I Theatre is listed by city first, then by venue. running in alphabetical order. Touring shows are listed separately under the relevant heading. KEY:  facilities for the disabled. [E] facilities forthe hard of hearing, usually an induction loop system. For prices, price in brackets eg (£1.50) isthe concessionary price. Long running shows. unless specified otherwise, do not run on Sundays. At this time of year mosttheatres are hosting Christmas shows and Pantomimes- many are given a cursory listing below. but they have been listed in full in our special ‘A—Z of Panlos and Christmas Shows‘.
I CITIZENS' THEATRE Gorbals Street. 429 0022. Box Office Mon—Sat 10am-8pm. Bar. [D].
Pinnochio'l‘ue 29 Nov-211an.SEE PANTO LIST.
I CRAWFORD THEATRE Iordanhill College. 76 Southbrae Drive. Glasgow. 041 950 3437’ 3438.
The Magic Snowball Tue 29 Nov—Sat 7Jan. SEE PANTO LIST.
I CUMBERNAULD THEATRE Cumbcrnauld. 0236 732887. Box Office Mon-Fri 10am—6pm; Sat I0am-~3pm: 6—8pm perf. eygs Bar Cafe.
The Jungle Book Thurs 24 Nov—Sat 31 Dec. SEE PANTO LIST.
I DRAMA CENTRE 126 Ingram Street.552 5827.
Tamburlaine Tue 12—Sat 17 Dec.7.30pm. Sat mat 2.30pm. Strathclyde Theatre
Group in a production of Marlowe's brilliant. flamboyant play about the over-reaching Tamburlaine. whose driving desire to aquire yet more and more eventually leads him to meglomania and tyranny — one of the greatest dramatic studies of the emptiness and danger of conquest.
I GLASGOW ARTS CENTRE 12 Washington Street. 221 4526.
The Story of the Monkey King Thurs s- Fri 1o Dec. SEE PANTO LIST.
I KINGS THEATRE Bath Street. Box Office. Mon—Sat noon—6pm. 4 bars. [1)]. [E]. Phone bookings. Ticket Centre. Candleriggs. Mon—Sat 10.30am—6.30pm. 041 227 5511.
Jack and the Beanstalk Tue 29 Nov-Sat 11 Feb. SEE PANTO LIST.
I MITCHELL THEATRE Granville Street. 221 3198. Box Office Mon—Sat noon~ 6pm. Bar. Cafe. Tickets also available from the Ticket Centre. Candleriggs. 227 5511 Mon—Sat 10.30am—6.30pm.
Mother Goose Mon 5-8er 11) Dec. SEE PANTO LIST.
Giovanni‘s Gilt Weds I4—Sat 17 Dec. Slit-L PANTO LIST.
Cinderella Thurs 22 & Fri 23 Dec. SEE PANTO LIST.
I PAISLEY ARTS CENTRE New Street. Paisley. 887 1010. Box Office open Tue-Sun noon-8.30pm. Bar (Open noon-11pm Tue-Sat; 12.30-2.30pm & 6.30-1 Ipm Sun. Meals served). Cafe (Open noon-11pm). [D].
Mr Boom Sat 10 Dec. SEE PANTO LIST.
Santa's Travelling Snowman Sat 10 and Sun 10 Dec. SEE PANTO LIST.
I PALACE THEATRE 9 Green Street. Kilmarnock. 0563 23590.
Peter and Penny’s Panto Thurs 8—Fri 30 Dec. SEE PANTO LIST.
I PAVILION THEATRE 121 Renfield Street. 332 1846. Box Office Mon—Sat 10am—8pm. Bar.
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs Fri 2 Dec—Sat 29 Jan. SEE PANTO LIST. Craig Ferguson Sun 18 Dec. 8pm. Check with theatre for times. Craig may have dropped the Bing IIitler name. btit Bing‘s style remains — very rude and very funny and not for the faint-hearted.
I ROYAL SCOTTISH ACADEMY OF MUSIC AND DRAMA 100 chfrew Street. 041 332 4101.
Puss in Boots Mon 12—Fri 16 Dec. SEE PANTO LIST.
I THEATRE ROYAL I lope Street. 331 1234. Box Office Mon—Sat l0am—6pm. (7.30pm on perfevgs). Bar. Buffet.
lolanthe Fri 16 & Sat 17 Dec; Mon I9—Fri 23 Dec; Weds 28—Fri 30 Dec. 7. 15pm. Tue 27 & Weds 28 Dec. 2. 15pm. SEE PANTO LIST.
I THIRD EYE CENTRE 350 Sauchiehall Street. 332 752]. Cafe open 1 lam-2.30pm Tue-Fri and during evening performances.
Notes from the Underground Thurs 8—Sat 10 Dec. Thurs & Sat 7.30pm. Fri 9.30pm. £3 (£2). Dostoevskys wonderfully lugubrious study of a man who has buried himselfaway from his contemporary world. adapted for stage by Angus Read and performed by Speakeasy Theatre Company. who scored a hit with this production at the 1987 Edinburgh Festival.
Mr Bones Fri 16 Dec. SEE PANTO LIST. I TRON THEATRE 63 Trongate. 552 4267/8. Box Office Tue—Sat Noon—8pm;
Sun 12.30-11pm. Closed Mondays. Christmas Present Fri 9 December—Sun 8 January. SEE PANTO LIST.
I DEDLAM THEATRE Forrest Road. 031 225 9893.
Macbeth Until Sat 10 Dec (not Tue 6 Dec). 7.30pm. Charity matinee 2.30pm. Sat 10 Dec. The Scottish Play in the round. Harry's Christmas Weds 14 Dec. 1.30pm. £1 members. £1.50non-members. (Price includes lunch). Not exactly a romp a minute fun — EUTC present Pinter‘s bleak play about the unpopular Harry.
I DRUNTON THEATRE Musselburgh. 665 371 1.
Frankie MacStein — the Panto Weds 7 Dec—Sat 7 Jan. 7.45pm. Sat mats 2.30pm. SEE PANTO LIST.
I THE GILDED BALLOON 233 Cowgate. 225 4463/3013.
Cabaret Evening Fri 16 and Sat 17 Dec. 9.30pm. £3.50 (£2.50). Norman Lovett. who appeared with the \"icious Boys during this year's Edinburgh Festival. returns along with May McCreadie and Glasgow stand-up comic. parrot.
I KINGS THEATRE 2 Leven Street. 229 1201 . Box Office Mon—Sat 10am—8pm. Bar.
Mother GOOSE Tue 6 Dec—Sat 18 Feb. SEE PANTO LIST.
I NETHERBOW ARTS CENTRE 43 High Street. 556 9579. Box Office. l0am—4.30pm. 7—9pm perf. evgs. Cafe. [D]. [E].
Beauty and the Beast Tue l3—Sat 17 Dec. 7pm. Sat mat 2.30pm. SEE PANTO LIST.
The Lunchpack of Boab ’n' Tam Tue 20-Sat 31 Dec. 25 Dec. SEE PANTO LIST.
I PLAYHOUSE 18—22 Greenside Place. 557 2590. Box Office Mon—Sat 10am—6pm (8pm on show nights). Bar.
Oklahoma! Sat 7 Ian. Weds & Sat. SEE PANTO LIST.
I ROYAL LYCEUM (irindlay Street. 229 9697. Box Office Mon—Sat 10am—6pm. 10am—8pm on perf. evgs. Bar. Rest/Cafe. [D]. (TheatreSaver Concession Cards
The central idea behind Noel Coward’s Blithe Spirit is beautifully simple. The apparition of a ghost, with whom only one person can communicate while others stand by oblivious, is a perfect spur for comic misunderstanding. It's a distortion of reality that Coward's witty banter thrives upon-the non sequiturs, the unintentional insults and the consequent manic diplomacy to restore relations. Luckily it is a formula that works even when handled without the greatest degree of sensitivity.
Pitched exclusively at one level - loud and fast- the current production at the Royal Lyceum relies heavily on Coward's script— or more to the point, his jokes—to rescue it from an otherwise relentless pace. The story is sufficiently intriguing and the lines sufficiently fresh for the first act to pass
by entertainingly, but with two more acts to go it is a tendency that becomes wearing. True enough, Coward isn’t known for subtle character insight, but neither are his creations just machines for spewing out one-liners. Tonal variation is essential and when the actors are already barking out their lines it becomes very difficult iorthem if they really want to shout. The production has a strained air that cannot be attributable solely to its stiff upper-lip English accents.
Despite his impressive international track record. director Euan Smith would appearto favour over-acting as the best way to raise a laugh. Two of the characters in particular- Edith the house maid (Valerie Edmond) and Madame Arcati the medium (Jeannie Fisher) — are played as an irritating
bundle of twitches and jumps, acting against the play's natural comic timing and often up-staging the other characters. Needless to say, this isn’t funny. It is left to the scenes between Charles (Neville Jason), his second wife Ruth (Jenifer Black) and the ghost of his first wife Elvira (Morag Rood), to redress the balance. Fortunately these constitute the bqu of the play- indeed its central concept - and it is where the production feels most comfortable.
Gregory Smith’s stylish monochrome set impressively fills the large Lyceum stage without dwarfing the actors, but it could have done without the gimmicky (albeit black and white) cow in the garden. Costumes too are of a high standard, especially the shimmering silver gowns worn by the ghosts. But I would have liked to have seen a less predictable wrecking of the set at the play’s climax as the ghosts enact their revenge.
If this is a battle between the Royal Lyceum and Blithe Spirit, it is one in which the play comes out on top. But only iust. (Mark Fisher)
Theatre Royal, Glasgow. Run ended. There’s a sense throughout Ron Daniels’ highly artificial production of Hamlet forthe Royal Shakespeare Company (which visited Glasgow last week) of imposed orderteeterlng precariously on the unstable ground of human emotions. The worn opulence of
Antony McDonald's wildly tilted set with its backdrop (seen through a huge French window) of stormy water suggests a sinking Edwardian cruise liner, whose passengers observe social nicetles in studied ignorance.
The first few scenes are almost intolerably mannered. Every move and gesture is choreographed, lines are spoken in unison, costumes are carefully co-ordinated. The exception is Mark Rylance’s manic-depressive Hamlet, who appears in a long black coat, which he abandons, on adopting his antic disposition, in favour of pyjamas and dog-chewed socks. As each character is sucked into the plot’s inescapable whirlpool, so he or she too begins to abandon this formality, and nowhere does this work better than in the duel scene, the play’s climax, in which a neat row of chairs and spectators is scattered as a genteel sporting contest becomes an ugly scrap to the death.
The performances of Peter Wight (last seen here as Lucky in Waiting For Godot) as Claudius and Elizabeth Bell as Gertrude both grow in strength as their characters weaken, exposing believable, vulnerable family bonds; and Patrick Godfrey’s Polonlus wins laughs without sacrificing authenticity, but it is of course Rylance who carries the production with a sensitive, fierce, clearly spoken and often very funny central performance which is finally very moving. (Andrew Bumet)
26 The List 9 — 22 December 1988