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Manchester reviewed
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Manchester theatre reviews

Dancing Bear

Dancing Bear

at Palace Theatre

Reviewed by Katie Leicester February 2018


“The production is glamorous, hilarious and heart-breaking, deeply personal and uplifting making it a must see for all”.

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Manchester theatre reviews

Rattle of a Simple Man

Rattle of a Simple Man

at Lyceum Theatre, Oldham

Reviewed by Matthew Dougall February 2018

 

Written by Charles Dyer in the first years of the 1960s, when Britain was politically and socially coming out of its shell, and finding a voice after a decade or so of poverty and rationing after the war. He capitalised on both the repressed and tight-mannered morals of the day, and the move towards a more tolerant and free 'Swinging Sixties' society, juxtaposing these nicely in the form of a 40-something Northern virgin and a confident and experienced London prostitute.

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Manchester theatre reviews

Strangers On A Train

Strangers on a Train

at Opera House, Manchester

Reviewed by Matthew Dougall February 2018

 

Strangers On A Train is a novel by Patricia Highsmith which was quickly taken up and adapted for the screen by Alfred Hitchcock; and has now been adapted once again for a touring stage production which came to Manchester's Opera House this evening.

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Manchester music reviews

RNCM Big Band with Steve Berry

RNCM Big Band with Steve Berry

at RNCM

Reviewed by Matthew Dougall February 2018

 

If names such as Tommy Dorsey, Duke Ellington, Count Basie and Benny Goodman are your thing, then perhaps tonight's concert would have been a bit of a disappointment. Big Band it most certainly was, but brought right up to date and, I have to be honest, a little too extemporary and contemporary for me.

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Manchester theatre reviews

Macbeth

Macbeth

Presented by Cream-Faced Loons

at International Anthony Burgess Foundation

Reviewed by Jane Tuttle February 2018

 

MACBETH as presented by Cream-Faced Loons, is an easy to understand re-telling of William Shakespeare’s classic Scottish tragedy, made funny yet faithful.

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Manchester theatre reviews

ImproQuo and the Bridge Street Irregulars

at Gullivers NQ, Manchester

Reviewed by John Waterhouse, January 2018

 

It’s theatre Jim but not as you know it, as Dr McCoy would have almost certainly said to Captain Kirk, had they both been at Gullivers Pub in Oldham Street on Tuesday. This is improvised comedy, performed without a script, theme, props, or anyone having any idea at all what’s coming; just six actors (or sometimes less) being given random ideas and letting everyone see where it leads them. The result is unpredictable mayhem which is fast, funny, and engaging.

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Manchester theatre reviews

North West Wonders

North West Wonders

at 53TWO, Manchester

Reviewed by Matthew Dougall January 2018

 

This was an evening of 8 short plays very much in the style of a J B Shorts evening, performed on a mostly bare stage with a minimum of set, props and costuming, meaning that the turnaround between plays was swift and efficient.

 

This though was Baps Theatre; a company run by three actresses living and working in Greater Manchester, and this was their paean to the creativity and talent of the North West of England. All the writers, directors and actors in the 8 plays we saw all haled from the region, and proved beyond doubt that this region is teeming with talent.

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Manchester theatre reviews

Hamlet

Hamlet at Lowry Theatre

Reviewed by Andrew Marsden January 2018

 

Out of all of Shakespeare’s plays, Hamlet is both the longest and the most famous. For actors the title role is one of the biggest parts to perform, in terms of lines to learn and the role’s status as one of the most iconic in the English theatrical tradition.

 

The Royal Shakespeare Company’s latest staging of the show is currently on tour, following a well-received production last year. But how can a play such as Hamlet, so often quoted and staged numerous times, be made to feel fresh? This production, directed by Simon Godwin, goes some way to reinterpreting the play and is, for the most part, successful in this endeavour.

 

Recent years have seen the role of Hamlet played by critically adored actors such as Benedict Cumberbatch and Tom Hiddleston, while Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre shook things up by giving audiences a female Hamlet in the talented form of Maxine Peake.

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Manchester theatre reviews

Night Terror

Night Terror

at New Adelphi Theatre, Salford University

Reviewed by Andrew Marsden February 2018

 

Presented as part of the ‘Practical Research Projects 2018’ fortnight at the University of Salford, Night Terror by H & M Theatricals, Night Terror explores issues around Combat-Related Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in returning veterans from the war in Afghanistan (2001-present). Being part of a larger programme has placed obvious timing constraints on the piece and, as a result, the play feels like it is only just beginning to scratch the surface of the issues it wants to explore. This is not to diminish the important message of the play, or the quality of this staging of a piece which is clearly still in development, but instead highlights the amount of potential which is already instilled in the piece and deserves to be examined and teased out further in future productions.

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Manchester theatre reviews

The Play That Goes Wrong

The Play That Goes Wrong

by Henry Lewis, Jonathan Sayer & Henry Shields

at Storyhouse, Chester

Reviewed by Jane Tuttle January 2018

 

Mischief Theatre Production’s hilarious comedy, The Play That Goes Wrong, epitomises British humour at its best - the art of laughing at ourselves. The story revolves around an over ambitious amateur dramatics society (Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society); a bunch of am dram actors; an incompetent stage management team and a highly wayward set as they attempt to perform, dun dun duuuun... ‘Murder At Haversham Manor’.

 

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