Zucchini

53Two, Manchester; Wednesday 27th February, 2019

 

Zucchini

[zoo-kee-nee]

noun

  1. a variety of summer squash that is shaped like a cucumber and that has a smooth, dark-green skin.
  2. the plant bearing this fruit.
  3. a partner in a queer-platonic relationship.

 

Jamie (Alaister Michael) needs to talk, or more precisely he wants his girlfriend Katie (Elaine McNicol) to talk – he desperately wants to know what she’s feeling and he appears to have spared no expense in order to find out.

On the auspicious occasion of their third anniversary, a local hotel room has been booked, a bunch of flowers have been hastily dumped into a couple of spare hotel mugs, and a Mars bar has been declared as one of the evening’s planned highlights.

It’s little wonder then that Katie doesn’t have much time for it all. Read More »

A Skull In Connemara

The Coliseum Theatre, Oldham; Tuesday 26th February, 2019

 

Connemara on Ireland’s west coast: intrigue hangs in the air, like a sinister mist which refuses to clear. This is a place where aspersions are being cast, insinuations are being insinuated – the rumour mill tediously grinds away in low gear leaving a tense, thick atmosphere as cold as the weather that the locals keep complaining about.

Connemara’s grave-digger is Mick Dowd, he and his apprentice Mairtin dutifully clear out the old burials to make room for newer occupants. Mairtin is fearful, he swears that some of the skulls are grinning at him; Mick is far more pragmatic, he just gets on with the job at hand, whilst also taking every opportunity to comically exploit his young accomplice’s naivety.Read More »

The Adhesion Of Love

The Martin Harris Centre, Manchester; Wednesday 20th February, 2019

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Bolton, Lancashire – the 1880s. Three shillings and sixpence is what it costs for the latest, cutting-edge diagnostics for any man experiencing a sense of mild distress at where his life might be heading. The diagnostics in question? A quick scratch and sniff of his freshly laid s*** sample and the inquisitive attentions of a pseudo-scientific necromancer who boasts of having discovered that a lady’s ankle circumference measurement is directly proportional to her womb volume.

The Adhesion Of Love is a amusingly comical tale based on the remarkable true story of nineteenth century Boltonian John Wallace: an otherwise entirely ordinary man who developed such a deep passion for the literary works of American poet Walt Whitman that he eventually sailed across the Atlantic for a summer holiday in order to meet his hero.Read More »

Mydidae

Hope Mill Theatre, Manchester; Tuesday 19th February, 2019

 

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Marian (Hollie-Jay Bowes) and David (David Gregan-Jones) are one of those couples. So, they’re like totally comfortable using the toilet in front of each other, but being one of those couples it’s probably something that they’ll need to tell everyone else about. David seems most keen on the toilet talk, specifically about why his piss doesn’t smell of the asparagus that they both had for dinner last night.

To be fair, their bathroom does look quite impressive: a visually-pleasing jigsaw puzzle comprised of every shade of pastel blue that IKEA offers. And centre-stage is a large, free-standing bath where, being one of those couples, Marian and David choose to relax and unwind with a few glasses of £6-a-bottle red wine.Read More »

SparkPlug

HOME Theatre, Manchester; Thursday 14th February, 2019

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“I’m here, I’m aaaaaahrite, …. I got me car.”

Dave loves his car, his beloved Ford Capri – the metallic 1980s comfort blanket that he wears around him as he ferries his sister and her mate between the leafy-green Irish estates of Wythenshawe and the cramped, red-brick claustrophobia of Moss Side.

Things happen to Dave when he’s in his car, playing his Rod Stewart tapes; and quite a lot of things seem to happen outside the car too. Though he’s mad for it, eventually he’s left with no choice: he can’t just cruise up and down the Princess Parkway in his Capri forever, ultimately he has to open that door and step out – there are some big, big decisions to be made.Read More »

Mother Courage And Her Children

The Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester; Wednesday 13th February, 2019

 

The year is 2080. Every nation that humanity created has now gone – all that remains are grid squares, huge blocks of land that are both battle ground and prize as the Red and the Blue Armies wage war in an attempt to methodically seize control of each zone.

In amongst the carnage, a mother and her three children roam the vast expanses of what was once known as Europe. Armed only with a solid sense of pragmatism and a keen eye for a business deal, Mother Courage buys and sells her way through the war, determined that neither she nor her children will will be victims of a conflict that has clearly broken the spirit of so many others.Read More »

The Animals And Children Took To The Streets

HOME Theatre, Manchester; Thursday 7th February, 2019

 

At number 3 Red Herring Street in the lousiest, grottiest part of town, there lies a cockroach-infested tenement block known as the Bayou Mansions – a dreadful, filthy old hovel inhabited by no-good seedy tricksters and lowlife perverts.

But as frightful as these unsavoury occupants are, their repugnant exploits pale into insignificance compared to the horrors of what happens at night – for that’s when the animals and children take to the streets.Read More »