Archive | November 2015

Rich pickings # November 2015

It’s been quite a month including 90s flashbacks, existential ennui, black power propaganda, Christmas crackers, postmodern polemics, a filmic succès de scandale, anarchist utopias, scary wonderlands, a literary gentle giant and the first of the panto madness! Enjoy!

Happy Mondays: Pills ‘n’ Thrills And Bellyaches 25th Anniversary Tour @ O2 Academy, Leeds


Happy Mondays have reformed to tour for the 25th anniversary of the seminal Madchester album Pills, Thrills and Bellyaches. It is the original line-up of Shaun Ryder who keeps his act together on vocals, Paul Ryder providing some pumping bass, Mark Day with razor-sharp guitar, Paul Davis providing some magical keyboards, Gary Whelan keeping it tight on drums and Bez, of course, just being the court jester, including a new balancing act. The sensational Rowetta lifts the sound with some epic awesome supporting vocals…

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Pilot Theatre: Outsiders @ Lawrence Batley Theatre, Huddersfield


This is a revisiting of the existential classic novel by French writer Albert Camus. The original book became a signifier for outsiders the world over, who identified with the ennui of the main character and it influenced The Cure song Killing An Arab back in the late 70s. Writer Emtaez Hussain has preferred to omit the main character of the Camus classic, replacing him with two significant female characters: namely, the murderous Maursaut’s fiancé, Marie (Lou Broadbent with a very convincing French accent), and the Arab victim’s sister, Sumaya (an incisive Sara Sadeghi)…

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Selina Thompson: Dark & Lovely @ Theatre in the Mill, Bradford

Photo Francesca Tennant

Selina Thompson’s one-woman show begins with suggesting a premise: ‘Hair is just hair’. Then this very notion is explored, questioned and eventually negated. But all this is done in an incredibly personal and audience-friendly journey. The set consists of an enclosure made of hair which she dubs a ‘tumbleweave’ and we are offered a glass of rum punch on the way in too as well as being able to explore the weird igloo…

The Night Before Christmas @ West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds


Amy Leach is the director who brought us the hit children’s show Little Sure Shot at West Yorkshire Playhouse. So it was with great anticipation that we approached her yuletide offering. And it didn’t disappoint. At first we wonder how stubborn Carol (Rose Warlaw) will ever get into the Christmas spirit as she sends her neighbour packing and plans for an early night on Christmas Eve…


The Future Is Not What It Used To Be @ Delius Arts Centre, Bradford


It is three totally absorbing acts for the price of one at the Delius Art Centre in Bradford in an event to augment the radical exhibition Notes from Technotopia at the University of Bradford’s Gallery II. The evening started with Andy Brown and Nathan Gibson’s short film Melt Shop. This corrects the erroneous notion that steel is no longer made in Sheffield and environs. The film shows living evidence that steel production is stronger than ever before, albeit in a totally different form than in previous decades…

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Pasolini @ National Media Museum, Bradford


Like the work of Italian filmmaker Pier Paolo Pasolini, Abel Ferrara’s biopic is a succès de scandale in its investigation into the last few days of the director’s life. He is presented as a militant Marxist and surrealist writer, not afraid to shy away from putting the wildest fantasies of the Marquis de Sade on screen in his notorious Salo…

Inventing the Future @ 1 in 12 Club, Bradford


Nick Srnicek and Alex Williams’ illuminating and radical new book Inventing the Future: Postcapitalism and a World Without Work is as ambitious and global as its title implies. It looks at the political left’s ‘emancipatory visions’ to date with the notion of technology as a liberating tool. It notes the changes brought about in democracy through the internet and social media giving voice to individuals around the world, but still maintains that this democracy is ‘in disrepair’…

154 Collective: Under the Bed @ Theatre in the Mill, Bradford


Under the Bed is a compelling and compulsive piece of theatre that benefits from the mother-daughter roles played by Leanne Rowley and Emily Mallaghan, the latter a real revelation and perfectly natural choice for the role. Having a minor play the young Alice, practically abducted by her distraught mother from the parental home to a house full of dark and dank mysteries and fear…

Ian McMillan @ Ilkley Literature Festival


TSOTA’s Rich Jevons meets Bard of Barnsley Ian McMillan at Betty’s Tea Rooms before his show as part of Ilkley Literature Festival. They talk about his search for the real meaning of Yorkshire, writing about your own experiences, working with cartoonist Tony Husband, hosting The Verb, writing groups, podcasts and audio books…

Dick Whittington @ Wakefield Theatre Royal


After the success of last year’s Beauty and the Beast Wakefield Theatre Royal presents a tour de force of an ensemble performance. Daniel O’Brien’s script plays to the very corniness of its jokes while Rhiannon Hannon’s direction keeps the action quickly paced but not rushed. Indeed there are some gushing romantic moments that Jodie Steele as Alice Fitzwarren relishes…

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