Newbury theatre guide
Find out about theatre events coming up in and around Newbury and West Berkshire, reaching out to Oxford, Basingstoke and Reading. This site is updated very frequently - see What's new below.
In the spotlight
See What's on for a list of everything.
News and special events
Is pretending to like Beckett an example of The Emperor's New Clothes? See why Daniel Finkelstein of The Times described Happy Days as an "incomprehensible load of old gibberish" here.
Music, not theatre, but the Newbury Spring Festival is again inviting young people (16 - 30) to enjoy free tickets to events at the Festival by becoming a Newbury Spring Festival Critic, selecting the events you want to come to and in return submitting a review. Details at www.newburyspringfestival.org.uk/young_festival_critics.htm.
Coming to Shaw House on 17th to 18th April, 451 combines immersive sound and sensory theatre to depict a dystopic society where literature is outlawed and acts of violence are rewarded. Inspired by Ray Bradbury’s visionary novel Fahrenheit 451, this incendiary outdoor performance recounts the story of a society in which books are banned and firemen are employed to burn them. Tickets are free.
Feeling guilty because you don't like (or can't understand) Antigone or Medea? Don't be - read Catherine Nixey's article.
The Oxfordshire Drama Wardrobe has a stock of over 5,000 costume and prop items available for hire to drama groups, schools and colleges. They have costumes from almost every period, from Ancient Rome, through Elizabethan to Georgian. They also have a good range for the Victorian/Edwardian eras, and for the 1920s-1950s, with a large choice of WW2 allied uniforms. They're happy to discuss your needs with you and to see how they can help you to stage a visually striking play without having to break your budget. www.oxondramawardrobe.co.uk
There's an interesting article by the Watermill's Tei Williams about the process in staging a Watermill production, from choosing the play through to the opening night. It's here.
If you're under 25, you can get Watermill tickets for £10 from the box office. This is for performances from Monday to Thursday. You can also get Student Standby tickets on the day for £3.
You can get the latest updates via RSS or Twitter (@NewburyTheatre). If you don't know what RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is, this may not be for you (find out more here), but if you're using an RSS reader already, this is a good way to keep up to date with the changes to this site.
|24 Mar||Review of New Era's Travels With My Aunt ("a brave choice... enthusiastically received by the appreciative audience" - NWN).|
|17 Mar||At ACE Space in Newbury, local artists Ilona Kotz and Nina Kissaun present Contractions by Mike Bartlett, an ink-black comedy about being human in the workplace. It's on 21st and 22nd March.|
|5 Mar||Reviews of KATS' Acorn Antiques The Musical ("a spirited, well-paced performance... the audience loved it" - NWN) and Hungerrford's Whistle Down the Wind ("very, very good... a fine ensemble performance by everybody" - NWN).|
|3 Mar||Kennet Opera are offering A Night at the Opera in Wantage Parish Church on 23rd May.|
|28 Feb||Details of productions from Boundary Players (The Importance of Being Earnest), Blewbury Players (The Taming of the Shrew), Faringdon Dramatic Society (Office Hours), Hook Players (Wife After Death), New Era Players (Travels With My Aunt), Overton Dramatic Society (Avenue Q), Silchester Players (Tons of Money) and WLOS (South Pacific).|
|26 Feb||Review of New Era's Someone Somewhere Smiled ("an endearing, funny and well-observed drama with great characterisations" - NWN).|
T.A.D.S' next production in Tilehurst is the comedy Holiday at Home from 10th to 11th April. After a spate of jewellery thefts Lady Boucher and her butler Scribbins fabricate an Italian holiday, but stay at home to avoid hosting the next burglary. With a murder, it becomes a growing puzzle for Inspector Warwick to solve.
Sinodun Players' next production from 15th to 18th April is Life of Riley. Riley has been diagnosed with terminal cancer and has only six months to live. On the face of it, this seems to be a deadly serious play but being Ayckbourn, laughter is always present as he dissects the complacency, worries and angst of middle class, middle-aged people.
When Morris and Jean win the National Lottery they can't believe their luck. But the cracks in their marriage widen, their past catches up with them and their relatives become increasingly resentful. Will the prophecy that bad luck always follows good turn out to be true? Loddon Players' production of Lucky Sods is from 16th to 18th April.
The comedy-thriller A Tomb With a View is Compton Players' production from 22nd to 25th April. It features a weird and sinister family, most of whom are dead by the third act.
When a Baker and his Wife learn they've been cursed with childlessness by the Witch next door, they embark on a quest to reverse the curse. They meet various characters along the way and their behaviour is questionable... does getting your wish make you happy? AmEgos' production of Into the Woods is from 22nd to 25th April in Wantage.
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