West Midlands actor and star of the hit sitcom Hi-de-Hi, Jeffrey Holland will be returning to his theatrical roots in a new production of Arnold Ridley’s classic comedy thriller, The Ghost Train touring to the Belgrade Theatre from 12 to 16 May.
On a dark and stormy night a number of passengers find themselves thrown together in the waiting room of a rural train station. A pair of newlyweds, an estranged couple, a self-indulgent young dandy and an elderly spinster are treated to the stationmaster’s unique hospitality, which includes an eerie tale of a ghostly locomotive that supposedly haunts the line.
Can the story be true and should they be alarmed by his grim warning of death to anyone who sets eyes on the infamous Ghost Train?
Arnold Ridley was inspired to write The Ghost Train after becoming stranded overnight at Mangotsfield station near Bristol. Ridley was perhaps best known for playing Private Godfrey in the classic BBC comedy Dad’s Army.
Completing the cast of The Ghost Train are Tom Butcher (The Bill, Doctors), Sophie Powles (Emmerdale), Judy Buxton (General Hospital, On the Up) and David Janson (Get Some In!, ‘Allo ‘Allo!, Keeping Up Appearances).
Tickets for The Ghost Train can be booked by visiting Belgrade Theatre's website here or calling the Box Office team on 024 7655 3055.
Two University of Warwick graduates turned professional directors are on a mission: to bring opera to Coventry. Working in association with the Belgrade Theatre, their first production, Hansel and Gretel, will run from 7 - 9 May 2015.
Felicity Green and Benjamin Hamilton first met in 2009 and have been working together ever since. Both developed a passion for opera working with the university’s opera society, Opera Warwick, and the pair directed three sell-out productions at the Warwick Arts Centre. Since then, both have worked with companies across the country, but felt something was missing: Coventry did not have a professional opera company to call its own. By securing the support of Arts Council England to absolve this absence, HighTime was born.
Stage Director, Felicity Green says:
"We want to shatter the myth that opera is elitist, and that you need a vast concert hall and millions of pounds to create amazing productions. HighTime translates work into English and produces fun, modern music-theatre of the highest standard that everyone can enjoy. We want to give people a really enjoyable, magical evening out, and we think that by updating this classic fairy tale, we will do just that."
And this is no ordinary Hansel and Gretel. Sung in a new English translation produced with Kit Hesketh Harvey (Kit and the Widow, BBC Comedy Proms), Hansel and Gretel live on the outskirts of society, hungry and poor, when their mother sends them to forage for food on the mean city streets. News soon arrives that the circus has come to town, led by a very sinister Ringmaster, renowned for luring children away from their homes with the intoxicating smell of frying hot dogs…
Musical Director, Benjamin Hamilton says:
"We have founded HighTime with the aim of bringing excellent opera to Coventry. Having lived here for most of my life, I feel really passionately about this. We’re absolutely thrilled to be working with the Belgrade Theatre and hope to become a company the city can be truly proud of."
Keen to instil a love of the arts in the younger generation, the company are also giving 60 children from schools across Coventry their first taste of opera, with the chance to perform in the chorus of the production. The young people will appear alongside internationally-acclaimed professional singers, whose credits include the Royal Opera House, English National Opera and the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition.
Hansel and Gretel runs from 7 - 9 May 2015 at the Belgrade Theatre B2. Tickets are available by clicking here or by calling the box office on 024 7655 3055.
Award-winning Coventry Musical Theatre Society (CMTS) return to Belgrade Theatre, Coventry this May with their latest offering, Oliver!. Based on the classic novel by Charles Dickens, Oliver! is undoubtedly one of the best-loved musicals in theatre history.
When orphan Oliver Twist utters the immortal words “Please Sir I Want Some More”, little does he know his actions will take him on unimaginable adventures in the underworld of Victorian London, alongside the colourful characters of Fagin, Nancy, Bill Sykes and The Artful Dodger.
Director Steve Boden says:
"It's fun to work with so many young people. Their energy and enthusiasm is boundless and they
are making rehearsals great fun. Myself, the Musical Director James Suckling, Choreographer Sue
Biddle and Assistant Choreographer Louise Redmond are thoroughly enjoying the challenges
which mounting a show like this presents. The most enjoyable part is making sure the personality
of each child shines through while making scenes like the workhouse exactly as the audience
Lionel Bart’s sensational score includes the timeless songs, Food, Glorious Food, Consider Yourself, You’ve Got To Pick A Pocket Or Two, Who Will Buy?, Oom Pah Pah, As Long As He Needs Me, I’d Do Anything and many more tunes for the whole family to sing along to.
Six-times NODA award-winning Coventry Musical Theatre Society are proud to bring this legendary show to the Belgrade Theatre. Following their highly successful productions of Crazy for You and Oklahoma recently, they are again set to delight audiences, this time with the fun, family favourite, Oliver!
Oliver! runs at the Belgrade Theatre, Coventry from Thursday 21 to Saturday 23 May 2015. There are two performances a day with show times of 3pm and 7:30pm on Thursday 21, a 10:30am schools performance and 7.30pm on Friday 22 and 2pm and 7:30pm on Saturday 23.
For information and to book tickets click here or call the Belgrade Theatre box office on 024 7655 3055.
You can find Coventry Musical Theatre Society on Twitter here.
You can find Coventry Musical Theatre Society on Facebook here.
Here is our top 15 theatre picks for May (we couldn't narrow it down to 10!). From amateur to professional, get your diaries at the ready to pop some of the most important dates in...
5 to 9 May
The Arcadians at Crescent Theatre
I Love You Because
Starbuck Theatre Company at Ruddock Performing Arts Centre, Birmingham
12 to 16 May
Trinity Players at Sutton Coldfield Town Hall
12 to 16 May
Mellow Dramatics at The Brewhouse Arts Centre
12 to 16 May
Kiss Me, Kate
Bournville Musical Theatre Company at Crescent Theatre
12 to 16 May
The Witches Of Eastwick
Solihull Theatre Company at Solihull Arts Complex
13 to 16 May
Ghost The Musical
WBOS at Wolverhampton Grand Theatre
15 to 30 May
The Rise And Fall Of Little Voice
Birmingham Repertory Theatre
21 to 23 May
Coventry Musical Theatre Society at Belgrade Theatre, Coventry
21 to 23 May
Judy - The Songbook Of Judy Garland
New Alexandra Theatre
22 to 23 May
Old Rep Theatre
26 May to 6 June
The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time
27 to 30 May
SSA Drama at The Edge
27 to 30 May
SSC Performing Arts at Lichfield Garrick
28 to 30 May
Into The Woods
Backstreet Theatre Company at Prince of Wales Centre, Cannock
Agatha Christie’s 1922 thriller The Secret Adversary received its world stage premiere at The Watermill Theatre, Newbury on 12 February 2015 in a new adaptation by Sarah Punshon and Johann Hari. Introducing crime-fighting duo Tommy and Tuppence to the stage for the very first time, The Secret Adversary will play at the Belgrade Theatre from Tuesday 28 April to Saturday 2 May as part of the 125th Anniversary of Agatha Christie’s birth.
Emerald O’Hanrahan and Garmon Rhys will play the roles of Tuppence and Tommy. They are joined by Keiran Buckeridge as Julius, Nigel Lister as Sir James Peel Edgerton, Elizabeth Marsh as Rita / Kramenin, Morgan Philpott as Whittington and Sophie Scott as Jane.
The Secret Adversary is directed by Sarah Punshon and designed by Tom Rogers, with original music and musical arrangements by Alex Silverman, lighting design by Howard Hudson, sound design by David Gregory and movement direction by John Nicholson. The production will be presented as a play with live music.
The Secret Adversary presents the first new stage adaptation of Christie’s work in over a decade. Agatha Christie Limited has chosen the award-winning Watermill Theatre to bring two of Christie’s most vibrant characters to life as part of its 125th anniversary celebrations in 2015. With a fresh and inventive theatrical approach, this production promises fast-paced action, shot through with comedy, romance and live music.
The first of five Tommy and Tuppence thrillers which spanned Christie’s writing career (and indeed the lives of the two characters), The Secret Adversary follows the daring and dizzying adventures of the duo through 1920s London. Home from the First World War, flat-broke and unemployed, our intrepid young heroes embark on an outlandish business scheme: ‘The Young Adventurers Limited’ - willing to go anywhere, willing to do anything. Their first assignment plunges them into more danger than they ever imagined and they quickly find themselves sucked into a perilous world of political intrigue, criminal conspiracy, murder and mayhem. Will the nation survive? And who exactly is Mr. Brown?
Tommy and Tuppence are set to be the detective couple on everyone’s lips in 2015 when the glamorous pair will also feature in the new BBC television adaptation, Partners in Crime, starring David Walliams and Jessica Raine.
The Secret Adversary will visit the Belgrade Theatre from Tuesday 28 April – Saturday 2 May. To book, call the Belgrade Theatre Box Office on 024 7655 3055 or click here and book online.
Amelia Lily is set to bring yet more X Factor to this year’s Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat as she steps into the role of Narrator alongside fellow X Factor finalist Lloyd Daniel’s Joseph at Belgrade Theatre, Coventry from 21 to 25 April.
After a successful 2014 tour, Lloyd Daniels reprises his role as Joseph for 2015, the musical also sees the welcome return of Matt Lapinskas (EastEnders) who will be donning his Elvis outfit once more to reprise the role of the Pharaoh. This colourful retelling of the biblical story about Joseph, his eleven brothers and the coat of many colours sings out to young and old alike with a score which is crammed wall to wall with hits – including Jacob and Sons, Close Every Door and Any Dream Will Do.
Having garnered sensational reviews and standing ovations at every performance since its inception almost 35 years ago, Bill Kenwright’s production of Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s sparkling family musical has embarked on a new tour. With a fantastic company of energetic actors, singers and dancers, Joseph’s non-stop action, laughter and infectious fun are sure to delight young and old alike.
For more information or to book tickets for Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat click here or call Belgrade Theatre, Coventry box office on 024 7655 3055.
From the author of the best-selling novel, The Woman in Black, comes a brand new stage adaptation of the gothic fireside thriller, The Mist in the Mirror. The world premiere production between Oldham Coliseum and imitating the dog will visit Belgrade Theatre, Coventry from Tuesday 14 to Saturday 18 April.
Adapted by award-winning writer Ian Kershaw (Shameless, EastEnders, Casualty), from author Susan Hill’s novel, The Mist in the Mirror is a tense and atmospheric new production with visual theatre innovators imitating the dog creating an unsettling ethereal atmosphere both on stage and off. An unsettling ghost story in the mould of Hill’s chilling West End smash hit The Woman in Black, The Mist in the Mirror is staged as if audiences are eavesdroppers to a fireside ghost story.
Sir James Monmouth has spent most of his life travelling, following in the footsteps of his childhood hero, the explorer Conrad Vane. Returning to the England he left as a five year old orphan, Sir James is determined to discover more, not just about his origins but also about the early life of Vane. Warned against pursuing this quest, Sir James becomes ever more determined to unravel the mysteries of the past. But who is the mysterious pale, thin little boy who haunts his every step?
For more information and to book for The Mist in the Mirror, playing from Tuesday 14 to Saturday 18 April click here or call Belgrade Theatre, Coventry's box office on 024 7655 3055.
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Opening on 8 April, in the year that marks Arthur Miller’s centenary, A View From The Bridge plays at Belgrade Theatre, Coventry.
Respected longshoreman, Eddie Carbone, lives with his wife and niece in a tight-knit Italian immigrant community bound by strong moral codes of justice and loyalty. When two family cousins, Marco and Rodolpho, arrive from Italy and enter their lives, the balance of Eddie’s family relationships is seriously rocked.
As the young men seek work, wealth and security they find themselves under threat in a country simmering with a mirage called the American Dream.
Set in the dangerous and mysterious world of New York’s Brooklyn harbour in the 1950s, this gripping and passionate drama ranks as one of the great classics of our time.
Make sure not to miss this epic piece of drama, which has been described as ‘tense and impressive’ (Birmingham Mail) and ‘an exceptional piece of drama by an incomparable playwright’ (Express & Star).
A View From The Bridge runs at Belgrade Theatre, Coventry from 8 to 11 April, to book tickets click here or call Belgrade’s box office on 024 7655 3055.
Here is our top 10 theatre picks for April. From amateur to professional, get your diaries at the ready to pop some of the most important dates in...
31 March to 26 April
Shrek The Musical
1 to 3 April
South Staffs Musical Theatre Company at Wolverhampton Grammar School
7 to 11 April
Tamworth Arts Club at Landau Forte Sixth Form Centre
8 to 11 April
A View From The Bridge
Belgrade Theatre, Coventry
14 to 18 April
Peterbrook Players at Solihull Arts Complex
21 April to 2 May
21 to 25 April
Studley Operatic Society at Redditch Palace Theatre
23 to 25 April
A Man For All Seasons
Union Theatre at St Edburgha’s Church, Yardley
27 April to 2 May
Birmingham Repertory Theatre
28 April to 2 May
Solihull On Stage at Solihull Arts Complex
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