Here we are again at the end of another year; so without further ado, here’s a bit of a list – the best theatre and performance from Liverpool (and surrounds) of 2017.
The Unity’s Christmas show occupies a much-needed niche by virtue of it offering an affordable family show that is a panto-free zone.
Joanne Tremarco begins in the audience, asking questions and hearing people’s stories about near-death experience, or how they would like to die. Immediately, she has tapped into something.
It’s nearly November, which means Homotopia is here – and for the first time, the LGBT+ arts festival is bringing a RuPaul’s Drag Race winner to Liverpool.
“My new show is about living with my emotionally abusive grandfather and the therapy I underwent because of it,” says Sofie Hagen. “It’s still stand up – there are plenty of jokes in there, it’s funny,” she adds, in case you were concerned.
The Tin Drum is an assault on the senses, a wild, unrelenting ride that jolts its audience out of any complacency and dazzles bright.
If a creepy sense of deja vu has descended on you, dear reader, fear not; this is indeed the second review of this show, at this venue, on this site.
The Looking Glass is the new, interactive, family-friendly show by Manchester-based theatre company Carnival of Eternal Light, inspired by the well-known and well-loved works of Lewis Carroll.
Season six winner Bianca can fill theatres all over the world with her one-woman shows, she made her own movie Hurricane Bianca, and famous fans include Graham Norton and the late Joan Rivers.
Returning to the theatre after its premiere run last year, the madcap Scouse play tells the story of a bunch of misfits trapped in the Royal Liverpool Hospital as the old building – a landmark most everybody in the city knows inside and out – is literally about to be demolished.
A few months ago when Arts Council England announced their funding allocation for the next four years, one of the shocks that came out of it was the dropping of Liverpool’s MDI as a National Portfolio Organisation (NPO).
Gypsy Queen achieves a lot in a single act. At the heart of this 70-minute boxing drama is an unexpectedly sweet gay love story, and a relationship shaped both by the macho world of sport and the expectations of close-knit families.
Naughty Corner Productions formed in Edge Hill University in 2013 and are taking not one, but three shows to the Edinburgh Fringe this summer – but not before a preview run at the Unity next week. MADEUP found out more.
Jamie Wood’s latest work, I am a Tree, closed this year’s Physical Fest with a sold-out performance at the City of Liverpool College’s Arts Centre, where the festival was forced to relocate at the last minute as the Unity’s refurb overran.
Cartoonopolis was first performed in the Playhouse Studio a couple of years ago, where it came into existence thanks to actor Lewis Bray’s involvement with YEP [Young Everyman and Playhouse]. Along with Matt Rutter and Chris Tomlinson, that company’s artistic director and associate director respectively, Bray’s fledgling idea – to do a play about his brother’s autism – began to take flight.
Notably more settled into its new home of the Invisible Wind Factory than last year, the event is presented in two-hour long episodes and action is (kind of) recapped at the top of each one, so audience members without the luxury of 33 hours to spare can come and go. I saw only two episodes on Saturday night, and wished it was more.
GP Margaret (Denise Kennedy) keeps her patients at arms’ length, not only simply to get through each day’s crippling workload, but also to avoid confronting her personal problems. Nicholas (Graham Hicks) is a hypochondriac taxi driver who is about to push her patience to the limit as he bids to overstay his strict ten minute appointment.
As the Everyman’s company season continues, The Story Giant takes to the stage. An adaptation of a tale by Mersey Poet Brian Patten, it brings together a wealth of the theatre’s backstage talent for a real family affair.
Committed, Stephen Smith’s bleak tale of a fractured community in 90s Belfast was first performed as part of Liverpool Irish Festival a few years ago in 2014.
Tradition is indeed the main theme of this classic musical – not the usual fodder for this particular Liverpool stage, you will agree; the tale of Tevye, the turn-of the century Russian peasant wishing he were a rich man, battling the wills of his five daughters and keeping the Jewish faith.