We take a look at what is being said about the European premiere of the musical Head Over Heels, playing at the Manchester based Hope Mill Theatre until 4 March.
REVIEW ROUND-UP: The Ocean at the End of the Lane – Touring
The National Theatre’s production of The Ocean at the End of the Lane is currently on a UK tour – here’s what critics have been saying about it so far.
‘Live entertainment has come back with an encouraging roar’: Alun Hood celebrates his Top 20 new theatre shows of 2022
As somebody who loves a listicle plus a bandwagon to jump on, how could I NOT compile my list of my top 20 new (to me) shows of 2022? It’s been 12 months in which live entertainment has come back with an encouraging roar, although the impending cost of living crisis is inevitably, and understandably, causing anxiety in theatrical circles. Please do get out there, if you can, and support your local venue in 2023.
‘Hugely entertaining show’: THE PANTOMIME ADVENTURES OF PETER PAN – Manchester ★★★★★
It’s panto season! (Oh no it isn’t, etc…) Full disclosure: I haven’t seen a panto since I was a kid, and went in to the Opera House’s Peter Pan frankly a little bit cynical. I’d assumed it was just for parents wanting to introduce their kids to theatre – a great aim, but one with not much to offer someone like me. How wrong I was.
‘I left having cried tears of both joy & empathy’: BETTY! A SORT OF MUSICAL – Manchester ★★★★★
Reviewer: Daniel Shipman Upstaged Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ The Royal Exchange has a solid reputation for outstanding, non-pantomime Christmas shows, and Betty (written by and starring Maxine Peake) is no exception. Described as ‘a sort of musical’, Betty follows the misadventures of…
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‘Inventive & dreamlike’: MATTHEW BOURNE’S SLEEPING BEAUTY – Touring ★★★★★
New Adventures and Matthew Bourne return to The Lowry with their Gothic take on the classic fairytale Sleeping Beauty. A firm favourite in the company’s repertoire and celebrating 10 years since it was first performed, this stylish and supernatural production reawakens for 2022.
‘Razor-sharp &captivating’: FRANTIC ASSEMBLY: OTHELLO – Touring ★★★★★
Lean, mean and totally uncompromising, Frantic Assembly bring a newly updated and gritty version of Shakespeare’s Othello to The Lowry as part of their UK tour. Razor-sharp and captivating, Frantic Assembly’s pulsating and athletic physical style adds new depth to Shakespeare’s text.
‘Bloody unmissable’: LET THE RIGHT ONE IN – Manchester ★★★★★
Since the Royal Exchange announced their new season back at the end of 2021, I’ve been eagerly awaiting this production. Adapted for the stage by Jack Thorne, Let The Right One In is everything I envisioned it could be and much more. Suitably timed for Halloween, the performance delivers – it’s brutal, jumpy and at times, quite bloody – but it’s also threaded with innocence, sweet humour and heart.
‘Two spectacular performances’: Switch_MCR Double Bill – Manchester ★★★★★
Switch_MCR are a Manchester-based theatre company creating new and exciting accessible work. The company was founded by Royal Exchange Young Company members and is now one of the biggest independent theatre companies in Manchester. This Double Bill performance was a collection of two new and exciting plays, Lekhani Chirwa’s Senses of Responsibility and Joseph Conway’s Blue Moss.
’It’s sexy, dark & riveting’: PASSION – Manchester ★★★★★
Make no mistake, this is a world class Passion, and one which any Sondheim nut, or indeed anybody who wants to see a collection of remarkable talents at the top of their game, would be mad not to make the journey to the Hope Mill Theatre Manchester for.
NEWS: Chichester’s South Pacific transfers to Manchester & London ahead of UK tour
This summer’s Chichester Festival Theatre smash hit production of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s South Pacific will transfer to London’s Sadler’s Wells in the new year.
NEWS: Broadway musical Mrs Doubtfire gets UK premiere in Manchester next September
Broadway musical Mrs Doubtfire will get its UK premiere next year. Producers have confirmed the screen-to-stage hit will have a strictly limited season at the Manchester Opera House from 2 September to 1 October 2022.
‘Emotional, thought-provoking & honest’: THE MOUNTAINTOP – Manchester ★★★
Katori Hall’s The Mountaintop, revived at Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre by Roy Alexander Weise, is what happens when we examine our heroes at their most vulnerable.
‘A magical fever dream that invites you to suspend your disbelief’: BAT OUT OF HELL – Manchester & Touring ★★★★★
Hitting the highway until late 2022, after several staggering runs in Toronto, New York and London, Bat Out Of Hell returned to its proverbial Manchester home this weekend.
NEWS: Covid self isolation guidance forces West End opening night of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cinderella to be postponed
Following the cancellation of weekend performances of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cinderella at London’s Gillian Lynne Theatre, due to one member of the company testing positive for Covid-19, the composer has announced today that the opening night and gala evenings (19 and 20 July 2021) will also not go ahead.
NEWS: Government tier system announcement receives a mixed reaction
There has been a mixed response from theatres up and down the country to the Government’s announcement detailing which areas of England will fall into which Tier when the second lockdown comes to an end on 2 December 2020.
‘Wholly engaging’: PETRICHOR – ThickSkin (Online review) ★★★★
At a time when human connection feels more vital than ever, Petrichor offers an immersive, accessible and unique way to experience theatre.
NEWS: The Industry Minds Awards 2020 will be held at Manchester’s Hope Mill Theatre in November
The Industry Minds Awards 2020 will be held on 30 November 2020 at The Hope Mill Theatre in Manchester, hosted by Industry Minds and Hope Mill Theatre patron Denise Welch, a leading advocate for mental health in the arts industry.
‘Maureen Lipman gives a magnificent performance’: ROSE – Hope Mill Theatre (Online review)
Magnificently played and realised by Maureen Lipman, Martin Sherman and Scott Le Crass, Rose is well worth viewing.
NEWS: Designers launch #MissingLiveTheatre across the UK & Ireland
In collaboration with theatres across the UK, #scenechange – a community for stage designers taking action for theatre – has launched #MissingLiveTheatre, wrapping theatre buildings in a positive message of hope and visibility to the industry.