- THEATRE LIST
is a comedy ofmanners, as the over-polite passengers on a liner's maiden voyage come face to face with disaster. Recommended. The Ballad of Jimmy Sample Thurs Oct 26. 7pm. £1 (50p). Eliza Langland's new play is based on Chinese Whisper-style misunderstandings and is given a first reading by the Edinburgh Playwrights Workshop. Great Expectations Mon 30—Tue 31 Oct. 7.30pm. £4.75 (£2.50). Also 2.30pm on Tues 31. Tickets are already scarce for the second chance to see this Dickens adaptation originally produced by TAG and now about to go off on a British Council tour ofthe Middle East. Well worth seeing for its blend of dance and drama and John Clifford‘s cleverly reworked script. Under The Rubble and Running Away Thurs 2 Nov. 7pm. £1 (50p). Robert Dodds has a radio play and a short monologue given a first airing by the Edinburgh Playwrights Workshop. Come along to listen and stay around for a discussion afterwards. flow To Kill Thurs 2—Sun 5 Nov. 7.30pm. £4.75 (£2.50). Return ofSpeakeasy Theatre Company's Fringe First-winning play based on the war-time writings of Keith Douglas. See Preview. Elena and Robert Tues 7—Sun 12. 7.30pm. £4.75 (£2.50). Another highly-rated play from this year‘s Edinburgh Fringc,Thc Wilde Player‘s tragedy is set in an institutional home for the elderly and the 'mentally confused‘ where two ofthe inmates strike up a love affair. Don't be put off by the grim setting. this German translation is well worth seeing. Choir Practice Thurs 9 Nov. 7pm. £1 (50p) An unexpected turn of events during Thursday evening choir-practice forms the basis of Liz Harc‘s play, which is read by Edinburgh Playwrights Workshop. Stay around for a discussion afterwards.
This section lists shows that are touring Scotland. There is a phone numberforeach company should you require more information. Unless otherwise specified, the number after each venue listed isthe telephone number for ticket enquiries for that particular evening (please note, this is not always the venue number).
I Beyond The Rainbow Having received wide acclaim at the Edinburgh Festival, including a Fringe First from the Scotsman, Clyde Unity Theatre take their poignant production on a Scottish tour. The play, written by John Binnie, takes its inspiration from a series of concerts given by Judy Garland at Glasgow‘s old Empire Theatre in 1951. Examining the nature of idolotry and shattered illusion the action revolves round an encounter between the visiting star and a tongue-tied Glasgow waiter.
Muirhouse Festival Activities Centre Thurs 26 Oct. 7.30pm. 031 3152151. Clovenstone Community Centre Fri‘27 Oct. 7.30pm. 031 453 4561. Calton Centre,
Abbeyhill Sat 28 Oct. 7.30pm.031661
9121. Byre Theatre, St. Andrews Fri 3—Sat
4 Nov. 8pm. 0334 76288. I Gulliver in Lilliput Lambeth Children‘s Theatre Company are touring nationally with their fantastic one-man production. loosely adapted from the political satire of Jonathan Swift. Performer/writer Raymond Cook combines mime and physical and vocal buffooncry with life-size puppets (a la Spitting Image) and colourful shadow puppets. Further details on 031 554 3481. Southside Resource Centre Mon 30 ()ct 5.30pm; Royston ’Wardieburn Centre Tue 31 Oct 6.30pm; Clot'enstone Community Centre Wed 1 Oct 6.30pm;.S't'ghthill Primary SchoolThurs 2 Nov 1.30pm; Triangle Arts Centre, Pilton Thurs 2 Nov 7pm; Muirhouse Primary School Fri 3 Nov 1.30pm.
I A nghl II the 8&th Unit One Theatre Company perform Simon Sharkcy's new play about the unlikely over-night success of a buskcr who only knows two tunes on his mouth-organ. The company promise music, comedy, drama and entertainment. More details 041445 4078. See Review. Castlemilk Community Centre Thurs 26 Oct. Penilee Community Centre Fri 27 Oct.
I Whupplte Stourle Aimed at an older audience this time, Theatre Alba‘s new touring play is a Scots folk version of Rumpelstiltskin. in which a deserted mother finds herself depending on her sow, Bessie. Directed by Charles Nowosielski, the play uses the Scots language in the tradition ofAlba productions.
Greenock A rts Guild Theatre Thurs 26 Oct. 7.30pm. 0475 23038. Henderson Theatre, Shorts Fri 27 Oct. 7.30pm. 0501 21826. HarbourArts Centre. Irvine Sat 28 Oct. 7.45pm. 0294 74059.
I The Funny Farm Paisley Arts Centre. New Street, Paisley, 041 887 1010. 8pm. The Funny Farm comedy collective is starting to build up its reputation in Paisley and makes this return visit with the absurdism of Parrot, the zany. fire-eating, comic conjuring of Kevin Kopfstein and the laid-back patter of Fred MacAulay.
SATURDAY 28 f
I The Comic Club Blackfriars, 45 Albion Street, Merchant City, Glasgow, 552 5924. 9pm. £4.50 (£3). Bar open 8.30pm—midnight. This fortnight‘s bill of entertainment from the ever-popular stand-up comedy venue features Parrot,
soon to be seen on Channel 4‘s Signals, Philip McGradc, who may once have been your teacher. and Adam Raff, the winner of Mayfcst‘s comedy competition. There should also be a new comic trying out their act in the New Comic Spot.
I Young People's Cabaret Nights Theatre Workshop. 34 Hamilton Place.
Seen at Crawford Theatre, Glasgow. On tour.
Glasgow, in case anybody had forgotten, is about to be crowned ‘European City of Culture 1990’. it all sounds so easy: a few speeches, a particle oi interest from the English media, and the continentals getting their first glimpse of the sun-drenched Clyde. Meanwhile, Glaswegians geton with the serious business of propelling themselves towards a golden iuture. Everyone is happy.
Everyone, that is, apartirom playwright Simon Sharkey. Underthe smooth and often hilarious veneer of a made-for-stage sitcom, he raises a question that has always been lurking in the background: what exactly is it that we are being invited to celebrate? The articulation of a long-held culture, or an escape into the calmerwaters of respectability?
Mr Sharkey is in no doubt when it comes to the answer. His central character Sammy, a loveable ‘moothy’ with dreams of stardom, has been shot to fame as the city's cultural mascot. The plot thickens however, and it begins to seem as if Sammy is being held up as an obiect oi ridicule. As TV crews prepare to descend for the final punch-line, his friends rally round, and the play culminates in a head-on clash between the ‘old’ and the ‘new' faces oi
A Night at the Sarie, gentle and unassuming though it may appear, has thrown down the gauntlet to the whole notion of Glasgow ‘smiling better’. We stand accused. (Philip Kingsley).
King's Theatre Edinburgh. Until 4 Nov. After the two-minute warning had been sounded and the audience was saier locked in the theatre, the tannoy announced that Bertice Reading would not be appearing in the show tonight. Cue general melancholy and waves of means from the assembled masses. The absence of the formidable Ms Bedding may have given me a tainted view of the three or so hours which followed but i doubt it.
This is what you expect from a West
End revival musical which has condescended to take culture outside the metropolis. The orchestra play their hearts out and make up in velocity what they lack in coordination. The chorus jump and cartwheel and dance and sing and make up in audibllity what they lack in ability. The sets certainly take the breath away and make you realise why you have to take out a second mortgage in orderto see this kind of thing. it’s just a shame that the designer who received the blank cheque was colour blind. I haven't ever seen such garrish greens outside of a word processor display screen.
But what of the ‘stars’? Both Richard Lyndon and Gamma Craven give the distinct impression of missing the security of the London stage. Whilst Rodgers and Hammerstein's songs retain a certain charm and are surig
confidently by the two principles, and
especially Andrew Wadsworth in the role of Joe Cable, the linking dialogue sounds tired and dated. One could suggest that this was due to Mr Hammerstein but I believe that more blame lies with this particular cast than the author. Too much of the script is rushed through and dispensed with in order to enable the stars to demonstrate theirforte-singing. Both the cast and the audience are left waiting for the next standard to come along so there is much shuffling about and looking at watches in between.
By the end, the reception which the players received is decidedly muted with the greatest ovation being reserved for Ms Reading's stand-in. This moment rather epitomises the evening -there is little to be applauded save for a good effort from a member of the company who would usually not even set foot on the stage. (Philip Parr)
52 The List 27 October — 9 November 1989