Five-star ANYTHING GOES sails into UK cinemas for two nights only!

The multi five-starred new London production of ANYTHING GOES will be screened across the UK for two nights only after the end of its run at London’s Barbican Theatre (until November 6th).

For those of you (like me) who are taking your time to return to theatre, you can see it in more than 450 cinemas across the UK on November 28th and December 1st.

The show had been touted for an extensive UK tour after the London run but this appears to have been shelved owing to scheduling problems and the departure of leading lady Sutton Foster (off to do THE MUSIC MAN on Broadway), after the first delay in opening caused scheduling problems which necessitated the departure of originally announced leading lady Megan Mullaly (of WILL AND GRACE fame).

Scheduling problems for regional tours were thrown into utter chaos by the pandemic causing huge numbers of announcements, sudden cancellations and postponements, which has undoubtedly caused a lot of financial hardship to producers and receiving venues alike. I sincerely hope that the touring schedules are able to be maintained without too much interruption, as our industry- and the theatres they serve- depend upon it.

For cinema tickets to ANYTHING GOES, click here when they go on sale on Friday 15th October.

International screenings are to be announced at a later date.


CARNATION FOR A SONG can now be heard online

A couple of years ago, I was privileged to see one of the most impactful shows I have ever seen in my life.

CARNATION FOR A SONG was a show put together as a response to another show, by members of the Young Vic’s local LGBTQ+ community. You can read my appreciation of the show from April 2019 here

The show was recorded and you can now listen to the sound recording for free on SoundCloud, by clicking here

On this page you can find the original Soundtrack recording of the show at the bottom of the list here, lasting just over 57 minutes.

It brings something of the flavour and deeply personal qualities of the show for you to experience. I was so glad that I was able to see it. I hope that you will enjoy listening to it, and that it resonates with you, wherever you are – and whoever you are.


MT musical Festival “tours” virtually after live London run in May

Here’s a fascinating chance to see musicals in the making this Summer.

8 intriguing new pieces of musical theatre “work in development” can be seen live at The Turbine Theatre in Battersea, London from May 17-29, followed by a digital tour (online only- not in person) to twelve venues across the UK in the following five weeks.

The shows to be presented are below (with bookable links attached)

Far From Heaven

By Richard Greenberg, Scott Frankel & Michael Korie LIVE: 17th – 19th May

Book Now

#50Days

Created and written by Thabo Stuck LIVE: 17th – 19th May

Book Now

The Man in the Ceiling

By Andrew Lippa & Jules Feiffer LIVE: 20th – 22nd May

Book Now

Cake

By McManus, Lloyd Malcolm & Taylor-Johnson LIVE: 20th – 22nd May

Book Now

HouseFire

By P Burton-Morgan & Felix Hagan LIVE: 24th – 26th May

Book Now

Millennials

Music, Book & Lyrics by Elliot Clay LIVE: 24th – 26th May

Book Now

Daisy

By Caroline Kay

CANCELLED

Proud

By Graham Lappin, Mark Anderson & Lee Freeman LIVE: 27th – 29th May

Book Now

Tony! (A Tony Blair Rock Opera)

By Harry Hill and Steve Brown LIVE: 27th – 29th May

Book Now

MY PICKS

Top of the group for me is FAR FROM HEAVEN, featuring a jazz-influenced score based on the haunting Todd Haynes film set in the late 1950s America. The big appeal here is the brilliant Scarlett Strallen in the lead role of Cathy, who will make this worth the ticket price alone for a chance to hear her sing.

Caroline Kay’s DAISY has certainly pricked my interest. After waking from a coma with no memory of life before her accident, a young woman must try to move on knowing little more than her name: Daisy. Writing challenges and stimulates her abilities of recall – but are some memories best left forgotten? This story explores several forms of loss, challenges the resilience of a family, and celebrates the healing-power of storytelling. What also intrigues me is that Kay herself performs as Daisy. ***UPDATE This show has now sadly been dropped from the festival without explanation.

HOUSE FIRE also catches the eye, being co-written by Felix Hagan, one of the SpitLip mastermind team behind cult comedy musical OPERATION MINCEMEAT. Its a frenetic gig-theatre show which features a trio of endangered animals who form a rock band to protest against the climate crisis.

Comedy-wise we are sure to find value in TONY!, following Harry Hill’s earlier brilliantly funny but short-lived I CAN’T SING! with Cynthia Erivo and Simon Lipkin, amongst others. Lipkin is featured in the cast of this new piece and he is always worth watching.

THE MAN IN THE CEILING boasts co-creator Andrew Lippa who is always bringing interesting work. His, and Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Jules Feiffer’s, show is about a 12 year old boy who wants nothing more than to be a cartoonist.

All of the shows will be available to see live in person on the dates mentioned above only at the Turbine Theatre in London, where social distancing measures will ensure audience and performers’ safety.

The shows will all then become digitally available for online viewing only through twelve “tour” theatres, which are:

Norwich Theatre Royal

Belgrade Theatre, Coventry

Birmingham Hippodrome

Mayflower Theatre, Southampton

Mercury Theatre, Colchester

The Curve, Leicester

Dundee Rep Theatre

New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich

Theatr Clwyd, Mold, Wales

Sheffield Theatres

Royal & Derngate, Northampton

The Lowry, Salford

PLEASE NOTE Tickets for all live shows at the Turbine in person will be £15. Tickets for all digitally-delivered shows online will be £12.50. Most shows last around 45minutes. Tickets are limited availability for live shows and also online. At venues offering digital only there is a one-week window to see the show of your choice, and after you have started watching you will then have 24 hours to finish watching that show. Tickets are per device.

Most shows will be available to watch globally. Shows are available on a mix of dates at different venues. Please check the individual theatre for the dates on which shows will be available.

You can find more details and booking information at the Turbine’s website here


PRELUDES livestreaming today- book for matinee or evening

One of the top ten best shows of 2019, Dave Malloy’s mesmerising PRELUDES returns to the Southwark Playhouse for two streamed concert performances today.

The story deals with legendary composer Rachmaninoff and his struggle with writers block which lead to him being treated by a hypnotherapist in the late nineteenth century.

Nominated for two Stage Debut Awards 2020 for actor Tom Noyes and director Alex Sutton, PRELUDES is an elegantly, intriguingly constructed work which grips the viewer as few other shows have done. Its often sublime musicality makes its a must-see show. The superb 2019 cast have been reassembled which will ensure the incredibly high quality of this streamed production.

You can read my four star review of PRELUDES here

Read what a clinical hypnotherapist thought of PRELUDES here

Book for PRELUDES here


Time Travel Theatre: Enjoy the great Fats Waller musical AIN’T MISBEHAVIN’ – and a Bonus!

Here’s a great opportunity to enjoy an Emmy-winning recording of the original production (and original cast) of the hit Fats Waller musical AIN’T MISBEHAVIN’

Originating as a cabaret piece at Manhattan Theatre Club in February 1978, it was an instant hit, therefore the material was rapidly worked up into a full show which opened on Broadway at the Longacre Theatre on May 9, 1978, later transferring to the Plymouth Theatre and then to the Belasco Theatre, finally closing on February 21, 1982 after 1604 performances and fourteen previews. The show was directed by Richard Maltby Jr (who co-wrote the show with Murray Horwitz), with musical staging and choreography by Arthur Faria.

Programme from the earliest incarnation of the show in February 1978. By the time it got to Broadway, Charlayne Woodard had replaced Irene Cara.

The original cast featured Nell Carter, André DeShields, Armelia McQueen, Ken Page, and Charlayne Woodard. Luther Henderson adapted Waller’s music for the revue and served as the production’s original pianist. Cast replacements later in the run included Debbie Allen, Yvette Freeman, Adriane Lenox, and Alan Weeks.

The show won three 1978 Tony Awards (Best Musical, Best Direction and Best Performance (Carter)), three Drama Desk Awards (Outstanding Musical, Outstanding Actor (Page) and Outstanding Actress (Carter)), as well as two Theatre World Awards (for Carter and McQueen).

On June 12, 1982, NBC broadcast the revue with the original Broadway cast (you can see this broadcast recording below). This production received eight Primetime Emmy Award nominations, winning two perfromance awards (for DeShields and Carter)

UK readers may remember that the show also came to London, opening at Her Majesty’s Theatre in March 1979 with DeShields and Woodard from the original Broadway cast, where it also enjoyed a substantial, successful run.

So, below, please enjoy a great musical which pays full tribute to the musical genius of Fats Waller

With special thanks to YouTube poster Jackie M

EXTRA BONUS! For those of you who would like to see the 1978 Tony Awards, with performances from shows including Ain’t Misbehavin’, Dancin’, On the Twentieth Century, Runaways and The Act, and to see the stars of AIN’T MISBEHAVIN’ win their Tony awards, just click on the link below

With special thanks to YouTube poster MIssPoochSmooch