Just a short reminder for the Doctor Who fans in the audience that Doctor Who Live materialised in Glasgow today and remains at the SECC until Sunday.
Nigel Planer stars as intergalactic showman, Vorgenson, who travels the galaxy with his minimiser containing many of the Doctor’s foes. Matt Smith stars on the big screen as things begin to go awry for his biggest fan.
A few trailers and the odd unofficial video have arrived on YouTube, so take a look at what you could be seeing if you head to the event this weekend:
And one video which isn’t quite officially approved:
Nor this one:
Tickets can be bought over on the Doctor Who Live website.
Doctor Who fans in Edinburgh for the Edinburgh Fringe really have no excuse not to head to see ex-companion Katy Manning (Jo Grant in the Jon Pertwee era) star in one-woman show Me & Jezebel (Gilded Balloon, Wine Bar, 4 – 5.15pm).
Me & Jezebel is a hilarious play based on the real experience of author Elizabeth Fuller, who in the summer of 1985, by pure chance, had the legendary screen actress Bette Davis come to stay at her ‘somewhat dilapidated’ New England cottage.
What was supposed to be an overnight stay turned into an escapade which lasted 32 days, in which time Davis turned Fuller’s home and life upside down.
In a ‘tour de voice’ performance, Katy Manning plays all the parts.
Full details are up on the Gilded Balloon website.
If you’re not still in shock after last week’s epic Torchwood Week on BBC1 (and if not, where were you?) this DVD release of all five episodes is all you need to help you catch-up on perhaps the finest reversal of fortune for a TV series since…well, ever.
A normal day for the Torchwood Cardiff gang, led as ever by Captain Jack Harkness (the omnipresent John Barrowman), soon goes awry when the world’s children all stop in unison and start chanting the same phrase of “We are coming.”
Meanwhile in London, Government ministers, led by John Frobisher (Peter Capaldi) and Prime Minister Green (Nicholas Farrell) are reminded of past misdemeanours when contact is established with the mysterious alien race known as the 456.
Soon Torchwood is facing the full might of a Government keen to cover-up its secrets, the team raising their game far beyond the reaches of Cardiff Bay as the planet edges ever closer to chaos.
Back in November 2007, in a DVD review of BBC Three’s recently aired first season of Doctor Who spin-off Torchwood, I was less than kind to the new arrival.
Criticising the series makers’ rush to get the programme on air barely a year after it was publicly announced, I commented that it was “a schizophrenic series that annoys as much as it entertains, the perceived need to justify its post-watershed slot meaning that what at times seems to be a treatise on what it is to be a thirty-something in noughties Britain…is often lost in a mire of soft-core titillation and half-baked plots.”
Who would have thought that two years on the BBC would not only have promoted the programme to BBC Two for its second season, but that they’d be stripping it across five nights on primetime BBC One for a truncated third mini-season?
And who would have believed that Torchwood: Children of Earth could be so much fun?
Short notice for this play being staged this Thursday, 11 September, at Brunton Theatre. It’s called Sex and Chocolate and is from acclaimed Scottish writer Rona Munro. According to the theatre website this is:
“A Shirley Valentine style comedy thriller about life, love, mobsters and maltesers!
“Jan has just turned 50, she’s all alone, the rest of the office is off clubbing, the kids have flown the nest and it’s a holiday weekend. Faced with the prospect of defrosting the fridge she makes a decision that will change her life forever… She goes on an adventure!
Sex & Chocolate, a one woman show guaranteed to make you laugh, cry and give up on that diet!”
I’m going to be reviewing it for the Edinburgh Evening News and should have a link to that on Friday afternoon.
Find out more at the Brunton Theatre website.
Currently appearing in the Lyceum’s Six Characters in Search of an Author, Ron Donachie has had a long and varied career on stage and screen. I caught up with him in November 2007 (before this blog existed) while he was appearing in Living Quarters to discuss his work.
Jonathan Melville: Can you start by telling me how you first got into acting?
Ron Donachie: I went to university and studied English – I sort of wanted to be a journalist although I was half-supposed to be a lawyer – but I didn’t fancy either of those as much as I thought I would.
Myself and a couple of friends decided while we were there that we wanted to be actors. I’d done academic drama as a side subject, but no practical stuff, no acting of consequence, maybe a bit at school. We had no connections or experience.
People say it’s a closed world, but I think it’s as closed as any other profession like journalism or law and if you don’t have any connections then there’s not any way in.
Following a record breaking run in London’s West End, Equus opens at the King’s Theatre, Edinburgh on Monday 18 February and runs until Saturday 23.
Psychiatrist Martin Dysart (Simon Callow) is brought the most challenging case of his career by magistrate Hester Saloman (Linda Thorson).
Alan Strang (Alfie Allen) seems like a normal seventeen year old. His life is routine and his family loving. However, Alan’s passion for horses and his first experience with a girl, stable-hand Jill (Laura O’Toole) has led him to behave in the most devastating way. Only Dysart seems able to grasp the answer to this psychological puzzle.
This is a fantastic opportunity to catch Simon Callow on stage, especially for any fans of his performance as Charles Dickens in Doctor Who a few years back. And I have to mention Linda Thorson’s role as Tara King in the cult TV series The Avengers – I realise she was awarded an honorary BAFTA Award in 2000 but the fans will never forget…
Equus is produced by David Pugh and Dafydd Rogers, the Olivier and Tony award winning producers of Art, The Play What I Wrote and Heroes.
Venue: King’s Theatre, 2 Leven Street, Edinburgh, Box Office 0131 529 6000
Date/Time: Monday to Saturday 7.30pm/Wed & Sat 2.30pm, tickets £12.50-£21.00
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Colin Baker (Doctor Who) and Liza Goddard (Bergerac) are coming to the King’s Theatre, Edinburgh in the Birmingham Repertory Theatre production of the classic comedy of manners She Stoops to Conquer from 12 to 16 February.
First performed in 1773, this major revival features a brand new prologue and epilogue by Tony Award winning writer Bryony Lavery.
This celebrated tale of class, courtship and dysfunctional families charts the exploits of two young men, Charles Marlow and George Hastings, and their attempts to court Kate Hardcastle and her friend Constance Neville. A number of delightful deceits, clever schemes, comic ruses and hilarious turns of plot must be played out if the two pending marriages are to conclude happily.
This production is directed by Jonathan Munby
Event: She Stoops to Conquer
Venue: The King’s Theatre, 2 Leven Street, Edinburgh, Box Office: 0131 529 6000
Date/Time: 12-16 February, Tue-Sat 7.30pm, Wed & Sat 2.30pm, Tickets from £10.50-£22.00