Staffordshire news and blogs Sunday 21 January 2018


Views from a Bum

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Looking Back in Anger 

16 Jan 18

BONES Old Joint Stock, Birmingham, Tuesday 16 th January, 2018   Mark is a 19-year-old with a temper – to put it mildly – in this production by Gritty Theatre of Jane Upton’s one-hander.

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Strictly the Best 

4 Jan 18

CINDERELLA Birmingham Hippodrome, Wednesday 3 rd January, 2018   It’s my final panto of the season and I’ve saved the biggest until last.

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Marley and E 

19 Dec 17

A CHRISTMAS CAROL Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford upon Avon, Monday 18 th December, 2017   Do we need yet another version of Charles Dickens’s perennial classic?  The RSC and playwright David Edgar think we do, but what can they bring to …

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Nearly Perfect 

15 Dec 17

CLOSER Crescent Theatre, Birmingham, Thursday 14 th November, 2017   Patrick Marber’s award-winning play from 1997 is brought to fresh life in this production from final year students at the Birmingham School of Acting (which, I believe, is now …

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You Couldn’t Make It Up 

13 Dec 17

THE KNEEJERKS The Victoria, Birmingham, Wednesday 13 th December 2017   As a reviewer I get invited to all sorts of things, so when a man I’d never heard of asked me to come to a room above a pub, I jumped at the chance.

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Beanz Meanz Lolz 

12 Dec 17

JACK AND THE BEANSTALK Grand Theatre, Wolverhampton, Tuesday 12 th December, 2017   Apart from a couple of changes, the main cast from last year’s rollicking Aladdin returns to Wolverhampton for this generous bean feast of fun, and they seem to …

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The Original Walk-in Wardrobe 

9 Dec 17

THE LION, THE WITCH AND THE WARDROBE Crescent Theatre, Birmingham, Saturday 9 th December, 2017   Mention C S Lewis’s classic book for children and people get a bit misty-eyed with nostalgia, and indeed, the idea of finding a mythical land at the …

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All Puns Blazing 

9 Dec 17

THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY SISTERS B2, Belgrade Theatre, Coventry, Friday 8 th December, 2017   One Christmas tradition that doesn’t get me bah-humbugging all the way home, is the Belgrade Theatre’s annual alternative production to the (…

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Spot On 

6 Dec 17

THE HUNDRED AND ONE DALMATIANS The REP, Birmingham, Tuesday 5 th December, 2017   Debbie Isitt’s adaptation of Dodie Smith’s 1956 popular classic provides a perfect package of festive fun as the REP’s Christmas show for this year.

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Afternoon Delight 

3 Dec 17

AN EVENING OF SEX A E Harris Building, Birmingham, Sunday 3 rd December, 2017   A small but discerning audience gathers on a chilly afternoon in a converted factory building in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter.

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Magic and Mess make for success 

2 Dec 17

CINDERELLA Belgrade Theatre, Coventry, Friday 1 st December, 2017   Writer, director and jovial genius Iain Lauchlan is back at the Belgrade for another triumphant year with a winning pantomime that blends traditional with new elements.

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Pleasure Voyage 

26 Nov 17

TREASURE ISLAND New Vic Theatre, Newcastle under Lyme, Saturday 25 th November, 2017   With this new adaptation of the Robert Louis Stevenson classic adventure, Theresa Heskins plots a course for another big Christmas hit.

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Inexplicable Elephant 

21 Nov 17

A CHRISTMAS CAROL Grand Theatre, Wolverhampton, Tuesday 21 st November, 2017   First version of the classic seasonal tale I’m seeing this year, this version’s staged by Bilston Operatic Company.

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Christmas Turkey 

16 Nov 17

MIRACLE ON 34 th STREET New Alexandra Theatre, Birmingham, Wednesday 15 th November, 2017   For their Christmas production this year, BMOS have chosen to mount this musical adaptation of a creaky old film, a perennial favourite – in the USA more …

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Boulevard of Broken Dreams 

14 Nov 17

SUNSET BOULEVARD Birmingham Hippodrome, Tuesday 14 th November, 2017   Andrew Lloyd Webber has written loads of musicals.

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Boots and All 

12 Nov 17

HOBSON’S CHOICE Crescent Theatre, Birmingham, Sunday 12 th November, 2017   Harold Brighouse’s classic comedy first appeared in 1916 when the tide of women’s suffrage was running high.

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Blonde Ambition 

11 Nov 17

LEGALLY BLONDE Grand Theatre, Wolverhampton, Friday 10 th November, 2017   I have seen this show before, years ago, but if you put a gun to my head I would be able to tell you very little about it.

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Sorry State 

10 Nov 17

(sorry) The REP, Birmingham, Thursday 9 th November, 2017   Millennials are terrible, aren’t they?  Spoiled, impatient, thinking they’re special…  This new piece from writer Susie Sillett shows us three sides of the coin (if that’s …

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Thrilled to Death 

8 Nov 17

DEATHTRAP New Alexandra Theatre, Birmingham, Tuesday 7 th November, 2017   Ira Levin’s classic thriller is doing the rounds in this effective new production, featuring two escapees from Albert Square, namely Paul Bradley and Jessie Wallace as …

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A Fool Aloof 

4 Nov 17

EUGENE ONEGIN Birmingham Hippodrome, Friday 3 rd November, 2017   Welsh National Opera’s autumn season is all about the Russians.

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Mum’s the word 

3 Nov 17

BABY DADDY The Door, Birmingham REP, Thursday 2 nd November, 2017   Single mothers get a bad press.

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Full of the Devil 

1 Nov 17

LIVING WITH THE LIGHTS ON Warwick Arts Centre, Coventry, Wednesday 1 st November, 2017   I am welcomed into the temporary, pop-up theatre by writer-performer Mark Lockyer.

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Spell Trouble 

1 Nov 17

MACBETH Crescent Theatre, Birmingham, Tuesday 31 st October, 2017   Karen Leadbetter’s strong production takes us to feudal Japan rather than medieval Scotland.

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Christmas Comes Early 

26 Oct 17

NATIVITY! The Musical The REP, Birmingham, Wednesday 25 th October, 2017   It’s too early to think about Christmas, I mutter as I take my seat, along with other curmudgeonly thoughts.

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Firm Favourite 

10 Oct 17

HAIRSPRAY Birmingham Hippodrome, Monday 9 th October, 2017   I don’t know how many times I have seen this show but I am always glad of the chance to see it again.