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News - Reviews - Interviews - What’s On

Interview with


Wexford Opera House 15th & 22nd Jan 2012

Tickets Available from

www.wexfordoperahouse.ie


CONTENTS News Ÿ Grand Canal announces new programme full of West End/Broadway Hits. Ÿ Jeff Waynes announces The War of the Worlds, The New Generation, an all new production of his smash hit new

Auditions Ÿ Exclusive interview with Irish musical theatre legend Colm Wilkinson

Interview Ÿ Exclusive interview with Irish musical theatre legend Colm Wilkinson

What’s on Ÿ We take a look at what’s on around the country and recommend the top shows to see this January


News

25th Anniversary Production Sets Dublin Dates

John Owen-Jones has just finished playing the role of ‘The Phantom’ in The Phantom of the Opera at Her Majesty’s Theatre in the West End. He has appeared on Broadway and in the West End as ‘Jean Valjean’ in Les Misérables and also played the role in the recent 25th Anniversary tour of the show. Earl Carpenter recently played the role of ‘Javert’ in the West End production of Les Misérables and also played the role in the 25th Anniversary tour of the show. He has also played ‘The Phantom’ in the West End production of The Phantom of the Opera as well as the starring role of ‘Darryl Van Horne’ in The Witches of Eastwick at the Prince of Wales Theatre, also in the West End. His touring credits include ‘Joe Gillis’ in Sunset After 25 phenomenal years, a spectacular new production of Andrew Lloyd Webber's legendary Boulevard.

musical is coming to Dublin. With an exciting new design and staging, retaining Maria Björnson's amazing costumes, be the first to surrender to the music of the night and fall in love with the Phantom in his new guise all over again! The Phantom of the Opera became the longest running show in Broadway history on 9 January 2006 when it celebrated its 7,486th performance, surpassing the previous record holder “Cats”. This coincided with the Broadway and the US national touring company celebrating an unprecedented 20,000 performances in the United States. In October 2010 the London production celebrated its 10,000th performance.

Katie Hall was a boot camp contestant for the BBC1’s search for ‘Nancy’ in I’d Do Anything and was a final round contender for Andrew Lloyd Webber’s search for the Eurovision entry, Your Country Needs You, also for BBC1. After leaving the I’d Do Anything competition she was immediately cast to cover the role of ‘Christine’ in The Phantom of the Opera at Her Majesty’s Theatre and is now the alternate ‘Christine’ in the production. Katie has also played the role of ‘Cosette’ in Les Misérables at the Queen’s Theatre in the West End, on the 25th Anniversary tour and also at the O2.

The Phantom of the Opera runs at the Grand Canal Theatre, Dublin from 5th July until 4th of August, The Phantom of the Opera has won over 60 major theatre with matinees every Wednesday and Saturday. Tickets available from www,grandcanaltheatre.ie awards, including seven Tony on Broadway and three Olivier Awards in the West End. It won the ‘Most Popular Musical Audience Award’, voted by the public, in the 2002 Laurence Olivier Awards. The Phantom of the Opera, which opened at Her Majesty's Theatre on 9 October 1986 starred Michael Crawford as 'The Phantom' and Sarah Brightman as 'Christine.' It is produced by Cameron Mackintosh by arrangement with The Really Useful Group. John Owen-Jones will play the role of ‘The Phantom’ and Katie Hall to play ‘Christine’ in the Dublin leg of the tour.


Grand Canal Theatre 17th-25th January Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story On Stage, written by Eleanor Bergstein, script writer and creator of the phenomenally successful film, features all the much-loved characters and original dialogue from the iconic film with exciting extra scenes added in! The tantalising dance sequences and brand new choreography come alive on stage, set to all the hits from the unforgettable soundtrack, such as ‘Do You Love Me?’, ‘Hungry Eyes’ and the Academy Award Winning ‘(I’ve Had) The Time Of My Life’, plus many more songs that weren’t on the original recording, making the show a truly extraordinary live experience. Over 5 million people worldwide have now seen this sensational production, with the UK show alone having been seen over 1 million. Having opened in 2006, Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story On Stage in London was sold out 6 months in advance breaking West End records.

Grand Canal Theatre 10th-21st April Winner of 7 major awards including the coveted Best Musical 2011 (Olivier Awards) this all singing, all dancing romantic comedy is about knowing who you are and showing what you’ve got! Elle Woods can handle anything. So when her boyfriend, Warner, dumps her she decides to follow him to Harvard Law School and win him back. With some help from new-found friends Paulette, Emmett and her Chihuahua Bruiser, she learns that it’s so much better to be smart. Directed by Tony and Olivier Award winning Jerry Mitchell (Hairspray), Legally Blonde The Musical is the funniest and most fabulous musical around. The best show in town, case closed. Ray Quinn will play the role of ‘Warner’ (Brookside, X Factor finalist, Dancing on Ice winner and star of Dirty Dancing and Grease in the West End) with Niki Evans as ‘Paulette’ (X Factor, Blood Brothers in the West End and on tour). Further casting to be announced.

Grand Canal Theatre 3rd-7th April After nearly five years of mischief, bad behaviour and political incorrectness, London’s funniest show by far is hitting the road. The Tony Award – winning Avenue Q is the irresistibly charming musical about the lovably hopeless characters on a downtown New York street trying to make sense of life’s burning issues: love, work, relationships and, above all, how are you supposed to pay the bills with a BA in English? Hilarious and uproariously entertaining, with a terrific batch of songs performed by a cast of hugely talented performers and puppets, Avenue Q is the musical like no other. So don’t let your life suck – book your tickets


News

JEFF WAYNE'S MUSICAL VERSION OF THE WAR OF THE WORLDS... THE NEW GENERATION! Based on HG Wells' Classic Science Fiction Story The Dazzling, Groundbreaking Arena Production Launches a New Era Starring LIAM NEESON in 3D Holography, as George Herbert, The Journalist

After 33 years since its original release, Liam takes over from Richard Burton, whose holographic head had appeared in the show since 2006, using the original narration from Jeff Wayne's classic 1978 album, a sound that has lived long in the memory and deep in the psyche of generations who have heard it.

Over the years, Jeff was often asked how he would approach composing and producing The War of The On November 29th, the O2 in Dublin will once again come Worlds in today's world, rather than the era of the mid under attack by the Martians, as Jeff Wayne's kick starts his 1970s, when disco was king of the dance floor, punk was all ‘NEW GENERATION’ production of The War Of The the revolutionary music of the day and science fiction was being re-discovered in the movies and on TV. Worlds The Musical. One of the most successful stage shows of recent times, Jeff He always answered 'why fix what isn't broken?.' He was proud of the work and especially of all those who had Wayne's Musical Version of The War of the Worlds, contributed their varied talents to bring it to life - David returns to UK Arenas with a new star and another technological leap forward. On November 18, 2011 'The New Generation' of Jeff Wayne's Musical Version of The War of The Worlds launched in conjunction with Sony Music, Live Nation and SJM Concerts, featuring a new interpretation of the classic recording followed by a major international arena tour commencing November 2012. Internationally acclaimed actor Liam Neeson will be seen in 3D holography as the story's narrator and leading a new cast. Neeson will be seen in 3 ways: appearing as the first full body hologram seen on stage interacting with live actors, as an 11-foot high holographic head and shoulders hovering above the stage, and appearing within the 2-hour CGI film projected onto the incredible 100 foot wide 'animation wall' which adds a true epic scale to the production.


Essex, Justin Hayward, Phil Lynott, Chris Thompson, Julie Covington, and of course, Richard Burton. What Jeff never predicted was the extraordinary life his musical interpretation of HG Wells' visionary and dark Victorian tale would have. Now some 33 years on and as Jeff approached his sixth year of touring The War of The Worlds - Alive on Stage! and an animated feature film now in development, this same question kept returning.

Ÿ Leaf drops over the audience and surround sound that engulfs them, contributing to the allencompassing experience that is The War of The Worlds. Jeff Wayne's double album was originally released by CBS records in 1978. It has enjoyed huge success and critical acclaim across the globe with over 15 million records sold and spending over 330 weeks in the UK Album Charts (to date) plus achieving two International hit singles – 'Forever Autumn' and 'The Eve of The War'. The War of The Worlds has also won two prestigious UK Ivor Novello Awards, the US Best Recording in Science Fiction and Fantasy (the judges included Alfred Hitchcock, George Lucas and Steven Spielberg), as well as winning for Jeff, Classic Rock's 'Showman of The Year' Award. Jeff Wayne's Musical Version of The War of The Worlds has grown into a true classic, acquiring new generations of devoted followers since its original release. For anyone of any age, The War of The Worlds – The New Generation is a unique double album and exciting arena show, not to be missed!

New Generation Facts: On the original 1978 double album and from 2006 when the arena tours began, Richard Burton's audio and technological visual performances contained 74 sequences. Liam Neeson's Journalist contains 90. Richard's performance was seen in one way. Liam will be seen in three: Ÿ As an 11-foot high holographic 'head and shoulders' as The Journalist recounts in 1904 his story of survival from the Martian invasion of Victorian England some six years earlier. Ÿ Within CGI sequences seen on a 100-foot wide 'Animation Wall'. Ÿ Perhaps the most remarkable element, and a world first in live entertainment, will see Liam Neeson appearing full body on stage interacting holographically with the show's live performers. A triumph of technology and a remarkable performance by Liam.

Since starting to tour in 2006 The War Of The Worlds has had cast including Justin Hayward and Chris Thompson, both of whom preformed on the original album, Tara Blaise, Alexis James, Russell Watson, Sinéad Quinn, Jennifer Ellison, Shannon Noll, Rhydian, Liz McClarnon and Jason Donavan.

Original Cast recording included: Richard Burton – spoken words (The Journalist: the narrator-protagonist) David Essex – spoken words and vocals (The Artilleryman) Phil Lynott – spoken words and vocals The new live production will also contain exciting new (Parson Nathaniel) ingredients, as well as some of the most iconic elements Julie Covington – spoken words and vocals ( returning, including: Beth) Justin Hayward – vocals Ÿ A 3-tonne, 35-foot tall Martian Fighting Machine (The Sung Thoughts of The Journalist: "Forever Autumn") firing real flame Heat Rays at the audience and Chris Thompson – vocals scanning them with its bug-like eyes, as it 'lands' on (The Voice of Humanity: "Thunder Child") Jerry Wayne – spoken words ("Epilogue, Part 2") centre stage. Ÿ Special effects and illusions including a world first Tickets for the O2, Dublin are available from 'levitation' and the Martian Fighting Machine's www.ticketmaster.ie 'incineration' of a cast member Jeff Wayne will again conduct the Black Smoke Band and ULLAdubULLA Strings with musical Guest Artistes to be announced for both the new album and tour.


Auditions International Large Scale Productions Professional Male and Female Dancers Employer: STEPS The Ultimate Tour Location: London Audition Director and Choreographer Gareth Walker is casting for STEPS The Ultimate Tour Looking for Professional Male and Female Dancers of exceptional dance talent. Must be an experienced performer. Men- muscular, strong, trained in all genres. 5’9 min Women-5’6 min-trained in all genres Must be versatile and open to learn new skills. Open Auditions to be held on January 11th 2012 Dance Attic-368 North End Road, Fulham, London SW6 (Nearest tube Fulham Broadway) Women - 9am register (Please be prepared to stay all day) Men – 1.00 pm Register (Please be prepared to stay all day) If successful you will be required to attend the recall on January 12th 2012 Job dates are from early February until the end of April (Dates are a guide only). You would need to be available throughout this time. No agents submissions. The audition will be filmed. Please bring a current Photo/Z Card and CV, Women - bring heels and trainers and dress to impress! Please wear appropriate dance-wear, knee pads (and no Uggs!) First come first served basis as there are limited places There is a strong likelihood that this will be filmed as part of STEPS REUNION Series Two on Sky Living

Auditions Singers Employer: The Lion KingLocation: London Disney Presents The Lion King Open Call Auditions for Strong Singers Disney Theatrical Productions is looking for male and female singers with strong soulful/gospel type voices who also have good movement skills. Please be prepared to sing a contemporary pop/rock song and bring the sheet music. No backing tracks. A pianist will be provided. Please bring a CV and photograph stapled together and be prepared to wait. Monday January 30TH 2012,0 Lyceum Theatre, 21 Wellington Street, London WC2E 7RQ. Please enter via Stage Door. 2.00PM Registration for Afternoon Auditions 2.30PM Auditions commence 6.00PM Registration for Evening Auditions 7.30PM Registration ends Performers of all backgrounds/diverse ethnic groups are encouraged to attend. Section 5 of the race relations Act of 1976 applies. All descriptions given above are for guidance only Photographs by Catherine Ashmore; Alexia Khadime, Roger Wright, Brown Lindiwe Mkhize from the London Company


Live at the Opera House Album

Now Available From all good Music stores


Interview with Co By John Michael Murphy It’s not often you get to see a hero of yours. But more recently I had the extreme honour of sitting down and talking to one of my stage heroes Colm Wilkinson. I have been lucky enough to see Colm Wilkinson 3 times in concert and had the privilege of shaking his hand at each of them. Colm Wilkinson’s life is surrounded by music. The celebrated Broadway and West End star has spent years on the stage, mesmerizing audiences with his starring roles in Les Misérables and The Phantom of the Opera. Now, with the release of his latest solo album, Colm Wilkinson Broadway & Beyond, and a tour of the same name which enjoyed great success with sell out shows in all parts of Ireland. Starting his career in the 1970's, when he performed with one of the best Irish bands of the era, The Action, Colm has gone on to become one of the most celebrated performers of our time. He has had several pop hits in Ireland on the Release label as C.T. Wilkinson, and in 1972 took on the role of Judas Iscariot in the Dublin and London productions of Jesus Christ Superstar. In 1976, he also played the part of Che Guevara on the original concept album of the musical Evita. From there, he furthered his international stature by taking on the role of Barach, the Shylock character in the London production of Fire Angel, the musical rendition of Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice. His performance was so impressive that Great Britain’s National Theatre invited Wilkinson to join as an actor. In 1977, Wilkinson’s phenomenal talent was revealed when his self-titled L.P. shot to number 1 in the Irish charts and stayed there for eight weeks. His composition, There Was a Dream, went on to become a chart topping hit in Ireland. With intense focus on composing, Wilkinson competed in numerous song contests, achieving great success. Having tested the waters of stage musicals, cabaret, records, radio, and television, Colm Wilkinson spread his talents as singer and composer to viewers in over twenty countries worldwide when he represented Ireland in the Eurovision Song Contest in Paris in 1978 with Born to Sing. The early eighties recognized Wilkinson as one of the finest singers of popular song. However, Colm craved the part that would test his abilities as both singer and actor. Wilkinson went on to achieve international fame when he created the role of Jean Valjean in the hit musical, Les Misérables. He instinctively knew that this was the role he’d been waiting for. “I knew that I was a part of something very special,” explains Wilkinson. Wilkinson also created the role of The Phantom in the workshop of The Phantom of the Opera in Sydmonton. After finishing in Les Misérables, he then went on to star in the Toronto production of The Phantom of the Opera for four and a half years, giving 1,653 performances and earning nightly standing ovations from more than 3.5 million theatre-goers. Wilkinson earned the Dora Mavor Moore award for his portrayal of the Phantom in 1989-90. He also received the Dora award for the role of Valjean in 1998-99 in Toronto.


olm Wilkinson Between musicals, solo albums, compilations and singles, Wilkinson has appeared on over 60 titles, including Stage Heroes (BMG), a solo album, where he performed with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and recorded at the historic Abbey Road Studios in London, England, as well as the celebrated Highlight album of the Broadway hit Jekyll and Hyde (BMG). Colm also recording another solo album entitled Some of My Best Friends Are Songs, a selection of some of his favourite songs of all time. It includes three self-penned compositions and a duet performed with his own son, Aaron, on Cat Stevens', Father and Son and more recently Colm Wilkinson Broadway & Beyond which includes many musical classics and a few more of Colm's favourite songs like, House Of The Rising Sun, Hallelujah and Whiskey In The Jar. He has recently appeared on our TV stations over here as Lord Darcey in The Tudors. A role in which he relished “It was a challenge and so much fun to do that series. I always relied on the music to help me but this was me out on my own.” And boy did he impress. I was recently granted an exclusive interview with Colm and this is what the international star of stage and screen had to say: Music seemed to play an important part in your life, growing up. Your father played banjo and piano and also sang and I believe your mother was involved in amateur dramatics. Were you ever involved in any of these shows when growing up? No, I never performed with them, they got married and that was the end of most of that for them. My mother was from Crossmolina, Co. Mayo, and she was involved in the local stuff from around there and she played violin a little. She also sang, she was a great singer. My dad was a great singer to and he played the banjo a lot but I was never involved in anything with them, but there was always singing in our house. There were ten kids and so everyone had their party piece, if there was a gathering or a Ceile.

I felt absolutely terrified because it was a pretty complex part and a pretty demanding part. I was actually in the dressing room throwing up before I went on. Luke Kelly was in the show, playing King Herod, and Luke was looking after me, my minder. Luke was such a wonderful guy, not the brash guy a lot of the public knew. He actually guided me on to the stage, and took me onto the side of the stage and nudge me on for my entrance because I was just so terrified. You have had a lot of firsts in your career. You were the first Val Jean in Les Miserables, first Che in the concept album of Evita, and you were the first to don the Phantoms mask, and perform Music of the Night. Both Phantom and Les Miserables have two distinctive songs that were hits, and in most peoples eyes consider your versions the definitive ones. Tell us how you first felt when you heard these songs and did you think they would play such an important part in your career?

It’s funny how that happened. I contracted myself to do Les Miserables and then went down to Andrew Lloyd Webbers house to do the work shop for Phantom, where they asked me to play the Phantom in the workshop. Andrew had the first act of the show written and he wanted to present it to backers to see if they would be interested in financing it Well I didn’t actually motivate that at all. It was actually further. While I was down there he asked me to play the Jim McCann, who was going to play Peter, and Carl O’Doherty, was going to play Pilate. And Noel Peircen was part of the Phantom for the show, but I said “you better ask looking for someone to play Judas, and they said “you want Cameron Mackintosh because I am already contracted to Les Miserables.” So we did the first act in the converted to hear this guy, Colm Wilkinson, who we think would be great as Judas. So Noel came out to a hotel out in Malahide church in the grounds of Andrews house and on the way to the hotel that I was working in, there he heard me doing back to London, I was driving back with Cameron, he said “I know Andrew asked you about doing the Phantom, but I a cabaret and he offered me the gig as Judas. can’t let you out of the Les Miserables musical but if Les You succeeded in getting the role of Judas in the show. Miserables doesn’t work you can do the Phantom.” Those For your first big musical, what was going through your were his words which actually seem a bit strange given the mind stepping out on the first night? magnitude of both of them. But I went on to do Les A lot of people already knew you as a singer but in 1972 you auditioned for the Dublin production of Jesus Christ Superstar. What made you want to do the change over to musical theatre?


member of the RSC while I was working on the first show. But I have given up on the critics as a lot of them have gone back, but Sheridan Morley was the only one that said this show was a masterpiece, while the others were very wishy washy but there you go, the people voted with their feet.

Miserables and then did Phantom later on in Toronto, Canada, for 4 and a half years. But Bring Him Home was actually written for me, so that’s always nice to have that, and I also remember singing Music of the Night for the first time. It was very moving actually and I was actually in tears singing it. You recently made an appearance on TV in The Tudors. Tell us what that was like for you? It was very interesting actually for me. That was the first time I did anything of that scope, I mean I have appeared in a few small little character parts but nothing like this. I played Lord Darcy, and English lord, and to actually try to assume that character and put in the costume and I couldn’t do the north of England accent so I just adopted this grand accent. It was quiet and experience to work with those people, and it was all done in Dublin, which was great. To be asked to do that was a huge experience for me, to get to work with guys like I did these fabulous actors. The big thing for me was actually not singing, because I got the usual comments, I didn’t know there was singing in the Tudors, when they saw me around. I said “I’m not singing, I’m just speaking, just acting here.” It was a great challenge to actually do that and try and make that work because I was always relying on the music to get the emotion of the piece. But I loved the work Would you like to do more television work?

A short while ago I had the honour of working with an old colleague of yours, Peter Karrie from Wales. One of my favourite parts of his shows was listening to him telling stories about when the show went wrong and he had to continue. Have you any funny memories from a show where it went wrong and had to carry on? I remember him playing tricks on us actually. It was on a show called Fire Angle, which didn’t last to long. The show was based on The Merchant of Venice and I was playing Barach, a Shylock type character. I had to reach into a drawer to take out a quill but instead pulled out a dead mouse. I could go on for ages about when things go wrong on stage like in Jesus Christ Superstar when crosses don’t go down on time and Jesus is left sitting there unable to move. Or in one particular production of Superstar the performers playing Jesus and Mary were having a fling and they were obviously up to something back stage and when Jesus walked on stage he was covered in lips stick for the last supper. Or in Les Miserables what happened a lot was you were supposed to be hiding behind furniture or the barricades and they would get stuck and so you would have to go on stage and pretend to be hiding behind something and the other guy able to see you clear as day and try to deliver the scene, never knowing if this thing was going to trundle on in a minute and kill you on the spot. Tell us a little about your new album, Colm Wilkinson Broadway & Beyond? It’s basically a mix of good songs. Obviously there is Music of the Night, Bring Him Home as well as Tennessee Waltz, Country Roads, Hallelujah and House of Rising Sun and more. It’s a big mix of stuff that I have done.

Well I would love to get an offer, if someone came up to me with something I would love to look at it. I’m actually Colm Wilkinson Broadway and Beyond is available to buy involved with a possible film called The Island, based on the Blasket Islands, and they want me to play the main part. from www.comwilkinson.com It’s about a guy returning home from America to bury his sister. So I really hope this happens. We recently saw you perform at the Les Miserables 25th Anniversary Concert at the O2. How does it feel now, after you been there at the start, to have this chance to go back on stage and say to those critics who said it wouldn’t last a week that here the show is 25 years on and after sweeping the world? Well I did it when I went back to do the 10th anniversary I did say “I would like to remind the critics what they said.” They didn’t slate anyone in person; they just said the musical wasn’t going to work. They also didn’t like the fact that Cameron Mackintosh was actually financially and commercially involved with the Royal Shakespeare Company, who did the original production. So I was a

News


Live at O2 29/11/2012 www.ticketmaster.ie


Top Shows Wexford

Top shows to see this January from around the Country

Wexford Pantomime Society, Dun Mhuire Theatre, 10th-15th Jan The biggest pantomime in the South East of Ireland gets underway. Join Peter Pan, the boy who never grew up, and his faithful gang of Lost Boys as they battle against the evil Captain Hook and his villainous pirate chums in the ultimate battle for Neverland. This January, the Dun Mhuire Theatre will be awash with beautiful fairies, fishy mermaids, proud Indians and mischievous pirates as Wexford Pantomime Society presents this all singing, all dancing, all sword fighting AND ALL FLYING production to whisk your little fairies and lost boys away on the adventure of a lifetime! Tickets available from Box Office, 053 9123061

Extreme Rhythm - Primal, Wexford Opera House, 7th Jan PRIMAL – The Show – explores how Rhythm is part of our very being. Rhythm is universal .. in a world divided by borders, currencies, laws and religions, it is a part of us which can never be tainted by external, social or political factors. Everything we do has a rhythm of its own … Our Heartbeat; Our Breath; Hunger; Sleep … are the RHYTHMS of our very being. The Show fuses rhythms and sounds from all over the world into a rhythmic and musical journey, using narratives and strong visual stimuli, to create a two hour ‘journey’ for the audience. Tickets available from Box Office, 053 9123061, www.wexfordoperahouse.ie

Singing Nina - Nina Simone Tribute, Wexford Arts Centre, 21st Jan The fabulous new show by the Chicago Jazz Queen, Karen Underwood and her band. Karen and her live band bring to you in narration and song the engrossing life story of the great legend Nina Simone, from her struggle against racism and exile from her homeland to her flamboyant and troubled relationships and her poignant later years. Tickets available from Box Office, 053 9123764, www.wexfordartscentre.ie

Galway Big Maggie, Town Hall Theatre, Galway, 24th-28th Jan A riveting story of money, land and secret sex. Aisling O’Sullivan (Raw, The Clinic), John Olohan (The Tudors and Druid’s The Silver Tassie) and Keith Duffy (Coronation Street, Boyzone) lead a cast of eleven of Ireland’s finest actors in this much loved play by John B. Keane, complete with caustic wit and scandalous honesty. On the day of her husband’s funeral, Maggie Polpin (Aisling O’Sullivan), widowed mother of four, is now ready to take power into her own hands… but at what cost? On tour to ten Irish venues, Druid’s Big Maggie promises to be one of the hottest tickets in theatre this year – if you do one thing this autumn, don’t miss this! Tickets available from Box Office, 091-569777, www.tht.ie

Cork The Plaza Suite, Cork Opera House, Cork, 24th-25th Jan Rough Magic Theatre Company makes a welcome return to Cork with a superb cast in this stylish comedy by Neil Simon – one of America’s most popular dramatists and author of classics such as The Odd Couple and Brighton Beach Memoirs. One of Simon’s most popular and celebrated plays, Plaza Suite details the misadventures of three very different couples facing crucial moments in their respective lives, all set in the same room in New York’s world famous Plaza Hotel. Plaza Suite showcases Simon at his best - witty, sophisticated and deliciously funny. Tickets available from Box Office, 021 - 427 0022, www.corkoperahouse.ie


Dublin The Government Inspector, The Abbey Theatre, present -28th Jan The Mayor, the Judge, the Chief of Police and a host of the crooked characters are in an awful tailspin as a visit from a government inspector looms large on their town. It’s all brown envelopes and bribes as this befuddled group frantically try to keep the show on the road at all costs. But could a case of mistaken identity sabotage their efforts? Jimmy Fay directs a colourful cast in a new version of this magnificent Gogol satire. Enjoy a night of hilarity this Christmas at the Abbey Theatre, as Roddy Doyle takes his signature wit to Nikolai Gogol’s The Government Inspector. Tickets available from Box Office 01 8787222, www.abbeytheatre.ie

Little Women, The Gate Theatre, Dublin, present -14th Jan Little Women is a much-loved and timeless classic that will warm audience hearts as it follows the adventures of four young sisters - Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy March. Guided by their mother ‘Marmee’, while their father is away serving in the Civil War, the girls struggle, but manage, to get through the difficult times. As the sisters grow up, Little Women tells the tale of family, love, individuality, and finding a place in the world. Tickets available from Box Office 01 874 4045 , www.gatetheatre.ie

Dirty Dancing The Musical, The Grand Canal Theatre, 17th Jan - 25th Feb The Record Breaking smash hit musical, sets pulses racing with the announcement of the first ever UK & Irish tour! The producers of Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story On Stage, one of the most successful hit musicals in West End history, are delighted to announce the launch of the first ever UK & Irish tour, coming to Dublin in 2012. Tickets available from 0818 719 377, www.ticketmaster.ie


Grand Canal Theatre 10th-21st of April Tickets from www.ticketmaster.ie


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