It’s that time of year where theatre houses are trying to cater to their audiences by trying to dish out those seasonal offerings. They try to make sure the ingredients they have will have a broad appeal, something that is hugely fun and frivolities for the festive season. In Roots, Home Manchester, have once again looked at previous hitmakers in 1927 to produce a seasonal offering that is sure to be a hit with audiences in this part of the world.
Who doesn’t love a festive edition of their favourite show with their favourite characters? I recall that it used to be the staple of british television to put out their star shows in the festive season. Of course that medium is television and not the world of theatredom, where the seasonal offerings are your usual fare of pantomimes and other feel good shows. Nevertheless, HOME Manchester have decided to bring back a festive edition of Monkeywood’s Manchester Project, with surprising results.
Halfway through Forced Entertainment’s current offering, Out Of Order, which is currently playing out to enthralled audiences at HOME Manchester, I started to wonder what the collective noun for clowns was. I was hoping it would be just that eclectic to be an eyebrow raising conversational starter. Like a murder of crows. I was secretly hoping it be something like a parliament of clowns and in doing so the allegory that Forced Entertainment wish to bestow upon those watching Out Of Order will have come full circle.
It’s an all time 1980s classic. It’s a story of three women who work for a sexist egotistical boss and deliver his comeuppance in spectacular style. The theme tune sung by Dolly Parton became a global smash and as it is the way with these things it eventually made its way into realms of the world of theatre by becoming a musical. This revival debuted in the West End earlier this year and is currently embarking on its national tour hitting the Palace Theatre all this week.
I’m not sure exactly when the word “dramedy” entered the popular consciousness of people’s lexicon but it seems that dramedies have been around for a lifetime. Mixing comedy and drama has become vogue and that is certainly the case for the heavyweight production from HOME and the National Theatre of Scotland, Red Dust Road. A play that centres on the memoirs by Scots Makar Jackie Kay, it tells the story of Kay’s journey from being an adoptive mixed race child to her search for her real parents, bringing into sharp focus issues such as race, sexuality and parenthood.