Backstage with the man masterminding a new era for the arts in Yorkshire

A first-time collaboration with the National Theatre and a major redevelopment looming. Robin Hawkes tells Sarah Freeman how the curtain is about to go up on a new chapter for Yorkshire arts.

The cast of Everything is Possible take to the streets of York.

Review: Everything is Possible - The York Suffragettes, York Theatre Royal

York has a bit of a thing for staging big open air productions with large community casts and anyone who saw Blood and Chocolate, which led the audience through the streets as it brought to life the Rowntree factory workers in the First World War, will know that done well these can be stunning pieces of theatre.

THEATRE OF SANCTUARY: Events will be taking place for Refugee week (June 19 -25) including at the West Yorkshire Playhouse.

Arts embrace Refugee Week

We seem to be going through a bit of a mini ‘golden age’ of television drama at the moment.

Review: Mighty Atoms

Review: Mighty Atoms

It is going to be virtually impossible to avoid the cliches, so why resist: this knockout show really does pack a punch.

NEW WORLD ORDER: Golem comes to Harrogate Theatre next week.

Man or machine

A new show exploring our relationship with technology returns to Harrogate, where it was developed, next week. Theatre correspondent Nick Ahad reports.

D-Day veteran Ken Cooke, 92, at his home in York. (Gary Longbottom).

York veteran recalls the D-Day landings

Ken Cooke is one of the last surviving D-Day veterans from York and his wartime experiences are among those recounted in a new play. Chris Bond talked to him.

Rehearsals for Everything is Possible, which features a 170-strong community cast.

Vote with your feet: Streets of York mark landmark anniversary of suffragette movement

As a landmark anniversary of the suffragette movement nears, Sarah Freeman reports on a new theatre production about to take to the streets of York to mark the fight for equality.

Ali MacGraw and Ryan O'Neal had been due to tour the UK in Love Letters.

Lightning strikes twice as second Alhambra show hit by illness

Just a week after Sheridan Smith pulled out of Funny Girl having been diagnosed with mumps, Bradford’s Alhambra Theatre has been forced to postpone another hit show.

Aryana Ramkhalawon as Devika, Chance Perdomo as Theo, Keah Walker as Darcy, Archie Rush as Mack and Genesis Lynea as Queenie in Ode to Leeds.

Review: Ode to Leeds, West Yorkshire Playhouse

When James Brining arrived at the West Yorkshire Playhouse as its new artistic director in 2012 he pledged to do more work which reflected the city which gave the theatre its home.

The Alan Bennett season which came afterwards was an obvious and a safe choice, but since then Brining has made good on his word and Zodwa Nyoni may yet prove his secret weapon.

Micky Flanagan returning to Sheffield Arena on Saturday, June 24.

WIN: Tickets to see Micky Flanagan back at Sheffield Arena on June 24

Comedy star Micky Flanagan is celebrating his recent record-breaking appearances at Sheffield Arena with a return this month - and you could see him for FREE.

What s on
RHYME AND REASON: Rehearsals for Ode to Leeds at West Yorkshire Playhouse.Picture: James Hardisty

Poetry in motion

Written by a rising star and directed by a theatre veteran, 
Sarah Freeman goes behind the scenes of Ode to Leeds.

Shobna Gulati

Review: Mother Tongues from Farther Lands

A TOURING event that began in London’s Southbank before travelling around the country, Alchemy is a celebration of South Asian culture featuring dance demonstrations and classes, comedy and drama.

Miss Meena and the Masala Queens

Theatre for all

In praise of Rifco: the theatre company that has been bringing hugely successful shows to Yorkshire for over a decade that, chances are, you’ve never seen.

Bette Midler accepts the award for best performance by an actress in a leading role in a musical for "Hello, Dolly!"

Broadway shows its age on Bette’s big night out

IT WAS Broadway’s biggest night of the year, but the cultural references came largely from years gone by.

Barrie Rutter in Rutherford & Son in 2013.

Barry Rutter: Sound and fury of a bard in a Northern voice

As Northern Broadsides marks its 25th anniversary, Nick Ahad takes a walk down memory lane with founder Barrie Rutter and finds the future is far from certain.

Khadijah Ibrahiim.

Khadijah Ibrahiim: My Yorkshire

Leeds-born Khadijah Ibrahiim is artistic director of Sema Roots Theatre and executive director of Voices of a New Generation youth slam festival. She is also creative associate of Ode to Leeds at the West Yorkshire Playhouse.

Natasha Barnes stepping into Sheridan Smith's shoes in Funny Girl at  Bradford's Alhambra.

Review: Funny Girl, Alhambra Theatre, Bradford

There were no boos, no heckling, but when the audience at Bradford Alhambra’s were told that Sheridan Smith had been forced to pull out due to mumps the sense of disappointment was audible. Natasha Barnes, who stepped into her shoes, no doubt heard it too.

Sheridan Smith has won acclaim for her role in Funny Girl.  Picture by Johan Persson.

Sheridan Smith forced to pull out of Funny Girl tour

Theatre-Goers have been left disappointed after it was announced Sheridan Smith will not appear in this week’s run of Funny Girl at Bradford’s Alhambra Theatre.

Analysis 1
Calum Hughes-McIntosh in The HandleBards' A Midsummer Night's Dream.

The theatre company which got on their bikes to take Shakespeare to the masses

Shakespeare is often a favourite among theatre companies putting on outdoor shows in the summer months, but there is one company presenting the work of the Bard in the open air that has an eye-catching USP. The HandleBards, as their name wittily suggests, travel to all their performance venues on bicycles, carrying their props and costumes with them. Since 2013, they have pedalled more than 6,000 miles across the UK to perform ecologically- sound, bicycle-powered Shakespeare. Later this month they will be bringing their production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream to Howsham Mill, an 18th century John Carr-designed watermill on the River Derwent near Malton.

Rebecca Boey as a Chinese factory worker in The Pulverised.

Review: The Pulverised, York Theatre Royal

Anyone feeling trapped on a corporate hamster wheel is probably best advised to avoid this claustrophobic show about the realities of life in a multinational corporation.

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