Theatre audiences have been spoilt throughout 2017 with a diverse range of programming from West Yorkshire Playhouse, The Grand, City Varieties, The Carriageworks, Stage@Leeds and more.
From dance to drama, musical to monologue, here are just some of the shows you shouldn't have missed throughout the year.
James Brining has been Artistic Director of West Yorkshire Playhouse since 2012. In addition to driving forward a bold new vision for the producing theatre, including a forthcoming £13m redevelopment of the building, James has directed several flagship productions, including The Rise and Fall of Little Voice, The Crucible, Enjoy, Talking Heads, Sweeney Todd – The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Into the Woods and Ode to Leeds.
This season, James directs Reece Dinsdale in a contemporary adaptation of Ibsen's The Master Builder. We spoke to James amidst rehearsals prior to the show's premiere later this month.
Theatre Royal Bath Productions has revived Relatively Speaking, Alan Ayckbourn's celebrated comedy, which is at Leeds Grand Theatre this week.
When Greg proposes to Ginny, he decides to secretly visit her parents for the first time. Following an address on the back of a cigarette packet, he finds his way to their home the break the good news. The problem is the address isn't that of her parents, rather the cosy detached home of his fiancée’s ex-flame Philip and his house proud wife Sheila.
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.
This Spring sees one of the longest-touring musicals return to the Leeds Grand Theatre. The first major collaboration between Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is one of the most celebrated musicals of recent years. Boasting stars such as Jason Donovan and Donny Osmond in the leading role, it has also proved to be a perennial favourite with families and particularly children.
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.
Paul Daniels has been performing internationally with The Intimate Magic Tour, offering a close-up illusion experience which promises: “you’ll never get closer”.
Calamity Jane, a classic Western musical, rides into Leeds Grand Theatre this month. Featuring a stampede of iconic show tunes, rugged characters and unexpected romance, Calamity Jane is a new production of a much-loved classic.
It’s the Summer of 1876 in Deadwood City, Dakota. When Calamity Jane, a tomboyish cowgirl, brags that she can deliver hot Chicagoan performer Adelaid Adams to the local stage of Deadwood, she sets out to the big Windy City to persuade the sultry starlet, only to pick up her maid for a live performance which will shake up the local community and create a love triangle of gunslinging proportions.
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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