Mar 3 2012 Chester Chronicle
STARTING THIS WEEK
BAGLADY (Royal Exchange Theatre, St Ann’s Square, Manchester, March 14-17)
ENGLISH premiere of a rarely performed Irish masterpiece by Frank McGuinness, one of Ireland’s leading playwrights. A touching story about alienation and truth which explores the conditions and circumstances which caused a gentle woman to become estranged from her life, while giving the audience a glimpse into the terrifying events which led to this isolation. Performed as a monologue, this show promises a tour-de-force performance by Joan Kempson. Ring 0161 833 9833 or visit www.royalexchange.co.uk.
BALLET BOYZ - THE TALENT (The Lowry, Salford Quays, March 14)
LED by former Royal Ballet dancers Michael Nunn and William Trevitt, the universally thrilling BalletBoyz pass the baton to a new generation for an evening of awesome skill and talent. With a programme that includes Russell Maliphant’s mesmerising Torsion, Paul Roberts haunting and the critically acclaimed Void by Jarek Cemerek, this explosion of exhilarating dance is cleverly fused with the company’s trademark use of film and behind-the-scenes footage. Call 0843 208 6000 or visit www.thelowry.com.
BETTE & JOAN: THE FINAL CURTAIN (The Lowry, Salford Quays, March 15-17)
BETTE Davis famously said: “You should only say good of the dead. Joan Crawford is dead. Good”. Now on her own deathbed, Davis finds herself forced to confront the ghost of her nemesis. But the fact that someone is dead doesn’t mean they’ve changed. This new comedy-drama from Foursight Theatre, the creators of Thatcher The Musical!, takes a wry look at two Hollywood icons and their equally famous feud. Call 0843 208 6000 or visit www.thelowry.com.
A CLOCKWORK ORANGE (Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, Mount Street, Liverpool, March 8-10)
ANTHONY Burgess’ novel achieved iconic staus through Stanley Kubrick’s infamous film adaptation. Burgess hated it and wrote this stage version as a response. Horrifyingly violent and unspeakably beautiful, this extraordinary play examines how far the human spirit can bend before it breaks. Performed by third year acting students. Call 0844 873 2888 or visit www.unitytheatreliverpool.co.uk.
ESTHER QUEEN OF EGYPT (Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, Mount Street, Liverpool, March 15-17)
FUNKY, modern twist on the story of the biblical heroine set in a modern day New York ruled by Ancient Egyptians. It bristles with dance styles from belly dancing and hip-hop to jazz. Enter the court of King Herod, who must pick a wife from a group of beautiful women. Each must dance - both solo and against the palace’s own male and female dancers - to win his hand. But Herod only has eyes for one. Performed by third year dance students. Call 0844 873 2888 or visit www.unitytheatreliverpool.co.uk.
GISELLE (Empire Theatre, Lime Street, Liverpool, March 12)
THE most poignant of all classical ballets combines powerful emotions and visual splendour in a chilling and heart-rending tale of love, treachery and forgiveness from beyond the grave. The story of Giselle and her aristocratic but duplicitous lover Albrecht is set to a glorious score and brought to life by the magnificent costumes and virtuoso performances of the Russian State Ballet of Siberia. Call 0844 847 2525 or visit www.liverpoolempire.org.uk.
HORMONAL HOUSEWIVES (Opera House, Quay Street, Manchester, March 8)
JOIN the Hormonal Housewives as they battle against weight, mood swings, wine, PMS, men, going to the gym, waxing, stretch marks, chocolate, upper-lip hair and all the other joys of being a 21st century girl! Ring 0844 372 7272 or visit www.manchesterpalace.org.uk.
HORRIBLE HISTORIES (Empire Theatre, Lime Street, Liverpool, March 9-11)
IT'S time to prepare yourselves for Horrible Histories live on stage. Historical figures and events will come alive on stage and hover at your fingertips in two shows: The Terrible Tudors - From the horrible Henries to the end of evil Elizabeth, hear the legend (and the lies!) about the torturing Tudors. Find out the fate of Henry's headless wives and his punch up with the Pope. The Vile Victorians - What exactly did a baby farmer do? Would you have survived the misery of the mines or the filth of the factories? Ride on the rotten railway and watch out for the wicked workhouse. Don't miss this horribly good chance to travel back in time! Call 0844 847 2525 or visit www.liverpoolempire.org.uk.
LA TRAVIATA (Opera House, Quay Street, Manchester, March 10)
THE Ukraine National Opera present this true story of the passionate consumptive Violetta. There are many echoes of Verdi’s own life in Traviata and he threw himself into the music. Ring 0844 372 7272 or visit www.manchesterpalace.org.uk.
MADAMA BUTTERFLY (Opera House, Quay Street, Manchester, March 9)
THE Ukraine National Opera present Puccini’s heart-breaking story of the beautiful young Japanese girl who falls in love with an American naval lieutenant – with dramatic results. Ring 0844 372 7272 or visit www.manchesterpalace.org.uk.
MOSCOW STATE CIRCUS (Lyceum Theatre, Heath Street, Crewe, March 13-14)
INSPIRED by the legend of The 12 Chairs, this show takes audiences on an incredible journey in the company of the greatest non-animal circus performers on Earth. The newly devised show includes beautiful Russian circus queen Yana Alievia on a revolving aerial chandelier; the breathtaking Stalkions (three men and two girls who walk, backflip and perform unbelievable pyramids 30ft in the air on the high wire); the Whirlwind Rubsovsm troupe, who acrobatically catapult themselves across and high into the big top at breakneck speed; and the high-flying Perushkins. Call 01270 686777 or visit www.lyceumtheatre.net.
NAUGHTY KNICKER KNIGHT (Floral Pavilion, New Brighton, Wirral, March 8-9)
AFTER the great success of Twisted Angels, local playwright Paula Rowlands along with Corrie Starr brings you another chance to see the ultimate adult musical. A story of sex, drugs and sausage rolls. Lynda Cairns thinks she lives a normal life, financially supporting her ex-Liverpool doorman Dick and his ASBO ridden sons Ronnie and Reggie. As she plods along in her less than perfect world she discovers that having a naughty knicker night with her mates reveals more than thongs. Call 0151 666 0000 or visit www.floralpavilion.com.
NO SLEEP FOR THE HAUNTED (The Lowry, Salford Quays, March 8-10)
THREE classic tales unfold in this chilling new musical. In The Judge's House by Bram Stoker, a young student in search of solitude and isolation soon finds that he is not alone. Following a series of tragic railway accidents, a lonely railway-worker in The Signalman (Charles Dickens) is tormented by ghostly warnings of a further impending calamity. Finally, A Warning to the Curious (MR James) is the harrowing tale of what happens when a man unearths an unusual treasure. Whether haunted by guilty secrets, dreadful premonitions, or terrifying spectres, all are caught in a nightmare, and desperately crave the blessed sleep of the innocent Call 0843 208 6000 or visit www.thelowry.com.
OEDIPUSSY (Playhouse Theatre, Williamson Square, Liverpool, March 13-17)
HOT on the heels of Spymonkey’s acclaimed version of Moby Dick comes an eagerly-awaited collaboration of artists at the forefront of British theatre. Spymonkey’s hilariously anarchic physical comedy and the playful storytelling of Kneehigh artistic director Emma Rice and writing partner Carl Grose, combine to create an outrageous no-holds-barred subversion of thje quintessential Greek tragedy - a tale of forbidden list, accidental incest, violent murder and the ultimate dysfunctional family. Call 0151 709 4776 or visit www.everymanplayhouse.com.
RAMBERT DANCE COMPANY (Anthony Hopkins Theatre, Clwyd Theatr Cymru, Mold, March 14-17)
RAMBERT celebrates 85 years at the heart of Briish dance. The Welsh premiere of artistic director Mark Baldwin’s new work Seven For A Secret, Nver To Be Told is this season’s must-see performance. The programme also features the brutal and seductive Elysian Fields by groundbreaking choreographer Janier De Frutos and Itzik Galilli’s sensational A Linha Curva. Call 0845 330 3565 or visit www.clwyd-theatr-cymru.co.uk.
RELATIVELY SPEAKING (Little Theatre, Gloucester Street, Chester, March 10-17)
CHESTER Theatre Club presents this early classic from Alan Ayckbourn. When Ginny misleads her new boyfriend Greg into believing she is visiting her parents in the country for the weekend, she hasn;t expected him to follow her in order to give her and them a pleasant surprise. For her, the surprise is far from pleasant as the country home belongs to her older lover and his wife. By the time Ginny arrives, Greg has already introduced himself to her lover’s wife as her daughter’s boyfriend. Cue a succession of misunderstandings and deceptions, presented with typical Ayckbourn relish and wit. Call 01244 322674 or visit www.chestertheatreclub.co.uk.
SOME LIKE IT HOTTER (Bickerton Village Hall, March 8; Whitley Village Hall, March 9; Kelsall Community Centre, March 10)
IT’S September 2010 and at long last funny man Jack Lemmon and the legendary Marilyn Monroe are reunited with old friend Tony Curtis. But how come Curtis looks 30 again? Where exactly are they? Who is the stranger on the set? And what is going on? This new fantasy comedy, presented by Oxfordshire Theatre Company as part of Cheshire Rural Touring Arts, whisks the three screen icons back to their most beautiful, sexy and hilarious selves for the most surprising comeback in movie history. Visit cheshireruraltouringarts.co.uk.
SOUTH PACIFIC (Palace Theatre, Oxford Street, Manchester, March 13-17)
THIS breathtaking and lavish Lincoln Center Theater production reinvented the classic Rodgers & Hammerstein show, swept the 2008 Tony Awards, played to sold-out houses on Broadway. The UK touring cast is headed by former EastEnders star Samantha Womack. Ring 0844 372 7272 or visit www.manchesterpalace.org.uk.
SWAN LAKE (Empire Theatre, Lime Street, Liverpool, March 13-14)
RAYMOND Gubbay presents The Russian State Ballet and Orchestra of Siberia in an immortal love story filled with emotion and beauty, Tchaikovsky's magical score creates a truly unforgettable experience. Formed in 1981, The Russian State Ballet of Siberia has quickly established itself as one of Russia's leading ballet companies and has built an international reputation for delivering performances of outstanding quality and unusual depth. The soloists and corps de ballet are superb and never fail to delight audiences with their breathtaking physical ability and dazzling costumes. Call 0844 847 2525 or visit www.liverpoolempire.org.uk.
TRAVELLING LIGHT (The Lowry, Salford Quays, March 13-17)
IN A REMOTE village in Eastern Europe, around 1900, the young Motl Mendl is entranced by the flickering silent images on his father’s cinematograph. Bankrolled by Jacob, the ebullient local timber-merchant, and inspired by Anna, the girl sent to help him make moving pictures of their village, he stumbles on a revolutionary way of story-telling. Forty years on, Motl – now the famed American film director Maurice Montgomery – looks back on his early life and confronts the cost of fulfilling his dreams, both to himself and those he left behind. Following Vincent in Brixton and The Reporter, Nicholas Wright’s new play is a funny and fascinating tribute to the Eastern European immigrants who became major players in Hollywood’s golden age; and a haunting look at the stories we tell about our own lives. Nicholas Hytner directs the award-winning Antony Sher in this National Theatre production in the role of Jacob. Call 0843 208 6000 or visit www.thelowry.com.
WELSH NATIONAL OPERA (Venue Cymru, Llandudno, March 13-17)
THREE productions from the acclaimed company: Verdi’s La Traviata can be seen on March 13 and 16, The Marriage of Figaro will be performed on March 15 and 17 and Beatrice and Benedict by Berlioz is presented on March 14. Call 01492 872000 or visit www.venuecymru.co.uk.