Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Programme competition winner

The winner of our programme design competition, Mehvish Khalid age 10, was here in the theatre on Monday to claim her prize - tickets for her whole class to see The Wizard of Oz!

After the show Dorothy (Helen McAlpine) and the Wicked Witch of the West (Cara Kelly) came out into the auditorium to congratulate Mehvish and present her with a special signed copy of her design.

Here's the pictures from the day of Mehvish and all her classmates from Victoria Primary School. Congratulations Mehvish!

Friday, 12 December 2008

Wizard of Oz Production Pictures

The Wizard of Oz has now been in full swing for two weeks and has been pleasing audiences young and old!

"From start to finish one of the best nights I have had in a long time. The style of the show was fantastic, the effects real, imaginative and incredibly effective and the characters exactly how you would hope they would be - Dorothy endearing, the lion hilarious and the witch, well the witch was such a WITCH!"
Audience Member

Even the critics have been giving us a thumbs up:

This is the real deal. A caringly-realised production where storytelling counts and every detail colludes to capture our imagination, involve our emotions. THE HERALD ****

Helen McAlpine plays and sings the central role of Dorothy with a feistiness and innocence which warms the heart; the young actress seems born to wear the blue and white dress. SUNDAY HERALD ***

Rich in imaginative ideas and wonderfully committed performances... the whole production has terrific energy and bounce. ONSTAGE SCOTLAND

If your toes aren't tapping duringthe Jitterbug number, check for frostbite. METRO ****

Here's a selection of images from the show - if you haven't got your tickets yet it's not too late to book!

Alternative Christmas fun

A View From The Stalls, blogging reviewers came to see Wicked Christmas 3. Here's a few of their comments:

"We knew we could rely on the Citizens Community Company's "Wicked Christmas 3" to deliver a sharper glance at our modern Christmas."

"Anne Marie McLeod's "The Poor Philosopher" gave us a sombre look at the commercialisation of Christmas from someone on the outside and an image that will haunt my remaining Christmas shopping trips, while Kathleen Harrison's tale of family grief brought a lump to even a cynical throat."

"But for sheer entertainment Neil Bratchpiece's "The Wee Man v Santa" and "Munchkin Strike" are hard to the "Munchkin Strike" he gives us something that is little short of genius and provided one of the funniest five minutes I've had in a theatre this year - worth the ticket price alone."

"Other particular favourites...were Patricia Preston's "Angela's Story" and Rena Hood's nostalgic "Christmas Adventure"."

"For those theatre addicts like us who don't really do the whole Panto thing this is a great way to stave off withdrawal symptoms with an entertaining and thoughtful evening."


Shooting Horses - documentary

Shooting Horses was made for us by film-maker Ania Winiarska (Oval Studio). This three part documentary delves behind the scenes of They Shoot Horses Dont They?, a large scale community theatre production at the Citizens Theatre, Glasgow in Spring 2008.

This powerful documentary gives a brilliant insight in community theatre making at the Citizens Theatre. This film has previously been available to view at Oval Studio, but we have just got our own version for YouTube, which we are delighted to share with you now.

Part One

Part Two

Part Three


Thursday, 11 December 2008

Wicked Christmas - tickets available

Four tickets have become available for this Friday's performance of Wicked Christmas 3 at 7.30pm. You may have been trying to get tickets but heard that it's sold out. Well if you're quick off the mark, you could grab these four! Call 0141 429 0022.

photos by Tim Morozzo


Thursday, 4 December 2008

Nightschool Level 3 sold out!

With the new brochure not even out yet (!)...Level 3 of Nightschool - our acting classes for adults - has already sold out. This class which starts for the first time in January offers a natural progression for previous Level 2 participants.

If you are looking for a new hobby or challenge in the new year, we still have spaces left in both Level 1 and Level 2.

You can read details of the courses here.


Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Late Night Cabaret

We have just announced three very special late night cabaret sessions at the theatre, after the Wizard of Oz on 13th, 20th and 27th December. RSAMD students will perform a selection of MGM classics and other favourites. We hope you'll join us for a wee dram and a lovely evening of music! From 10.30pm each night.

The theatre will be open until 1am (with last orders called earlier). NB. No booking necessary.


Wizard of Oz workshops

Throughout December TAG drama workers have been out and about in Glasgow Primary Schools delivering Wizard of Oz workshops. Here are a few photos from St. Brides and St. Francis.


Saturday, 29 November 2008

Put 'em up, put 'em up!

From front of house to backstage, staff have been working round the clock (quite literally) to put the final touches to the Wizard of Oz preparations.

Our first preview is tonight. You might not know this, but every year the Citizens Theatre donates its takings from the charity preview to the Hospice. It’s a full house tonight, so a great start to the season and an excellent donation for charity.

All of the programme design entries have been mounted in the foyer, so if you entered, we hope you can come and find your design. There are loads!!

If you haven’t booked already, you can get your Wizard of Oz tickets here.


P.S. I took some snaps of the decorated foyer but haven’t been able to get them yet. They’re lost in cyberspace somewhere between my iphone and my inbox.

Thursday, 20 November 2008

Design a Programme Cover Competition

Every year we challenge primary school children across the city to design a cover for the programme of our Christmas show, this year The Wizard of Oz. All we ask is that they let their imaginations run wild and be as creative as they can be. The winning entry wont necessarily be by the best drawer but will be bold and eye-catching and have something a little bit special!

This year we had a phenomenal response and received 473 entries from 16 different schools! It was a tough choice but we whittled it down to a shortlist of just six and put it to a vote amongst our theatre staff.

THE WINNER!! The lucky winner was a Mehvish Khalid, aged 10, who is a pupil at Victoria Primary School. Her prize is tickets for her whole class to come and see The Wizard of Oz and we're really looking forward to meeting her and showing her the finished programme with her design! Well done!

Here's the rest of the shortlist - we were really impressed by all the entries and our judging panel really struggled to narrow it down!

Carolyn Baker, age 11, St Convals Primary

Fraser Cowle, age 8, Cardonald primary

Kiara Bradbury, age 9, Victoria Primary

Craig Bell, age 8, Chirnsyde Primary

Darren McCarthy, age 11, Carntyne Primary

All the entries will be displayed in our foyer through the run of The Wizard of Oz. For more information or to book tickets click here.

Hope to see you there! Cx

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

Young Co. on Tour - Blackout

This week sees Young Co. tour around Glasgow schools for the first time, with a fantastic new play by Davey Anderson. Blackout, which Young Co. premiered earlier in the summer (at the Royal National Theatre) is a hard-hitting true story about a 15-year-old boy called James who wakes up one day in a jail cell and discovers that he's getting charged with attempted murder.

Young Co. are taking Blackout into 9 schools this week for a performance and discussion. Members of Young Co. from the cast along with Davey Anderson have been blogging about their experiences.

You can read the entries in full on the TAG blog.


Thursday, 13 November 2008

Behind the scenes at 'Christmas Wrapped up!'

With Christmas just around the corner, we're thinking of little else here at the Citz! It seems we're not the only ones, as this week our 'Dorothy' was invited to take part in a photocall in Glasgow city centre, along with characters from all the other big Glasgow shows.

The photographs that appear in the paper are always very beautiful and glamorous but we thought you'd like to see what really goes on at these things - mostly, a lot of waiting about in the cold!

Say cheese everyone! Alongside our own Dorothy, the line up includes Mother Bruce from the Tron, Cinderella from The Kings and The Snow Queen from the Arches.

Dorothy and Cinderella get up close and personal with Santa!

Dorothy aka. Helen McAlpine takes time out from posing to give a quick interview for Glasgow City Marketing Bureau's podcast!

Holding the jackets is an inevitable part of a marketeers role - as demonstrated here by Alison, Marketing Manger here at the Citz.

And even after all the hard work is done - the girls (and Toto) still have time to pose for one last picture...


P.S. To find out more or to buy tickets click here!

Thursday, 6 November 2008

Swedish Exchange - A 'Braw Partnership'

Myself, Martin and Elly from 'Citizens Learning and TAG' , have just returned from Sweden. I'm lucky as this is my third visit and have established an affinity with the area. We went to build on the partnership between the Citizens Theatre, Länsteatern (translated to city theatre) and 14* (their community company, named after the bus service that connects the outer suburb of Vivalla to Orebro, the city centre).

One important element of this exchange is that some members of our Community Company will visit Sweden in early May 2009 and perform there, this is thrilling and will make a fantastic contribution to the Community Company's 10th anniversay celebrations. A group from there, will visit us in June, we'll work together and create a piece of theatre to be shown at the end of our week together. We are calling this connection the "Braw Partnership" as "braw" is a Swedish word that translates to "good" and that's just braw!

The conference was very interesting, attended by theatre practitioners from all over the country, quite amazing how the seminar on our work, including the showing of the documentary, Shooting Horses was appreciated. Community drama is apparently a new concept in Sweden and our practice is now revered and will be talked of throughout many theatres in the country. Which gave us renewed confidence and pride in our work.

Also speaking at the conference was Eugene van Erven, from Utrecht, who has researched community theatre around the world, a very well informed man and someone I hope to meet again, maybe in his home town, to witness their work.

Socially we also had a good time with our new friends but the drink is expensive and still no sign of an IKEA...Now it's back to work with the Community Company and Wicked Christmas 3...can't wait...we'll be singing the Jingle Bells before we know it!


Monday, 3 November 2008

Great theatre on this week...

This week we are playing host to two great very diverse shows...

A NOVEMBER DAY, a charming piece of puppetry for 10-15 year olds, takes us on a journey through the lives of two brothers during the time of World War I. Thingumajig Theatre's timeless fable runs until Wednesday 5 November. Find out more/Buy tickets

Theatre Absolute's ZERO by Chris O'Connell is a chaotic, fast and furious production which takes an explosive and anarchic stare at the ethics of torture and the curse of censorship. Thursday 6 - Saturday 8 November. Find out more/Buy tickets


Reflecting on Reflections

Eleanor Capaldi is a member of the Citizens Young Co. and one one of the writers from the company's most recent performance piece "Reflections on the River". Eleanor has reflected on her experiences in the build up to the production...and the post show glow!...

"The Reflections journey began almost a year ago when the Citizens Young Co. conducted writing workshops with Peter Arnott of the Playwright's Studio. A basic insight into writing for the stage followed, but the project for me didn't fully get under way until next spring. In the middle of rehearsals for They Shoot Horses, Don't They? I happened to mention to Neil Packham that I had written a script for the Young Co. project, but hadn't really done anything with it since. In his usual encouraging and enthusiastic way Neil said to submit it, go for it, get involved. I did. And almost a year since the first writing workshops began, I was sitting in the audience watching five new plays performed in a beautiful set to a paying public..."

Click here to read the rest of Eleanor's fantastic article - a great insight into the experience of writing your first play and watching it being produced...well worth a read!

photo by Iain G Farrell...more here

TAG produces all of the Citz work for children and young people, which includes Citizens Young Co. You can read more Young Co. news on the TAG blog. Here's a link to all recent Young Co. posts.


Thursday, 30 October 2008

The Caretaker gets the thumbs up from the critics!

There is a real buzz about our current main stage production The Caretaker. Since opening last Friday, The Caretaker has received a raft of 4 star reviews from all the major broadsheets.

"a powerfully intricate and broodingly intense affair"
The Herald ****

"...laugh-out-loud funny as well as threatening...Quality stuff all round."
The Times ****

"The Caretaker retains not only its elliptical strangeness but also its ability to resonate with the times"

Daily Telegraph ****
The List ****

All three actors - Tam Dean Burn, Robert Hastie and Eugene O'Hare - give great performances in this Harold Pinter classic.

Get closer to the action by viewing a slideshow of images (by Pete Le May) from the show below.

Wednesday, 29 October 2008

Costume designs for The Wizard of Oz

We've just managed to get hold of some of the costume designs from Jason Southgate -the designer of this year's Christmas show, The Wizard of Oz. These are the very drawings that our wardrobe department use to create the costumes you'll see on stage.

Here's a selection to whet your appetite!

Saturday, 18 October 2008

The Caretaker - in rehearsal

Next up on our main stage is Harold Pinter's classic, The Caretaker. With an outstanding cast of Tam Dean Burn, Robert Hastie and Eugene O'Hare and directed by Phillip Breen (who previously directed Shadow of a Gunman and The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui here at the Citz), rehearsals have been a place of intense creative pursuit as they each bring their own special interpretation to this very funny and extraordinary piece of theatrical writing.

Here's a video of some photographs we managed to capture in the rehearsal room to give you a flavour of the show...

The show previews on Wed 22 & Thu 23 October, opening officially on Fri 24 October. You can book tickets online now or call the box office on 0141 429 0022.


All photos by Richard Campbell

Friday, 17 October 2008

The New Not New

You may have caught The New Not New recently in the Stalls Studio. This 15 minute visual theatre short was developed by Ailie Cohen and Guy Hollands, based on the writings of Anais Nin. Here's a video to give you a sense of this magical show.

All photos by Tim Morozzo.


Friday, 3 October 2008

She's not in Kansas anymore...

Anyone who was shopping in or around the St Enoch Centre or Buchanan St on Wednesday would have seen our very own Dorothy (played by Helen McAlpine) making a special guest appearance!

St Enoch is sponsoring this year's Christmas show THE WIZARD OF OZ and so to celebrate this fact Dorothy was on the site to lay a yellow brick in the foundations, as part of St Enoch's £100 million re-development.

Centre manager Susan Nicol was on hand to help out!

And then... we had a bit of fun on Buchanan St!!!

In true Glaswegian style, shoppers barely batted an eyelash at our antics!

Photographs by Richard Campbell

Thursday, 2 October 2008

Haunting Curtain Raiser

As trailed previously The New Not New, runs this week only at the Citizens Theatre. This haunting piece is in the Stalls Studio at 7pm each night until Saturday - acting as a curtain raiser for Don Juan (4 stars Herald and 4 stars Times) and Follow Me. Although completely free, you must book tickets by calling the box office on 0141 429 0022.

photo by Anne Binckebanck

Hurry as only a few remain!


Tuesday, 23 September 2008

Don Juan in images

Our autumn season officially opened on Friday with the first performance of the Spanish legend of Don Juan. Here are a selection of our favourite images from the show.

The New Not New

You don't get much in life for free...unless you come to the Citizens Theatre new Curtain Raiser show, The New Not New, which opens in the stalls studio next Tuesday.

The New Not New is a 15 minute visual theatre short by puppeteer, Ailie Cohen, based on selected writings by Anais Nin and directed by Guy Hollands. This event is free but ticketed and commences at 7pm each night next week from Tuesday to Saturday.

If you're popping along to see Don Juan (4 stars Herald) or Follow Me, why not come a little earlier to check out The New Not New. This show is recommended for 15+.

Here are a couple of rehearsal photos to whet your appetite.


Monday, 8 September 2008

Don Juan in rehearsal

As we enter the final week of rehearsals for the big season opener, Don Juan, we caught up with some of the action. Mark Springer (pictured) takes on the the charismatic but brutal lead role as Don Juan while Neve McIntosh plays Donna Anna, a woman not willing to succumb to his charms.

A charismatic lover or a dangerous monster? You decide! Don Juan previews on Wednesday 17th and Thursday 18th September, opening for its full 3 week run on Friday 19th September. BOOK NOW.

Cast also includes: Elspeth Brodie, Fintan McKeown, James Anthony Pearson, Ross Sutherland and Pauline Knowles.

Photographs by Eamonn McGoldrick

Friday, 5 September 2008

Tony Benn gets standing ovation

As part of our Audience With week of talks, Tony Benn - one of the greatest politicians and orators of our time - appeared at the theatre on Wednesday night. He did not disappoint the sold out crowd and at 83 years old still managed to bring the audience to its feet in appreciation. He then signed books and chatted to the crowd in our packed foyer. I had the privilege of accompanying him to and from the theatre and it is an experience I will never forget. An absolute gentleman.

Thursday, 4 September 2008

New photos!

Here is a selection of images showing some of what we've been up to for the last year or so. This isn't exhaustive, but it gives you a really good overview of the range of work created and delivered by the Citizens Theatre and TAG. Maybe you can spot yourself or one of your favourite shows. Enjoy!


Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Pierrepoint - Follow Me

If you were glued to the box last night, you might have been lucky enough to catch Pierrepoint, an excellent film (starring Timothy Spall) about Albert Pierrepoint, the most prolific executioner of 20th century Britain.

A fascinating story, this provided the perfect introduction to Guy Masterson's new production of FOLLOW ME by Ross Gurney-Randall and Dave Mounfield, which is coming to the Citizens this autumn. FOLLOW ME tells the story of Ruth Ellis - the last woman to be hanged in Britain and Pierrepoint the "ultimate professional" who hanged her.

As grim a tale as this may sound, it probes the innermost feelings of an utterly fascinating profession and is sure to make a powerful piece of theatre. Both The Herald and Scotsman have given this show 4 stars, so click FOLLOW ME to find out more.


Wednesday, 13 August 2008

"Top of the world, ma!"

I managed to gets some brilliant snaps from Chris. He also pointed out that Mont Blanc is actually 4808m!! (possibly due to ever-changing snow levels). But let that be a lesson to all those wikipedia cut and pasters!

Chris on the summit

Auguille di midi

glacier ice climb