Theatre, Previews

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Arches Live! 2014 promises diverse line up of experimental performers

19 Sep 2014

Artists taking part include Rob Jones, Katie Gallagher, FK Alexander and Harry Giles

Arches Live! has become the traditional start of the autumn season in Glasgow. Although running later than usual this year, it still has its perennial mixture of familiar artists and emerging talents. The festival kicks off with Rob Jones' AARG!!!…

Interview: theatremaker Bruce Downie on The Battle of Calder Street

16 Sep 2014

Verbatim theatre piece about the 2001 Govanhill Baths protest

What inspired the creation of the company? Govanhill Baths is such a beautiful building: I could see the potential right away – I knew we had to start a theatre project here. There are a number of different performance spaces, there's storage space…

Interview: actor Brian Ferguson takes on Dominic Hill's new version of Hamlet

16 Sep 2014

The play, 'about a time of huge change in the country', could reflect post-referendum society

'As an actor I have done a lot of new writing,' explains Brian Ferguson. 'These plays are often about the things that aren't said, more so than the things that are. Shakespeare's characters don't have this problem. They shout and weep and rage and love…

Interview: theatremaker Robert Icke on adapting George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four

27 Aug 2014

'We looked more to other art forms for inspiration: David Lynch, Breaking Bad, Grand Theft Auto'

Jointly created by Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan, Headlong's adaptation of George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four has been praised for its energy and finding new ideas in a familiar tale. Applying a contemporary sensitivity, the classic tale of…

Interview: actor Joe McGann on taking the lead in John Godber's bittersweet April in Paris

27 Aug 2014

'You see wives nudging their husbands and saying, that's you, that is. He writes in a universal way'

'Al and Bet are one of those couples you wouldn't want to be sitting next to on a bus,' says Joe McGann, who plays Al in John Godber’s April in Paris. 'They have been together 27 years and it sounds like constant bickering. And we all know couples like…

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Verbatim theatre exploring sensitive issue at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2014

22 Jul 2014

‘It accesses an emotional honesty, an immediacy that is rare in conventional scripted performance'

Max Stafford-Clark, former artistic director of the Traverse and collaborator with writers as diverse as David Hare, Mark Ravenhill and Caryl Churchill, regards verbatim as ‘the last great pulse in theatre’. Often used in a documentary format, it takes…

Random Accomplice present a comedic look at the Commonwealth Games with News Just In

14 Jul 2014

Johnny McKnight promises ‘daft tongue-in-cheek nonsense. It’s fun, unapologetic, brash comedy'

Random Accomplice is able to turn its hand to more serious matters – recent comedy Wendy Hoose made salient points about disability within the fast-flowing gags – but News Just In is playing to the strengths of Julie Brown and Johnny McKnight. ‘This…

Lucy Bailey and Fiery Angel take on Frederick Knott's Dial M For Murder

17 Jun 2014

The murderous play made famous by Alfred Hitchcock stars Christopher Timothy and Kelly Hotten

Having toured the rest of Britain, Fiery Angel's production of Dial M For Murder finally reaches Glasgow. The classic play by Frederick Knott, adapted by Hitchcock into the iconic 1954 film, is now being directed by Lucy Bailey. Bailey has an…

Interview: David MacLennan on The Great Yes, No, Don't Know, Five Minute Theatre Show

13 Jun 2014

The groundbreaking theatre-maker, now sadly deceased, on one of his final projects

Five Minute Theatre curates a range of shows and broadcasts them for an entire day. How did you cope with the submissions? The real credit belongs to staff at NTS. Their experience in doing this type of work has been invaluable. Did you get many…

Interview: Theatre director Niall Henry discusses Yuri Gagarin, the focus of Jocelyn Clarke’s First Cosmonaut

22 May 2014

'He was the very first person to see the Earth... it had a big impact on him'

It wasn't quite Neil Armstrong’s ‘giant leap for mankind’ but it still made history. In April 1961, in a little Vostok spacecraft, Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin became the first human to journey into outer space. However, for director Niall Henry of…

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Interview: Sudha Bhuchar on new play My Name Is..., about the apparent kidnapping of Molly Campbell

15 May 2014

The abduction caused a tabloid frenzy against 'the fundamentalist, tyrannical father'

The story of Molly Campbell, a 12-year-old apparently kidnapped by her father from her Scottish home and taken to Pakistan, created a flurry of tabloid speculation. When Sudha Bhuchar began developing a script, she discovered that is was more…

Enormous Yes explore home truths about the home front in The Forbidden Experiment

22 Apr 2014

Rob Jones and Michael John O’Neill explore language deprivation experiments in WWII

both Rob Jones and Michael John O’Neill – collectively known as Enormous Yes – have plenty of theatrical form. O’Neill was one of the Traverse Fifty writers, and Jones was a key member of underground performance troupe Flatrate, before going on to work…

War and peace announced as themes for Edinburgh International Festival 2014

18 Mar 2014

Programme highlights includes works involving The Kronos Quartet and Handspring Puppet Company

War and peace, conflict and conciliation are the grand themes being tackled in Jonathan Mills’ final year as director of the Edinburgh International Festival. The 2014 programme, announced today, explores music, dance, theatre and other arts not just…

Philip Ridley's The Pitchfork Disney is a combination of 'tickles and terror'

18 Mar 2014

'Ridley’s stories make your heart beat faster' - director Eve Nicol

With Philip Ridley’s visceral Dark Vanilla Jungle having conquered the Edinburgh Fringe last year, the revival of his first play from back in 1991 is a reminder that he was a pioneer of the aggressive ‘neo-brutalist’ style that has defined new British…

Interview: Game of Thrones star Gemma Whelan on Philip Ridley's Dark Vanilla Jungle

19 Feb 2014

The dark Fringe First-winning stage production embarks on a UK tour

Philip Ridley is a polymath artist: film-maker, scriptwriter, artist and novelist. The casting of Gemma Whelan in Dark Vanilla Jungle brought in another multi-talented performer: when Whelan is not acting on stage, she has been variously a stand-up…

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Noel Coward's Private Lives set to return to Edinburgh, the city of its premiere

18 Feb 2014

Director Martin Duncan: 'It’s a rollercoaster of a play: funny, absurd, excruciating and tragic'

Regularly revived, most recently through the Chichester Festival and the Gielgud Theatre in London, Noel Coward’s Private Lives becomes particularly resonant when it returns to Edinburgh. After all, it was in this city’s King’s Theatre in August 1930…

Phil Porter's stage romcom Blink subverts the stereotypes of its genre

18 Feb 2014

'The story feels like a psychological thriller, about following someone and using technology'

Phil Porter’s love story, Blink, has already charmed London and Edinburgh audiences. Far from a simple stage version of the ‘meet-cute’ comedy, Blink fashions romance from the difficulty and isolation of both urban life and the characters’ idiosyncratic…

Stephen Mottram, Editta Braun and Duda Paiva among the highlights of Manipulate 2014

23 Jan 2014

The visual theatre festival brings together puppetry and dance techniques to convey narrative

In the same way that films and TV shows use animation or computer graphics to portray impossible feats, so puppetry allows theatre audiences to witness things not normally achievable by live human performers. The programme for this year’s Manipulate…

1933: Eine Nacht Im Kabarett draws parallels between the Weimar Republic and modern times

17 Jan 2014

'Popular feeling today is not removed from the origins of the Third Reich'

Susanna Mulvihill is one of Scotland’s more intriguing singer-songwriters, staging cabaret-style performances and working with Edinburgh’s Tightlaced Theatre, an ensemble that is dedicated to new writing. Her first full-length play, 1933: Eine Nacht Im…

Filter Theatre offer an iconoclastic, 'rock'n'roll theatre' approach to Twelfth Night

17 Jan 2014

Co-artistic director and founder Ferdy Roberts discusses the company's 'crazy' Shakespeare adap

Although Filter Theatre's version of Shakespeare's satirical romance has been touring since 2006, its genesis was modest. 'Originally we were commissioned by the Royal Shakespeare Company to give a response to Twelfth Night,' explains Ferdy Roberts…

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Interview: director Tom Morris on bringing Michael Morpurgo's War Horse to the stage

18 Dec 2013

The National Theatre collaborated with South Africa’s Handspring Puppets to bring the show to life

When Tom Morris describes War Horse as ‘a business and commercial phenomenon’, he’s not being boastful – just mindful of the show’s humble beginnings. ‘It’s important to remember,’ he says, ‘that when we started out, we only thought it was an…

Fringe performer Will Pickvance returns with piano-meets-panto show PianoMime

5 Dec 2013

Pickvance hopes to reclaim panto from Z-listers and bad pop

Will Pickvance’s Fringe show Anatomy of the Piano matched musical virtuosity with wry humour, as he deconstructed – both metaphorically and literally – his chosen instrument. Returning to Summerhall – a venue that is suited to his intelligent…

Preview of 2014: Capital events

26 Nov 2013

The biggest events in Edinburgh in winter/spring 2014, including War Horse and Six Nations Rugby

War Horse The National Theatre production of Michael Morpurgo’s epic tale of a young man and his beloved horse arrives in Edinburgh with expectations as high as they can go. Life-sized puppets of galloping horses, stirring music and perfect…

6 of the best: winter theatre highlights in Glasgow and Edinburgh

25 Nov 2013

From traditional panto to queer nativity, there's something for everyone over the festive period

A Gay In A Manger After their re-emergence at last year’s Glasgay! festival, lifestyle gurus Tranny and Roseannah return to Scotland with a Christmas show that promises to reinvent the festive season for adults. Teaming up with intimate performance…

Steven Houghton, Graham Cole and Wendi Peters star in White Christmas stage adaptation

25 Nov 2013

Stage adap of Irving Berlin's classic Christmas musical features 17-piece orchestra

Some theatres try to stand against the tide of pantomimes: the Traverse pretends that Christmas isnʼt happening, while the Citizens has an adaptation of The Jungle Book. Irving Berlin’s White Christmas, however, straddles the divide between the festive…