The Forest Arts Theatre Company is now in it’s fifth year and this week they will be bringing to life the Tony Award-winning Parade from 28 to 31 October at Forest Arts Centre.
Set in the American Deep south in 1914, Parade is a daring and innovative musical, with a heart-wrenching story offering a moral lesson about the dangers of prejudice and ignorance. With music and lyrics from Jason Robert Brown, its soaring score - drawing on blues music, spirituals and hymns - it dramatizes the true events that followed the murder of a thirteen year old girl and the ensuing witch hunt that led to the arrest and trial of the Jewish factory manager, Leo Frank.
Parade has a bold willingness to dive into the complexities of early 20th Century social relationships in the American South with its sophisticated dark tale of endless depths. It is a moving and powerful theatrical experience not to be missed.
Having previously staged shows such as Chess, Hot Mikado, Boogie Nights, Songs For a New World, Calendar Girls, Company and Allo’ Allo’, the Forest Arts Theatre Company group exists for local performers to get involved in both musicals and plays and holds regular auditions for new members.
For more information and to book tickets for Parade at the Forest Arts Centre, click here or call 0300 555 2898.
Swan Theatre Amateur Company is looking for a cast for their latest production of Little Women to perform on the main stage at the Swan Theatre next February.
The story of Little Women is a classic novel by Louisa May Alcott. This adaptation for the stage is set during the turmoil of the American Civil War and follows the March Family (Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy) as they struggle with the absence of their father as well as their declining social status into poverty.
Director of the production, Curtis Fulcher, said:
“No previous acting experience is needed. Swan Theatre Amateur Company are a friendly bunch, and it gives budding local actors the chance to tread the boards on a professional stage”.
Scripts of the play can be borrowed before the audition from Bygones of Worcester, Cathedral Square.
The audition day will involve some reading from a script, no preparation is needed. The cast for Little Women needs four women aged 18-35, three women aged 50 plus, two men aged 50 plus and two young men aged 18-35.
The audition date is Sunday 25 October 2015 from 2.30pm. If that date is not convenient contact Curtis Fulcher on firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a different time or day.
Meg March (Female) – The eldest, romantic sister, (playing age for all sisters is from 18 – 35)
Jo March (Female) – An authoress, forthright, (playing age for all sisters is from 18 – 35)
Beth March (Female) – Sweet, very charitable (playing age for all sisters is from 18 – 35)
Amy March (Female) – Youngest sister, self centred (playing age for all sisters is from 18 – 35)
Marmee (Female) – The sister's mother. Raising the girls on her own with her husband at war, very charitable and believes in setting morale standards for her daughters. (Playing age from 40 – 55)
Hannah (Female) – The March family maid. (Playing age 50 or over)
Aunt March (Female) – The March families wealthy, widowed aunt. (Playing age 50 or over)
Laurie Lawrence (Male) – The boy next door (Playing age 18 – 35 )
John Brooke (Male) – Tutor to Laurie. Love interest for Beth. Playing age 18 – 35
Mr Lawrence (Male) – Laurie’s Grandfather and wealthy neighbour (Playing age 50 or over)
Mr March (Male) – The March families father, husband to Marmee. (Playing age 40-55)
Little Women will be performed at the Swan Theatre from Tuesday 16 to Saturday 20 February 2016.
Jonathan Coe’s The Rotters’ Club, Gareth Farr’s The Quiet House and Tom Wells’ Folk will receive their stage premieres at Birmingham Repertory Theatre next year. The new Spring and Summer 2016 season also features a ground-breaking new production of The Government Inspector, Don Warrington as King Lear, plus a major revival of Alan Bennett’s Single Spies alongside a compelling mix of drama, comedy and family shows.
Roxana Silbert, Artistic Director at Birmingham Repertory Theatre says of the season;
“I’m proud to announce The REP’s new season, which combines new work from local writers, alongside exciting premieres, striking productions of classics and bold new interpretations of three of Shakespeare’s greatest works during the 400th anniversary of his death.
Jonathan Coe’s The Rotters’ Club is an iconic story set against the background of 70s Birmingham, there are new productions of Gogol’s The Government Inspector and Alan Bennett’s Single Spies, as well as premieres of Tom Wells’ Folk and Gareth Farr’s The Quiet House. And we have three striking Shakespeare productions - Don Warrington stars as King Lear, John Heffernan and Anna Maxwell Martin lead in Macbeth and experimental theatre company, Filter, bring their take on Twelfth Night."
Exploring the enduring fascination with royalty and Russian spies is an award-winning double bill by Alan Bennett. Single Spies (17 to 27 February). The REP’s Artistic Director, Roxana Silbert, will direct The Government Inspector adapted by David Harrower (19 to 26 March). Gogol’s satirical masterpiece is a riot of corruption, lies and greed and will feature an integrated cast of Deaf, disabled and able bodied actors and every performance will be fully accessible to Deaf or disabled audiences. This production is the first in the ground-breaking ‘ Ramps on the Moon’ touring project.
Jonathan Coe’s iconic 1970s coming-of-age novel, The Rotters’ Club (2 to 9 April) is brought to life on stage for the first time in an adaptation by Richard Cameron and will feature a large cast of young people drawn from across the city.
Infertility, IVF and the taboo that surrounds the subject is explored in the world premiere of Gareth Farr’s The Quiet House (26 May to 4 June). Also premiering is another Birmingham Repertory Theatre commission - Folk (14 to 30 April). Previous winner of the Critics Circle Most Promising Playwright award, Tom Wells’ Folk takes us into the world of Winnie – a swearing, Skoda-driving, Guinness drinking nun. Both of these shows will be directed by The REP's Associate Director Tessa Walker.
Acclaimed stage and screen actor Don Warrington will play one of Shakespeare’s most iconic roles King Lear (19 to 28 May). Two other Shakespeare plays also feature in the season – the previously announced, Macbeth (26 to 30 January) with John Heffernan and Anna Maxwell Martin, and visiting The REP for the first time is experimental theatre company, Filter, with their radically-cut, fast-paced version of Shakespeare’s much-loved comedy Twelfth Night (12 to 16 April).
Back by popular demand is The REP’s successful 2014 production of, Of Mice And Men (4 to 13 February) directed by Roxana Silbert. The production will open at The REP before it embarks on a 15 week UK tour.
Two new commissions by REP Foundry artists will feature in the season – Sarah Baker-Hamilton’s Lady Lust (21 to 23 January) and Abuelo (14 to 16 January) by Amahra Spence.
Alfred Hitchcock’s classic spy thriller, The 39 Steps (29 February to 5 March), brilliantly and hilariously recreated for the stage now comes to The REP after 9 years in London’s West End.
For families, Hetty Feather (8 to 12 March) is based on a novel by Jacqueline Wilson, adapted for the stage by Emma Reeves using songs, live music and circus skills to glorious effect.
Based on Terrence Rattigan’s own experiences as a tail gunner during World War II, Flare Path (25 to 30 April), the epic wartime romance story, is presented by The Original Theatre Company who also visit with Shadowlands (31 May to 4 June) - the love story of C.S. Lewis.
Birmingham writer Charlene James’ urgent play, Cuttin It (14 to 18 June), highlights the issue of female genital mutilation (FGM) here and abroad and is directed by Gbolahan Obisesan. Cuttin It is a Young Vic / Royal Court Theatre co-production with Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Sheffield Theatres and The Yard Theatre.
The season will also feature award-winning French artist, Mohamed El Khatib’s haunting but often funny Beautiful Ending (26 to 27 January); Graeae Theatre’s The Solid Life of Sugar Water by Jack Thorne (2 to 6 February); one-woman show, The Crows Plucked Your Sinews performed by Yusra Warsama (9 to 11 Feb); Matthew Zajac’s phenomenal international hit The Tailor of Inverness (3 to 5 March); Gary Owen’sIphigenia in Splott (15 to 19 March); a gritty Faustian-tale and new opera by Stuart MacRae and Louise Welsh from Music Theatre Wales - The Devil Inside (18 April); the latest production from Stan’s Cafe –Made Up (14 to 21 May), Torben Betts’ middle-class culture clash, Invincible (17 to 21 May) and Charlene James’ urgent play, Cuttin It (14 to 18 June). Additional shows will also be announced at a later date.
Tickets for the Spring and Summer Season are now on sale. Book tickets by calling Box Office on 0121 236 4455 or by booking online at Birmingham-rep.co.uk.
Stourbridge Amateur Operatic Society are set to raise the roof at Stourbridge Town Hall this week as they present the toe-tapping musical Sister Act from 19 – 24 October.
Sister Act tells the hilarious story of Deloris Van Cartier, a wannabe diva whose life takes a surprising turn when she witnesses a crime and the cops hide her in the last place anyone would think to look—a convent!
Under the suspicious watch of mother superior, Deloris helps her fellow sisters find their voices as she unexpectedly rediscovers her own.
A sparkling tribute to the universal power of friendship, Sister Act is reason to rejoice!
Tickets start from £12.50, with evening performances at 7.30pm and a Saturday Matinee at 2:30pm. Tickets can be booked from the ticket hotline on 07504 301767. Limited tickets available for the week and it promises to be 'Fabulous, Baby!'
Following the success of Witches of Eastwick earlier this year, Stafford and District Operatic Society are back in the Gatehouse Theatre Stafford with their production of Sweeney Todd from 13 to 17 October.
A departure from their usual fare and their first ever Sondheim musical, the Society are very excited to be putting on such a complex and challenging production.
Sweeney Todd is the tale of a murderous barber, and his partner in crime, Mrs Lovett, a baker who disposes of the bodies by baking them into her pies. Meanwhile, Anthony Hope, a sailor who saved Todd's life, falls in love with Todd's estranged daughter, Johanna, who is being brought up as the ward of the twisted Judge Turpin.
But with Mrs Lovett's pie business booming and suspicions increasing, surely it’s only a matter of time before one or the other meets their delicious demise?
Join the Stafford and District Operatic Society for a tale of love, revenge and sheer bloody murder as we creep into the darkness of Victorian London to meet The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.
Playing at the Stafford Gatehouse Theatre from Tuesday 13 to Saturday 17 October. For tickets call 07817 215 420 or email email@example.com.
Award-winning theatre troupe Union Theatre, based in Solihull, recently secured the rights to perform the critically acclaimed National Theatre production of One Man Two Guvnors, based on Carlo Goldoni's A Servant of Two Masters.
From 15 to 17 October, Union Theatre present the production in the beautiful Solihull URC, Christ Church, Warwick Road.
This fast-paced, hilarious comedy originally starred James Corden and transferred to London's West End before heading to the bright lights of Broadway. Audiences will be treated to a show filled with music and laughter, the perfect way to brighten up a dreary October.
Richard Bean’s award-winning play is a glorious celebration of British comedy – a unique, laugh-out-loud mix of satire, songs, slapstick and glittering one-liners.
Fired from his skiffle band, Francis Henshall becomes minder to Roscoe Crabbe. But Roscoe is really Rachel, posing as her own dead brother – who’s been killed by her boyfriend Stanley Stubbers. Francis spots the chance of an extra meal ticket and takes a job with one Stanley Stubbers – but to prevent discovery, he must keep his two guvnors apart. Simple.
Don't miss this unique opportunity to see this Midlands premiere in the heart of Solihull from 15 to 17 October. Tickets can be purchased on the door or by calling 07949 508478.
Visit www.uniontheatresolihull.co.uk for more information.
Calamity Jane, the rip-roaring comedy musical with an Oscar-nominated score, will have audiences shouting from the highest hills from 14 to 17 October as Tamworth Arts Club performs this thigh-slapping musical at Tamworth Assembly Rooms.
Calamity Jane can outrun and outshoot any man in Deadwood. Hard, boastful and desperate to impress, she travels to Chicago to recruit a star, Adelaide Adams. But things don’t go too smoothly for Calamity as everyone in town favours the new girl and she struggles to keep her jealousy and pride in check. It takes her longstanding enemy Wild Bill Hickok to make her see sense and realise her secret love.
Jenny Jennings, who has been with the club for 18 years, takes on the title role. Over the years she has played numerous roles, including Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, Dolly in Hello Dolly, Reno in Anything Goes, Sarah Brown in Guys and Dolls and Lucy in Jekyll and Hyde. Andrew Gilman stars in the role of Wild Bill and has previously performed as Max in The Sound of Music, Fagin in Oliver, Professor Higgins in My Fair Lady, Tony in West Side Story and Curly in Oklahoma. As Calamity's love interest, the heroic Lieutenant Danny Gilman is Adam Gregory. Gregory has been with TAC since 2009 and has had the honour of playing roles including Will Parker in Oklahoma, Riff in West Side Story, Jesus in Jesus Christ Superstar, The Beast/Prince in Disney's Beauty and the Beast and the voice of Audrey II in Little Shop of Horrors.
Other lead roles in the show include Nicola Downs who plays love rival Katie Brown, Connor Brooks as the actor Francis Fryer, Peter Wilkes as saloon owner Henry Miller, Natasha Beckett as Henry’s niece Susan and Leanne Smith as sought after showgirl Adelaide Adams. All are ably supported by a large chorus and a live orchestra.
The show is being directed by Martyn Cotterill, who previously directed West Side Story. He is joined on the production team for the first time by Claire Chandler, as assistant director, and choreographer Emily Carroll.
Tamworth Arts Club’s Laura Whitehouse said:
“Having done the ‘80s dance show Footloose in October 2014 and the darkly humorous Sweeney Todd in April 2015, it was time to go back to some classical musical theatre. Calamity Jane is a family favourite that has great songs and dances including Higher than A Hawk, Windy City, Black Hills of Dakota, Whip Crack Away and the award-winning Secret Love. It is rip-roaring comedy that should brighten everyone’s day and who doesn’t need their day brightening in dreary October?"
The show opens on 14 October at 7.30pm and runs to Saturday 17 with a matinee at 2.30pm and evening performance. The Saturday night is also British Sign Language interpreted.
Tickets are available through the Tamworth Assembly Rooms website here and also on the booking line 01827 709618.
Here is our top 10 theatre picks for October. From amateur to professional, get your diaries at the ready to pop some of the most important dates in...
Must end 11 October
Shrek The Musical
6 – 10 October
Belgrade Theatre, Coventry
7 – 10 October
Guys & Dolls
Brierley Hill Musical Theatre
9 – 24 October
Anita and Me
Birmingham Repertory Theatre
13 – 17 October
Stafford and District Operatic Society
13 – 17 October
The Full Monty
Lichfield Operatic Society
14 – 17 October
Tamworth Arts Club
15 – 17 October
Thoroughly Modern Millie
BOA at The Old Rep
15 – 17 October
One Man Two Guvnors
29 October – 7 November
Night Project Theatre at Blue Orange Theatre
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