Jam/AL LYCEUM Grindlay Street. l 229 9697. Box office Mon—Sat l 10am—6pm. 10am—8pm on perf evgs. g Bar. Rest. [D][E] The Nutcracker Suite Until 2 Nov. i 7.45pm. Mat. Sat 260ct 3.15pm. 1 944. New play by Jimmy Boyle. Former Glasgow gangleader and now founder of the Gateway Exchange rehabilitation centre in Edinburgh. ; and Andy Arnold. until recently ; aritistic director ofthe Edinburgh Theatre Workshop. This. Boyle‘s skcond collaborated play. covers his years in the famous ‘Nutcracker 1 Suite” — the Special Unit ofBarlinnie Brison. Directed by Ian Wooldridge and Andy Arnold with Billy McColl as Boyle. (See review). ; Like Men Possessed Sun 20 ()ct. 8pm. £5 (£4). Harvey and the Wallbangers back for one night with their irresistible mixture of a cappella. humourand swing.
0 THEATRE WORKSHOP 34 Hamilton
Place. 226 5425. Box office Mon—Sat 9.30am—5.30pm. Bar. Cafe. [1)] Tom Paine Live! Thurs l7—Sat 19 Oct 8pm. £3 (£1.50). Modern Times
theatre company in a new play by Vince Foxall celebrating the life and times of'l'om Paine. author of ‘The Rights of Man‘ a document that has continued to influence revolutionaries since it was written in 1791. Vince Foxall‘s multi-media production aims to bring back into
the limelight the man behind the ideas.
It’s A Free Country Thurs 31 Oct—Sat 2 Nov. 8pm. £3 (£2.50). Wildcat Stage Productions in their new autumn touring show— a politically
; censorious seriesof songs about life under MrsT.
0 TRAVERSE 112 West Bow. 226 2633. Box office Tues—Sat 10am—9pm. Sun 12.30—9pm. Bar. Rest.
The Death oi Elias Sawney Until Sun 3
Nov8pm. £4.50. Members £3x’£3.50
Written by Douglas Hankin and starring Polly March, this one woman play attempts to provide a keyhole peep into the personality oi Lilian Baylis; the iounder oi the Old Vic and Sadlers
Guests £4. Student standby £2.50, members £2. New production of Peter Arnott‘s comic play about the English way ofdying throughout the centuries. directed by Stephen Unwin. (See review).
Playreadlng: The Russians oi Boss Sat 20 Oct 5.30pm. £2 (50p). Presented by the Edinburgh Playwright’s Workshop: reading and discussion of a play by George Gunn. Playreading: A Womb with a View Sat
27 Oct. 5.30pm. £2 (50p). Reading and discussion of a play by Gabe
Stewart. presented by the Edinburgh Playwright‘s Workshop.
0 BRUNTON THEATRE Musselburgh. 665 2240. Box office Mon—Sat 10am-8pm. Bar. [D] [E]
A Midsummer Night’s Dream Wed 16 Oct—Sat 26 Oct. Tickets £1 .5()—£3.75 depending on night and concs. Brunton Theatre Company present Shakespeare‘s comedy in Regency style.
The Cry oi Spain Mon 28 Oct—Sat 2 Nov. Tickets as above. Winged Horse Touring Productions in Robin Munro’s epic commemoration of the Spanish Civil War - a production which uses original documentary material to present the lives ofthe Spanish people living through the horrors ofwar.
0 Life of Galileo The Scottish Theatre Company in Brecht‘s great drama about the famous scientist (See panel). Aberdeen. His Majesty‘s Theatre. until Sat 19 Oct, 0224 638080. Inverness. Eden Court, Mon 21—Sat 26 Oct. 0463 221718. Edinburgh. Kings Theatre. Mon 28 Oct—Sat 2 Nov. 031 229 1201. (Tour continues to Glasgow 11—16 Nov). 0 It’s a Free Country Wildcat Stage Productions present their new autumn tour. a musical cabaret-comedy investigating the state of Mrs T's Britain in songs and
BEAUTY AND THE BOUNDERS
Wells, and one at the gargantuan driving iorces behind British theatre this century.
0n the surtace she was an arch matriarch constantly haranguing actors, directors and audiences mercilesst for not contributing enough, but beneath the exterior was a vulnerable and sad woman who used the theatre as a surrogate child to ease her loneliness.
At times Polly March succumbs to the temptation oi slipping into caricature, with Baylis portrayed as a manic Margaret Butheriord. But considering the subject matter it is impossible to avoid this, and Ms March's periormance contains enough sensitivity to convey the subtleties oi Baylis’s personality. To Lilian Baylis, going to the theatre was akin to a religious experience, and while this production might not turn you into a born again believer, it is, nevertheless, a thoughtful and iascinating portrait ot a very remarkable woman. (Duncan Swan)
Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh.
Receiving its iirst protessional production at the hands oi Stephen Unwin, Peter Arnott's Death oi Elias Sawney is based on a simple but ingenious idea. Purporting to trace the development at conventions surrounding death throughout the ages, Arnott uses Elias Sawney‘s irreverent tour at history to illustrate how class-ridden attitudes towards the Great Levelier persist irom century to century and to touch on the gradual emergence oi the voice at the worker.
Sawney begins tile as a iourteenth century peasant and remains on the lower rungs oi society as he slips, outwitting death, through the centuries, listening bemused to successive authorities and overlords tying themselves in knots over the proper way to die, and winding up in an NHS bed, determined not to die to suit the system. The play’s episodic
sketches presented with Wildcat‘s customary measure of satire. Drumchapel Community Education Centre. Fri 18 Oct. Camelon Labour Club. Sat 19 Oct. Irvine Magnum Centre. Mon 21& Tue 22 Oct. 0294 78381. Faifley Family Centre. Wed 23 Oct. 37 79659. Glasgow University Queen Margaret Union. Thurs 24 Oct. 041 339 9784. Edinburgh. George Square. Edinburgh South CLP. Fri 25 Oct. 041 334 4866 (Wildcat Office). Kilmarnock Palace Theatre. Sat 26 Oct. 0563 23590. Dundee Bonar Hall. Mon 28 Oct. 0382 22200. Perth St Ninian's Cathedral Hall. Tue 29 Oct.0738 21818. Edinburgh Gateway Exchange, Wed 30 Oct. 0316610982. Edinburgh Theatre Workshop. Thurs 31 Oct—Sat 2 Nov. 031 226 5425.
The Lucky Ones TAG theatre company in Tony Marchant's comedy about four young office clerks trapped in mindless jobs and the tensions that arise. Directed by Ian Brown with Vincent Friell (of the film Restless Natives) Russ Elias. Blythe Duff and Bryan Cowan.
THE DEATH OF ELIAS SAWNEY
structure allows Arnott to create short witty scenes oi sharp dialogue between idiosyncratic characters, brought vividly to lite by the small cast. particularly Simon Beale, who erupts into a spectacularly bombastic but endearing squire - a Great Bore oi the Seventeenth Century.
The iormat brings its own problems though: Sawney remains very much an oniooker until the twentieth century, and while Bernard Docherty gives him a solid, sardonic character, his presence as a counterioil becomes both repetitive and limiting. The iinal scene also suiiers rather irom Arnott’s main tic as a writer— a tendency to become didactic and to introduce wadges oi argument that make the dialogue stilted, a drawback that
l Unwin’s otherwise quietly managed and lunny production doesn’t
overcome. (Sarah Hamming)
lryine Harbour Arts Centre. Fri 18 Oct. 0294 74059. Edinburgh Springwell House. Gorgie. Sat 19 ()ct.0313371971.Cumbernauld Theatre. Fri 25—Sat 26 Oct. 023 67 32887.
The Cry oi Spain Winged Horse Touring Productions continue their tour of Robin Munro‘s latest play. a ‘requiem’ for the Spanish Civil War. The play. covering the years from 1931—1939. has drawn on original documentary evidence to portray the effect on the Spanish people ofthe conflict they had to live through. Dundee Bonar Hall. Mon 21 & Tue 22 Oct. 0382 23181. Glasgow Househill Community Centre. Wed 23 Oct. 041 881 8083. Stirling Cowane Centre. thurs 24 Oct. 0786 790m. ext. 30]. Glasgow Barlanark Community Centre. Fri 25 Oct. 041 773 1812. Irvine Harbour Arts Centre. Sat 26 Oct. 0294 74059. Musselburgh Brunton Hall. Mon 28 Oct—Sat 2 Nov. 031 665 3711.
til 0 CITY HALL (‘andleriggs The Hungarian State Ensemble Mon 21
14 The List 18—31 October