Friday June 26, 2015
Oran Mor’s “A Play, A Pie and A Pint” is a hugely successful lunchtime theatre initiative where visitors – you guessed it – have the chance to see an adaptation of a classic play while enjoying a pie and a pint (or glass of wine or soft drink if you are so inclined). It’s great to see the event continue as part of the West End Festival with its Summer Season of Classic Cuts. This week the feature piece was Harman Melville’s ‘Moby Dick’ which I had the pleasure of seeing yesterday afternoon.
Arriving ten minutes before the performance started, it was already difficult to find a seat among the 60 or so other people there where I could enjoy my pie (meat and vegetarian options available) so my first observation would be to get there early! The performance space consisted of a small runway and stage behind it making for a very intimate-feeling performance no matter where you were sat. As the lights dimmed the three performers who played all of the characters marched in from the rear, singing an old sea shanty and even slipped in a sly nod to Scotland during it. This was met with more than a few chuckles from the crowd.
The three actors regaled the captivated audience (myself included) with the tale of the white whale and one captain’s insatiable need for revenge against it. All three of them gave powerful performances using very subtle, if any, sound effects and basic props. The transition between narrative and performance was very slick and worked well as part of the 45 minute piece. Despite watching captain Ahab descend further into his destructive obsession with Moby Dick, there were a few light hearted moments which were weaved skilfully into the performance keeping the experience not too intense for a lunch time event.
Moby Dick was incredibly enjoyable to watch at Oran Mor. Great setting, great cast, great play and great pie (although I could have eaten another!) I’m a convert to “A Play, A Pie and A Pint” and will be back to check out whatever takes centre stage next!
Moby Dick will be performed again today (26th June) and tomorrow (27th June) with tickets available online or at the door of Oran Mor.
Thursday June 25, 2015
Little Bat productions presents: Speaking in Tongues - the story of nine interwoven lives. It deals with the right and wrongs of emotional conduct, of contracts broken between intimates, bonds forged between strangers and the darker aspects of human nature.
Sonja & Leon and Pete & Jane are all happily married. Or so they say. But one night Sonja meets Pete in a bar – they go back to a hotel room. Leon meets Jane in a bar – they go back to a hotel room. Is what happens tragic or inevitable? How well do your really know the one you love?
A woman disappears. But who was the last one to see her alive? Her husband? Her client? Or the man who finds her shoe in his car? Speaking in Tongues takes you on a journey through a web of deceit, love, lies and death to answer the question ‘Do you truly know the one you love?’
The production company Little Bat Bat is the creation of Meli Bach in collaboration with Simon McCay and Una McDade.
“Little Bat grew out of the need / desire to DO something and not just sit around waiting for someone else to cast us in great roles. By taking control of ‘making it happen’ we get to cast ourselves and choose projects that challenge us. When looking for material we wanted stuff that intrigued and captivated us. When we first read Speaking in Tongues we all thought ‘how are we going to do this?’ That’s all part of the challenge.
The ability of this play to capture the imagination, to keep people debating and asking questions, is one of the reasons we chose it. It is brilliant writing and technically quite difficult with simultaneous scenes and overlapping dialogue.”
- Meli Bach
Review by Andrew Stewart:
"The recently renovated and elegant Webster’s theatre plays host to the fascinating production by Andrew Bovell, ‘Speaking In Tongues’.
Meli Bach, Simon McCav, Jessica Phillippi and James J Robson take centre stage in this play about adultery and betrayal. Opening in a sleazy hotel, we are introduced to the first four characters telling two similar stories at once. At first this method seems confusing however as the play progresses we see the reason for this clever approach. As the act continues we learn about the individual characters and their marriage woes. This initially required intense concentration pays off as the story progresses.
As the second half begins we are introduced to four more characters played by the same people. Although again mildly confusing, this device becomes compelling and creates a feeling of pain shared between the characters. This play is clever as it intertwines everyone’s story and brings about an interesting plot involving a detective, a woman councillor with self-esteem issues and a character who might have been a murderer. As the plot develops, the audience begin to see how each character connects with one another and with that allows for a unique story about relationships to be told.
During the play there were many different environments including a bar and a hotel. The clever use of props allowed the audience to feel as if they were in the set environment with the characters. Working with little space, credit is due to the creative ability in order to make this a success. With only four actors playing nine different characters the opening night of ‘Speaking In Tongues’ was certainly a hit at the Webster Theatre."
Tickets available online through Little Bat Productions for performances today (25th June) and tomorrow (26th June).
Monday June 15, 2015
“As a consequence of a number of discussions, over the last two years, about art with Alasdair Gray, I decided to use my knowledge of art history, and my interest in playwriting, to compose a play that really looked at his paintings and to bring those meanings to life using the dramatic potential of theatre.
Alasdair Gray’s paintings on the surface are engaging designs, but they can also reveal hidden depths of ideas and feelings, ranging from intense pain to delightful pleasure: How could these attributes be communicated in a play?
The decision to use Oscar Wilde’s infamous literary character ‘Dorian Gray’ was initially inspired by the chance association of names, but as the play demanded someone who was an art expert, he claimed the job.
Dorian gets assistance from other characters because they have intimate knowledge of the art. In consequence, the writing and the painting are brought into a close relationship and exploited by the dramatic visual and literary qualities of theatre.
Lanark and Duncan Thaw are regenerated to help Dorian Gray find the key to the meaning of Alasdair Gray’s art. However Lanark has a new dilemma and she falls in love with the beauty of Dorian Gray. Duncan Thaw on the other hand is sceptical and tests Dorian’s claims about the role of art and the beautiful as transforming experience for the individual.
Assisted by a lily, a symbol of purity and beauty they travel into the Alasdair Gray mural painting ‘Glasgow: The Triumph of Death’ in search of the key, but events overtake them and their world is turned upside down. Will art triumph over death?”
- Duncan Comrie, writer of The Key: An Art Mystery
Showing on the 16th and 17th of June at 2.30/7.30pm, tickets are available from Mighty Fine Theatre or available on the door at Websters Theatre.
Wednesday June 18, 2014
Websters is home to four musicians this week as part of the WEF regular - The Acoustic Affair. Take a look at what's on and don't forget to use #WEF2014 when talking about events online. Enjoy!
Rab Noakes: from Nashville to Muirend, Stripped
Wedneday 18 June, 7.30pm, £16
An evening of great songs drawn from an eventful 40+ year long career in the music business working with some of the great legends including Gerry Rafferty. He will be joined by a fantastic backing band formed for the evening which includes well known musicians Emma and Jill.
“It was an excellent show from one of this country's finest songsmiths” The Herald Jan 2014.
Thursday 19 June, 7.30pm, £12
A classically trained cellist and songwriter from Paisley, he studied at The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music in NYC and, although based in UK, he frequently tours North America.
In 2011, he opened for Jack Bruce at the Queens Hall (Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival) and recent live appearances include O2 ABC Glasgow, CCA, The Spree festival and he has also featured on Paul Jones on BBC Radio 2 and a live session the Culture Show on BBC Scotland.
Friday 20 June, 7.30pm, £16
John Muir was an American hero, born in Scotland. He was to become known as the father of the American conservation and the founder of their wonderful national park system. As a long time admirer, Jimmie leapt at the opportunity of a recording trip to San Francisco, the Napa valley, Muir’s home at Martinez, Yosemite national park and the Sierra Nevada.
Come along to hear Jimmie’s stories and see some great images all presented in a relaxed and humorous style; truly one of our Westend treasures !
Saturday 21 June, 7.30pm, £16
Brought up immersed in the musical traditions and culture of the Gaels, both Scots and Irish, Dick Gaughan has been a professional musician and singer since January 1970, and made his first solo album in 1971, No More Forever. He was an early member of the Boys of the Lough and the now legendary Scottish folk-rock band, Five Hand Reel.
In December 2009, Dick was honoured by being inducted into the Scots Trad Music Hall of Fame and he received a Lifetime Achievement Award at BBC Radio 2’s annual Folk Awards ceremony.
Thursday June 12, 2014
The actors have been hard at work rehearsing today as Gilbert and Sullivan's HMS PINAFORE weighs anchor for the first of three performances tonight in Glasgow. They are taking place in the Glenlee, Glasgow's own Tall Ship moored on the River Clyde next to the Transport Museum – one of the most unusual festival venues
Presented in the round by Walter Paul Productions for three nights only on 13th, 14th, & 15th June at 7.30pm, we are delighted that this brand new production of the nautical opera is already proving a massive hit with Festival goers - before a single note has been sung!
Tickets are sold out, and the unique venue has proved itself a winner with West End Festival audiences.
The Music Director is David Mackie, who was the Assistant Music Director of the original D'Oyly Carte Opera Company until its demise in 1982, and the production is in the hands of G & S expert Walter Paul.
He has gathered together a talented cast of local performers including Chriss Mills, J.Campbell Kerr, Ross Nicol, and David Blackwood, and the leading soprano is played by Brianna Robertson-Kirkland, making her debut with WPP.
This G & S classic, with Gilbert's witty barbs about the class system, and Sullivan's sparkling music, we hope everyone who got tickets has a fantastic night!
Friday June 14, 2013
We like to bring you some snippets of events happening every weekend. This week we're giving you the event plus the details! #wef13
Have a look on our website and search the date, venue, category or event title to see what else is happening...
1. FREE event - Glasgow School of Art Goes West 10am-5pm
Iota proudly presents the new cutting edge of contemporary painting: ten of the best from the M Litt in Fine Art Practice (Expanded Painting) at the Glasgow School of Art for 2013.
Venue: Iota Gallery, 25 Hyndland Street Glasgow, G11 5QE
0141 338 6052
2. West End Festival Winds by Cottier Chamber Project at Cottiers
Music: Mozart Gran Partita K.361
£7 in advance, £9 on the day, £5 students. £25 for both concerts with main course and drink, £20 for concert and pre theatre menu. A beard like Brahms’ get you in free for the concerts (genuine beards only!)
Tickets in advance from www.cottierchamberproject.com www.cottiers.com or in person from the Box Office at Cottiers Hyndland. 0141 357 4000.
3. The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee at 7.30pm
Mad Props Theatre present their inaugural production, the Glasgow premiere of this Tony Award-winning play. Six young people in the throes of puberty, overseen by grownups who barely managed to escape childhood themselves, learn that winning isn’t everything and that losing doesn’t make you a loser. With profits going to Leukaemia Research and with laughs guaranteed, don’t miss out on this cult musical where anything can happen!
Booking and ticket info:
Tickets £12 plus BF • 0141 357 4000
Venue: Kelvinbridge Theatre, Lansdowne Church 414 Great Western Rd, G4
0141 357 4000
1. Paintings On Railings - All day Saturday, Sunday
Long established outdoor art gallery at the Botanic Gardens railings started in 1996 as part of the first West End Festival. Come and see a large variety of original art, craftwork and photography - meet the artists and maybe buy something! To exhibit call Lynne Scobbie 07779 977612.
If wet, come back another day!
Venue: Botanic Gardens, 730 Great Western Road Glasgow, G12 0UE
0141 276 1614
2. O2 Glasgow Mela 12:00pm - 8:00pm
also on Sunday 16 June 12:00pm - 8:00pm
For one weekend Kelvingrove Park will be transformed into an extravaganza of music, dance, exotic food and eclectic stalls with the 02 Glasgow Mela, Scotland’s biggest multi-cultural festival. The two-day event is open to all ages, and includes family activities and an array of stalls to browse and food to try, as well as a richly diverse programme of colourful performances across three stages. Join us at Kelvingrove Park to celebrate the multi-cultural influences that make Glasgow so vibrant, creative and cosmopolitan. Delivered by Glasgow Life.
Venue: Kelvingrove Park, G12
0141 334 6363
3. Lari Don: Little Red Riding Hood 11am and 2.30pm
A magical experience for all the family. The renowned children’s writer and storyteller Lari Don will read her stunning new retelling of Little Red Riding Hood, encouraging the listener to imagine fairy tales and magical journeys of their own. Woodland crafts activities after and tasty baking! Age 4-7 and families.
Venue: North Kelvin Meadow, Clouston Street, Glasgow, G20
4. Peter MacCalman Symphony No 1 at 8pm
Performed by the Cappella String Quartet and piano. Popular and contemporary composition collide in an exploration of the symphony – a format rooted in the classical tradition of Western Europe, yet one that has evolved and changed from its original meanings and structure. Rooted in today’s culture, but incorporating and respecting the history of the symphony, Peter MacCalman’s work uses chamber-sized forces to produce music on a symphonic scale. “Sonorously atmospheric live music composed for string quartet by Peter MacCalman” - Herald 2007.
Booking and ticket info: Tickets £12
Available from www.cottiers.com or 0141 357 4000
Venue: Cottier Theatre, 93-95 Hyndland Street Glasgow
1. Kids Creative Corner 12-5pm
Why not bring the kids along this afternoon for some fun food and arty-crafts? Pop in to the Lansdowne between 12 and 5 where the kids can occupy themselves in a fun way while Mum and Dad can eat lunch in peace and quiet?
Booking and ticket info:
Tickets £5 per child. Info 0141 334 4653
Venue: Lansdowne Bar, 7a Lansdowne Crescent Glasgow G20 6NQ
0141 334 4653 email@example.com
2. FREE - Queen Margaret Drive – Street Festival (also on Sat 15th) 12:00pm - 6:00pm
Come and join the West End Festival’s latest community street event in Queen Margaret Drive, just to the north of Byres Road. We have a great selection of independent shops and businesses. Join us for music, craft beer, authentic food, art and craft workshops, street stalls, vintage clothing, face painting and children’s activities. Families welcome and parking free!
3. RSNO Chamber Series: Classical Strings 2:30pm
Relax and unwind on a Sunday afternoon with the RSNO Chamber Series. This is a refreshing chance to hear the musicians of the Orchestra up close and personal, performing music by great composers in an intimate setting. Join our quintet of strings for a concert of celebrated classical chamber music, including Wolf’s Italian Serenade and Schubert’s String Quintet in C major.
Booking and ticket info:
Tickets £12, disabled £6, under 26 £5, under 16 free (max 2 with paying adult)
Venue: St Mary's Cathedral, 300 Great Western Road Glasgow, G4 9JB
0141 339 6691
4. Storytelling: Julia Donaldson Favourites - 10.30am
Celebrate Father’s Day with a collection of Julia Donaldson stories. Tam Dean Burn will read Tales from Acorn Wood in the morning (Family event but best for under 5’s).and The Gruffalo stories in the afternoon (Family event but best for under 8’s). Music from Emma Schad and Andy Alston. There will be crafts, face painting, home baking and, in the afternoon children can meet The Gruffalo and The Gruffalo’s Child!
10:30am Tales from Acorn Wood. 2pm The Gruffalo and Gruffalo’s Child event
www.childrenswood.comVenue: North Kelvin Meadow, Clouston Street Glasgow G20
5. The Mackintosh Choir Sings “America!” 7pm
After our very successful launch at last year’s West End Festival, please join us for another wonderful night of song, this time with an American theme. We will delight you with many familiar songs, songs from the shows, exciting Aaron Copland songs, and many more.
Booking and ticket info:
Tickets £7 (children £3) at the door or in advance from choir members
Venue: Mackintosh Church, Queen’s Cross 870 Garscube Road Glasgow G20 7EL
0141 946 6600 firstname.lastname@example.org
Wednesday May 15, 2013
Family Book events
Announcing a feast of Festival book events for families! Opening the West End Festival Family Book Programme will be the creator of the much loved Katie Morag stories - Mairi Hedderwick at Hillhead Library on Saturday 1 June at 2.30pm. A combination of masterly storytelling and the stunning Hebridean illustrations give this remarkable series enduring appeal for children and adults alike. Join Mairi to hear all about Katie Morag’s adventures!
Saturday 8 June sees a Socktastic celebration of a fantastically funny picture book Socks with Nick Sharratt who is one of most creative and loved illustrator talents in the UK. Later, he will be joined by Julia Donaldson, creator of The Gruffalo. In their new picture book Animal Music, the animals get together for a sing-song. Why not join in the fun and meet two leading talents of the children’s book world! At The Kelvin Gallery, University of Glasgow. Tickets John Smith’s Tel 0141 342 5986.
All aboard The Tall Ship on Sunday 9 June at noon to hear the captivating tales of Bottlenose Bay which have already been featured on Bookaboo on television. Meet award-winning illustrator/writer Jan Fearnley to hear about the adventures of Harry the harbour mouse and a host of other loveable characters. Tickets £2.50 in person only from The Tall Ship.
On Saturday 29 June there is a chance to be a princess for the day and enjoy storytelling and fun activities at a Princess Poppy party. The adventures of the enchanting Princess Poppy have become a firm favourite with little girls. A global phenomenon, over 2 million copies have been sold to Princess Poppy fans worldwide. Join author Janey Louise Jones at Hillhead Library at 11.30 am to hear the latest tales about the delightful Princess Poppy.
Spotlight on The Children’s Wood and North Kelvin Meadow
With some seventeen literary happenings at North Kelvin Meadow and The Childrens Wood during The West End Festival, there are some magical experiences on offer for families and schools. On Saturday 15 June, children’s writer and storyteller Lari Don will visit this special piece of West End wilderness, to read her stunning new retelling of Little Red Riding Hood, encouraging the listener to imagine fairy tales and magical journeys of their own. Meanwhile, back by popular demand, actor Tam Dean Burn celebrates Father’s Day on Sunday 16 June with a collection of favourite Julia Donaldson stories with musical accompaniment from Emma Schad and Andy Alston. In the afternoon, there is a once in a lifetime opportunity for children to meet The Gruffalo and The Gruffalo's Child!
Sunday 30 June sees Glasgow’s own literary and artistic genius Alasdair Gray lending his unique voice in a reading of The Just So Stories and Tales by Hans Christian Andersen to mark this closing Celebration of the West End Festival Book Programme at North Kelvin Meadow. At this colourful family event, there will be a range of other activities. Children and adults are also invited to come dressed as their favourite character from the Just So Stories!
Spotlight on the West End Festival schools book programme at Glasgow City Libraries
Unputdownable stories are the hallmark of Cathy MacPhail’s writing for young people. The West End Festival and Glasgow City Libraries are proud to premiere her latest novel Mosi’s War at The Mitchell Theatre on Monday 3 June at 10am. We’re delighted that an author who connects with such a wide range of children and young people is able to open the Schools Programme for The West End Festival.
Back by popular demand, ‘A master of funny’ the hilarious writer (a.k.a. “The Fibster”) Steve Hartley returns to The West End Festival and The Mitchell Library for a super-heroic session of fun and fibbing. Be a part of “Fact or Fib”, the silliest game-show in the galaxy. Play the “What If?” game, and help Steve make up the biggest, fattest fib in the universe. And finally. . . hear all about Oliver Fibbs and The Giant Boy-Munching Bugs.
The West End Festival and Glasgow City Libraries are also very excited to feature Carrie and David Grant, presenters of CBeebies show Pop Shop and voice coaches for Take That and Fame Academy. Carrie and David are passionate about promoting opportunities for children to enjoy music. Their brand new series of high energy picture books Elephants Birthday Bells and Lions Speedy Sauce are all about MAKING MUSIC and JOINING IN!
These are just some of our events for schools - don't miss out!
The West End Festival’s roving Writer in Residence
My West End –The Never Ending Story
Come meet our first ever Roving West End Festival Writer in Residence, Cathy Forde and be inspired to create a short piece about your favourite West End Place. It could be new, or in the past. Perhaps your special West End place has vanished and is now a memory or has changed significantly. Or maybe it is a new discovery or a cutting edge new design June. Open to all at 6.30pm Thursday 6 June at Hillhead Library. Elsewhere in this fascinating project, Cathy will lead school classes in a series of creative writing workshops held at The Botanic Gardens and The Childrens Wood encouraging them to express their response to their special West End place.
Wednesday May 15, 2013
This year the West End Festival is proud to showcase an incredible array of literary talent at 50+ book events across a variety of venues across the west end from The Tall Ship to Cottiers Theatre to libraries, schools and The Children’s Wood.
Scotland’s National Poet Liz Lochhead headlines our new series of Literary Late Nights at The Cottier that also features Christopher Brookmyre and the outrageous humour of his novel Bedlam. We also have Glasgow’s own Doyenne of Darkness, up and coming Glasgow crime writer Caro Ramsay with her crackling crime thriller Blood of Crows and former New York Club producer Martin Belk with his unique memoire Pretty Broken Punks about coming of age amidst New York’s demi-monde. Tickets from Cottiers 0141 357 4000 or www.cottiers.com.