Monday, 30 September 2013

Review: Rough Justice at The Theatre Royal Newcastle

So many questions..?

Terence Frisby has acted as a litigant-in-person himself. He has tried to defend himself in court. This experience, perhaps has led to the excellent play ‘Rough Justice’.  His play explores the dynamic of the closed shop that is the British Legal system. He has not, however, used his own cases for this play. Rather, he has taken a separate controversial issue and used that as a vehicle to allow the audience to question the due legal process.
James Highwood, played expertly by the experienced Tom Conti, stands on trial for the murder of his disabled son. He tries to defend himself whilst being cross-examined by the equally articulate Margaret Casely (Elizabeth Payne). Payne’s portrayal of the prosecution barrister is a perfect foil for Conti’s character. The umpire in the proceedings is of course the Judge (Benjamin Whitrow) who seems to provide the audience with a number of ironic laughs.
Highwood is not totally on his own in the trial as he has his solicitor in court (David Michaels) and his wife (Carol Starks), but both are unable to have much of a say in the proceedings as due legal process takes its course. Director James Larkin has enabled both of these characters a chance to vent their frustrations as the drama unfolds.
This is no whodunnit play. We are asked to consider if murder is ever acceptable. Is it prudent to defend oneself? Can a publicly well known individual ever get a fair trial? Is the legal system a closed shop full of wigs and identical qualifications? Should we know more about the background of the judge and the barristers? Are trials a game that is played between legal representatives and the defendant a mere spectator? Should the jury go out on a limb and ignore the judges summing up?
The production at times feels like a gripping boxing match but no one seems able to score the knock out blow. It kept the audience on the edge of their seats without resorting to unnecessary clich├ęs.
Rough Justice is on until the 5th October and tickets can be bought in person at the theatre box office or online at
 Words: Stephen Oliver

Saturday, 28 September 2013


TV star brings work-in-progress show to Barnard Castle

Join Russell Howard, one of the UK’s funniest and most successful comedians, as he tries out material for his sold-out arena tour, Wonderbox.

In his first ever appearance in Barnard Castle, the TV star will play the newly-refurbished Witham Hall on Saturday 9 November for Funny Way To Be Comedy Club.

This is your chance to see the star and creator of the award-winning hit TV show, Russell Howard’s Good News, in an intimate setting; back on stage, on top of the world, doing what he does best.

Following his show in Barnard Castle, Russell embarks on his first tour for three years and a show which looks set to be the hottest ticket of 2014.

His 2011 sell-out UK tour included three sold out dates at London’s O2.

Peter Dixon, of Funny Way To Be Comedy Club, said: "I am thrilled that in preparation for his first live tour in three years Russell Howard has asked to come to our club.

“It's testament to the success we have had over the last three years producing shows that have been enjoyed by audiences and artists alike. 

“The fact that a few weeks after he tries out his tour material with us Russell will be selling out venues like the Newcastle Metro Arena, The London 02 and The Royal Albert Hall is incredibly exciting.

“It really puts the rural town of Barnard Castle firmly on the comedy map."

Tickets for Russell Howard: Wonderbox (WIP) go on sale at 10am on Monday 30 September from, priced £10.

Something huge is coming indeed! The larger than life production, Shrek the Musical will be heading to Newcastle Theatre Royal as part of the show’s first national UK tour! Join Shrek, Donkey, Princess Fiona and Lord Farquaad on this year’s biggest family musical adventure, Wednesday 11 – Sunday 29 March 2015!

Coming direct from London, where it was seen live on stage by nearly a million people, the UK tour of the Drury Lane production of Shrek the Musical will be directed by Nigel Harman who starred as Lord Farquaad in the west end production, winning him the 2012 Laurence Olivier Award for Best Performance in a Supporting Role in a Musical.

Shrek the Musical is based on the story and characters from William Steig’s book Shrek!, but will be known to most of us as the Oscar winning DreamWorks Animations feature film that had us laughing with Donkey and quivering at the sight of Lord Farquaad…well, kind of!

Bill Damaschke, Chief Creative Officer of DreamWorks said: “We are thrilled that Shrek and his fairy-tale friends will be heading out on tour across the UK and Ireland and delighted that our very own Nigel Harman will be directing Shrek the Musical on the road. It has been such a joy to bring this loved story to life and we can’t wait for families up and down the country to experience their beloved swamp-dwelling ogre, Princess Fiona, Donkey and all their pals live on stage, as so many have on Broadway and in the west end.”

Director of Shrek the Musical UK and Ireland Tour, Nigel Harman said: “I am delighted to be returning to Shrek as its director. This show is very special to me with its dizzying blend of great characters, a hilarious script and sublime music. This production is visually stunning, and the story has the magic ingredient of moving at great pace while still being surprisingly intimate. In short, there was no way I was going to say no to the challenge of realising the production for the UK and Ireland.  I really can't wait to take this show on the road!”

Shrek the Musical opened on Broadway in 2008 before touring to nearly 150 cities in the USA and Canada. Productions of Shrek the Musical have played in Spain, Poland, France, Malaysia, China, Brazil, Italy, Denmark, The Netherlands, Estonia, Israel and Turkey but this is the very first UK tour!

If you want to grab a seat in the swamp, tickets go on sale to Theatre Royal Friends Monday 30 September, Advantage, Groups and School bookers Wednesday 2 October and on general sale (including online) from Friday 4 October.

Shrek the Musical appears at Newcastle Theatre Royal from Wednesday 11 – Sunday 29 March 2015. Tickets are available from £16.00 (booking fees apply) and can be purchased from the Theatre Royal Box Office on 08448 11 21 21 or select your own seat and book online at
Tickets go on sale: Monday 30th September to Friends of Theatre Royal
                               Wednesday 2nd October to Advantage members and groups
                               General Public on Friday 4th October 2013

Why should grown-ups have all the fun?

Jesterval, the comedy festival coming to Gateshead Quays next week, have announced free afternoon comedy for kids.
The five-day long festival, which runs 3-7 October from Baltic Square, features some of the UK’s biggest stand-ups – including Ed Byrne, Marcus Brigstocke and Hebburn creator Jason Cook.
But it’s not all about the grown-ups, with organisers today confirming four family shows from the likes of Frehd the Clown and Silky.
Frehd the Clown will open the kids’ comedy at 12pm on Saturday 5 October before a family package show.
And Silky, who has performed at the Newcastle Stand’s kids’ show before, will kick off Sunday’s stand-up at Jesterval. 
 “Kids’ comedy is even funnier than comedy for adults,” he said.
“I find that everyone’s happy in a way that adults aren’t; they’ve all got their own interests and they tend to be more attentive to the comedy.
“You can talk about broader topics, but at the same time kids will laugh when I say that I’m made out of cheese.”
Silky also says that adults won’t be twiddling their thumbs at his shows; there are plenty of jokes for them too.

“I think the parents will enjoy it; there are little in-jokes for them. I’d like to think of the show as a lift; it works on many levels.”

Check out the Jesterval Lineup on their website: This is set to be five days of quality funnies!

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Review: Morgana le Fey at Northern Stage

The Crick Crack Club return to Northern Stage
 with the story of Arthur's legendary big sister.
The stage was set with a giant chess board, a set of draughts, a harp and a number of other props and instruments when Nick Hennessey started a gentle lullaby.  Xanthe Gresham then walks on stage wearing an extremely long blonde wig. The show has begun.
Over the next hour and a quarter we a given a real storytelling treat. The playful interaction between the two storytellers adds to the irreverent nature of a tale of old. We are all aware of the tales of King Arthur but we now find the spotlight turns to Morgana Le Fey. Xanthe muses on her status in the legend. Was she a goddess or simply a fairy who deserved a better billing?
The talented Nick weaves lush music around the story that Xanthe lays down with crystal clarity. A greater understanding develops of the lead character through a poignant narrative. Rewriting the rules becomes necessary to understand her battle against the misogyny of the time.
A refreshing take on a classic tale of Avalon.

words: Steve Oliver
The Noise 4 – 12 October at Northern Stage
A body washes up and a massive iceberg appears in the harbour of a remote island near Antarctica where a strange, ever present sound makes the small community of islanders somehow ‘different’...   
This intriguing scene could be taken from the latest Danish hit crime thriller. Like The Bridge and The Killing, or BBC’s Top of the Lake, The Noise is unsettling; a combination of gripping storytelling with an unfamiliar edge and a mysterious undertone which draws you in and keeps you guessing.  

Written by an award-winning creative team – Claire Duffy, Jon Spooner and Chris Thorpe - this brand new Unlimited/Northern Stage co-production follows in the footsteps of successful shows like Mission to Mars, Tangle and The Ethics of Progress, using theatre to explore leading research into contemporary science. "Working with scientists has played a big part in making the stories we tell for a few years now. We've worked with quantum physicists, astronauts and neuroscientists to make shows based on their research across the world and, in honesty, we've been surprised at how hungry audiences are for those types of stories. With The Noise, we've combined our love of science and edge-of-the-seat storytelling to make a ‘sci-conspiracy thriller’ about memory, secrets and the effects of sound on human beings.”: Jon Spooner, Creative Director, Unlimited Theatre. 

Both companies have a reputation for producing adventurous and thought-provoking new work. The British Theatre Guide describes Unlimited as, “One of the most exciting theatre companies around”, and The Guardian’s Lyn Gardner says, “Northern Stage is often ahead of the pack in terms of interesting and adventurous programming.” 

Being about noise, sound takes centre stage and Unlimited are working with long term collaborators David Edwards (aka electronic musician Minotaur Shock) who’s composing original music for the show and sound designer by Gareth Fry (who previously worked on Zero Degrees & Drifting in 2004) and more recently created the soundscape for the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games. 
“Sound and music has always been a massively important part of how we tell our stories. The Noise was inspired by our research into the effects of sound on human beings - physically, emotionally, and psychologically. We've worked closely in collaboration with the brilliant electronic musician Minotaur Shock and one of the UK's most brilliant sound designers Gareth Fry to create (what we hope will be!) a pretty intense aural experience.”. Jon Spooner, Creative Director, Unlimited Theatre 
Compelling and intriguing The Noise will have audiences on the edge of their seats when it opens at Northern Stage on 4 October.

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Review: "Wet House" at Live Theatre

An Alcohol-Fuelled Free-For-All

The Live Theatre in Newcastle has provided gritty drama in the past. Not known for "safe" theatre it faces issues head on and presents them with realism. This play, written by Paddy Campbell, a product of the Live Theatre writing course in 2007, and a one-time worker in such an establishment, is no exception.

The "Wet House" is a homeless hostel where alcoholics are allowed to drink, providing them with a "safe" place to exist and be sheltered and to keep them off the streets. Andy, fresh from failing at university, and ready to be a useful citizen, walks into this alternative reality where normal social rules no longer apply and it isn't only the residents who are dysfuctional and damaged.

The writing is exceptional, in my view, and one liners are delivered by the cast, especially Chris Connel with the skill of a seasoned stand-up. However this play, despite having laugh out loud moments had me close to tears with the tragic stories behind the characters, and the brutality meted out by Connel's character Mike on residents he felt deserved it.

Back in the day, my old Dad told me about the legendary Patricia Hayes playing a drunk in "Edna the Inebriate Woman" the BBC Play For Today in 1971 and her amazing performance. The drunks in this production were utterly believable, tragic, and at times hilarious. Joe Caffrey quickly transformed from the loveable smelly old tramp to a man who had lost his family through drink and saw no future for himself. Eva Quinn played  Kerry the  young woman set on a trail of self distruction and facing the loss of custody of her baby through drink and drugs. She expressed the anger and hopelessness of this character so well, I was close to tears.

Riley Jones, as Andy changed from the awkward young man with a normal life, to a mentally scarred individual with an unhealthy relationship with drink, in an alarmingly short time...with help from his messed-up mentor, Mike. Helen, another staff member was equally controlled by ex-army bully Mike and was played brilliantly by Jackie Lye. David Nellist had a hard role to play. Spencer, a convicted paedophile, terrorised and violently attacked by his "key worker" Mike, was a pitiful character, spiralling down into alcoholism to hide from the shame and hopelessness that filled his life.

This play was amongst the best theatre I have seen this year. The combination of comedy, violence and utter gloom these characters faced, made for an emeotional rollercoaster I hadn't bargained for. Live Theatre truly hit the spot with this production.

This Wednesday (25th September) there will be a post-show discussion with director Max Roberts, writer Paddy Campbell and the creative team. They will talk about the process of taking the writing to the stage.

Also, on 29th September at 6.45pm there well be a discussion even with a panel including Paddy Campbell and people who work with sufferers of addiction and homelessness.

The Cyrenians work with vulnerable, disadvantaged and homeless people, to give them a roof over their heads and a support network. They will have representatives at the panel discussion. I have witnessed their work as I used to live next door to one of their houses on Westgate Road. The thing I noticed about the men that stayed there was not that they were threatening in any way. They seemed afraid to even say "hello" and surprised that us (students, as we were) would let on to them. Now I present a radio show in the basement of one of the charity's houses, its funny how things come full circle. They do such valuable work with people who may be difficult to cope with, and not always easy to sympathise with.

Everyone has a story.

"I'm a middle aged woman working as a tramp-farmer" (Helen)

Watch the trailer:

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Theatre Review: "Our Day Out" at The People's Theatre

Our Day Out by Willy Russell
Newcastle People's Theatre 17/9/2013
The Newcastle People’s Theatre open up their new season with a vibrant telling of the Willy Russell classic by their Youth Theatre.  Director Mark Buckley has moved the production away from Russell’s native North West and moved it closer to home for the cast, and indeed audience, and yet the narrative still works.  The working class kids from the school’s bottom group are not expected to pass any exams but their loyal teacher Mrs Kay, ably plaid by Anna Robinson, has not given up on them. She wants them to have a nice day out away from Newcastle. Thus she decides to organise a school trip. Moving the play to the East Coast results in the destination changing from North Wales to Whitby. The Head isn’t happy about the class going so he asks the stricter Mr Briggs (Lara Cowler) to go along too.
The play has also moved forward in time to 1983 resulting in a lot of blue eye shadow and some fabulous period outfits by the trendy young teachers Susan (Grace Dickson) and Colin (Arthur Thorpe). The young cast put on an entertaining show with sufficient gravitas when necessary. The scene in which the student Carol (Alex Carmichael) decides that she doesn’t want to go back home had enough tension in order to highlight the issue being raised. The characters Carol and Ronnie (Michael Critchlaw) also treat us to a couple of well timed songs but this is no musical production.  There are funny scenes too, and the Bored Girls, Lauren Gillen and Jess Rootham had superb comic timing with their lines. 
Thirty years may have passed but the problems presented still have a certain resonance today. The cast are to be commended and should have successful futures ahead of them.
This entertaining production continues until Saturday 27 th September 2013 at Newcastle’s Peoples Theatre. The tickets are £11.50 (concessions £9.50)

Sunday, 15 September 2013


Following the sell-out success of Save the Last Dance for Me, Dreamboats and Petticoats the musical, features some of the greatest hit songs of the Rock ‘n’ Roll era! This whirl round the jukebox of one of the most dynamic musical decades stars musical legend Mark Wynter, performing on tour for the first time in 50 years! Grab a seat in the 60’s at Newcastle Theatre Royal, 7 – 12 October.
Since premiering in 2009 and having played to more than two million people across the UK, Dreamboats and Petticoats, inspired by Universal’s multi-million selling album series, features some of the greatest songs of the Rock ‘n’ Roll era - when each passing week brought another classic track.
Set in 1961, emotions run high as young musicians Norman and Bobby compete to win a national song writing competition, and, more importantly, the attentions of the gorgeous Sue. But when Bobby discovers that shy Laura is no slouch on the piano, love, and rock ‘n’ roll fame beckon.
At the request of his fan and friend, producer Bill Kenwright, Mark Wynter will join the cast and perform on tour for the first time in 50 years!
Mark Wynter made his professional debut in the early 60’s when he was hardly out of the charts from 1960 until 1963, during which time he had nine singles chart hits and spent an extraordinary 80 weeks in the hit parade.
In the mid 60’s pop star Mark made his debut in the musical Phil the Fluter. He never returned to pop music, but went on to have real success in musicals such as Charlie Girl, Phantom of the Opera, Cats, South Pacific, Barnum, and many more. His film credits include Just for Fun, The Haunted House of Horrors and Red.
Mark will be playing the father of a wannabe pop star, however, every night for the finale of the show he will become Mark Wynter, and for the first time in five decades sing his hits including the legendary Venus in Blue Jeans, Go Away Little Girl and It’s Almost Tomorrow.
The show features classic tracks such as Let’s Dance, To Know Him Is To Love Him, Shaking All Over, Bobby’s Girl, Little Town Flirt, Only Sixteen, Runaround Sue, Happy Birthday Sweet 16, Let It Be Me, Let’s Twist Again, and many more from music’s golden era.
Dreamboats and Petticoats is written by Laurence Marks and Maurice Gran, the team behind Goodnight Sweetheart, Birds of a Feather, The New Statesman, Shine on Harvey Moon and of course, Dreamboats and Petticoats’ sequel, Save the Last Dance For Me, which delighted audiences at the Theatre Royal earlier this year.
Dreamboats and Petticoats appears at Newcastle Theatre Royal from 7 - 12 October 2013 (Evenings: 7.30pm, Matinees: Thu 2pm, Sat 2.30pm). Tickets are available from £15.00, booking fees will apply. Tickets can be purchased from the Theatre Royal Box Office on 08448 11 21 21 or select your own seat and book online at

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Jowheretogo PR, the story so far, and the clients..

So What's Been Happening?

Since this blog was launched there have been a lot of changes. The Jowheretogo Show is an established part of the NE1fm schedule and Jowheretogo PR has had its first clients through the books.

This blog serves to publicise events in the Northeast and review those that have just happened. There have been theatre, music and comedy events on here and photos from the gigs we go to.

The old listings format is long gone, with bigger features for events more favoured now. There's going to be features on Jowheretogo clients and people who get in touch to be featured on the Jowheretogo Show on NE1fm on Mondays 12noon until 1pm (subject to schedule changes, updates will be posted on here).

For now though, a brief intro to the people who are using Jowheretogo PR. These are bands and an artist who are simply brilliant and need to be seen and heard by as many people as possible.

Denature and their label Riise Music

The first Jowheretogo mission....

Their fabulous video for Time created by video artist Chris Lavelle was publicised by Jowheretogo on Twitter and on Facebook, the video has, deservedly had over 16k views. You can see it here. Denature are playing a live gig at HMV Newcastle this coming Saturday. Check out their Facebook page.

Peculiar Disco Moves


This post-Britpop bundle of talent is on the search for the right label, the right management and a chance to break into the consciousness of the British public. Jowheretogo is throwing management contacts their way and searching for a label that will see the value of the songwriting and live performance package we have here. The upcoming single is set to be pinged all over the UK and "Chris" their previous single got put onto rotation on Rocker's Dive radio in America after Jowheretogo pushed it their way. America need this British eccentricity for its sanity! They played Corbridge Festival and a canny  review in The Crack magazine. Check out their website, lots of links to music and a press release there.

So What Robot

A new client for Jowheretogo PR, an eagerly awaited single is coming soon. These "agit pop" "electro-geek punks" (this is a Jo term, the description is subject to change) have made a video, and we can't wait to share it! They also rocked Corbridge Festival, like Peculiar Disco Moves after some badgering of the organisers by Jowheretogo.
Troy Slater

Troy is a musician, playing in more than one band, more of that to come. However the talent that Jowheretogo is promoting right now is his visual art. Having shared a corner of Troy's studio for a few weeks, Jo recognised how great his work is and Troy employed Jowheretogo for his PR work. Troy can create anything you want for your venue, or your home. Have a look at his Facebook gallery. He does landscapes, portraits and murals. He can work for councils, nightclubs....anyone who needs him.
Music Marketing
There are a number of new clients in the pipeline. But musicians need to be aware that the marketing process needs to start long (a couple or 3 months) before a release to make use of national press. Get in touch if you need music marketing help, sooner rather than later. Radio plugging is available as a standalone service. The number of stations on the database is growing all the time.
All the photos on this page are by Jowheretogo Photography (except for young Troy's selfie). Gig photography is available, just get in touch. Also if you want your gig photos turning into something, like a canvas for your mum's wall....get in touch, we'll work out a price! The main service though is to produce great live pics that show you in action on stage. We are picky which pictures are used, some things in our view, are just not good enough on gig photos, and yet they are seen so often!
The Jowheretogo Show
On NE1fm 102.5 and on You can hear Jo live every Monday 12 noon until 1pm,talking about what's on in the Newcastle/Gateshead area. Music is played right through the show, from the bands playing in the area and occasionally some that just fit the theme of a theatre event, perhaps. Interviewees on the show have included local grime artist Absorb, Dennis Greaves of Nine Below Zero, Steve Hackett of Genesis, coming up next month is an interview with 80's punk pop legend Hazel O'Connor and later in the year Jo may be speaking to prog rock flute maestro Ian Anderson. NE1fm is a valuable asset to Newcastle. Presenters are all volunteers and music gets played on there that doesn't get heard elsewhere because of the restrictive playlists on major radio stations. Do support the station. While sponsorship from businesses are a great help, this money must be match-funded with donations. We try our best to help this but with your help the station could be even better. You can donate on the station website here:

Jowheretogo PR is now based in Studio 14, Brighton Road Studios, Brighton Road, Gateshead. NE8 1XS. You can call Jowheretogo PR on 07928078810. The website is
See Steve Hackett at Newcastle City Hall

It takes a legend to bring a myth back to life. A unique treat for music fans worldwide, Steve Hackett’s critically acclaimed live production ‘Genesis Revisited’ has so far triumphed in Europe, Japan and North America alike and is still going strong; on May 10th it celebrated its success at a sold out London’s Hammersmith Apollo with an ecstatic audience. Genesis Revisited – Live at Hammersmith - a unique performance with guests including Nik Kershaw, John Wetton, Jakko Jakszyk and Steve Rothery - will be released on October 21st.   The 3CD+2DVD (with 5.1) box set, coincides with the return of Hackett’s Genesis Revisited Tour to the UK for a second round due to popular demand.
The pioneering guitarist comments:  "The 5.1 DVD with stereo CD out on 21st October including the whole show from Hammersmith Apollo is a feast for all the senses. I was blown away by the fantastic response to those May UK gigs. The autumn Genesis Revisited shows will include different Genesis material to before as well as all the big faves .that bring the house down...See you all soon!"
Steve Hackett called Jo at NE1fm for a chat about music, the tour and the upcoming release. You can hear the interview on Mixcloud
Details of the DVD/CD set as follows:
Steve Hackett – Genesis Revisited: Live At Hammersmith
Release date: 21st October 2013
Catalogue Number: 050664
Format: 3CD+2DVD Box set in slipcase


1.       Watcher of the Skies
2.       The Chamber of 32 Doors
3.       Dancing with the Moonlit Knight
4.       Fly on a Windshield
5.       Broadway Melody of 1974
6.       The Lamia
7.       The Musical Box
8.       Shadow of the Hierophant
9.       Blood on the Rooftops

1.       Unquiet Slumbers for the Sleepers
2.       In That Quiet Earth
3.       Afterglow
4.       I Know What I Like
5.       Dance on a Volcano
6.       Entangled
7.       Eleventh Earl of Mar
8.       Supper’s Ready

1.       Firth of Fifth
2.       Los Endos
DVD1 – Full live show
DVD2 – Behind the scenes featurette

The upcoming UK Tour includes a nearly sold out performance at the legendary Royal Albert Hall on October 24th. Taking the stage with Steve Hackett is an exceptional team of top class musicians, including Roger King (Gary Moore, Snoop Doggie Dog, Jamelia) on keyboards, Gary O’Toole (Kylie Minogue, Chrissie Hynde) on drums, percussions and vocals, Rob Townsend (Eddie Henderson, Bill Bruford, Django Bates) on sax, flute and percussions, Lee Pomeroy (Take That, Rick Wakeman) on bass and Nad Sylvan (Abbas’s Michael B Tretow) on vocals.
Full dates below:
Tue 22nd BIRMINGHAM      Symphony Hall          0121 345 0603
Wed 23rd BRISTOL              Colston Hall              0117 922 3686
Thu 24th   LONDON**          Royal Albert Hall        020 7589 8212
Sat 26th  MANCHESTER     02 Apollo                    08444 777 677    o2
Sun 27th   NEWCASTLE      City Hall                    0191 277 8030
Tue 29th   LIVERPOOL        Philharmonic             0151 709 3789
Wed 30th SHEFFIELD         City Hall                     0114 2789 789
Fri 1st        CAMBRIDGE*** Corn Exchange          01223 357 851
Tickets are £26.50, £24.50 for all venues – except Aylesbury £30 £37.50 & £40; Cambridge £26.50; London Hammersmith £27.50 and Royal Albert Hall £32.50 to £45.  Tickets available through 24hr Ticket Hotline: 0844 338 0000 Online: Agency & credit card bookings are subject to booking fee.  All venues are seated. Showtime will be 7.30pm.  
VIP Ad-on upgrade packages are available for all UK and some USA shows.   For full information go to:
Hackett made its mark on prog rock in the Seventies with his astounding, innovative work as Genesis’ lead guitarist, before embarking in a fulfilling solo career in 1977. In 1996 he released ‘Genesis Revisited’ – followed by ‘Genesis Revisited II in 2012 – where he reinterpreted Genesis classics from Golden Era (1971-77), keeping the original spirit of the songs intact while giving them a new edge, with the help of an impressive plethora of special guests. Steve Hackett is the first ex member to revive that particular segment of the band’s seminal career; the ‘Genesis Revisited’ Tour, Steve’s most ambitious production so far, sold out its first batch of dates in the UK last May.

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

51 Shades of Maggie at the Theatre Royal, Newcastle

Knickerbocker Glory!
51 Shades of Maggie is a colourful mix of comedy and adult relationships. It started life when writer Leesa Harker started put about 500 words online. The positive feedback for 50 Shades of Red, White and Blue (check out the Facebook page) encouraged her to carry on with her story about how Maggie Muff started a relationship with a man she met at the dole office.
Since her start as a Belfast girl, Maggie’s story has now relocated to the East End of London. She is now frequenting the Red Lion with her big best mate Sally Ann, with whom she enjoys cigarettes, White Lightning cider and men. Things change when Maggie agrees to step in to do the Back to Work interview at the dole office for Sally Ann. Her interview is with “Mr Big” and after a chance meeting in B & Q everything quickly starts to move. This is when the differences between the book 50 Shades of Grey and this play become obvious. Maggie is no shy and retiring violet and she says it as it is. 
The one woman show is skilfully navigated by the wonderfully talented Adele Silva, whose comic timing and sassy delivery of the punch lines gave the audience many laugh out loud moments. It is always a delight to see such an appropriately paced one person show. The ability to not just learn a huge script but to also deliver it in such an engaging way is impressive. I, for one, will not be able to look at a cheese grater again without thinking about the parmesan cheese.
The show was, in short, amazeballs!
Please note due to the strong language and themes of an adult nature this show is deemed unsuitable for anyone under the age of 16.
On until 14th September Tuesday-Thursday 7.30pm, Friday 8.30pm Saturday 8pm. Get your tickets (from £15) from the box office at the Theatre Royal Tel 08448  11 21 21 or from their website
Words: Steve Oliver


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