Feb 18 2012 Chester Chronicle
ALEGRIA (MEN Arena, Manchester, April 4-7)
CIRQUE du Soleil brings its critically acclaimed production Alegría to UK arenas for the first time. Alegría is a Spanish word that means happiness, joy and jubilation and features an international cast of 55 performers and musicians from 17 countries and showcases breathtaking acrobatics. Call 0844 847 8000 or visit men-arena.com.
ART (Little Theatre, Gloucester Street, Chester, June 30-July 7)
CHESTER Theatre Club presents this funny and interesting play from Alan Ayckbourn. What do you do when a friend you have known for years - a friend you thought you knew really well - buys a work of art you consider to be ridiculous? This is the dilemma facing the three friends featured in Art. Serge thinks his painting of white tear lines cut into a blank white canvas in inspired. Marc thinks it’s rubbish and Yvan can’t quite make uop his mind. Their friendships are tested to breaking point as a result. Call 01244 322674 or visit www.chestertheatreclub.co.uk.
CHICAGO (Palace Theatre, Oxford Street, Manchester, March 19-24)
BASED on real life events back in the roaring 1920s, this show sees nightclub singer Roxie Hart shoot her lover and – along with Velma Kelly – fight to avoid death row with the help of smooth-talking lawyer Billy Flynn. Ring 0844 372 7272 or visit www.manchesterpalace.org.uk.
CHICAGO (Pavilion Theatre, Rhyl, April 30-May 5)
BASED on real life events back in the roaring 1920s, this show sees nightclub singer Roxie Hart shoot her lover and – along with Velma Kelly – fight to avoid death row with the help of smooth-talking lawyer Billy Flynn. Ring 01745 330000 or visit www.rhylpavilion.co.uk.
A CLOCKWORK ORANGE (Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, Mount Street, Liverpool, March 8-10)
ANTHONY Burgess’ novel achieved iconic staus through Stanley Kubrick’s infamous film adaptation. Burgess hated it and wrote this stage version as a response. Horrifyingly violent and unspeakably beautiful, this extraordinary play examines how far the human spirit can bend before it breaks. Performed by third year acting students. Call 0844 873 2888 or visit www.unitytheatreliverpool.co.uk.
DANCING IN THE STREETS (Palace Theatre, Oxford Street, Manchester, June 4-9)
IVOR Novello Award winner Keith Strachan’s directs the hit show Dancing in the Streets - a spectacular celebration of classic music from the heart of the Motor City - Detroit. Ring 0844 372 7272 or visit www.manchesterpalace.org.uk.
GOLDILOCKS (Royal Exchange Theatre, St Ann’s Square, Manchester, March 7-8)
YOUNG Goldilocks likes to explore the world and experience new things. This time, when she wanders into an empty house, she finds much more than three bowls of porridge. But what will happen when the Bears return and find her? Using table-top puppetry and musical influences from around the world, this production from Little Angel Theatre brings this classic story to life with a twist. Ring 0161 833 9833 or visit www.royalexchange.co.uk.
HORMONAL HOUSEWIVES (Opera House, Quay Street, Manchester, March 8)
JOIN the Hormonal Housewives as they battle against weight, mood swings, wine, PMS, men, going to the gym, waxing, stretch marks, chocolate, upper-lip hair and all the other joys of being a 21st century girl! Ring 0844 372 7272 or visit www.manchesterpalace.org.uk.
I DREAMED A DREAM (Palace Theatre, Oxford Street, Manchester, June 19-23)
SUSAN Boyle will make a guest appearance in this eagerly awaited new show based on her life story. Starring Elaine C Smith (Rab C Nesbitt) the musical follows Susan Boyle’s rise from humble beginnings to global icon and features signature songs from her multi-platinum selling albums. Ring 0844 372 7272 or visit www.manchesterpalace.org.uk.
MACBETH (Little Theatre, Gloucester Street, Chester, May 5-12)
CHESTER Theatre Club presents William Shakespeare’s dark, compelling tragedy. Promised a golden future as ruler of Scotland by three sinister witches, Macbeth murders the King to ensure his ambitions come true. By this act, he soon learns the meaning of terror as the dead return to haunt him. A story of war, witchcraft and bloodshed. Call 01244 322674 or visit www.chestertheatreclub.co.uk.
OEDIPUSSY (Playhouse Theatre, Williamson Square, Liverpool, March 13-17)
HOT on the heels of Spymonkey’s acclaimed version of Moby Dick comes an eagerly-awaited collaboration of artists at the forefront of British theatre. Spymonkey’s hilariously anarchic physical comedy and the playful storytelling of Kneehigh artistic director Emma Rice and writing partner Carl Grose, combine to create an outrageous no-holds-barred subversion of thje quintessential Greek tragedy - a tale of forbidden list, accidental incest, violent murder and the ultimate dysfunctional family. Call 0151 709 4776 or visit www.everymanplayhouse.com.
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA (Palace Theatre, Oxford Street, Manchester, April 5-May 19)
CAMERON Mackintosh presents a spectacular new production of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s classic musical which will star John Owen-Jones as The Phantom and Katie Hall as Christine. Phantom became the longest running show in Broadway history in 2006 when it celebrated its 7,486th performance, surpassing the previous record holder Cats. Ring 0844 372 7272 or visit www.manchesterpalace.org.uk.
PHOENIX DANCE THEATRE (Playhouse Theatre, Williamson Square, Liverpool, March 23-24)
THE company’s latest mixed programme Crossing Points features the world premieres of two contrasting dance works. Catch by Ana Lujan Sanchez is inspired by Magritte’s iconic painting The Son of Man; SoundClash by Kewsi Johnson sees dancers mimic sound wave patterns; and there is the return of Henri Oguike’s Signal along with another chance to see Aletta Collins’ sassy modern classic Maybe Yes Maybe, Maybe No Maybe. Call 0151 709 4776 or visit www.everymanplayhouse.com.
RELATIVELY SPEAKING (Little Theatre, Gloucester Street, Chester, March 10-17)
CHESTER Theatre Club presents this early classic from Alan Ayckbourn. When Ginny misleads her new boyfriend Greg into believing she is visiting her parents in the country for the weekend, she hasn;t expected him to follow her in order to give her and them a pleasant surprise. For her, the surprise is far from pleasant as the country home belongs to her older lover and his wife. By the time Ginny arrives, Greg has already introduced himself to her lover’s wife as her daughter’s boyfriend. Cue a succession of misunderstandings and deceptions, presented with typical Ayckbourn relish and wit. Call 01244 322674 or visit www.chestertheatreclub.co.uk.
SISTER ACT (Empire Theatre in Lime Street, Liverpool, May 22–June 2 2012)
FROM producers Whoopi Goldberg and Stage Entertainment (Hairspray, High School Musical) the smash hit musical comedy based on the classic film comes to the Opera House direct from its record-breaking run at the London Palladium. Call 0844 847 2525 or visit www.liverpoolempire.org.uk.
SOUTH PACIFIC (Palace Theatre, Oxford Street, Manchester, March 13-17)
THIS breathtaking and lavish Lincoln Center Theater production reinvented the classic Rodgers & Hammerstein show, swept the 2008 Tony Awards, played to sold-out houses on Broadway. The UK touring cast is headed by former EastEnders star Samantha Womack. Ring 0844 372 7272 or visit www.manchesterpalace.org.uk.
SWALLOWS AND AMAZONS (Playhouse Theatre, Williamson Square, Liverpool, March 27-31)
FOLLOW Captain John and his able crew as they set sail to Wildcat Island on an exotic adventure to encounter savages, capture dastardly pirates and defeat mortal enemies. An action-packed musical adventure for the whole family, this imaginative stage production of Arthur Ransome’s novel is directed by Tom Morris of War Horse fame and is adapted by Helen Edmundson, featuring songs by Neil Hannon of The Divine Comedy. Call 0151 709 4776 or visit www.everymanplayhouse.com.
WONDERFUL TOWN (Royal Exchange Theatre, St Ann’s Square, Manchester, March 31-April 14, 2012)
FOR the first time The Royal Exchange Theatre, The Hallé Orchestra and The Lowry will combine their artistic forces and present this remarkable fully staged, brilliantly choreographed production of the legendary composer Leonard Bernstein’s musical comedy. Connie Fisher plays aspiring writer Ruth Sherwood who arrives in New York with her beautiful younger sister Eileen. The indomitable pair meet an array of colourful characters along the way, creating chaos at every turn in their search for romance, success and a free meal at Walgreens deli. Ring 0161 833 9833 or visit www.royalexchange.co.uk.