Posts

Take That and David Pugh & Dafydd Rogers present the new musical The Band, written by Tim Firth, with the music of Take That

AJ Bentley, Yasdan Qafouri, Sario Watanabe-Soloman, Nick Carsberg & Curtis T Johns,
AJ Bentley, Yasdan Qafouri, Sario Watanabe-Soloman, Nick Carsberg & Curtis T Johns,

AJ Bentley, Yasdan Qafouri, Sario Watanabe-Soloman, Nick Carsberg & Curtis T Johns, © Jay Brooks

David Pugh & Dafydd Rogers and Take That have announced that the UK Tour of Tim Firth’s new musical, THE BAND, with the music of Take That,  will have a major UK Tour, beginning at Manchester Opera House on 8 September, with a national press night on Tuesday 26 September 2017.

The producers made the announcement yesterday, Sunday 2 April, on stage at the Manchester Apollo (where Take That first performed in 1992), following a rapturous reception to a rehearsed reading of the new musical in front of an audience of invited guests, from fans to friends.

Take That said, “We are incredibly proud and excited that our first production as theatre producers is THE BAND – a musical that we think will touch the hearts of not just our fans, but everyone.”

THE BAND is a new musical about what it’s like to grow up with a boyband.  For five 16 year-old friends in 1992, ‘the band’ is everything.  25 years on, we are reunited with the group of friends, now 40-something women, as they try once more to fulfil their dream of meeting their heroes.

The Band will be played by AJ Bentley, Nick Carsberg, Yazdan Qafouri Isfahani, Curtis T Johns and Sario Watanabe-Soloman, who, as Five to Five, won BBC’s Let It Shine.  Playing the parts of Rachel and Young Rachel will be Rachel Lumberg and Faye Christall respectively.  Further casting is to be announced.

THE BAND will be directed by Kim Gavin and Jack Ryder, designed by Jon Bausor and choreographed by Kim Gavin, with lighting design by Patrick Woodroffe, video design by Luke Halls and sound design by Terry Jardine and Nick Lidster.

THE BAND will be produced by David Pugh & Dafydd Rogers and Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Mark Owen, Robbie Williams.

Website – www.thebandmusical.com

Twitter – @TheBandMusical

Instagram – BandMusical

Facebook – /TheBandMusical

 

TOUR SCHEDULE

Manchester Opera House

8 September 2017 – 30 September 2017

 

Sheffield Lyceum Theatre

4 October 2017 – 14 October 2017

 

Bradford Alhambra Theatre

17 October 2017 – 28 October 2017

 

Southampton Mayflower Theatre

31 October 2017 – 11 November 2017

 

Llandudno Venue Cymru

14 November 2017 – 25 November 2017

 

Stoke Regent Theatre

28 November 2017 – 9 December 2017

 

Cardiff Wales Millennium Centre

9 January 2018 – 20 January 2018

 

Liverpool Empire Theatre

23 January 2018 – 3 February 2018

 

Norwich Theatre Royal

6 February 2018 – 17 February 2018

 

Canterbury Marlowe Theatre

20 February 2018 – 3 March 2018

 

Hull New Theatre

6 March 2018 – 17 March 2018

 

Leeds Grand Theatre

20 March 2018 – 31 March 2018

 

Newcastle Theatre Royal

3 April 2018 – 14 April 2018

 

The Bristol Hippodrome

17 April 2018 – 28 April 2018

 

Birmingham Hippodrome

1 May 2018 – 12 May 2018

 

Plymouth Theatre Royal

15 May 2018 – 26 May 2018

 

Northampton Royal & Derngate

29 May 2018 – 9 June 2018

 

Nottingham Theatre Royal

12 June 2018 – 23 June 2018

 

Glasgow King’s Theatre

26 June 2018 – 7 July 2018

 

Edinburgh Playhouse

10 July 2018 – 14 July 2018

 

Facebook @bristolhippodrome

Twitter @bristolhipp

Instagram @bristolhipp

,

First Look – THE GIRLS Opening Night, Tuesday 21 February

, ,

‘The Girls’ boasts a solid female cast, inventive design and score and makes for a successful screen-to-stage transfer

The Girls

Gary Barlow and Tim Firth’s The Girls 

Phoenix Theatre, London.  

The Girls

The Girls © Carl Woodward

Following a ‘tryout’ last year at The Leeds Grand Theatre and The Lowry in Manchester, ‘The Girls’ boldly finds itself lighting up the West End. Gary Barlow and Tim Firth’s new musical – based on the 2003 film Calendar Girls, is a delight to behold.
The solid female cast, inventive design and score, make for a successful screen-to-stage transfer. Joanna Riding as Annie is a safe pair of hands,providing a poignant portrayal of marital loss; how will she cope alone in Tesco and Scarborough?
Firth’s production, Lizzi Gee’s musical staging and Tim Lutkin’s lighting, between them, overcome the problem of putting topography on stage; transporting us to Yorkshire Dales. Robert Jones’s set comprises moving kitchen cabinets, inventively framed, creating a dynamic landscape.
Debbie Chazen as Ruth with her “Russian Friend”, gives us a brutal, but hilarious glimpse at the place we feel most afraid to look when everything ahead seems too much to bear. There are some wonderful ensemble performances from the cast. Firth’s staging boasts half a dozen spot-on performances.
In a show with patchwork lyrics, plenty of Northern humour and more than a few cliches, the score is somewhere between mid-tempo and up-tempo, and breezes along for a good stretch with age-defying liberation.
The book is good enough as entertainment, with meaningful overtones of love and loss, rendered with authentic emotional effectiveness.
There is not a weak link in the casting, but the standout performance comes from the bereft Annie, so beautifully full of life. Things really get going in Act Two with the cheeky ladies doing traditional WI things like jam-making and floristry in the nude for their fundraising calendar.
At times Firth and Barlow’s production underuses its design and is a little laboured, but beneath its veneer ‘The Girls’ reminds us that true friendship can overcome even the most challenging of times.

Some photos from THE GIRLS Opening Night, Tuesday 21 February 2017

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Footage and photos from last night’s Gala for the Gary Barlow & Tim Firth musical The Girls

FOOTAGE OF ARRIVALS AT THE PHOENIX THEATRE ON 20TH FEBRUARY 2017

Celebrity guests, who were in the presence of HRH The Duke of Kent and HRH The Countess of Wessex, included Graham Norton, Phillip Schofield, Mel Giedroyc, Mark Owen, Ore Oduba, Marc Almond, Michael Ball, Angus Deayton and John Sergeant. At the curtain all, the cast were joined on stage by writers Gary Barlow and Tim Firth, producers David Pugh & Dafydd Rogers and Bob Wankel of The Shubert Organization, and the original Calendar Girls.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The ‘Girls’ are played by Debbie Chazen, Sophie-Louise Dann, Michele Dotrice, Claire Machin, Claire Moore and Joanna Riding. THE GIRLS is directed by Tim Firth.

Gary Barlow and Tim Firth’s new British musical is based on the inspiring true story about a group of ladies who decide to appear nude for a Women’s Institute calendar in order to raise funds to buy a settee for their local hospital, in memory of one of their husbands – they have to date raised over £4million for Bloodwise.

,

Gary Barlow & Tim Firth’s The Girls wins at WhatsOnStage Awards ahead of opening on Tuesday 21 February 2017 at the Phoenix Theatre

The Girls
The Girls

The Girls © Matt Crockett

Gary Barlow and Tim Firth triumphed tonightSunday 19 February 2017, ahead of the opening of their musical THE GIRLS in London’s West End on Tuesday 21 February.  At an awards ceremony at the Prince of Wales Theatre, they won the prestigious WhatsOnStage Award for Best Regional Production.  Gary and Tim and the original Calendar Girls were given a rapturous reception from an audience made up of stars from all the West End shows after Gary, Tim and Joanna Riding performed Scarborough, a song from their musical.

Gary Barlow and Tim Firth’s new British musical, THE GIRLS, is based on the true story, the film and the award-winning play by Tim Firth, Calendar Girls.  The West End premiere at the Phoenix Theatre, which began previews on 28 January 2017, follows sold-out runs at the Grand Theatre Leeds and the Lowry Salford late 2015/early 2016.  In the West End, the producers have made a commitment to there being no ‘premium-rated’ seats, no booking fees and reduced price previews.

The ‘Girls’ are played by Debbie Chazen as Ruth, Sophie-Louise Dann as Celia, Michele Dotrice as Jessie, Claire Machin as Cora, Claire Moore as Chris and Joanna Riding as Annie.  Also in the cast will be Joe Caffrey as Rod, Jeremy Clyde as Denis, John Davitt as Doctor, Soo Drouet as Brenda, James Gaddas as John, Jenny Gayner as Miss Wilson (coffee), Steve Giles as Lawrence, Maxwell Hutcheon as Colin, Shirley Jameson as Miss Wilson (tea), Marian McLoughlin as Marie, Judith Street as Lady Cravenshire and Jane Lambert, Rebecca Louis, Victoria Blackburn and Frazer Hadfield, and introducing Josh Benson as Tommo, Ben Hunter as Danny and Chloe May Jackson as Jenny.

THE GIRLS is inspired by the true story of a group of ladies, who decide to appear nude for a Women’s Institute calendar in order to raise funds to buy a settee for their local hospital, in memory of one of their husbands, and have to date raised almost £5million for Bloodwise.  This musical comedy shows life in their Yorkshire village, how it happened, the effect on husbands, sons and daughters, and how a group of ordinary ladies achieved something extraordinary.

Gary Barlow and Tim Firth grew up in the same village in the north of England and have been friends for 25 years.  With Take That, Gary has written and co-written 14 number one singles, has sold over 50 million records worldwide and is a six times Ivor Novello Award winner.  Tim has won the Olivier Award and UK Theatre Award for Best New Musical, and the British Comedy Awards Best Comedy Film for Calendar Girls.

THE GIRLS is directed by Tim Firth, with musical staging by Lizzi Gee, comedy staging by Jos Houben, design by Robert Jones, lighting design by Tim Lutkin, sound design by Terry Jardine and Nick Lidster, musical direction and orchestrations by Richard Beadle, with casting by Sarah Bird, and associate producer is U-Live.

THE GIRLS is produced by David Pugh & Dafydd Rogers and The Shubert Organization.

Bloodwise, the UK’s specialist blood cancer charity, will receive monies from this production.

Website            www.thegirlsmusical.com

Twitter               @thegirlsmusical

#TheGirls

Facebook          www.facebook.com/TheGirlsMusical

 

67 Year-old Understudy Judith Street makes West End Debut in Leading Role in Gary Barlow & Tim Firth’s THE GIRLS

Judith Street

In spite of intensive medical treatment, Michele Dotrice, who has never missed a performance in her entire career, has been diagnosed with acute bronchitis and therefore unable to perform for the time being.

Judith Street

Judith Street, at 67 to debut as Jessie in The Girls

The part of Jessie in Gary Barlow and Tim Firth’s new British musical, THE GIRLS, will now be played by Judith Street, who at 67 is making her West End debut in a leading role.  For her, this is a dream come true.Gary Barlow and Tim Firth said, “Having seen Judith in rehearsals, how lucky we are that an actress such as she will be playing the part of Jessie.”

THE GIRLS is based on the true story, the film and the award-winning play by Tim Firth, Calendar Girls.  Performances began at the Phoenix Theatre on 28 January 2017 and THE GIRLS officially opens on Tuesday 21 February.  The West End premiere follows sold-out runs at the Grand Theatre Leeds and the Lowry Salford late 2015/early 2016.  In the West End, the producers have made a commitment to there being no ‘premium-rated’ seats, no booking fees and reduced price previews.

Performing alongside Judith Street as the ‘Girls’ will be Debbie Chazen as Ruth, Sophie-Louise Dann as Celia, Claire Machin as Cora, Claire Moore as Chris and Joanna Riding as Annie.

THE GIRLS is inspired by the true story of a group of ladies, who decide to appear nude for a Women’s Institute calendar in order to raise funds to buy a settee for their local hospital, in memory of one of their husbands, and have to date raised almost £5million for Bloodwise.  This musical comedy shows life in their Yorkshire village, how it happened, the effect on husbands, sons and daughters, and how a group of ordinary ladies achieved something extraordinary.

The Girls

The Girls

Gary Barlow and Tim Firth grew up in the same village in the north of England and have been friends for 25 years.  With Take That, Gary has written and co-written 14 number one singles, has sold over 50 million records worldwide and is a six times Ivor Novello Award winner.  Tim has won the Olivier Award and UK Theatre Award for Best New Musical, and the British Comedy Awards Best Comedy Film for Calendar Girls.

THE GIRLS will be directed by Tim Firth, with musical staging by Lizzi Gee, comedy staging by Jos Houben, design by Robert Jones, lighting design by Tim Lutkin, sound design by Terry Jardine and Nick Lidster, musical direction and orchestrations by Richard Beadle, with casting by Sarah Bird, and associate producer is U-Live.

THE GIRLS will be produced by David Pugh & Dafydd Rogers and The Shubert Organization.

Bloodwise, the UK’s specialist blood cancer charity, will receive monies from this production.

Website               www.thegirlsmusical.com

Twitter                 @thegirlsmusical

#TheGirls

Facebook            www.facebook.com/TheGirlsMusical

LISTINGS INFORMATION

Phoenix Theatre

110 Charing Cross Road

London WC2H 0JP

Box Office:  0844 871 7629

Ticket Prices:

Previews: £25 / £35 / £45 / £55

After 24 February: £29.50 / £49.50 / £59.50 / £69.50

Group Rates: 6+ from £29.50

Performances:  Monday to Saturday at 7.30pmThursday and Saturday matinee at 2:30pm

Running Time: 2½ hours including interval

,

FIRST LOOK – Rehearsal Photos for Gary Barlow and Tim Firth’s new British musical, THE GIRLS

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Photo Credit -Matt Crockett

Starring Debbie Chazen (Topsy-Turvy, Smoking Room, Psychoville), Sophie-Louise Dann (Bend It Like Beckham, Made in Dagenham, Lend me a Tenor in the West End), Michele Dotrice (Nell Gwynn, The Importance of Being Earnest and When We Are Married in the West End and BBC1’s Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em), Claire Machin (My Fair Lady, Mary Poppins, Betty Blue Eyes and Memphis), Claire Moore (Miss Saigon, The Phantom of the Opera, Les Miserables and London Road) and Olivier Award-winner Joanna Riding (Carousel, My Fair Lady).

CLICK HERE TO BOOK YOUR TICKETS FOR THE GIRLS

THE GIRLS is based on the inspiring true story about a group of ladies who decide to appear nude for a Women’s Institute calendar in order to raise funds to buy a settee for their local hospital, in memory of one of their husbands – they have to date raised almost £5million for Bloodwise. Directed by Tim Firth, with musical staging by Lizzi Gee, comedy staging by Jos Houben, design by Robert Jones, lighting design by Tim Lutkin, sound design by Terry Jardine and Nick Lidster and musical direction and orchestrations by Richard Beadle, the musical comedy shows life in their Yorkshire village, how it happened, the effect on husbands, sons and daughters, and how a group of ordinary ladies achieved something extraordinary.

THE GIRLS is produced by David Pugh & Dafydd Rogers and The Shubert Organization.

Linda Nolan to star in new production of Our House

Linda Nolan
Linda Nolan

Linda Nolan

The 2003 Olivier Award-winning musical OUR HOUSE will be produced by Immersion Theatre Company and Damien Tracey Productions and tour the UK from 7th August – 25th November 2017. Featuring the music of ska music pioneers Madness and starring Linda Nolan, OUR HOUSE will be welcoming audiences into the house of fun nationwide.

Tim Firth, the writer of smash hits Calendar GirlsKinky Boots and OUR HOUSE, said: “Madness are unique in that they wrote songs about home and hearth, about growing up, never growing up, having and not having, rising and falling. They came from London but they spoke to every corner of the nation, and they certainly spoke to me, growing up in the North West. All this they did undercover of songs that fooled you into thinking they were just catchy, danceable and funny. This quality is for me at the heart of what musical theatre should aim to be. In a sense, Madness started writing a musical twenty five years ago. It was colourful, truthful, vibrant, witty and universal. It was just up to me to find it.”

 Linda Nolan said: “I couldn’t be happier about playing Kath Casey in OUR HOUSE. I’ve always loved Madness’s music. It spreads warmth throughout the soul, and finds joy in the everyday and ordinary. It’s a perfect partner to Tim’s wonderfully madcap story of love and locals.”

 On the night of his 16th birthday, Joe Casey takes the girl of his dreams, Sarah, out on their first date. In an effort to impress her with bravado, Joe breaks into a building site overlooking his home on Casey Street. When the police turn up, a split-second decision forces him to choose between himself and his heart as the story splits in two: one which sees Joe stay to face the music, and the other which sees him flee and leave Sarah to run from the police. As two very different paths unfold before him, the consequences of that choice will change his life forever.

CHECKOUT OUR THEATRE TICKETS FESTIVE OFFER HERE 

Our House

Our House

No stranger to the stage, actress and singer Linda Nolan has starred as Mrs Johnstone in the award winning musical Blood Brothers both on tour in the UK and in London’s West End. In addition to enjoying worldwide success with her sisters in the family act, The Nolans, Linda and the group toured the UK and Ireland in 2015 with their I’m In The Mood Again tour, and performed on BBC’s Children In Need.

OUR HOUSE was first staged at the Cambridge Theatre in London’s West End from October 2002 to August 2003 and won the 2003 Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Musical. This tour will be directed by Immersion Theatre’s James Tobias and choreographed by the resident choreographer ofMatilda The Musical, Fabian Aloise.

 

OUR HOUSE UK 2017 Tour Dates

www.OurHouseTourUk.com

 

Thursday 10 – Saturday 12 August                                                                                Box Office: 01270 368242

Crewe, Crewe Lyceum                                                                                                      Website: www.crewelyceum.co.uk

 

Tuesday 22 – Saturday 26 August                                                                                  Box Office: 01492 872000

Llandudno, Venue Cymru                                                                                                 Website: www.venuecymru.co.uk

 

Tuesday 29 August – Saturday 2 September                                                              Box Office: 01934 645544

Weston-super-Mare, The Playhouse                                                                            Website: www.parkwoodtheatres.co.uk

 

Tuesday 5 – Saturday 9 September                                                                               Box Office: 01507 613100

Skegness, Embassy Theatre                                                                                            Website: www.embassytheatre.co.uk

 

Monday 11 – Saturday 16 September                                                                           Box Office: 01684 892277

Malvern, Festival Theatre                                                                                                Website: www.malvern-theatres.co.uk

 

Tuesday 3 – Saturday 7 October                                                                                    Box Office: 01792 475715

Swansea, Swansea Grand Theatre                                                                                                Website: www.swansea.gov.uk

 

Monday 9 – Saturday 14 October                                                                                  Box Office: 01253 625252

Blackpool, Winter Gardens                                                                                              Website: www.wintergardensblackpool.co.uk

 

Monday 16 – Saturday 21 October                                                                                Box Office: 01262 678258

Bridlington, The Spa Bridlington                                                                                     Website: www.thespabridlington.com

 

Tuesday 24 – Saturday 28 October                                                                                Box Office: 020 3285 6000

Bromley, Churchill Theatre                                                                                              Website: www.churchilltheatre.co.uk

 

Monday 30 October – Saturday 4 November                                                              Box Office: 023 9282 8282

Portsmouth, Kings Theatre                                                                                             Website: www.kingsportsmouth.co.uk

 

Wednesday 8 – Saturday 11 November                                                                       Box Office: 024 7655 3055

Coventry, Belgrade Theatre                                                                                            Website:  www.belgrade.co.uk

 

Monday 20 – Saturday 25 November                                                                            Box Office: 01494 512 000

High Wycombe, Wycombe Swan                                                                                    Website:  www.wycombeswan.co.uk

 

 

 

Gary Barlow and Tim Firth’s new musical comedy The Girls to open at the Phoenix Theatre in London’s West End

The Girls

Gary Barlow and Tim Firth’s new British musical, THE GIRLS, based on the true story, the film and the award-winning play by Tim Firth, Calendar Girls, will open in London’s West End at the Phoenix Theatre, with performances from 28 January 2017.  Tickets are on sale from 12.00noon today, Friday 16 September 2016.  The West End premiere follows sold-out runs at the Grand Theatre Leeds and the Lowry Salford late 2015/early 2016.  In the West End, the producers have made a commitment to there being no ‘premium-rated’ seats, no booking fees and reduced price previews.

The Girls

The Girls

The ‘Girls’ will be played by Debbie Chazen as Ruth, Sophie-Louse Dann as Celia, Michele Dotrice as Jessie, Claire Machin as Cora, Claire Moore as Chris and Joanna Riding as Annie.  Also in the cast will be Joe Caffrey as Rod, Jeremy Clyde as Denis, John Davitt as Doctor, Soo Drouet as Brenda, James Gaddas as John, Jenny Gayner as Miss Wilson (coffee), Steve Giles as Lawrence, Maxwell Hutcheon as Colin, Shirley Jameson as Miss Wilson (tea), Marian McLoughlin as Marie, Judith Street as Lady Cravenshire and Jane Lambert, Rebecca Lewis, Victoria Blackburn and Frazer Hadfield, and introducing Josh Benson as Tommo, Ben Hunter as Danny and Chloe May Jackson as Jenny.

Debbie Chazen played Ethel Kingsley in Mike Leigh’s film Topsy-Turvy and her many television credits include the lead roles of Annie in Smoking Room and Kelly-Su Crabtree in PsychovilleSophie-Louise Dann’s West End credits include Bend It Like BeckhamMade in DagenhamLend me a Tenor, for which she received an Olivier Award nomination, and Forbidden BroadwayMichele Dotrice is perhaps best known for her role as Betty opposite Michael Crawford in the BBC’s highly successful series, Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em.  Her most recent West End stage appearances include Nell Gwynn, for which she received an Olivier Award nomination, The Importance of Being Earnest and When We Are MarriedClaire Machin’s credits include My Fair LadyMary PoppinsBetty Blue Eyes and MemphisClaire Moore originated the role of Ellen in Miss Saigon.  Her other credits include Christine in The Phantom of the Opera, Fantine and Madame Thenardier in Les Miserables and the National Theatre’s award-winning London RoadJoanna Riding won the Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Musical twice for her roles as Julie in Carousel at the National Theatre and as Eliza Doolitle in My Fair Lady.

THE GIRLS is inspired by the true story of a group of ladies, who decide to appear nude for a Women’s Institute calendar in order to raise funds to buy a settee for their local hospital, in memory of one of their husbands, and have to date raised over £4million for Bloodwise.  This musical comedy shows life in their Yorkshire village, how it happened, the effect on husbands, sons and daughters, and how a group of ordinary ladies achieved something extraordinary.

Gary Barlow and Tim Firth grew up in the same village in the north of England and have been friends for 25 years.  With Take That, Gary has written and co-written 14 number one singles, has sold over 50 million records worldwide and is a six times Ivor Novello Award winner.  Tim has won the Olivier Award and UK Theatre Award for Best New Musical, and the British Comedy Awards Best Comedy Film for Calendar Girls.

For Gary Barlow and Tim Firth’s personal thoughts on the musical, please watch this video:

THE GIRLS will be directed by Tim Firth, with musical staging by Lizzi Gee, comedy staging by Jos Houben, design by Robert Jones, lighting design by Tim Lutkin, sound design by Terry Jardine and Nick Lidster, musical direction and orchestrations by Richard Beadle, with casting by Sarah Bird, and associate producer is U-Live.

THE GIRLS will be produced by David Pugh & Dafydd Rogers and The Shubert Organization.

Bloodwise, the UK’s specialist blood cancer charity, will receive monies from this production.

Website               www.thegirlsmusical.com

Twitter                 @thegirlsmusical

#TheGirls

Facebook            www.facebook.com/TheGirlsMusical

LISTINGS INFORMATION

Phoenix Theatre

110 Charing Cross Road

London WC2H 0JP

Box Office:  0844 871 7629

Ticket Prices:

Previews: £25 / £35 / £45 / £55

After 24 February: £29.50 / £49.50 / £59.50 / £69.50

Group Rates: 6+ from £29.50

Performances:  Monday to Saturday at 7.30pmThursday and Saturday matinee at 2:30pm

Running Time: 2½ hours including interval