In adapting Saturday Night Fever for the stage, Robert Stigwood and Bill Oakes refused the easy option of creating a mere jukebox musical: throughout the show, the harsh themes of the film - drugs, racism, social exclusion and sexism - are frequently referenced.
This is the Ministry of Entertainment’s seventh visit to one of Bristol’s Tobacco Factory Theatres and a return for fading, eager to please entrepreneur, Mrs Gerrish.
Love is all around but it’s far from wet wet wet or syrupy in John Cariani’s cult assemblage of a score of characters splintered by passion.
With so many stage and screen adaptations of Lewis Carroll’s beloved adventures with Alice crowding our consciousnesses, Theatre in the Quarter deserve huge praise for finding a fresh way to present such familiar material.
Few versions of Aladdin make much of the Emperor, but Paul Bentley’s operatic take on it is both refreshing and successful.
Seen previously in the West End in 2013 and on tour before, since and hereafter, this salute to Morecambe and Wise follows the formula for such tributes by opening in a situation that allows them to reminisce about their careers and recreate favourite routines.
A large cast supported by numerous lively extras gives required strength to this production, a feast for the eyes and ears - from the colourful Bollywood-style opening right through to the big number finale.
This is an excellent example of interactive, promenade theatre for very young children, which strikes a well-judged balance between watching, listening and taking part.
Qdos knows how to stage a good panto and this year’s offering at the Wycombe Swan is no exception.
This is a refreshing, modern day Cinderella which still maintains the essentials in the storyline but is cleverly produced for today’s market.
Not content with gender-swapping as Mrs Bouncer in Cox and Box at the Stephen Joseph Theatre earlier this year, Paul Ryan dons a frock once more in Andrew Pollard’s modern take on the traditional tale of the lad with the magical lamp.
This isn’t a pantomime that wastes time in getting going.
Princess Briar Rose was never really under threat and has already been restored to life by the interval in what is something of a cheerful nod to the story.
Following on from the seasonal successes of circus/cabaret fusions such as La Clique and La Soiree, producer Mike Perrin, in collaboration with award winning troupe Slightly Fat Features, now turns his hand to reinventing the British variety show.
The annual team-up of the Krankies and John Barrowman has served the SECC pantomime well - Barrowman and Janette Krankie have forged a sharp-witted partnership and the lavish spectacle of Qdos’ production makes this the most dynamic pantomime on the west coast of Scotland.