If you want to see the iconic songs of Scots duo The Proclaimers brought to life on stage this month, then you won't have to walk 500 miles to do it…
For Birmingham’s oldest musical theatre company BMOS is set to present the Midlands premiere of the ultimate feel-good musical Sunshine On Leith, at Birmingham's Crescent Theatre. The production runs from 29 September to 3 October.
Sunshine on Leith was originally created and produced by Dundee Rep Theatre, Scotland’s leading production house, with the help and support of The Proclaimers themselves.
It follows the highs and lows of Ally and his friend Davy as they return home to Leith from the army with a heart-warming story built round the songs of the legendary duo The Proclaimers, including I’m on My Way, Letter From America and Make My Heart Fly.
Families, friendships and life are not all plain sailing in this funny and moving story about love, life and Leith all set to an amazing soundtrack.
Sunshine on Leith is a vibrant, energetic piece of musical theatre, loved by audiences and critics alike.
BMOS has been entertaining audiences throughout The Midlands since 1886. For the last three years the company has performed at the New Alexandra Theatre, winning critical acclaim and awards for Carousel, South Pacific and Fiddler on the Roof whilst also raising funds for the British Legion and Muscular Dystrophy.
John Spencer, Chairman of BMOS, said:
"BMOS brings together a highly talented group of singers and actors of all ages, from students of musical theatre to professional performers to entertain and raise funds for good causes.
We are delighted to be granted the amateur Midland Premiere of the show under Licence from Weinbergers. This predominantly young cast of performers have faced the challenges of acquiring Scottish accents, the technical challenges of a “Glasgow Kiss” and reinterpreting some of the most popular of the Proclaimers’ songs including the all-time favourite I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles). The result is a sensational production not to be missed!"
The show is under the direction of local award-winning Director Stephen Duckham with a new stage set specially commissioned by BMOS.
Sunshine on Leith runs from 29 September to 3 October at The Crescent Theatre, Birmingham. Tickets are available from the Theatre Box Office at www.crescent-theatre.co.uk or on 012- 643 5858.
After months of hard work Lichfield Operatic Society’s cast are hoping to be performing to a full house at the Lichfield Garrick with ticket sales currently at over 90% still with 4 weeks to go!
A spokesperson for the company said:
“We have never known ticket sales like it and are forever grateful to our audience members, both new and regular, for supporting our society. It is their continuing support that has allowed us to perform for the last 72 years and hopefully for many more years to come. We hope they all enjoy watching ‘The Full Monty’ as much as we have enjoyed every minute rehearsing for it.”
Based on the hit British comedy about 6 Sheffield men who set out to outdo the Chippendale dancers by doing “the Full Monty”, this Americanised musical stage version carries the same combination of grit and laughs that worked so well in the film. Lichfield Operatic Society’s production follows 6 steelworkers down on their luck facing their fears, self-consciousness, and anxieties and finding that the camaraderie of their mates gets them past all those inner demons.
Local actor and family man Phil Bourne will be taking on the lead role of Jerry Lukowski in the October production, however this won’t be his first time performing in The Full Monty. In 2008 Phil played the part of ‘Fat Dave’ in Sutton Coldfield Musical Theatre Company’s production, he said;
“I can’t believe how blessed I am to be in the show again playing the part of Jerry, my first principle part with Lichfield Operatic Society (however the diet is a killer!!). I have had such a laugh working with the cast and everyone in the company and it’s a privilege to be on stage with them. I couldn’t be butt naked on stage with a better bunch of people – I hope you all enjoy this incredible production as much as we had making it for you.”
Performances of the show will run at the Lichfield Garrick from Tuesday 13 to Saturday 17 October. Tickets start from £15. To book click here or call the Lichfield Garrick box office on 01543 412121.
Susie Blake plays ‘The Queen’ in the Tricycle Theatre’s Olivier award-winning production of Moira Buffini’s West End hit comedy, Handbagged, which visits Belgrade Theatre, Coventry from 6 to 10 October.
Directed by Indhu Rubasingham, Susie Blake (Q) will lead a cast of six, including Kate Fahy (T), Emma Handy (Liz), Asif Khan (Actor 1), Sanchia McCormack (Mags) and Richard Teverson (Actor 2).
Handbagged first premiered at the Tricycle Theatre in 2013 where it enjoyed a sell-out 7-week run, winning the Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre (2014) and nominations for Best New Comedy and Best Ensemble Performance at the WhatsOnStage Awards (2014). The production transferred to the West End on 9 April 2014 where it ran for a strictly limited 17-week season and received an Olivier Award nomination for ‘Best New Comedy’ 2015.
Handbagged opens the clasp on the relationship between two giants of the 20th Century. The monarch - Liz. Her most powerful subject - Maggie. Two enduring icons born in the same year. One destined to rule, the other elected to lead. But when the stiff upper lip softened and the gloves came off, which one had the upper hand?
Moira Buffini's celebrated new comedy speculates on that most provocative of questions: What did the world's most powerful women really talk about behind closed palace doors?
For more information and to book tickets click here.
Founded in June 2014 NOMAD Drama offers something a little bit different. The company has a specific focus on original content from writers and performers and they will be presenting an original sitcom for the stage this October.
Written by Solihull playwright Kathryn Bakewell, Battle of the Exes is a brand new show that is being performed from 1 to 3 October at The Dovehouse Theatre, Olton, Solihull.
After a messy divorce, Jemima and Marcus decide a fresh look for their homes is the key for gaining closure. But little do they know they have both hired the same decorator for the job. Jemima's sister, Grace, and half-witted brother-in-law, Carl, are visiting for the weekend, along with their baby son Harry. Everyone knows of Jemima's distaste for children, but her reasons are further explored when her and Marcus are brought together in the most outlandish way possible.
Starring Katharine Williams as Jemima, Mark Anthony-Games as Marcus, Sarah Lamb as Grace, Nick McCullogh as Carl and Stephen Head as Geoffrey, the piece is directed by Kathryn Bakewell.
Appearing at The Dovehouse Theatre from 1 to 3 October, tickets are £8 - £10 and can be bought by clicking here or they are available on the door.
Birmingham Repertory Theatre, in association with Mem Morrison Company, are looking for volunteers to support the creation of the world premiere of Luminous a unique music performance, taking place outdoors across Birmingham City Centre on Friday 25 and Saturday 26 September.
Luminous will be one of the key highlights of Birmingham Weekender 2015. The project will see audiences embark on a moonlit expedition through the urban landscape in the company ofLuminous, an album of new songs inspired by the moon. With headset on and album artwork in hand, Mem Morrison invites the audience to discover the unknown amongst the familiar through a series of intimate installations.
Mem Morrison is an internationally acclaimed performance artist, musician, director and writer who has been making his own, highly personal work since 1995 and has created projects for theatres, galleries and responded to site-specific locations. You can find out more about the work of Mem Morrison by clicking here.
We are looking for voluntary participants and tour guides to be part of this exciting production:
The Participants: we are looking for enthusiastic participants to be solo ‘performers’ at different locations on the Luminous route. You do not need any previous experience but need to be a focused individual who is comfortable with simple movements and durational work. Rehearsals will be conducted in groups.
Tour Guides: we are also looking for tour guides to lead the audience around the Luminous route in Birmingham City Centre. You will need to be an enthusiastic and reliable individual who is comfortable in being responsible for small groups of people.
Please note both of these roles will require you to be on your feet for some time over the performance, if this is a problem do let us know beforehand.
The overall dates of the commitment are 18 September – 26 September. Volunteers will be required on the following dates and times:
Friday 18 6.30pm-10pm / Saturday 19 10am-6pm / Sunday 20 11am- 4pm
Wednesday 23 6.30pm-10pm / Thursday 24 2pm-11pm (dress rehearsal)
Friday 25 / Saturday 26 performance days (exact call time to be confirmed)
If you are interested in taking part please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, date of birth, contact details and why you would like to take part by Tuesday 15 September. This is a non-paid opportunity, refreshments will be provided.
Having enjoyed a successful run of Bad Girls in May, The Mellow Dramatics return to the Brewhouse Arts Centre, Burton with their production of Oklahoma!.
The first musical written by Rodgers and Hammerstein, Oklahoma! marked a revolution in musical drama. The show features classic songs such as Oh What a Beautiful Morning, I Cain’t Say No and its title song Oklahoma!
This musical is a treat for all of the family, full of wonderful songs and lively dance routines, there is lots of comedy to enjoy, as well as a love story or two.
Come along and see the The Mellow Dramatics two-stepping amongst the hay bales in Oklahoma! from 15 - 19 September.
For more information go to www.Mellow-Dramatics.org.
West End star Kieran Brown (Phantom of the Opera, Wicked, Les Miserables) spent 13 September at mac Birmingham, officially opening the Birmingham Institute of Theatre Arts (BITA).
Kieran, a patron of BITA, said:
“Having trained in Scotland, it's great to see that Birmingham now has a quality and exciting new theatre training opportunity. London and the West End is world class but people often forget about their local theatre and the fantastic opportunities provided by groups like BITA. I am delighted to be a patron of this group and look forward to their students joining me on the West End stage very soon.
Fellow West End Stars Lauren Samuels (Bend It Like Beckham, Grease) Liam Doyle (Wicked, Ghost) and Siobhan Dillion (Miss Saigon, Ghost) join Kieran in being patrons of BITA and will provide workshops and support to the students throughout the academic year.
This brand new theatre training school runs Sundays during term time from 4pm–7pm at mac, with a summer 2016 production of Jason Robert Brown’s hit teen musical 13.
The cost per week is just £11 for three hours and the first session is free!
Artistic Director of BITA Chris Passey said:
“Setting up BITA is the culmination of a lot of hard work and dedication to provide the young people of Birmingham and the Midlands with an actual training platform for their passion and art. Many similar schools in the area are production based, that is to say they produce high quality performances very regularly and this is great. But for us at BITA the focus is training and discipline. All of our teachers work professionally with West End/No.1 Touring credits to their name. We have been heavily inspired by Annemarie Lewis Thomas and her school The MTA in London, whose ethos and passion for young people has lead to some of the brightest young stars entering the world of theatre fully prepared.”
But it’s not all about training, BITA's performance of Jason Robert Brown’s hit teen musical 13 next summer, is seeking new students to join its growing cast.
The BITA team consists of local renowned talent Artistic Director Chris Passey (Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat) who is an award-winning composer and sought-after vocal coach. Co-Artistic Director and choreographer Attiye Partridge who is one of the Midlands best choreographers and producer and designer Amy Passey whose designs in California and New York have lead her to recently work with Birmingham Repertory Theatre and the RSC.
Visit www.birminghamita.org.uk for more information
Expect to be transported into a world of frivolity, mystery and mischief as Stone Revellers presents A Midsummer Night’s Dream from 9 to 12 September.
Performed in one of the most intimately designed performance spaces in the region, this production has a mere 60 seats available a night which puts the audience right in the middle of the action. Sit back and watch the chaos unfold around you…
Picture suspension bridges, hanging branches, colourful powder and about a million and one fairy lights, bringing this magical world of one of Shakespeare’s finest to life.
The show runs from 9 to 12 September at St Michael’s Hall, Lichfield St, Stone. Tickets are £12 and £10 (concessions) and can be purchased from the Home & Colour Centre on Stone High Street, alternatively you can call 01785 817307.
For any further information email email@example.com or visit their website www.stonerevellers.co.uk.
Here is our top 10 theatre picks for September. From amateur to professional, get your diaries at the ready to pop some of the most important dates in...
3 – 12 September
Sutton Arts Theatre
4 – 19 September
4 – 19 September
King Charles III
Birmingham Repertory Theatre
8 – 12 September
West Bromwich Operatic Society
9 – 12 September
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
16 – 26 September
21 – 26 September
One O Clock From The House
22 – 26 September
Ghost The Musical
Lichfield Garrick Youth Theatre
28 September – 3 October
The Shawshank Redemption
New Alexandra Theatre
29 September – 3 October
Sunshine On Leith
With the UK premiere of Crush opening at Coventry’s Belgrade Theatre tonight, what better time to take a look at their exciting new season.
Set in an all-girl’s boarding school at the dawn of the swinging sixties, Crush runs until 19 September before embarking on a short tour. Ian Seraillier’s highly acclaimed and much-loved children’s novel, The Silver Sword, will receive its world stage premiere at Coventry’s Belgrade Theatre from 26 September – 3 October before embarking on a UK Tour in Autumn 2015.
Make-believe, music and magic combine with the return of the Belgrade’s legendary pantomime, Beauty and The Beast from 25 November – 9 January and the Belgrade’s alternative B2 Christmas show is back with added bite this Christmas with a brand new show from the pen of Nick Walker, Vampomime from 5 December – 2 January.
Young theatre goers can look forward to a festive visit from Imagine Theatre who return to B2 from 10 – 24 December with their new production of Santa’s Rusty Robot, an all-new interactive adventure for ages 2-6 from the pen of children’s TV presenter and producer, Iain Lauchlan.
From 19 – 31 October, the Belgrade Theatre will be hosting the October Festival of Theatre for Children and Young People featuring some of the best professional theatre around including The Cat in the Hat, Marty MacDonald’s Farm, The Snow Dragon plus a selection of Theatre in Education productions touring to local schools.
Not only that, a raft of high quality touring productions visit the theatre this Autumn, including Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest from 29 September – 3 October, Moira Buffini’s Olivier award-nominated comedy, Handbagged from 6 - 10 October, a new UK tour of The Smallest Show on Earth from 13 – 17 October, Terrence Rattigan’s award-winning WW2 biopic Flare Path from 3 – 7 November, She Called Me Mother starring BAFTA-nominated actress Cathy Tyson on 7 November and back by popular demand, Agatha Christie's legendary Box Office smash-hit The Mousetrap returns from 9 – 14 November.
From the writer of We Love You City and Oh No It Isn’t comes a brand new play inspired by whatever major story is dominating the news that week. Running in B2 from 9 - 10 October, Our Main Story Tonight is a brand new, topical news show from the pen of acclaimed Coventry playwright Nick Walker.
Looking further ahead the Belgrade Theatre’s Artistic Director, Hamish Glen, makes a welcome return to the subject of marriage for his latest production, The Sisterhood from 30 January – 20 February. Along with this, Propeller's visually stunning production of Pocket Dream visits from 4 – 6 February, sex, scandal and showbiz combine in glamorous new 1940s musical Miss Nightingale from 9 – 13 February and from the company behind the best-selling Horrible Histories stage shows comes a brand new adaptation of David Walliams’ Gangsta Granny from 16 – 20 February.
Celebrating the life of musical legend Judy Garland, End of the Rainbow is a fiercely funny and emotionally charged new play charting Judy’s explosive London comeback at the height of the swinging sixties playing from 23 to 27 February. This will be followed by a visit from West End diva and star of I’d Do Anything Jodie Prenger in a new production of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Don Black’s West End and Broadway hit, Tell Me On A Sunday on 10 March.
For more information and tickets, call the Belgrade Theatre Box Office on 024 7655 3055 or visit the website www.belgrade.co.uk where cheaper tickets are available.
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