Northern Soul

Arts

Siegfried

Venturing towards Valhalla

July 8, 2013 Comments Off on Venturing towards Valhalla

Act 1

On the warmest day of the year so far, I sat on the rooftop patio of the Manchester International Festival pavilion bar fuelling myself with fish and chips and swilling down with a pint of festival ale in preparation for the heroic task ahead of me. I had volunteered to review Wagner’s Siegfried.

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A Field in England

A Field in England

July 8, 2013 Comments Off on A Field in England

In his own introduction to the film, director Ben Wheatley describes A Field in England as “pretty fucking mental”. For all the right reasons, that’s exactly what it is.

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Injured Soldiers

In Balance With This Life, This Death

July 8, 2013 Comments Off on In Balance With This Life, This Death

When I was a serving soldier, inter-corps rivalry was everything. The British Army encouraged soldiers to take a fierce pride in each level of the structure, right down to platoon or section level.

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Nikhil_chopra_Main

Pushing The Boat Out at The Whitworth

July 8, 2013 Comments Off on Pushing The Boat Out at The Whitworth

There’s nothing quite like having an international festival on your doorstep to make you feel a bit of national importance.There’s even people up from London for Christ’s sake, people who’ve got on a train to get here and everything!

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THE OLD WOMAN rehearsals 02 credit Lucie Jansch

The Old Woman

July 6, 2013 Comments Off on The Old Woman

Now this is what makes the Manchester International Festival cool. Let a visionary director loose on an obviously wild and crazy, but absolutely dazzling, idea, with defiantly large-scale production values and determined support.

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redgrave

Art for All: Thomas Horsfall’s Gift to Manchester

July 4, 2013 Comments Off on Art for All: Thomas Horsfall’s Gift to Manchester

Once upon a Victorian time, Manchester was a city of cotton mills.

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Emily

The Suffering of a Suffragette

July 4, 2013 Comments Off on The Suffering of a Suffragette

For a man who won the BBC Young Musician of the Year Composer’s Award aged 17, composer and director Tim Benjamin is a charming and modest man.

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Birdsong

A Song That Needs To Be Heard

July 2, 2013 Comments Off on A Song That Needs To Be Heard

For months after I read Sebastian Faulks’ novel Birdsong, I was haunted by feelings of claustrophobia. His retelling of the horrors experienced by the tunnellers during the First World War stayed with me to the extent that I have never felt ready to re-read the book.

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Katie Robinson & Michael White, The Man Who Woke Up Dead

Theatre in Mind and Body

July 2, 2013 Comments Off on Theatre in Mind and Body

Theatre means different things to different people. Of course there is some common ground, upon which we all meet, and the individual perspective should always be open to change; nevertheless we are creatures of habit, and one of mine is to seek out the theatre of ideas.

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The Time Machine

Defying the Arrow of Time

June 29, 2013 Comments Off on Defying the Arrow of Time

There can be few places as profoundly lonely as the stage in a one man production.

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