Black Men Walking: theatre review

Black Men Walking is an Eclipse Theatre Company production directed by Dawn Walton and written by composer, rapper and writer Testament. It is an original, exciting and enlightening piece of theatre, which aims to resurface 500 years of forgotten Black-British history while uncovering the ever-present racism of contemporary Britain. Continue reading

Irving Undead: Resurrecting the strangest actor who ever lived

This October, deep in the chambers of York Medical Society, a meeting of two minds. Unlikely for its reach across many centuries, and yet inevitable for the kindred nature of the characters in question. If you have ever, or never, hungered to hear from the restless spirit of the father of horror, your time is come. Continue reading

Billy Shakes – Wonderboy!: weaning onto the bard

Leeds-based company Wrongsemble turn their trademark aesthetic panache to the imagined creative awakening of William Shakespeare, on a pop-up stage in the groundlings pit of Shakespeare’s Rose Theatre in York. The formidable collective of Director Elvi Piper, Designer Antony Jones, Musical Director Rosie Fox and Costumier Julie Ashworth makes for another rich, eye-catching set piece and, for the most part, the story holds the attention of their dutiful audience of very mixed ages, who have ventured out despite the ominously changeable weather. Continue reading

Swallows & Amazons: conquering heroes

Setting the course for a generous canon of children’s adventure stories, Arthur Ransome’s beloved 1930 tale is faithfully adapted by Helen Edmundson and co-directed by fresh swabbie John R. Wilkinson and seasoned seadog Damian Cruden, with a beautiful score by Neil Hannon and masterful musical direction from Kieran Buckeridge. Continue reading

Testament of Yootha: Jolie Laide

Writer-performer Caroline Burns Cooke’s meticulous sixty-minute one-woman show investigates the life and work of the actress Yootha Joyce, most famous for her role as Mildred in seventies sitcom Man About The House. Despite a comparatively short and late-blooming career, Joyce’s prolific contribution to television and her untimely death had a great impact on many people. Continue reading

Sh!t-faced Shakespeare® – Macbeth: classics for the disenfranchised

Sh!tfaced Shakespeare is exactly as billed; classically trained actors performing a serious Shakespeare play, while one of them is seriously drunk. “With one cast member selected at random and given four hours to drink before every show, we present to you classical theatre as it was always meant to be seen.” With a firm belief in making the Bard accessible again after centuries of dry, stiff performances, Magnificent Bastard Productions proudly delight in resurrecting the hen-night-stag-do chaos inherent in some of the plays’ dirtier passages. Continue reading

Something Else: (“and now for ______ entirely different”)

Open Barn Productions present Renae Mae Miller’s sharp new absurdist play Something Else at the John Cooper Studio @ 41 Monkgate as part of the Great Yorkshire Fringe. This striking and vehement fifty-minute script serves an enigmatic cocktail of paracetamol fever dreams, indiscernible package beach holidays and age-old hurts. Continue reading

Ian McKellen On Stage: Because You Would Like It

Defying the wealth of classics quoted and recreated with unearthly perfection upon York’s Grand Opera House stage, words cannot serve what it is to be in the company of Sir Ian McKellen. Opening with a casual reading from Lord of the Rings, he scoops up the full house into a warm embrace immediately, establishing the tone for the evening’s loving, playful ode to theatre. Continue reading

Photons and Phantoms: A York Tour

ot-off-the-press Science Communication company Theatre of Science presents their debut production, Photons and Phantoms: A York Tour. A perfectly paced promenade between several spots in the city centre – “where possible, avoiding both tourists and the smell of wee” – company founder and teacher-performer Lara Stafford leads a growing crowd of curious minds of all ages through the streets, illuminating secret historical facts and anecdotes to delight and inspire the whole family. Continue reading

The Rocky Horror Show: Car trouble? Make a pit stop at Frankenstein’s Place

Since its first appearance at The Royal Court Theatre in June 1973, Richard O’Brien’s The Rocky Horror Show has become the world’s favourite rock ‘n’ roll musical. It has been performed worldwide in over thirty countries in every continent and has been translated into more than twenty languages. To celebrate the fortieth anniversary, Director Christopher Luscombe created a brand new production for a year-long UK National Tour. Continue reading