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Al Murray is the pub landlord who holds forth on all manner of topics, waxing wide about the state of the world with all the skewed logic of a bar room philosopher. Anyone who has spent even the smallest amount of time in a pub will recognise these immaculate observations of British pub culture.
Comedian, actor and permanent resident on 'QI'.
Following the sellout success of his long-awaited return to stand up, Alan Davies' previews his highly anticipated follow-up show, Little Victories. Much lauded as resident dunderhead on QI or the charming but reticent crime solver Jonathan Creek, Davies virtuosic story-telling and whip-smart funny bones combine to make this a show not to be missed. Age 15+
When Creon refuses to bury the body of Antigone's unruly brother, her anger quickly turns to defiance. Creon, in an attempt to retain control, condemns her to a torturous death - she's to be buried alive.
Acclaimed playwright, Roy Williams (Kingston 14, Sucker Punch), takes Sophocles' play and by placing it into a contemporary setting brings Thebes into the 21st Century, reinforcing this tales relevance and vitality.
This is a timeless story about loyalty and truth, human nature and human behaviour. It is a story about what happens when one person stands against the rules. About how we make meaning out of life and death and what, in the end, really matters.
This exhilarating Broadway musical follows the irrepressible imagination and dreams of Phineas T Barnum, America's Greatest Showman. The story of his life and his marriage to Chairy reveals a couple who looked at the world from opposite sides of the spectrum, and also reveals that she was the practical one who made his dreams come true. We follow the legendary showman's life as he lit up the world with the colour, warmth and excitement of his imagination and finally teamed up with J A Bailey to create Barnum and Bailey's Circus - the Greatest Show on Earth.
BE (Birmingham European) FESTIVAL champions the work of original and daring theatre makers from across Europe. In Best of BE FESTIVAL, three highlights from this year's festival are showcased together. The prizewinning shows form part of a convivial evening in which there is time to exchange ideas with fellow audience and company members during informal post-show gatherings and a shared meal in the Theatre's Green Room. Diverse and dynamic, with an emphasis on physicality, Best of BE FESTIVAL represents new European theatre seeking to break down barriers in more ways than one.
The Car Man is loosely based on Bizet's popular opera and has one of the most thrilling and instantly recognisable scores in New Adventures' repertory, brilliantly arranged by Terry Davies. The familiar 19th Century Spanish cigarette factory becomes a greasy garage-diner in 1960's America where the dreams and passions of a small-town are shattered by the arrival of a handsome stranger. Fuelled by heat and desire, the inhabitants are driven into an unstoppable spiral of greed, lust, betrayal and revenge.
Matthew Bourne's internationally acclaimed dance thriller was first seen in 2000, winning the Evening Standard Award for 'Musical Event of the Year'. Running time: 2hrs 20mins. Please note: Contains themes of an adult nature. Recorded music.
Michael Harrison has it all; great career, great friends and a beautiful fianc?. But when his stag night prank goes horribly wrong, Michael finds himself left alone, buried alive and facing a terrifying death. As time runs out and the terror grows, Detective Superintendent Roy Grace investigates Michael's mysterious disappearance. But as the mystery deepens and he begins to unravel a tangled web of deceit, Grace begins to fear that Michael won't be found in time...
One evening, Emily Brown and her rabbit Stanley find a Thing crying outside their window. Exciting original music, physical storytelling and lots of comedy combine to create a fantastic adventure based on the hugely popular book by Cressida Cowell (author of How to Train your Dragon) and Neal Layton.
How far would you run to find freedom? A hard-hitting story of two teenagers, brought together through the dynamic discipline of free-running. Kris and Zara share a city but can't find a place to rest. Haunting memories mix with an uncomfortable present as they keep on running, unable to face the consequences of their pasts - unable to stop or think for even a moment. Free tells the story of two teenagers, brought together through the dynamic discipline of free-running who face life-changing choices when a practice designed for self-improvement and freedom starts to cage them in. From dusk til dawn, against the backdrop of a sterile urban skyline, Kris and Zara form an obsessive relationship with one another, their city and the sport they know is pushing them to the limits of what is safe. Twisting together the real and the imagined, Free asks what we're running away from and if we're ever willing to stop and confront what we've left behind.
With his crown under threat from enemies both foreign and domestic, Henry IV prepares for war. Having deposed the previous king, he is only too aware how tenuous his position is, and the price to be paid if he falters. As his father prepares to defend his crown, Prince Hal is languishing in the taverns and brothels of London, revelling in the company of his friend, the notorious Sir John Falstaff. With the onset of the war, Hal and Falstaff are thrust into the brutal reality of the battlefield, where Hal must confront his responsibilities to family and throne.
King Henry's health is failing as a second rebellion threatens to surface. Intent on securing his legacy, he is uncertain that Hal is a worthy heir, believing him more concerned with earthly pleasures than the responsibility of rule. Meanwhile, Falstaff is sent to the countryside to recruit fresh troops. Amongst the unwitting locals, opportunities for embezzlement and profiteering prove impossible to resist as Falstaff gleefully indulges in the business of lining his own pockets. As the King's health continues to worsen, Hal must choose between duty and loyalty to an old friend in Shakespeare's heartbreaking conclusion to this pair of plays.
Jasmin Vardimon Company (JVC) is one of Britain's most pioneering physical dance theatre companies, creating work that excites both the eye and the mind by pushing the boundaries of human physicality whilst engaging in universal, contemporary themes that strike an emotional chord. Vardimon's powerful art of story-telling integrates multiple layers of communication - combining dance, movement, video, animation, text and music. Her sharp instincts and keen observations of human behaviour deliver beautifully precise characterisation, powerfully brought to life by her company of versatile dancers. Cast from around the world, each performer brings his/her own unique experience, with dynamic results.
Running time: 1hr 30mins (including one 20min interval). Park is an urban oasis, a place of refuge from ordinary life where eight characters play, fight, fall in love and learn to survive. In this playground of relationships, young lovers wrestle in a historic fountain, a graffiti artist sprays his story, a busker finds his only appreciative audience in a bag lady, and a flag-waving bully rants worn out political beliefs. Their stories intertwine creating a modern day fairytale that is alternately sharp, funny and cruel. Contrasting pieces set to an eclectic soundtrack that includes Frankie Goes to Hollywood, Brian Eno and Fiona Apple, Park has been reworked for 2014 with new 3D imaging, presenting a breathtaking collision of highly acute physical theatre, text, athletic dance and funky music, delivering fresh statements about our time.
Jersey Boys tells the story of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, the blue collar kids from New Jersey who formed a singing group and became famous. The musical features many of the group's pop hits from the Sixties such as Big Girls Don't Cry, Oh What a Night and Can't Take My Eyes off of You.
Puccini's most enduring opera. The story of the love of the poor poet Rodolfo for the consumptive seamstress Mimi. Set in the Latin Quarter of Paris the course of their love is constantly threatened by Rodolfo's jealousy and Mimi's illness. The painter Marcello and the provocative Musetta are the other main characters. This is where 'your tiny hand is frozen' comes from and the last few bars, as Rodolfo realises Mimi is dead, are some of opera's most moving moments.
Sung in Italian with English surtitles.
In this thrilling new production the action is transferred from deserted island to deserted theatre. A group of schoolboys find themselves abandoned. With no adults around they start to create their own rules and to build their own civilization. As time passes, the rituals become more disturbing as dark superstitions take hold. Order finally breaks down and blood is spilt as Ralph, Piggy, Jack and the boys grapple with the ?beast within' and the story builds to its thrilling climax. With a cast of New Adventures dancers and local young people, Golding's iconic characters are brought to life with raw energy, emotional intensity and electrifying performances. Chilling, beautiful and hugely entertaining, the piece will enthral die-hard Bourne fans as much as a generation of new audiences.
Of all the stories ever told - Of all the figures in history - Of all the men that have lived. Look at Jesus through the eyes of those around him: his mother, brother and followers, the political and religious elite. What do you see? The Son of God or a Jewish terrorist? A poet-philosopher or a fraud? Whoever the man Jesus was, he inspired the history of the world.
Milton Jones is renowned for his string of surreal and unusual one-liners. On stage, hair gelled in 360 different directions, clothes half-spaceman, half '70s Bhs, he was Perrier Finalist of 1997 and Best Newcomer in 1996. His delivery is part weirdo, part childish, part punch drunk.
With a career in comedy spanning three decades, Omid Djalili's legendary performances on stage and screen have won him fans and plaudits the world over. Renowned for his razor sharp wit, boundless energy and expertly crafted cultural observations, Omid's original material continues to explore the diversity of modern Britain and he remains one of the most exciting entertainers on the circuit.
Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream for young audiences. Pocket Dream is a sixty minute version of Propeller’s highly acclaimed production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, which has played in excess of 200 performances worldwide. Pocket Dream will leave a young audience not just having experienced Shakespeare for perhaps the first time, but having experienced theatre and crucially, theatre of the highest possible standard.
Propeller is an all-male Shakespeare company that brings texts alive with productions full of clarity, poetry, speed and imagination. Recommended for 9+
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife... The ultimate romantic comedy, Jane Austen’s story of the five Bennet sisters and their relentless pursuit of suitable husbands is one of the best-loved novels ever written, constantly topping the polls of favourite books. When feisty Elizabeth Bennet first meets handsome bachelor Fitzwilliam Darcy, she thinks him arrogant and conceited. When she later discovers that he has scuppered the relationship between his friend Bingley and her beloved sister Jane, she is determined to dislike him more than ever. In the sparkling comedy of manners that follows, the family’s lives are turned upside down as Jane Austen shows the folly of judging by first impressions and pokes gentle fun at the affectations and etiquette of provincial middle-class life.
The show premiered at Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds in 2013 and offers a brand new interpretation of one of the nation's favourite love stories. This inventive adaptation sees two actors juggle the full gamut of Austen's well-loved characters; they journey from the Meryton Assembly to the grounds of Pemberley; and take Darcy and Lizzy from instant dislike to something altogether more different, all in just two hours. Every word that is spoken is Austen's.
Traditional story of a princess whose royal background is put to the test by a pea placed under several mattresses. Will she notice the tiny lump in the bed as a real princess should, or is she an impostor?
Ross has a reputation for outstanding improvisation ability.
Shrek is the story of the swamp-dwelling ogre who, in a faraway kingdom, embarks on a life-changing adventure in order to reclaim the deed to his land. Joined by a wise-cracking donkey who won't shut up, this unlikely hero - not a handsome prince - fights a fearsome dragon, rescues the feisty Princess Fiona and learns that real friendship and true love aren't only found in fairy tales. With all-new songs, and an old favourite in "I'm a Believer", this spectacular stage musical brings to life the film's cast of dysfunctional characters and the accompanying subversive fun. The stage musical is based on the story and characters from William Steig's book Shrek! and the Oscar-winning DreamWorks Animation feature film Shrek, the first chapter in the series of irreverent fairy tales.
What is it that a citizen owes to his city or country? This is the question posed by Donizetti's rarely performed bel conto epic. It is the story of the burghers of Calais (depicted by Rodin in his famous sculpture outside the Houses of Parliament), citizens who offer up their lives to save their city from a besieging army. Their sacrifice is quiet, ordinary, sublime - and it culminates in one of the most moving ensembles in all of opera, the momentous O sacra polve, o suol natio (O Sacred Earth). The opera also includes poignant, intimate scenes between the young couple at the heart of the drama and between the leader of the city and his anguished followers. Meanwhile, at the gates, the triumphant Edward III shouts for blood.
Sung in Italian with English surtitles.
A young Amstell started performing on the comedy circuit when he was just 14 and later caught the eye of TV executives in 1998 after becoming the youngest ever finalist of the BBC New Comedy Awards. A short and somewhat chequered stint with Nickelodeon followed before he parted company with the children s channel and found himself much more at home as the cult co-host for Channel 4 s POPWORLD.
An internationally acclaimed stand-up comedian, accomplished actor and writer with guest spots on Mock the Week, Michael McIntyre's Comedy Roadshow and 8 Out of 10 Cats, Stewart Francis is one multi-talented performer. Stewart has made numerous television appearances. He's a regular guest on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, he is the host of trivia game show You Bet Your Ass, and in Britain, his TV appearances include The Comedy Store, Live At Jongleurs and The Big Stage.
The 1935 film centres on American dancer Jerry Travers (Astaire) who is working for bumbling producer Horace Hardwick in London. When Jerry practices his new dance routine late one night in Horace's hotel, it wakes the sleeping Dale Tremont (Rogers) below. When she goes upstairs to complain, the two are immediately attracted to each other, but complications arise when Dale mistakes Jerry for Horace, who is married to her friend.
Based upon Henry James' ghost tale. A young governess is despatched to the country to take charge of two small children by their distant uncle. Her charges appear to be the very picture of "deep sweet serenity" but there are sinister forces at work and her idyll is soon to be destroyed by terror.
Revival of the 2006 Tour production. Sung in English with supertitles.. The performance lasts approx. 2hrs inclu. one interval of 20mins.
I'm making a decision. I'm changing things. This is it. Three old friends. One remarkable day. For Ted, Danny and Charlotte, it s time to seize control. Make a difference. Change things. This is it. A day glo trip through the parks and raves and cafes of South London, where life is what you make it. The rapid fire words of Kate Tempest paint a picture of lives less ordinary in an unforgiving world, sound-tracked by an exhilarating score. A play about love, life and losing your mind.
Running time: 1hr. Age 14+