Improbable bring Opening Skinner's Box to West Yorkshire Playhouse this month. Adapted from the 2005 book by Lauren Slater, the play recalls the bold and bizarre history of some of the most extraordinary psychological experiments of the 20th Century.
From the makers of Britain’s Got Bhangra comes a new musical based on the 7th century romantic tale of Laila. Set against a Persian landscape with contemporary song and dance, it is a show which charts the tragic story of star-crossed lovers, 700 years before Romeo and Juliet.
West Yorkshire Playhouse presents Great Expectations in the Quarry Theatre, in a new adaptation by Michael Eaton. A tale of fortune, favour, identity and destiny, the play follows the story of a blacksmith’s apprentice as he is funded by a mysterious donor to become a wealthy gentleman.
Charles Dickens' celebrated novel has been adapted for stage and screen numerous times with variable success. Michael Eaton's new imagining for West Yorkshire Playhouse attempts to capture the gothic intensity of the novel and is directed with an equally dark intent by Lucy Bailey. One of the draws of Dickens is the detail in his writing, be it character or place, and Bailey's production embraces a love of stage business and detailed dressing to bring that world to life.
RashDash present We Want You To Watch at West Yorkshire Playhouse this month. Commissioned by The National Theatre, the script is penned by Alice Birch and examines the consequences of pornography in a digital world with the subsequent fallout from it being censored by a nation who appear addicted, desensitized and depraved.
West Yorkshire Playhouse opens a new season with its first in-house Shakespeare production for some time. Richard III is arguably one of Shakespeare's most brutal tragedies; a tale of jealousy and arch manipulation escalating in monstrous acts of violence, the play centres on a malcontent who will stop at nothing to gain access to the throne.
Tom Mothersdale dangles his bare feet in a moat of dark water as the audience take their seats. Behind him is a peeling stucco wall. "I have things up my sleeve,” he boasts. “But I am the opposite of a stage magician. He gives you illusion that has the appearance of truth. I give you truth in the pleasant disguise of illusion..." So begins the memory play which launched the career of Tennessee Williams, which is at West Yorkshire Playhouse this month.
When asking friends what their favourite movies are, you can be assured that somebody will wax lyrically about The Shawshank Redemption. Based on the story by Stephen King, the 1994 film regularly finds itself topping the lists of the most popular movies of all time. This season, a theatrical adaptation arrives at Leeds Grand Theatre as part of a national tour. Following a film held in such public affection, how does a new imagining for stage stand up to scrutiny?
Andy DeFresne (Ian Kelsey) finds himself incarcerated at Shawshank State Penitentiary with two life sentences for the murder of his wife and her lover. Befriended by Ellis 'Red' Redding (Patrick Robinson), Andy is inducted into prison life but inevitably succumbs to abuse and torment. It's the 1940s and corruption is rife throughout the prison system; by using his tact and illelect, Andy makes long-term plans for the perfect escape.
And Then There Were None comes to Leeds Grand Theatre this week as part of a national tour. Based on the record-breaking murder mystery novel by Agatha Christie, the play introduces ten individuals as they are lured to an island retreat and played a recorded message. The voice threatens to make them pay for a series of unspeakable crimes, assuring them that nobody will survive the duration of their stay. Soon the party realise that the killings in the house are being conducted by somebody within the group. The race is on to expose the murderer.
Cast: Laurence Pears, Cornelius Booth, Matt Cavendish, Leonie Hill, James Marlow, Chris Leask, Harry Kershaw, Naomi Sheldon, Alex Bartram, Rosie Abraham
Director: Adam Meggido
Writer: Henry Lewis, Jonathan Sayer and Henry Shields.
Theatre: Leeds Grand Theatre
Duration: 120 minutes
Start Date: June 17, 2015
Following Mischief Theatre's smash hit comedy The Play That Goes Wrong, the company present a second outing of theatrical disaster when Peter Pan Goes Wrong at the Leeds Grand Theatre this week. Promising perilously violent stunts, gloriously destructive sets and general calamity on stage, it offers a version of Peter Pan which audiences are never likely to forget.
When the Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society pulls into town it is guaranteed something will go wrong. This year's Christmas production of Peter Pan (opening in the Summer due to a booking error) is touted as the most expensive production from the company yet. Starting with noble and ambitions intentions, the show begins to fracture as actors drop out, scenery falls apart and lighting and sound runs wild. Famous for featuring a flying boy who didn't grow up, Peter Pan Goes Wrong is a downward tailspin of chaos, calamity and courage. As ever, the show must go on...
Cast: Cory English, Jason Manford, Ross Noble, David Bedella, Tiffany Graves, Stephane Anelli
Director: Matthew White
Writer: Mel Brooks & Thomas Meehan
Theatre: Leeds Grand Theatre
Duration: 150 minutes
Start Date: June 8, 2015
In 2001 Mel Brooks adapted his hit comedy film The Producers into a hit Broadway musical. This week the Tony award-winning show arrives at Leeds Grand Theatre.
The Producers is the story of Max Bialystock (Cory English), a theatre producer with a string of Broadway stinkers to his name. When accountant Leo Bloom (Jason Manford) reveals that more money can be made from a failure than a success, Bialystock sources a hideous script to be realised by an incapable director, in the hope of creating a guaranteed flop. With plans to escape with the show's investments to Brazil, the duo's hopes are dashed when Springtime For Hitler becomes an unexpected hit.
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