Interview with Sair Smith, winner of the competition for ‘Balancing Acts’ by Nicholas Hytner, talks about Wild Life FM, creating theatre for young audiences and upcoming shows at Unicorn theatre

Wild Life FM

Sair Smith, winner of the last competition we ran on our blog is an Events Producer at the Unicorn Theatre. As per her twitter bio, she loves cheese and sleep, which we believe is an awesome combination of things to love. We had a little tête-à-tête with her, keeping in with the tradition of featuring winner interviews on our blog. She has talked about current projects, challenges of creating work for young audiences and some exciting shows at Unicorn Theatre – a delightful read indeed.

Wild Life FM

Wild Life FM. ©Hugo Glendinning. Click on the image to know more.

Tell us about the projects you are working on currently
Recently I’ve been working on finding and casting young, London based musicians and performers to be in one of our new 17/18 season shows. It’s a collaboration we’re super excited about, between us, arts centre CAMPO (Before Your very Eyes, Next Day, Five Easy Pieces), and Norfolk & Norwich Festival. We’re still accepting applications if you know anyone suitable! Apply here
Wild Life FM  will be an honest, raw exposition of what it’s like being young today. This show is not going to be what you expect. It’s not a play. It’s not a gig. It’s also both those things.

Challenges faced when creating theatre for young audiences
We face the same challenges as all the other brave companies out there trying to make work, host visiting companies, support new writers, provide community projects and run a building. We don’t really think of the costs, staffing or scheduling challenges unique to a theatre for young audiences. The Unicorn was founded by Caryl Jenner as a touring company in 1947 with a commitment to giving children a valuable and often first ever experience of quality theatre, and a philosophy that ‘the best of theatre for children should be judged on the same high standards of writing, directing, acting and design as the best of adult theatre’. Today, we’re the UK’s leading professional theatre for young audiences, dedicated to inspiring and invigorating young people of all ages, perspectives and abilities, and empowering them to explore the world – on their own terms – through theatre. We strive to push the boundaries of imagination in everything that we do; welcoming families, schools, and young people for unforgettable theatrical experiences that will expand horizons, change perspectives, and challenge how we all see and understand each other.

The last theatre show you watched
The last performance I watched outside of the Unicorn was Salome at the National Theatre.

What you like about Carl’s website
Great content, interesting interviews and a helpful resource.

Your favorites from the summer line up of shows at Unicorn Theatre
I’m looking forward to Double Double Act in June. We’ve teamed up with Made in China, who have been exploring the format of a comedy duo, an adult double act and child double act try to take control of the stage; they joke, mirror and test each other, they reverse roles and they subvert expectations. The production meetings have been filled with hints of slapstick humour and a lot of green slime, it sounds like it’s going to be a clever and surprising performance that will offer a chance to see the world through each others’ eyes. I’m also a firm fan of our all year round piece called Baby Show  , watching a 6 month old baby in the midst of a real belly laugh is mesmerising. I also quite enjoy watching the parents get so emotional when that happens. It’s a brilliant sensory performance that has captivating images and intriguing sounds that keep little ones rapt. We’re definitely looking after our future audience with this one!

Interview with Matthew Jenkins, winner of X Factor Live tour event ( Bournemouth International Centre) ticket contest

Matthew Jenkins

Matthew Jenkins is the winner of the ticket contest we ran for X Factor tour event at Bournemouth International Centre last month. He works as Senior Account Manager at Darren Northeast PR Ltd which is is one of the South’s leading Award winning PR agencies. Keeping in with our tradition of interviewing our contest winners -here’s a little tête-à-tête with Matt Jenkins.

Matthew Jenkins

Matthew Jenkins

 Your thoughts on Carl’s website
Carl’s website is fantastic. It’s my go-to for all things theatre-related… unfortunately, in my busy job I don’t get to see theatre as much as I’d like but Carl manages to keep me up to date with the theatre world!

How much of an X-Factor buff are you?
To be honest, I’ve not watched X-Factor in years… I think when I last watched X-Factor Rhydian was still relevant! However, my auntie and little cousin absolutely love the X-Factor and so I thought I’d enter on the off chance I’d win the tickets for them.
They were wowed by the show and my aunties favourite was Sara who she said was fantastic… oh and Honey G of course!

Bournemouth theatre scene – your thoughts.
I think the Bournemouth theatre scene is great. We’re privileged to have the likes of the BIC, The Pavilion, and The Lighthouse on our doorstep for big national productions. However, I also grew up watching shows at The Regent Centre and still have soft spot for it. The Shelley Theatre is great too, it has a unique atmosphere. We also have some fantastic amateur dramatics locally – I’m a big fan of Theatre 2000!

What kind of theatre do you like?
I’m not picky! I studied Theatre as part of my degree and so I’d like to think I’ve got quite an eclectic taste. From musical theatre (love The Lion King!) to Shakespeare to Beckett!

Last play that you watched? Your views on that play.
One of the most recent plays I watched was ‘Curious Incident of the Dog In the Nighttime’, which was outstanding. The set pieces, staging and lighting to the story and actors were just superb.

Present day Theatre PR – your views
I think present day Theatre PR with the likes of social media has become much more interactive. Real communities are built around certain performances through social media as we can follow the journeys of the cast and crew and really feel part of the show before and after the curtain is called.


Sign up to win tickets to The X Factor Live Tour 2017, Bournemouth International Centre, 6th March


You’ve joined them on their journey from the judges’ room auditions to the arena, been on the edge of your sofa during the dramatic six-chair challenge and Bootcamp, travelled to Judges’ Houses, tuned in to see the starlets transform in the live studio shows…and now is your chance to see your favourite acts live in person as they embark on The X Factor 2017 Live Tour.  We’re giving you the chance to win a pair of tickets to see the show at Bournemouth International Centre. Winner will be announced on 2 March 18:00 Hrs GMT.

Sign up to be part of the luck draw for 2 tickets to The X Factor 2017 Live Tour performance at Bournemouth International Centre on 6th March’17

The top eight acts taking to the stage on this year’s live arena tour are: 5 After Midnight, Emily Middlemas, Four of Diamonds, Matt Terry, Ryan Lawrie, Saara Aalto, Sam Lavery and Honey G!

The X Factor Live Tour 2017

The X Factor Live Tour 2017

Beginning in Nottingham on February 23, The X Factor Live Tour 2017 will travel to Birmingham, London, Liverpool, Aberdeen, Glasgow, Sheffield, Manchester, Bournemouth, Cardiff, Newcastle, Leeds, Belfast, Dublin and Brighton, with contestants performing classic hits and viewers’ favourites from the TV series this year.

Attended by more than three million people so far, The X Factor Live Tour has been one of the most successful annual arena tours in the UK for the last 12 years. Tickets are on sale now. Don’t miss the opportunity to catch this year’s stars live in an arena near you.

For more information to go

Ts and Cs

1.The prize is non-transferable, no whole/part cash alternatives.

2. Regretfully, in the event that the event/concert is cancelled by the artist/promoter, tickets for alternative events/concerts, will not be provided to the winners.

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Your chance to win a Gypsy DVD -Competition closed, Winner announcement soon - Glitter Graphics


Well, it’s that time of the year when I would like to run a GYPSY competition and, as luck would have it, Universal Pictures have chucked a DVD my way in order to draw attention to the fact that GYPSY is available to buy on DVD and digital download from November 28.

In order to stand a chance of winning all you have to do is submit your email address in the sign up bar below. The promo is being run for UK residents only.

Gypsy DVD Cover Image

Gypsy DVD Cover Image

Awarded with an Olivier Award® for her role as Momma Rose, Imelda Staunton (Maleficent, The Harry Potter Series) gives “the performance of her career” in Jonathan Kent’s dazzling revival. Lara Pulver (Edge of Tomorrow, Spooks), reprises her “stunning” role as Louise and they are joined by Peter Davison (Law and Order: UK) as Herb, in this gloriously entertaining musical fable that features show stopping choreography from Stephen Mear.
Gypsy is based on memoirs of Gypsy Rose Lee, a famous striptease artist back in 1957, and focuses on her mother, Rose, whose name has become synonymous with “the ultimate show business mother”. It follows the dreams and efforts of Rose to raise two daughters to perform onstage and casts an affectionate eye on the hardships of show business life.
Featuring the classic songs “Let Me Entertain You,” “Rose’s Turn” and “Everything’s Coming Up Roses” with lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and music by Jule Styne, this moving and scintillating production of Gypsy was the first to be seen in London for 40 years.

And that is that.