Coming Up, Exclusive Features, Stage

Outdoor Theatre at Langley Priory

Langley Priory is one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been: not just because it’s set in stunning countryside less than 20 minutes from Derby, or because the Grade II listed property is steeped in fascinating history dating back nearly 1000 years, or even because the secluded house is so enchanting it conjures up all sorts of clichés about fairy tales. Langley Priory is warm and intimate and inviting. What a romantic place to have a wedding, an inspiring place to take an arts retreat or a brilliant backdrop for outdoor theatre. Continue reading

Coming Up, Exclusive Features, Stage

1623: Midsummer Magic and King Lear and dementia project

Midsummer Magic with 1623 Theatre CompanyPerforming Shakespeare in different ways for more than 8 years, 1623 Theatre Company – QUAD’s resident theatre company – have taken their unique productions all over the country, to Glastonbury, the National Theatre and the RSC Fringe as well as to quirky rural village settings. This Sunday evening, Shakespeare’s fairies come out to play as 1623 perform Midsummer Magic, an original production inspired by characters from A Midsummer Night’s Dream amongst the magical constellations of artist Aidan Shingler’s stunning StarDisc in Stoney Wood, Wirksworth.

I talked to Artistic Director Ben Spiller earlier this week at QUAD about fairy rebellions, Shakespeare Nights at QUAD and 1623’s new project inspired by King Lear and dementia. Continue reading

Exclusive Features, Interviews, Stage

A burst of energy with Derby Theatre’s Artistic Director Sarah Brigham

Sarah Brigham Artistic Director Derby Theatre
Sarah Brigham took on the role of Artistic Director at Derby Theatre in January. In those six months, we’ve seen a great burst of positive energy erupting all over the stage; high quality productions, incredible local talent and the sort of daring programming choices that are set to challenge audiences.

I spoke to Sarah about the success of Cooking with Elvis, engaging with new audiences and the vision for the future of Derby Theatre and its place in the city’s wider cultural scene. Continue reading

Out of Town, Reviews

The Kite Runner at Nottingham Playhouse

Khaled Hosseini’s bestselling novel, The Kite Runner, was taken in by readers because of its well balanced sociopolitical context and simple storytelling.  Set against a backdrop of 1970’s Afghanistan and spanning more than 30 years, the setting of the play feels epic yet never detracts from the very relatable emotions of betrayal and redemption that are at the heart of the narrative. Continue reading

Reviews, Screen

The ABC’s of Death at Derby QUAD

I’m still reeling from the surrealism that is The ABC’s of Death. An ambitious, trippy ride through 26 shorter-than-short films directed by some of the world’s leading directors in the horror genre, ABC’s – produced by Ant Timpson and Tim League – is equal parts gory, hilarious, bizarre and often completely distasteful. Basically, a conglomeration of all the traditional formulas which we associate with the genre.

Continue reading