Arts - theatre, art, classical, opera and dance in Leeds
Although the work of Charles Dickens is often looked upon as being a… (Read more...)
Alhambra Theatre, Tuesday 3 December - Saturday 7 December 2013 (Read more...)
Huddersfield Town Hall – Wednesday 11 December (Read more...)
John catches Goldilocks and the three bears at the Carriageworks
I have been to many LIDOS (Leeds Insurance Dramatic & Operatic Society) productions over the last decade, both pantomimes and also musicals and have always found them to be of a very high standard.
When Insurevue disbanded in 1973, it seemed that the end was in sight for amateur dramatics within the insurance industry in Leeds. However, a team of enthusiasts, led by the likes of Alan Smith, Noel Meer, Bob Sutherland and Barrie Ward decided to keep the tradition alive. They moulded a group of insurance workers, largely inexperienced, into a performing company and on 14th January 1974 their…
Under the leadership of new Artistic Director James Brining, who we hope to have an interview with shortly on the site, West Yorkshire Playhouse is starting a new chapter in 2013.
Through a process of bold re-imagining and evaluation the Playhouse will be reassessing relationships with artists and audiences, with communities from across the region and with the city of Leeds itself. For the Spring and Summer of 2013 the programme of work is adventurous, provocative and entertaining. Three major new stage productions, intimate performances, significant pieces of new writing and collaborations with innovative artists from across the region begin…
Liz takes a look at the Cinderella panto at the Alhambra
For over 75 years The Alhambra has been synonymous with spectacular pantomimes and this year’s production is no exception.
With its breathtaking sets, lavish costumes and amazing transformation scenes and some startling special effects Cinderella can only be described as magical.
The mainstay of the panto for 14 years has been Billy Pearce “My name’s Buttons this year”, he quips. Hardly ever off stage he’s a bundle of energy and vitality with his own inimitable brand of comedy, with a strong local stamp on it which the audience love; whilst at the same time capturing the warmth, tenderness and pathos…
Review One Man Two Guvnors
There had been much hype over the last year about this particular production and I really wasn’t sure what to expect from an adaptation of a 250 year old Italian comedy, The Servant of Two Masters.
What I actually experienced at the opening night of this play was one of the funniest evenings I have been to for many years. The comedy in this production is superb. It is well written, brilliantly acted and the timing and slapstick is immaculate.
Comedian Rufus Hound takes the lead role of Francis Henshall in Richard Bean’s award-winning version of Carlo Goldoni’s classic Italian…
Review Jack and the Beanstalk
Despite lavish sets and costumes, and a talented cast of panto favourites Jack and The Beanstalk lacks the sparkle, vitality and brash, belly laugh humour that we have come to expect from Paul Holman productions.
This year’s offering is also thin on the ground with audience participation as there are few opportunities to hiss, boo and shout catchphrases – with the tried and tested ghost gag failing to create a deafening din.
Even pantomime favourite Jezz Edwards, as Simon , had little opportunity to do what he’s best at doing - getting the audience to raise the…
Review Wind in The Willows
John follows the adventure of four lovable characters in the form of a toad, a rat, a mole and a badger at the WYP
Over the last few years West Yorkshire Playhouse has produced a sumptuous feast of entertainment for its audiences over the Christmas and New Year period.
Ian Brown, former artistic director at the Playhouse until this last Summer, has returned as Director of this production and in this he lovingly brings to life the adventures of our old friends Toad, Badger, Rat and Mole who many of us have loved since our childhood reading of the classic Kenneth Graham book.
Leeds’ own playwright Alan Bennett has adapted Graham’s original story and his adaptation is both witty and whimsical. It is full…
Review The Nutcracker
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas……..For most people that means tasting their first mince pie or getting that ultra early Christmas card. For me its always been experiencing a performance of Tchaikovsky’s nutcracker – and this year the icing was truly on the Christmas cake with a performance at St Georges Hall by the Moscow City Ballet.
From the days of the Imperial Ballet, Russia has always lead the world in the ballet stakes. Somehow they possess that extra element to make any performance a magical experience. It’s well known in dance circles they train hard and undergo…
Following the success of last year's Rock’n’Roll panto, this year John takes a look at another fabulous hit that is Cinderella
Visits to two Pantos in a week – It’s getting to look a lot like Christmas, as Mr Buble’s song goes! And what another Christmas cracker this one is at Leeds City Varieties. A hugely talented cast, fabulous set design and 110% enthusiasm from all the performers makes this one of the best family pantos for the public of Leeds and West Yorkshire.
The show has all the traditions associated with pantomime – the costumes, the gags, the men dressed as women – but this really is panto with a difference. The music is a huge part of the show…
Review The Mousetrap
Sixty years and one day after The Mousetrap opened on 25 November 1952 at the Ambassadors Theatre in London, the public of West Yorkshire got the chance to see this classic Agatha Christie play at The Alhambra in Bradford
Originally first performed as a 30 minute radio drama entitled “Three Blind Mice” it was commissioned by the BBC after discussions with King George VI to celebrate the 80th birthday of his mother Queen Mary in May 1952. Agatha Christie then extended this to the two hour stage drama that has now been running continuously for the last sixty years.
Christie is synonymous with her two sleuths of Miss Marple and Hercule Poirot but neither of these appears in The Mousetrap, and not even their razor sharp minds, working in tandem, are likely to solve the mystery of why this…
John Burland takes a look at this musical adventure by St Mary’s Youth Theatre at the Carriageworks
St Mary’s Youth Theatre from Garforth are celebrating their twentieth anniversary this year, having started in 1993 and over the years they have produced many exciting shows, initially in the Garforth area with Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and more recently at The Carriageworks Theatre in Leeds. Steve Archdale started the group back in 1993 and is the director of this current production of Peter Pan – A Musical Adventure.
Whilst this is a well produced show, there were a number of factors that let it down on the opening night, and I think it best to get these…