Buddy: The Regent Theatre, Hanley

There is musical theatre and then there is Buddy – so full of hit songs that it feels like a concert. Upbeat, energetic and hugely entertaining, Buddy charts the period from musical trailblazer Buddy Holly switching from country music to the rock ‘n’ roll that made his name, to the last day he played. For […]

Moscow City Ballet: The Nutcracker (The Regent Theatre)

Introducing ourselves – and our children – to new experiences is a great way to not only understand more but to find more that we can enjoy in life. As a novice to the ballet, this was not only my first visit to see The Nutcracker live, but the ballet in general – and with […]

Sleeping Beauty: The Regent Theatre, Hanley

The team behind the popular Regent Theatre pantomime return once again this year for their unique take on Sleeping Beauty and fans won’t be disappointed. Spellbinding choreography, slick performances, a laugh-a-minute script and plenty of audience participation make this a night to remember. With Stoke-on-Trent’s own Jonathan Wilkes appearing as Muggles, Christian Patterson returning as […]

No mystery to popularity of musical whodunit Curtains

Curtains is written by the same team that brought the world Chicago and Cabaret — which explains the classy feel of this musical whodunit. A real breath of fresh air if you are looking for a musical with a difference, Curtains brings together the unlikely combination of musical theatre, comedy and murder mystery. Filled with […]

The Prince And The Pauper (New Vic Theatre, Newcastle)

Prince (left), Pauper (right). Or is it the other way round … ? The New Vic doesn’t do a panto at Christmas but instead presents a classic story, always with impressive live music and often with gymnastics, from the swashbuckling Treasure Island to the frostier The Snow Queen (aka Frozen). They’re always entertaining and mark […]

Jon Deak: Symphonic Tales

This entertaining album stands repeated listens; Deak is a man who clearly enjoys his music. He is the young composers advocate of the New York Philharmonic, where he founded the award-winning Very Young Composers Program in 1995. His interest in making music accessible to younger listeners is clear. Two of the works are for full […]

New Vic: Wind In The Willows

The latest Christmas production at the New Vic, Newcastle, is a re-telling of Kenneth Grahame’s The Wind in the Willows — 110 years old this year — the tale of anthropomorphised animals in a pastoral version of ye olde England as progress, in the form of motor cars, arrives. It’s the best Christmas show the […]

Calendar Girls The Musical

  (Photo: John Swannell). Extraordinary tales about ordinary people make the very best stories and Calendar Girls The Musical is no exception. Showing at Hanley’s Regent Theatre this week, the show shines a light on the ubiquitous story of a group of WI members who bravely bared all for a fundraising calendar in memory of […]

Bluedot’s stars shine brightly

It’s fair to say that life really does get no better than the opening song at a Flaming Lips gig: music so happy it brings a lump to the throat, confetti cannons, giant balloons and lasers. France might think winning the World Cup was a top moment, but even they’d probably concede that hearing Race […]

A world of pure imagination

Thousands of festivalgoers began to descend on Scholar Green, on Friday (17th August) for the annual weekend of extraordinary escapism. And as the 2019 edition of the Just So festival at Rode Hall proved, it gets bigger and better each year. Just So promises a secret and joyous world — offering parents and children the […]