Monaghan has more than a touch of Karen Walker from TV’s Will and Grace. The cast also do a brilliant job in their sung scene changes, fabulous 50s Doo-Wop hits cover all the transitions.

There’s a ‘turn up your nose’ snobbery about slapstick and farce, but there’s no denying that Mischief Theatre’s trademark comedy is universally appealing. It also has to be acknowledged how much intellect and acting skill is required to pull this off so successfully.

It does take a while for the first half to get into its stride and there are a few too many filler moments but, though it feels hackneyed to use the phrase ‘a laugh a minute’, it really ramps up to being just this, the visual and verbal comedy is relentless.

Mischief Theatre still have the power to please an audience. It leaves you wanting more and wondering what’s next from this powerhouse production team.

Runs until November 2018 | Image: Contributed

This review was originally written for The Reviews Hub

WHAT’S ON JANUARY: Rebus – Long Shadows comes to Glasgow

Tue 29 Jan – Sat 2 Feb
Theatre Royal
Tickets from £13
By Ian Rankin, adapted by Rona Munro.

Featuring Charles Lawson as John Rebus, Cathy Tyson as Siobhan Clarke and John Stahl as Big Ger Cafferty, directed by Robin Lefevre.

The new story exclusively on stage. Detective Inspector John Rebus is retired but the shadows of his former life still follow him through the streets of Edinburgh. Whisky helped but now he’s denying himself that pleasure. But when the daughter of a murder victim appears outside his flat, he’s back on the case and off the wagon.

NEWS: Dementia Friendly performance of Still Alice at Theatre Royal

Theatre Royal, Glasgow is to hold a Dementia Friendly performance of Still Alice next month as part of the venue’s ongoing commitment to providing an accessible theatre environment.

Still Alice, which is based on the novel of the same name by Lisa Genova, runs at the city centre venue from Tuesday 13 to Saturday 17 November with the Dementia Friendly performance taking place on Thursday 15 November at 2.30pm.

Still Alice tells the story of Alice Howland, stubborn, clever and driven – a professional at the top of her game. But, diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s at the age of 50, she is compelled to confront her new reality and draw on her resilience to remain independent for as long as possible.

Starring Sharon Small with a ‘spellbinding’ performance as Alice, this tender and touching play is a unique insight into the experience of a woman fighting to maintain her identity as her world changes.

Industry publication The Stage described Still Alice as, ‘a moving production that manages to find the positivity at the centre of an otherwise devastating illness.’

The Dementia Friendly performance is carefully tailored for people living with dementia as well as their families and carers so everyone can enjoy this wonderful production in an environment that is comfortable and supportive.

The house lights will be partially left up throughout the performance and quiet break-out rooms will be available before, during and after the performance. Specially informed theatre staff will also be on hand during the show to answer any questions people may have. There will also be an Alzheimer Scotland information stand available during each screening.

A bucket collection will be taken throughout the week in support of Alzheimer Scotland.

Familiarisation visits are available should anyone wish to undertake one of these prior to attending the performance.

This Dementia Friendly staging follows successful Dementia Friendly showcases of Scottish Opera productions at Theatre Royal, Relaxed Performances of pantomime at Theatre Royal’s sister venue, the King’s Theatre alongside several Captioned and BSL aided shows every year across both theatres.

James Haworth, Theatre Director at Theatre Royal, said: “Working with the producers of Still Alice and Alzheimer Scotland to bring a Dementia Friendly performance of this poignant play to Theatre Royal has been extremely rewarding.

“Alzheimer Scotland have been a tremendous support to our staff, ensuring we as a venue understand how to assist those living with the illness when they visit our theatres. I do hope our patrons will consider leaving a donation for this fantastic organisation during their visit to see Still Alice.”

Sarah Burgess, Head of Localities from Alzheimer Scotland, said: “We are thrilled to be working alongside the Theatre Royal Glasgow to create a dementia friendly performance of Still Alice.

“Knowing that the theatre is aware of what dementia is and how staff can support people can really help those living with the illness become less isolated and more engaged with the arts. This is another crucial step towards building a Dementia Friendly Scotland, where nobody should face dementia alone.”

For any questions you may have about the performance or any specific additional requirements, please our dedicated Access Booking Line on Freephone 0800 912 6971.

LISTINGS

Still Alice

Theatre Royal, Glasgow

Tue 13 – Sat 17 Nov 2018

Dementia Friendly Performance, Thu 15 Nov, 2.30pm

Saturday matinee, 2.30pm

www.atgtickets.com/glasgow

Image: Geraint Lewis

NEWS: Leah MacRae announces her first ever solo Scottish tour – Leah’s Big, Fat, Fabulous Diary

Leah MacRae today announced her first ever solo Scottish tour! Leah’s Big, Fat, Fabulous Diary is her one-woman musical theatre show with original comedy songs – a classic ballad or two – and stories from Leah’s very secret diary. This is an exciting step for the River City and Gary Tank Commander star, taking her own show on the road.

Big, Fat, Fabulous Diary which was first performed to sell out audiences in Glasgow and Ayr in 2018 includes stories like ‘Cleaning Cupboard First Winch’, ‘The Hold-In Pants Naked Truffle Shuffle’ – taken straight from the well-loved pages of Leah’s “own” diary.

Fans of Leah’s on-stage work, her TV personalities and her presence on social media know she’s not afraid of belting a ballad or playing funny, quick and very real characters –they will get to know Leah a lot better as she brings her Fabulous Diary to life across the country in 2019.

TOUR 04 MAY – 09 JUNE 2019  

04 May – Howden Park Livingston

10 May – Adam Smith Theatre Kirkcaldy 

11 May – Barrfields Theatre Largs

16 May – Beacon Arts Centre Greenock

17 May – Eastbrook Hall Dumfries

19 May – Theatre Royal Glasgow

23 May – Palace Theatre Kilmarnock

24 May – The Tivoli Theatre Aberdeen

25 May – Universal Hall Findhorn

30 May – Queen’s Hall Edinburgh

31 May – FTS Theatre Falkirk

01 June – Webster Theatre Arbroath

02 June – Perth Theatre Perth

07 June – Whitehall Theatre Dundee

08 June – The Corran Halls Oban

09 June –  Eden Court Theatre Inverness

NEWS: THEATRE ROYAL TO HOST “THE BODYGUARD” THEMED KARAOKE AS HIT MUSICAL KICKS OFF UK TOUR IN GLASGOW THIS CHRISTMAS

Theatre Royal, Glasgow is to host The Bodyguard-themed karaoke during the hit musical’s four-week run at the venue this Christmas.

Following the success of Mamma Mia! karaoke at Theatre Royal last Christmas, the sing alongs will take place after the 7.30pm performance on Fridays and Saturdays at the venue’s upper circle bar.

Entry is included with the ticket price so if you’ve already booked your seats for a night karaoke is taking place, you’re sorted.

If you’ve yet to book and want to sing all the Whitney hits including Queen of the Night, Run To You, How Will I Know, I Will Always Love You and I Wanna Dance With Somebody, be sure to book for one of the following performances:

Friday 7 December 7.30pm

Saturday 8 December, 7.30pm

Friday 14 December, 7.30pm

Saturday 15 December, 7.30pm

Friday 21 December, 7.30pm

Saturday 22 December, 7.30pm

Friday 28 December, 7.30pm

Saturday 29 December 7.30pm

Grab somebody who loves you and sing the night away!

The Bodyguard, starring Alexandra Burke as Rachel Marron, opens on Monday 3 December and runs until Saturday 29 December, the first dates of an extensive UK tour.

Based on the hit 80s film of the same name, the classic story tells of former Secret Service agent, Frank Farmer, who is hired to protect superstar Rachel Marron from an unknown stalker. They both expect to be in charge, but they don’t expect to fall in love.

Alexandra Burke returns to the role of Rachel Marron following her triumphant run in the show in both the West End and the subsequent sell out UK tour which ran at King’s Theatre in March 2015 to a sold out crowd.

She first rose to fame after winning the fifth series of The X Factor and her debut number one single Hallelujah sold over one million copies in the UK, a first for a British female soloist. She most recently appeared as Svetlana in Chess at the London Coliseum and will soon appear as Roxie in Chicago at the West End’s Phoenix Theatre. Last year she reached the final of Strictly Come Dancing. Her other theatre credits include Deloris Van Cartier in the national tour of the musical Sister Act.

Alexandra Burke will perform the role of Rachel Marron at evening performances only with the exception of evening performances on Thursday 20, Wednesday 26 and Thursday 27 December. 

NEWS: SING-A-LONG-A PRESENT THE GREATEST SHOWMAN & TWO SCREENINGS ADDED DUE TO DEMAND

THEATRE ROYAL, GLASGOW

SUNDAY 27 JANAURY, 2.30PM AND 7.30PM

Additional screenings of Sing-a-long-a’s The Greatest Showman have been added in Glasgow due to popular demand.

It was announced that a sing along screening of the hit film would show at the King’s Theatre on Tuesday 8 January and tickets were snapped up within days of going on sale.

Two extra screenings have been confirmed for the King’s Theatre’s sister venue, Theatre Royal on Sunday 27 January at 2.30pm and 7.30pm.

It is anticipated that tickets will go just as quickly so be sure to get to the box office at Theatre Royal on Hope Street as fast as you can. Tickets can also be booked over the phone and online.

Cheer on Hugh Jackman, lust after Zac Efron and hiss Rebecca Ferguson (…or maybe not) as you experience The Greatest Showman in the greatest way possible – with lyrics on the screen so you can sing-a-long as loud as you want.

The live host will teach you a unique set of dance moves that will truly make you “come alive”. As they show you how to use our interactive prop bags, you also get to practice your cheers, your boos and even a few wolf whistles. Then you can sit back and relax and sing and along to the lyrics on screen.

It couldn’t be easier or more fun! Fancy dress is strongly encouraged and full audience participation is essential.

Even if you’ve not experienced a Sing-a-long-a before – now is the time.

Dress up in your best top hat and tails, add a beard if you fancy, and sing and dance your heart out in a night that’s guaranteed to put a smile on your face and music in your heart!

Sing-a-long-a The Greatest Showman

Theatre Royal, Glasgow

Sunday 27 January, 2.30pm and 7.30pm

www.atgtickets.com/glasgow

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

Please note this is a screening of the movie not a live stage show.

 

NEWS: Jodie Prenger to star in Abigail’s Party at the Theatre Royal

Jodie Prenger leads the cast in Abigail’s Party, Mike Leigh’s ground-breaking comedy classic at the Theatre Royal, Glasgow, from Monday 4 – Saturday 9 February as part of a UK tour.

The story set is in 1970s suburbia and its heavy mix of free-flowing cocktails, classic disco and cheese and pineapple sticks. Beverly and husband Laurence who are throwing a party for their newlywed neighbours, Tony and Angela. Joining them is highly strung Susan who’s been banished from the party of her teenage daughter, Abigail. As tensions rise and tempers flare, the sheen of respectability is torn away by the warring couples with hilarious and potentially disastrous consequences.

Mike Leigh’s iconic Abigail’s Party is one of Britain’s most celebrated comedies and was described by The Guardian as ‘One of the greatest plays about the human condition ever written.’

Jodie Prenger said: ‘Abigail’s Party is a true British classic and a real bucket list part for me.  I’m thrilled to be involved in something so wonderful.  Can’t wait to get started.’

Jodie landed the role of Nancy in Cameron Mackintosh’s revival production of Oliver! at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane after winning BBC 1’s I’d Do Anything.  She won the 2010 Whatsonstage Theatregoer’s Choice Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Musical. She then went on to play The Lady of The Lake in the Spamalot UK tour and in the West End at the Playhouse Theatre, and Dolly in the National Theatre’s production of One Man Two Guvnors at the Theatre Royal Haymarket.  2015 saw Jodie star in the title role of Calamity Jane on the UK No. 1 Tour followed by a Christmas run of Annie at the New Theatre, Oxford in the role of Miss Hannigan. In 2016, Jodie starred in a new UK tour of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s one woman show Tell Me On A Sunday and in the autumn, Jodie reprised the role of Madame Thenardier in a special production of Les Miserables in Dubai Opera Theatre.

Jodie has guest presented for Elaine Paige and Paul O’Grady on many occasions with BBC Radio 2.  Other BBC Radio 2 appearances include Wogan, co-hosting Going Out With Alan Carr, Chris Evans’ Breakfast Show, The Olivier Awards 2010 and Children in Need 2009 with Graham Norton.

Recently, Jodie starred in the one-woman UK tour of Shirley Valentine, and has just finished playing the role of Kelly in the production of Kay Mellor’s Fat Friends on its UK Tour with music written by Nick Lloyd Webber.

Abigail’s Party is a co-production between ATG Productions and Smith and Brant Theatricals by arrangement with Theatre Royal Bath, directed by Sarah Esdaile.

 

NEWS: SAMANTHA WOMACK TO STAR IN THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN AT THEATRE ROYAL

Samantha Womack is to star in a new production of The Girl on the Train, a gripping thriller based on the internationally acclaimed number one best-selling novel by Paula Hawkins and the Dreamworks film.  The Girl on the Train will run at Theatre Royal, Glasgow as part of a major tour of the UK & Ireland from Tuesday 15 – Saturday 20 April 2019.

Samantha plays Rachel Watson who longs for a different life. Her only escape is the perfect couple she watches through the train window every day, happy and in love. Or so it appears. When Rachel learns that the woman she’s been secretly watching has suddenly disappeared, she finds herself as a witness and even a suspect in a thrilling mystery in which she will face bigger revelations than she could ever have anticipated.

Samantha Womack has starred extensively in television, film and theatre. She is best known for playing Ronnie Mitchell in BBC1’s EastEnders. Other television credits include leading roles in Mount Pleasant and the hugely popular Game On.  Her recent films include: Kingsman: The Golden Circle and Kingsman: The Secret Service alongside Colin Firth. Samantha recently played Morticia in a tour of The Addams Family at the King’s Theatre in Glasgow.

Samantha said: “Having been thoroughly captivated by the novel, the opportunity to take on a role like this is incredibly exciting. I’ve been fascinated by thrillers for a long time and this kind of storytelling, like Hitchcock’s Rear Window, offers us a voyeurs journey into a world which is dangerous and full of suspense.”

Joining Samantha in the cast is Oliver Farnworth as Scott. Best known for playing Andy Carver in Coronation Street, Oliver’s other TV credits include Mr Selfridge, The Royal and Hollyoaks. Further casting is to be announced.

The Girl on the Train

Theatre Royal, Glasgow

Tue 15 – Sat May 2019

Tue-Sat, 7.30pm

Thu, Sat, 2.30pm

www.atgtickets.com/glasgow 0844 871 7647 *calls cost up to 7 p per minute plus your phone company’s access rate

NEWS: FIRST MAJOR STAGE PRODUCTION OF LOUIS DE BERNIÈRES’ BEST-SELLING NOVEL CAPTAIN CORELLI’S MANDOLIN

The first major stage production of CAPTAIN CORELLI’S MANDOLIN, based on the best-selling novel by Louis de Bernières will tour the UK with a stop in Glasgow, 25 years after the book was first published.

Directed by Olivier and Tony Award nominee Melly Still and adapted by Evening Standard Award winner and Golden Globe and BAFTA Award nominee Rona Munro, the play will run at Theatre Royal Glasgow from Tuesday 25 – Saturday 29 June 2019.

Casting is to be announced.

CAPTAIN CORELLI’S MANDOLIN is an epic love story set on the Greek island of Cephalonia. It follows the lives of Dr Iannis, his beautiful, strong-willed daughter Pelagia and the Italian Captain Antonio Corelli, during the Italian and German occupation of the island in World War II. For CAPTAIN CORELLI’S MANDOLIN, Louis de Bernières won the 1995 Commonwealth Writers’ Prize – Overall Winner for Best Book, the 1995 Lannan Literary Award for Fiction and the 1994 Sunday Express Book of the Year. In 2001, the novel was adapted into a film starring Nicolas Cage and Penélope Cruz.

Rona Munro has written extensively for stage, radio, film and television and most recently adapted Elizabeth Strout’s My Name is Lucy Barton for a new production at The Bridge Theatre, directed by Richard Eyre and starring Laura Linney. Rona received huge critical acclaim for The James Plays (National Theatre of Scotland, Edinburgh International Festival and National Theatre), which won Best Play at the Evening Standard Awards and Writers’ Guild Awards in 2015. Rona’s TV and film work includes Oranges and Sunshine, directed by Jim Loach and starring Emily Watson and Hugo Weaving, Aimee and Jaguar, which won a Silver Bear Award at the Berlin Film Festival and also received a Golden Globe nomination, and the BAFTA-nominated Bumping the Odds for the BBC. Rona is currently working on the adaptation of Ian Rankin’s Rebus: Long Shadows for Birmingham Repertory Theatre.

Melly Still is currently directing the UK tour of The Lovely Bones. Melly received huge critical acclaim for having directed and co-designed Coram Boy (National Theatre & Broadway) and for which she was a Tony Award nominee for Best Director, Best Set Design and Best Costume Design, and an Olivier Award nominee for Best Director and Best Design. Melly’s other theatre credits for direction include April De Angelis’s adaptation of Elena Ferrante’s tetralogy of Neapolitan novels, My Brilliant Friend (Rose Theatre Kingston), Cymbeline (Royal Shakespeare Company), The Cunning Little Vixen (Glyndebourne Opera Festival), Warhorse Proms (Royal Albert Hall) and Tiger Bay The Musical (Wales Millennium Centre). Melly will direct the upcoming UK and Ireland tour and European stage premiere of Agatha Christie’s The Mirror Crack’d.

Captain CorellI’s Mandolin

Theatre Royal, Glasgow

Tue 25 – Sat 29 June

Tue-Sat 7.30pm

Thu, Sat, 2.30pm

www.atgticekts.com/glasgow

 

FROM THE ARCHIVES: Backstage photo tour of Glasgow’s Theatre Royal

Here is a glimpse behind the scenes of Glasgow’s oldest and Scotland’s longest-running theatre, the Theatre Royal.

Originally opening as the Royal Colosseum & Opera House in 1867, the theatre changed its name in 1869 on receiving its royal charter (and confirmation of respectability) from Queen Victoria.

Literally hewn from the stone quarry below, it has survived multiple fires, changes of ownership and a stint as the headquarters of Scottish Television and now stands resplendent on the corner of Hope Street and Cowcaddens Road, its Victorian auditorium restored to its full glory and its 2014 extension shining like a splendid jewel. Home to Scottish Opera and Scottish Ballet the grande dame of Scottish theatre is better than it has ever been in its near-150 year life.

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The new foyer and staircase designed by Page and Park and opened during the 2014 festive season.

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