“You worry (especially with fringe theatre): are you going to put bums on seats? Is it going to be able to portray the message you want? Will the audience get much out of it?”
What is personally the most galling is the programming of Twelfth Night. Emma Rice’s production was my favourite show of 2017. It almost feels like they’re trying to brush it under the carpet by putting it on again so soon.
Lots & lots of shows have their first performances in London and across the country this month, including new productions of Pinter’s The Birthday Party, Wilde’s Lady Windermere’s Fan, and Shakespeare’s All’s Well That Ends Well.
Well, we’re all still here… The big red button hasn’t been pushed yet and theatre is better than ever! But what’s coming up this year?
Living with the lights on is centred around my time at the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1995. It was there that the odd and bizarre began happening to me and I had no idea what, why or how to stop it. I was going really well as a successful young actor. Then things began to fall apart.
Taking (very loose) inspiration from the 1935 film comedy The Ghost Goes West, Richard Ferguson and Andy Cannon’s musical features a Scottish castle that is transported to Florida by an American millionaire as a present for his astrologer fiancee – complete with the ghost of a Jacobite chieftain.
There’s bundles of fun and bonkers B-movie mayhem in Little Shop of Horrors, the debut musical from TBC Productions, which is at the Studio on Potterrow to Saturday. Adapted from a Roger Corman movie from the late fifties, Little Shop has a wickedly knowing book and lyrics from Howard Ashman and a solidly rock-driven score from Alan Menken.
Southern Light Opera returns to the King’s Theatre this week with its 120th annual show, a mammoth production of Titanic The Musical that the company hopes will get right into the soul of the tragedy.
This isn’t an exhaustive list because there’ll be a panto somewhere in practically every postcode come December, but it is a rundown of your options – financial and artistic – for a special Christmas outing. I’ve averaged six pantomimes in recent years, so am already adopting the ‘brace’ position …
Dancing with Colours, Whipping with Words: Dario Fo is coming to Edinburgh. This Sunday, 9 October 2016 , the great Italian playwright, performer, comedian, painter and all-round gadfly, will be making a personal appearance at the Lyceum Theatre.
Thom Dibdin will be putting his mouth where his pen normally goes and appearing in a show during the fringe.
Ross Dunsmore’s Milk heads Traverse Edfringe programme:
Ten world premiers will feature in the fringe programme of the Traverse this year. Ten plays which, as I write this, don’t even exist yet.
The world premiere of Thon Man Moliere, Liz Lochhead’s play about the life and times of the playwright Moliere, opens at Edinburgh’s Lyceum Theatre this week, running 24 May to 11 June 2016.
Solid showing for Linehan’s second EIF: The return of Alan Cumming to Edinburgh for the whole festival is the big news of a programme that is more solid than surprising. He will be singing his Sappy Songs for 20 performances of late-night cabaret at the Hub. Cumming is part of the theatre programme, as artistic director Fergus Linehan seeks to question the nature of cabaret.
Urban Fox has announced a short tour for its Edinburgh fringe hit Heartlands to the home towns of its company before a short stay at London’s King’s Head Theatre as part of its #Festival45.
Edinburgh Book Festival 2015 tickets go on sale tomorrow morning with a strong number of theatre-related events in the mix, including a talk with actor Alan Cumming about his memoir, Not My Father’s Son.
Quarter Century Celebrations:
After 25 years, Showcase is moving down the hill from the Church Hill Theatre for a couple of nights on the big stage of the Kings.
Grads’ Andronicus steps into modern era:
The buzz has predictably focussed on the blood and the guts in the Grads’ new production of Titus Andronicus, which is at the Assembly Roxy to Saturday this week.
Polling day production:
Culture is on the agenda on polling day, with the Traverse staging a pair of Two Minute Manifesto performances that attempt to capture the spirit of debate.