Monthly Archives: April 2012

Premiere of new stage adaptation of GULLIVER’S TRAVELS

Premiere of new stage adaptation of GULLIVER'S TRAVELS

Based on the classic book by Jonathan Swift World premiere of a new stage adaptation for schools and family audiences aged 9+

As part of Leicester’s Spark Children’s Arts Festival, a new adaptation of the much-loved tale of GULLIVER’S TRAVELS will premiere in the Studio at Curve. The production is the culmination of more than a year’s research and development work with local young people. Dragon Breath and Curve bring Swift’s tale to life for modern audiences with their celebrated epic, visual performance style, in award-winning playwright Peter Rumney’s adaptation.

It’s 1699. Lemuel Gulliver sets sail from England for lands unknown. Shipwrecked, he finds himself to be a powerful giant in one land, a tiny plaything in another. Then, abandoned by his crew, he discovers a flying island, and a strange world where men are beasts ruled by beautiful, civilised horses. Meanwhile, Gulliver’s daughter Molly waits at home for his return, and to hear his extraordinary tale. But Gulliver’s adventures have changed him for ever…. Can Molly help him truly return to the world he left behind?

Watch this space for behind the scenes blogs and updates from rehearsals.

Tickets and Information: 0116 242 3595 /

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Curve co-production DESH wins Olivier award

Curve co-production DESH wins Olivier award

Curve was acknowledged at the prestigious Olivier awards for the first time last night.

Their co-production with Akram Khan Company for DESH won in the ‘Best New Dance Production’ category was announced at the awards ceremony last night at the Royal Opera House.

DESH received its World Premiere at Curve in September 2011. This followed a six week residency by Akram Khan Company, in which they finalised the piece and took advantage of Curve’s technical capabilities and expertise. Taking inspiration from his homeland, Khan choreographed and performed this full-length solo show in which he used his body and voice to portray several characters familiar in daily Bangladeshi culture.

DESH, in addition to Curve’s previous co-productions with Khan, IN-I and VERTICAL ROAD have helped to put Leicester on the international dance map and built Curve’s reputation as a leading dance venue. Following their runs at Curve, all three productions have subsequently played London’s Sadler’s Wells and toured internationally. VERTICAL ROAD continues to tour the world having visited 55 venues playing to a total of 80,000 people so far.

Also nominated in the same category for ‘Best New Dance Production’, ZooNation’s SOME LIKE IT HIP HOP, has been co-commissioned by Curve and will visit the theatre in autumn 2012.

Fiona Allan, Curve’s Chief Executive says:

“We are incredibly proud that Curve has been acknowledged at the Olivier awards for the first time. Curve is a superbly equipped and versatile venue for dance. The team at Curve supported Akram through the show’s creation and it was developed here in Leicester. We are thrilled that Akram Khan Company and Curve to have received this recognition and we look forward to working together again in the future.”

Akram Khan said:

“It’s wonderful to receive the Olivier Award for DESH but it would not be complete if I didn’t mention the birthplace of DESH. In any creation, there is always an immense amount of fragility, darkness, and a sense of homelessness. And thanks to the Curve, we, the DESH team, has felt extremely supported, secure and rooted in a place I could call home. Curve for provided the strong soil in which DESH could grow.”

Did you see DESH at Curve? Let us know what you thought!

Review: Gypsy

Wednesday 4th April 2012 was one of those days where you’re given every possible sign that the best thing to do would be to stay indoors. It started raining long before I woke up, it began snowing whilst I was busy doing the ironing and the wind was so loud that it frequently woke me up the night before. Yes, I think that sounds like the perfect reason to stay at home, curled up on the sofa with a cup of something hot. 

I, on the other hand, was defiant in the face of the elements because I wasn’t prepared to let a little thing like ‘bad weather’ get in the way of me finally seeing Gypsy at Curve. So, armed with what turned out to be a weak umbrella that I ended up shoving in the nearest bin after it turned upside-down for the tenth time, narrowly avoiding a little old lady, I made my way to the theatre.

If you think about it, on a day like the one I described above, there’s not much left to do in Leicester (or anywhere else for that matter) apart from shop, visit a museum (Newarke Houses Museum & Gardens near De Montfort University is my personal favourite), watch a movie, etc – generally anything that involves staying indoors. However, in my opinion, the best thing to do when the weather is a total buzz-kill is to watch a show at Curve.

When I eventually arrived at the theatre (looking like a drowned rat) there was definitely excitement in the air and everyone was in good spirits, unified in their anticipation of the show. I, predictably, made a beeline for the restrooms and it was seriously jam-packed with ladies. The topic of conversation, of course, was the rubbish weather and everyone was busy fixing their hair, in addition to drying their hats, hair, scarves and leggings – okay, that last one was just me!!

Photo of Caroline O’Connor as Momma Rose by Pamela Raith

Once we were allowed into the theatre to take our seats, the excitement in the air just intensified. My friend Ricky and I had great seats and we had a good view of the stage and the audience – I like looking at the reaction of the audience sometimes (sorry, I’m weird like that!!).
The show itself was excellent, which I knew it would be, but it far exceeded my already high expectations. The star of Gypsy was Caroline O’Connor, who brings Mommaa Rose to live and has a great set of lungs on her. I was completely and utterly blown away by her voice, especially when she sang Rose’s Turn – WOW!

See below for Bette Midler’s version.

Whilst Caroline might have been the star, the entire cast performed their parts really well, with many of them having just starred in Curve’s Christmas show (42nd Street). I was particularly impressed by the imaginative use of the stage, which always seems to be the case when it comes to Paul Kerryson and the scene in which the younger kids are transformed into their older selves. The scene uses some strobe lighting effects and I’m sure I heard some sort of flickering sound (like a filmstrip), making it look like you’re looking at an old film strip via a projector. I know that probably makes no sense, but it’s so cool!!

The audience really seemed to be enjoying themselves throughout the show, in particular the chaps that Gypsy Rose Lee directed one of her onstage jokes at. At the end of the show, at least 20 people stood up to give Caroline a standing ovation and she 100% deserved it.

If you’ve not seen the show yet, fear not because there’s still time to get your hands on the hottest tickets in Leicester. Click HERE to go to Curve’s website and enjoy the incredible show that is Gypsy. Check out the tailer below, which is sure to entice you!!

Have you seen Gypsy? What did you think? Weren’t the costumes amazing? I want some of those feathers!! Feel free to pop your thoughts in the comments box below.

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