New play to remember bookshop founders:
James Ley, who helped form the Village Pub Theatre, has won an award to write a new play about LGBT bookshop founders Bob Orr and Sigrid Nieslen.
If the Lyceum dominated the winners list at Sunday’s Critics Award for Theatre in Scotland, it was the Arches closure which dominated the speeches.
How could it not. The ceremony was held at Glasgow’s Tron Theatre and the five minute walk to the Tron from Central Station starts opposite the entrance to the Arches. More to the point, the Tron is where the Arches founding director, Andy Arnold, is now artistic director.
The news that the Arches in Glasgow has gone into receivership and cancelled all future events with immediate effect from Wednesday 10 June 2015 is not only devastating for Glasgow’s theatre scene.
It is a body blow to the whole of Scottish theatre, one which will have repercussions all over the country and, it is not hyperbole to say, around the world.
Hugely – if inconsistently – funny, but lacking real dramatic impact, Yer Granny at the King’s is certainly crowd-pleasing but does not seem destined to linger long in the memory. Douglas Maxwell has taken Roberto Cossa’s Argentinian comedy La Nona and transported it to 1970s Scotland for the National Theatre of Scotland’s touring production. A family of Italian descent are suffering financial hardship, due largely to the Granny of the title, a monstrous 100-year-old who is literally eating them out of house and home.
Opera North’s production of Rodger and Hammerstein’s Carousel is a curious combination of drama, dance and song that on occasion both hits and misses the mark.
Meant to be a story about love, loss and redemption, this version feels more like a story about anger, resentment and possibly the glorification of domestic abuse.
Opening on a busy fairground scene, we meet the protagonists of the tale: fairground barker Billy Bigelow played by Keith Higham and millworker Julie Jordon, played by Gillene Butterfield. Among the magic of the carousel – and it really is a magical and stunningly visual set designed by Anthony Ward – Billy and Julie seemingly fall in love, losing both of their jobs in the process.