PAST THEATRE PRODUCTIONS 2016/17
It was perhaps the most bizarre pairing in the history of Cinema. Arthur Lucan, a British drag act, and Bela Lugosi, fading Hollywood horror star, were thrown together in 1951 to make a cheapo ‘B’ movie called “Mother Riley Meets the Vampire”.
But beneath the washerwoman's apron and the vampire's cloak are two men who stand at the crossroads of life. Their moments of greatness are behind them and a frightening future lies ahead. When the cameras stop rolling and the lights fade, all they have is each other.
1923: The Great War is over and while Clarissa Dalloway prepares a party in Westminster, Septimus Smith is diagnosed with shell-shock, and their memories and dreams magically intertwine with those of 15 other disparate souls, this hot blue day in June.
Conjuring the hopes and regrets of middle and upper-class London, this adaptation of Virginia Woolf's celebrated map of hearts, minds and memories offers a compellingly feminine response to the aftermath of the First World War.
Written and directed by Elton Townend Jones and performed by Rebecca Vaughan (Female Gothic; I, Elizabeth; Austen's Women).
“Breathtaking solo performance... beautifully designed and directed."
Celebrated chanteuse and mistress of dramatic cabaret, Fiona-Jane Weston recreates the excitement of times that changed our world forever, in a moving and humorous performance in this acclaimed production.
Questioning: What did Mummy do in the war? Fiona answers through fascinating stories, songs, verses and diary extracts: Things she'd never done before! This is a wonderfully affectionate tribute which reminds us of the first time when 'ordinary' women became pilots, mechanics and engineers. Women made munitions, worked the land and performed daring acts of espionage behind enemy lines.
Wartime Women - The Khaki Cabaret, illustrates that for women, things would never be the same again!
This play, by Patrick Garland, is a highly entertaining one man show tracing a day in the late life of the seventeenth century diarist, John Aubrey. The production is directed by Richard Avery, formerly of the Royal Shakespeare Company.
Old John Aubrey takes his audience by the hand and, with a twinkle in his eye, leads them through a day late in his life, launching into wicked tales. He regales you with tales of his contemporaries - Oliver Cromwell, General Charles II, Nell Gwyn - and stories gleaned as a child from folk who knew the likes of Shakespeare, Queen Elizabeth, Sir Walter Raleigh. By turns he is a stand-up comic, a philosopher, a lodger in a garret room suffering crying babies and other noisy co-tenants. Once he starts speaking to you he is like the Ancient Mariner - you cannot choose but hear.
Forget the modern blogger. John Aubrey was blogging 300 years ago, and not only are his words still read but they come alive on the stage.
theCompany present this all time favourite, which follows the relationship between Rita, a Liverpudlian working class hairdresser and Frank, a middle-aged university lecturer, during the course of a year. The play started life under the banner of The Royal Shakespeare Company in 1980 with Julie Walters taking the lead, but is best remembered for the successful film adaptation in 1983, when Miss Walters was joined by screen star Michael Caine. Since then there have been many revivals and tours.
The theme of working class girl making good through education was influenced by George Bernard Shaw's “Pygmalion” and it has become one of the late twentieth century's most well regarded and popular plays.
theCompany is very pleased to have been given special permission by Willy Russell's management to bring this production to the Heron Theatre.
“Learned Friends” is a one act play written by former practising barrister, writer and performer Ginny Davis, who draws on 15 years experience working in criminal law, raising fascinating questions of morality, loyalty and professional ethics and offers rare insight into the machinations of criminal proceedings outside the courtroom.
In the barristers' robing room of a Crown Court, two long-time friends, Judith (Prosecution Counsel) and Mandy (Defence Counsel) await the verdict in a criminal trial. . . . . . . announcement of the verdict forestalls discussion. . . . . . . and the Defendant, in a press statement, reveals all, causing serious consequences . . . . . . .
“Arrows of Desire” is a one-act comedy written to celebrate the centenary of local Women’s Institutes.
Sally, the local WI President, holds century-old WI traditions dear but numbers are dwindling. Federation has passed a controversial amendment to the constitution and the local WI looks poised to change forever. Will Sally hold her ground, or will an unexpected visitor who bears bad tidings, challenging opinions and a Cupid’s arrow change her mind?
Our Spring season commences with The English Lakes Touring Company, directed by Alan Matthews who will perform in collaboration with theCompany, Neil Simon’s classic comedy in which two vaudeville greats – the Morecambe and Wise of their time – try to work together again. But they haven’t spoken for twelve years – will it work ?
An evening with a difference – a very entertaining talk, presented by Bruce Entwisle, a member of The Churchill Society, describing how Churchill’s career might have been derailed, or even curtailed, combined with various lesser known aspects of his life. A fully illustrated and informative 16 page colour brochure is included in the cost of each ticket. Brief excerpts from five of Churchill’s speeches are played, to remind the audience of exactly how his voice sounded. Not to be missed - whether you are interested in, or curious about, his life from his early days as a reporter, soldier and politician, until he emerged as a revered 20th Century statesman.
Daddy’s Diaries tells the humorous and poignant story of a young man’s journey from war to peace and has been well received in various venues around the UK. Throughout WWII Leonard Bower kept a diary, which together with his conversations and memoirs inspired this moving production, with original recordings and images, portraying his emotions with both humour and poignancy, seemingly at odds with his pragmatism and practicality.
Jane Bower lived in the Lancaster area for fourteen years and is delighted to bring the play to the HERON. She has been devising, writing and performing her own one-woman plays since the 1980s, and was commissioned by Maureen Lipman to write a play which she performed with her in 2010.
Fresh from the hugely successful award-winning Swan Canaries, Arletty Theatre brings you the charming tale Quilter and the Ghost. Funny and hugely heart-warming, this celebration of community and folklore carries its audience in to the world of Quilter, a 'hoarder of stories'.
With her home under threat and her world collapsing around her, Quilter barricades herself in with her memories, only to find she has a mysterious visitor who just won't leave. Quilter and the Ghost includes an army of grandmas, a female highwayman, a WWII house-wife who changed history, and many more.
This inspiring and funny play includes true tales of bravery and adventure gathered from those around us, and combines dance, live music, comedy and compelling drama to bring stories which might otherwise have been forgotten, back to life.
You are cordially invited to the 1880’s wittiest “Chit-Chat” show where a gay time is guaranteed! You’ll be ‘Wilde’ about who he has on his chaise . . . . . . . . .
The popular modern chat show re-imagined for the Victorian age, hosted by the acclaimed wit of the era, Oscar Wilde. Following the familiar format, guests include a selection of some of the ‘celebrities’ of the day. Packed with gossip, song and humour - and a few surprises - this light-hearted performance invites the audience to experience the 1890’s wittiest “chit-chat” show. Plenty of audience interaction... and maybe cucumber sandwiches & Pimms!
“This is much more than a show; it is really a theatre experience, being both immersive and interactive...”
The Library Theatre Touring Company are based in Leeds, from where they take drama to country locations across the north of England. Their Deborah Kelly will perform Alan Bennett’s ‘A Lady of Letters’ in which one of her missives pushes her to the brink, with unexpected, but liberating consequences and ‘Bed Among the Lentils’ in which a vicar’s wife distracts herself from her vainly insensitive husband and his doting parishioners with an affair.
Timberlake Wertenbaker’s account of a group of Royal Marines and convicts rehearsing a production of George Farquhar’s “The Recruiting Officer” in a New South Wales penal colony in 1789, is a tale of redemption and success against appalling odds.
Inspired by the Thomas Keneally’s novel “The Playmaker” and based on true events. The play was written with the idea of ‘doubling’ in mind, needing only ten actors for twenty-two roles and promises to be an unmissable experience.