Theatre News

Key Openings (and One Closure) in the South-East This Fortnight

Among the major openings in our region for the rest of this month are:

Opening I5 June. Dreamboats and Petticoats is at the Corn Exchange, Cambridge. This British musical by Laurence Marks and Maurice Graun is based on two successful album releases of 1960s favourite songs. The story is that of two aspiring young rock’n’roll musicians and the girl who joins them. The cast is headed by Scott Bruton, Ben Freeman and Jennifer Biddall. It runs until 20 June as part of a national tour.

Opening 22 June. at the Arts Theatre, Cambridge. This is a stage adaptation by Jeff Young, John O’Hara and Tom Critchley of the 1973 album by Pete Townshend and The Who and the film version of 1979. it tells the story of teenager Jimmy, at odds with his parents and stuck in a dead-end job. He’s not sure what he wants out of life, but takes off to Brighton to find it – and her.

Opening 23 June. Singin’ in the Rain at the Cliffs Pavilion, Southend is the stage version of the musical film which starred Gene Kelly as Don Lockwood. The part is taken by Tim Flavin, who has won awards for his performances in musicals both on Broadway and in the West End. It runs until 27 June.

Opening 23 June. by Elizabeth Inchbald at the Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds. This Georgian actress and playwright was born in Stanningfield, just a few miles from Bury, acted in London with Sarah Siddons and John Kemble and wrote a series of successful comedies of manners, of which Maids As They Are, Wives As They Were was successfully revived at the Theatre Royal last year.

The Massacre is her only tragedy, inspired by the horrific September Massacres during the French Revolution but based on an earlier play about the equally horrendous St Bartholomew Day’s Massacre which also took place in Paris albeit 200 years earlier. It was judged far too controversial to be staged at the time and Colin Blumenau‘s production is its professional European première. A modern companion-piece on the subject of genocide by Jonathan Lichtenstein accompanies it

Opening 25 June. The Tiger Who Came to Tea is based on the picture book by Judith Kerr by David Wood. It’s at the Arts Theatre, Cambridge for morning and afternoon performances until Sunday 28 June and then moves to the Norwich Playhouse, also with matinée performances, for 29 and 30 June.

By the way, if you were looking forward to seeing Harvest by Richard Bean at the Arts Theatre, Cambridge between 15 and 20 June, this touring production has been cancelled at quite short notice. No other production is available to replace it, so the theatre is “dark” for this week.