Attention all of our wonderful New York blog readers!
The magnificent King’s Theatre in Brooklyn, New York has reopened and has scheduled a number of tours, twice monthly into May.
This incredibly opulent theatre was opened in 1929 as one of the five original Loew’s Wonder Theatres. Kings Theatre was initially a movie palace offering movie together with stage shows supporting the film attractions, which was the standard at that time in film exhibition in large prestige theatres.
Closed in 1979, a victim of changing entertainment tastes, population changes and its own vast size (3055 seats), it lay forgotten, unused and deteriorating for decades. Thankfully in 2013 a comprehensive multi-million dollar restoration began and it reopened in 2015 with live music performances.
The 75-minute tour unveils historical and architectural highlights, beginning in the majestic grand lobby. You’ll be shown through ornate speakeasy lounges and both levels of the huge auditorium. Music fans will be treated to an up-close glimpse of the fabulous Robert Morgan Wonder Organ as well as hearing about the daily workings of the theatre. Tour members have the chance to upgrade their experience with two drinks and access to one of the theatre’s private speakeasies for a post-tour chill-out.
Tours take place on selected Saturdays until 28 May at 1.00pm local time. Please note that proof of COVID vaccination is required to join these tours. Standard tickets cost $20.00 plus fees.
If I were in New York, I’d jump on this before they all sell out.
You can find more information and tickets availability at the Kings’ website here
Acclaimed theatre company Ardent Theatre have taken their most recent, five-star reviewed show on the road. Co-devised by playwright Andrew Muir and the Ardent 8 actors, this show is about them – their hopes and dreams as young people emerging into the world, and their wants and needs. It speaks to all those aspiring to have a career they love and to find meaning in their contribution to the world.
The show, which had a London run in October 2021, now visits Poole this Friday February 4th and subsequently plays private performances for students in Leicester and Manchester.
Ardent Theatre Company presents RETHINK, a brand new production created and performed by Ardent8, a group of emerging young actors from outside London who face barriers to pursuing a career in theatre. Written with and directed by award-winning playwright Andrew Muir (Joint Creative Director of Ardent Theatre Company) the play highlights inequality of opportunities to break into a career in theatre, intensified by the global pandemic.
RETHINK is set in the aftermath of that sunny July 2020, when six graduates from a performing arts course on the south coast of England are encouraged to reconsider their careers, in the wake of theatre closures and lack of opportunity. According to a government-backed advertising campaign, their next job could be in cyber, they just don’t know if yet. What choice do they have?
RETHINK is created and staged by the Ardent8 Ensemble, a group of Dorset-based young people brought together through Ardent Theatre Company’s scheme to rebalance inequality of access to a career in theatre. The project was born of a recognition that often the most talented of actors will have given up before they’ve even realised their full potential because they are unable to access other cities that provide greater employment and development opportunities.
Ardent8 was launched in Dorset in 2016 and the inaugural group’s production Sacrificewas staged to acclaim at Soho Theatre and Jellicoe Theatre, Poole in 2018. The programme is being expanded across the country with partners currently including Manchester Metropolitan University and Leicester De Montfort University.
The aim of Ardent8 is to provide a taste of life as an actor in London and benefit from opportunities within the industry from which they have otherwise been alienated but which Ardent Theatre Company believe is no more than an equal opportunity. In doing so, they will develop their skills further in a professional context that also introduces them to key industry practitioners. The programme includes acting workshops led by industry professionals, ongoing advice and mentorship, a week’s professional performance at a London theatre (paid at Equity rates), and all travel, subsistence and accommodation costs.
Andrew Muir, playwright/director, Joint Creative Director of Ardent Theatre Company: “It has been a joy to create RETHINK with such a talented and generous group of young people. The play gets to the heart of their own frustrations – feeling powerless confronted by a lack of opportunity to follow their dreams due to a lack of funds, knowledge, networks and stuck distanced from meaningful cultural offerings. From working class backgrounds, these young people are passionate about acting yet even considering a career in theatre was alien to them – even before Covid grounded them entirely. Through Ardent8 we hope to shift things in their favour, so that our theatre ecology can benefit from their talent and perspectives.”
RETHINK can be seen at The Lighthouse, Poole, Dorset on Friday 4th February at 8.00pm. Tickets here
Here’s a great chance to tour one of Scotland’s at-risk theatres from your own home. Join a LIVE Facebook tour of Leith Theatre.
The Theatre describes the event as follows:
“2020 saw 100 years since Leith became part of the City of Edinburgh; prior to that it was a separate burgh. Since we were not able to open in person during 2020 we are celebrating them this year.
Our talks programme explores the rich heritage of Leith and its unique identity. We were not able to run the talk so instead we are bringing you this short virtual tour of this gem of a theatre.
Leith Theatre was built as a gift to the people of Leith following the amalgamation with Edinburgh in 1920. As well as sharing the theatre’s history and story of how a local action group took on the challenge of saving the building form private development, our speakers will share the journey of getting the venue back on its feet and the doors open, and look to how it’s surviving Covid closure and to the future.
Lynn Morrison leads the tour- she has been in post as Exec Director of Leith Theatre since November 2018. Anna Higham is Funding and Finance Manager at Leith Theatre and has been a key part of the senior management team at the Theatre since August 2017.
Join Lynn on this short tour on Facebook by clicking here
Finally US viewers get a chance to see Sir Ian McKellen’s “show of a lifetime”, as for a limited period it is available via TBD.
Universally praised, his 80th birthday tour covered the whole of the UK to audience approval. On the way, raising hundreds of thousands of pounds for theatres and charities, the show did a huge amount for causes dear to Sir Ian’s very big heart.
The great news about this release is that proceeds from this release benefit over 40 partner organizations including regional and community theatres and educational theatre programs across the US.
That the show comes highly recommended is a given. Viewers can find more details about how to get hold of this treasure chest of wit, anecdote and performance excellence at the TBD site here