Review: Shangri-la at Hope Mill Theatre

The press release promised a run-down B&B which doubled as a swinger’s club, a gambling man, a fortune teller and an elderly deviant. My immediate thoughts turned to Benidorm. It’ll be leopard print, ‘bosoms’, nudge nudge wink winks, Carry On Abroad (at home), that glorious feature length film that took the cast of Are YouContinue reading “Review: Shangri-la at Hope Mill Theatre”

Preview: Ghost Walks and Stories and Pig heads. Oh my…

Friday nights can get a bit samey, don’t you think? Don’t get me wrong, they definitely remain my favourite night of the week. Ever since my school days when even the best telly was on on a Friday when you got home – Scooby Doo was on on a Friday. Byker Grove was on onContinue reading “Preview: Ghost Walks and Stories and Pig heads. Oh my…”

Review: The Strange Tale of Charlie Chaplin and Stan Laurel – HOME Mcr

Charlie Chaplin. He was instrumental in my phonics education. He was. And clearly on my cultural radar, and thus important to me, at a very young age (thank you mum and dad). 5 years old and engaged in a word game with my parents. The rules being thus – say the initials of a famousContinue reading “Review: The Strange Tale of Charlie Chaplin and Stan Laurel – HOME Mcr”

Pics: Rehearsals in full flow for Back to the Future The Musical

If you haven’t yet heard that Back to the Future The Musical (no less) is coming to Manchester’s Opera House on 20 February 2020, great Scott, you’d better make like a leaf and get outta here! Yes, I did that homage and I’m very proud of my little self… Starring Olly Dobson as Marty McFlyContinue reading “Pics: Rehearsals in full flow for Back to the Future The Musical”

Review: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at the Opera House

I’m cough years old but a good pantomime won’t fail to touch even the most jaded, cynical, grown up of adults. And this was no exception. In fact, and at the risk of over-exuberance (although at the time of writing I’ve had a 12 hour cooling off period) I’d say this was the bar by which pantomimesContinue reading “Review: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at the Opera House”

Review: The Manchester Project at Christmas. At HOME

I love a good kick-start to the festive season. For some it’s a trip to Dunham Massey’s ever popular lights extravaganza, some a performance of The Nutcracker, for some the appearance of the ‘red cups’ or even seeing Zippy being put together outside the Town Hall (Rest in Peace). This year I spring-boarded into theContinue reading “Review: The Manchester Project at Christmas. At HOME”

Review: Opera North’s Giulio Cesare at The Lowry

Some years ago, I visited the site where Julius Caesar was said to meet his maker. The Curia in the Theatre Of Pompey is not only a place of significant historical importance but much to my total and utter glee, a colony for feral cats. Cat lovers this is your Mecca, cat not-lovers probably giveContinue reading “Review: Opera North’s Giulio Cesare at The Lowry”

Review: The Jumper Factory at HOME

I do sometimes question why I come away with so many positive feelings, thoughts and, well, reviews, from productions that I’ve been lucky enough to see in theatres in and around Manchester. Be they performed on a stage in a large auditorium, in a church, in a renovated mill, even in a pub cellar, theatreContinue reading “Review: The Jumper Factory at HOME”

Preview: Penguin Pride 2019 (part of Pride at HOME)

Last year I shared my immense joy at what was an evening of entertainment, enlightenment, education and laughter (I couldn’t find a synonym for lolz beginning with ‘e’, ok?): Penguin Pride – less a review, more a tribute Well it’s back and I’ll be there and you should be too. And I’ll tell you forContinue reading “Preview: Penguin Pride 2019 (part of Pride at HOME)”

Preview: Dracula – The Blood Count of Heaton

Last summer I spent a very happy evening wandering round Heaton Park, not lost (although I’ve done that too), but at Romeo and Juliet – a production that took its audience to different locations round the park giving depth and reality to the oft told tale. So this year I’m thrilled that I’ll get toContinue reading “Preview: Dracula – The Blood Count of Heaton”

Review: Frozen Peas in an Old Tin Can (Greater Manchester Fringe)

I won’t repeat my love for fringe theatre all over again (I’ll just casually leave this here – Review – Talk to Yourself at The Kings Arms and actually probably will repeat it in this review anyway). One reason for my love of fringe theatre which I’m not going on about again (am) is theContinue reading “Review: Frozen Peas in an Old Tin Can (Greater Manchester Fringe)”

Review: First Time (Refract Festival 2019)

A funny and frank autobiographical solo-show, First Time (from Dibby Theatre) is written and performed by theatre-maker and HIV activist, Nathaniel Hall and returned to Sale Waterside Centre as part of Refract Festival. Diagnosed just two weeks after his 17th birthday and only months after coming out as gay to his family, Nathaniel kept his HIVContinue reading “Review: First Time (Refract Festival 2019)”

Review: Studio ORKA’s Tuesday (Manchester International Festival)

There are many times I’ve been to the theatre (literally and conceptually – not all plays take place on the stage), when I’ve thought ‘what a brilliant production, what a great story, what an excellent ‘play’ this is.’ And then there are times when I’ve left the idea that I’m at a play far behindContinue reading “Review: Studio ORKA’s Tuesday (Manchester International Festival)”

Review: Our Kid (Greater Manchester Fringe Festival)

I’ve documented my love for fringe theatre before. On the one hand you get to see experimental, exciting, no-holds barred productions and on the other hand, you get to see theatre which feels real, familiar, gritty, passionate… Our Kid, written by and starring Taran Knight, falls into the latter category and is all these thingsContinue reading “Review: Our Kid (Greater Manchester Fringe Festival)”

Back with a Bang! Refract festival returns to Sale this Summer

Those who have already discovered this award-winning arts festival will be thrilled to hear that Refract is back for its third edition in and around Sale, this July. Those who haven’t yet discovered Refract – you’re in for a treat. Running from Thursday 18 July to Saturday 27 July, this unconventional 10 day festival, curatedContinue reading “Back with a Bang! Refract festival returns to Sale this Summer”