U.K. Review: ‘Rain Man’ at Leeds Grand Theatre

U.K. Review: ‘Rain Man’ at Leeds Grand Theatre

I’ve noticed a recent trend in the rise of pieces of theatre inspired by stories from across the States, as well as productions actually brought over from there too. It almost seems as if British directors are seeing the merit in finding and understanding the universal power of narratives from other cultures, and seeing how they interweave with our own narratives and culture. On that note, I popped into the Leeds Grand Theatre to check out The Classic Screen to Stage Theatre Company’s latest adaptation of the classic MGM film ‘Rain Man’.

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U.K. Review: "Cilla: the Musical" at Leeds Grand Theatre

U.K. Review: "Cilla: the Musical" at Leeds Grand Theatre

Back in 2014, Jeff Pope’s hit TV series Cilla caught the hearts of the nation in its touching telling of the early days of Cilla Black’s storied career. The humble beginnings and hardships encountered by the late and celebrated singer made for an inspiring dramatic narrative, which was also shaped by the defining sound of the 60s and changing societal attitudes towards gender. I couldn’t help but feel the inevitability of Pope’s TV series becoming a stage musical, and sure enough, I was delighted when it was announced that the musical was embarking on a new tour after a successful run earlier this year - and I looked forward to seeing how the performances had grown and developed over time.

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U.K. Review: "Calendar Girls" at the Leeds Grand Theatre

U.K. Review: "Calendar Girls" at the Leeds Grand Theatre

The unforgettable, moving story of a group of members from one of the Women’s Institute’s Yorkshire branches has been inspiring viewers, and more recently audiences, for over fifteen years. I am of course talking about the story of Calendar Girls, which found life and widespread attention and success in the form of Nigel Cole’s 2003 film, with a screenplay by Tim Firth. In 2008, the film was adapted into a successful film, and ten years on, it’s found its way back onto the stage, this time in the form of a musical. With Firth returning to his work, the writer paired up with Gary Barlow to bring the vibrant story of the triumphant women to a theatre at the heart of Yorkshire: the Leeds Grand Theatre.

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