PUBLISHED: 09:00 22 May 2014
Find out what's on stage at The Playhouse and Blakehay in Weston, the Hippodrome and Colston Hall in Bristol, and the Theatre Royal Bath.
Theatre Royal: Box office - 01225 448844.
Until May 24: NEW JERSEY NIGHTS. A spectacular celebration of the music of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons. Take a nostalgic musical journey through the career of one of the biggest-selling groups of all time, starting from the back-street studio in New Jersey where it all began.
May 27-31: THE PLAY THAT GOES WRONG. Fawlty Towers meets Noises Off in this new hit comedy which visits Bath direct from the West End. The Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society attempt to put on a 1920s murder mystery, but the accident-prone thespians face a battle against all the odds to get to their final curtain call.
May 28-June 1: WE’RE GOING ON A BEAR HUNT. Michael Rosen’s award-winning book is brought vividly to life on stage. Join the intrepid adventurers on their quest to find a bear as they wade through the gigantic swishy swashy grass, the splishy splashy river and the thick oozy, squelchy mud.
June 3-7: ‘TIS PITY SHE’S A WHORE. This vivid and violent Jacobean tragedy shows a brother and sister’s passionate descent into hell. Incest, religion and corrupt morality collide in this ‘sexy, stylish’ production (The Times), making this play as shocking and controversial today as it was almost 400 years ago.
June 8: ZENITH YOUTH THEATRE ANNIVERSARY GALA. Looking back over half a century of musicals, the 50-strong multi award-winning company and full orchestra is joined by many ex-members who have gone on to careers on stage and screen.
June 9-14: THRILLER - LIVE. Direct from London’s West End, where it is now in its record-breaking sixth year, Thriller - Live is a spectacular concert created to celebrate the career of the undisputed King of Pop, Michael Jackson.
June 18-July 5: EDWARD ALBEE’S WHO’S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF? This scintillating masterpiece takes place over the course of one brutal, hilarious night when college professor George and his wife, Martha, invite a young couple back for late-night drinks after a faculty party. The guests are coerced into witnessing and participating in George and Martha’s sadistic game-playing and vitriolic verbal scrapping which reaches its climax in a momentous revelation.
Colston Hall, Colston Street: Box office - 0117 922 3686.
May 31: BREAKIN’ CONVENTION. The international festival of hip hop dance theatre returns with another line-up of jaw-dropping performances by companies from around the world and around the corner. This hugely popular production is hosted and curated by UK hip hop theatre artist Jonzi D.
June 3: STAND UP FOR SLAPSTICK 3. A huge night of comedy as stand-up legends Jack Dee and Al Murray take top billing at this fundraiser to make sure Bristol’s Slapstick Festival keeps going… and growing. Tony and Jeremy Hardy also feature.
June 5: GARETH MALONE: THE LIVE TOUR. Best-known for BBC 2’s BAFTA-winning show The Choir, Malone has completed a nationwide search for accomplished young singers. Having assembled the country’s finest young talent, they are now touring the UK after releasing their debut album Voices last year.
June 13 (The Lantern) THE BEST IN UK STAND-UP - CHRIS MARTIN. Comedian Chris Martin’s star is rising, having previously supported Jack Whitehall, Russell Kane, and Milton Jones on tour and performing critically acclaimed shows at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2011, 2012 and 2013.
June 26 (The Lantern): WORBEY AND FARRELL - DEVIATIONS ON A PIANO. Worbey and Farrell present their barnstorming blend of sparky comedy and sensational piano-playing. Prepare to laugh with joy at the sheer ingenuity and style of these two masters of musical mayhem.
June 28 (The Lantern): DUMASZINHAZ BRISTOL WITH TIBOR BODOCS. Expect pub stories, politics and Woodstock humour from the Hungarian comedian. He originally trained to be an actor and teacher before joining comedy club Duma Theatre.
The Hippodrome: Box office - 0870 607 7500.
Until May 24: MATTHEW BOURNE’S SWAN LAKE. Firmly crowned as a modern day classic, Matthew Bourne’s powerful, provocative and totally original interpretation of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake has turned tradition upside down and taken the dance world by storm.
May 26-31: FAME. Based on the Oscar-winning musical film and hugely successful TV series, this brand new production will take you on a hi-octane roller coaster ride through dizzy heights and crashing lows as a group of star-struck wannabes embark on their quest for the ultimate accolade – fame.
June 1: BRUCE FORSYTH ENTERTAINS. The icon of British television whose career has spanned almost 75 years is taking part in a one-off all-singing all-dancing performance. He will be serving up some of the classic catchphrases the nation has grown so fond of.
June 2-7: BUDDY. Seen by over 22 million people worldwide and now in its 25th year, here’s another chance to experience the drama, passion and excitement of Buddy Holly’s story, from his meteoric rise to fame to his final legendary performance at The Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake, Iowa.
June 9-14: ONE MAN, TWO GUV’NORS. The National Theatre’s award-winning comedy visits as part of its biggest-ever tour of the UK. This internationally acclaimed smash-hit is a glorious celebration of British comedy - a unique, laugh-out-loud mix of satire, songs, slapstick and glittering one-liners.
June 15: SING-A-LONG-A GREASE. Ever wanted to know what it’s like to be a T-bird or a Pink Lady but never quite felt cool enough to pull it off? Well, now is your chance to don those pink jackets, grease up those quiffs and let your inhibitions go for an evening where you are the stars.
June 20/21: 51 SHADES OF MAGGIE. A spoof of the hit book Fifty Shades of Grey, this is the story of the loveable Maggie Muff and her search for love. A working-class girl, she has been let down by all the men in her life. Then she meets hunky Mr Big. Will he be the man of her dreams?
June 23-July 5: TONIGHT’S THE NIGHT. The smash hit West End musical comedy, inspired by the songs of Rod Stewart and set on the mean streets of Detroit and in the glamorous clubs of uptown LA, is an all-singing, all-dancing feel good show which has played sold-out theatres across the UK.
The Playhouse, High Street: Box office - 01934 645544.
May 22: BLESS ‘EM ALL. A tribute to our armed forces of yesterday, today and tomorrow. Featuring great songs and music of the 1940s, this is damp eye nostalgia that promises to leave everyone with a warm and sentimental glow.
May 23: NIGHTS ON BROADWAY. A fabulous tribute to the Bee Gees, featuring the Gibb brothers’ incredible songs from over four decades. The show gives the audience the experience of being at a live Bee Gees concert, with a unique blend of classic hits, acoustic medleys and dance floor favourites.
May 24: OLD MACDONALD HAD A FARM. Written especially for parents to enjoy with their children, this fun-filled farmyard tale brings to life all the best-loved characters from the original nursery rhyme along with a magical medley of games, giggles and sing-along songs.
June 5: WORBEY AND FARRELL - DEVIATIONS ON A PIANO. Worbey and Farrell present their barnstorming blend of sparky comedy and sensational piano-playing. Prepare to laugh with joy at the sheer ingenuity and style of these two masters of musical mayhem.
June 6: ROCK ‘N’ ROLL PARADISE. Now in its sixth year on the road this incredibly talented cast brings you ‘the show that never was’ in the golden era of rock and roll, with a line-up featuring Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Buddy Holly, Roy Orbison, the Big Bopper and Eddie Cochran.
June 7: SWAY DANCE 2014. An evening of dance, drama and music provided by the Sway Dancers from Hutton Moor Leisure Centre. They will be performing street, cheer, break dance, ballet, contemporary and musical theatre alongside the Mini Movers, the group’s youngest students.
June 8: TENORS UNLIMITED - THE RAT PACK OF OPERA. Join the UK’s original classical-crossover ‘man band’ for a fantastic musical journey that will move you and make you laugh in equal measure as Scott, Paul and Jem perform hits from the world of opera, musical theatre and pop.
June 12-14: THE DEVIL AT MIDNIGHT. Talking Scarlet presents Brian Clemens’ spine-tingling, psychological, morally searching and topical thriller. Andrew Paul (The Bill, Where the Heart Is) and Corrinne Wicks (Emmerdale, Doctors) head the cast.
June 15: WE SAY YEAH! Celebrate the music and hits of Cliff Richard and the Shadows from the late 1950s, when they started their career in a small coffee bar in London’s Soho, through to the major hit records of the 1970s and 80s.
June 19/20: VEGAS OR BUST. Students from the Wessex Academy of Performing Arts at Weston College will whisk you away into a world of showbiz glamour. Elvis, Beyonce, The Rat Pack, Britney Spears and Celine Dion will all be making an appearance - kind of - alongside the obligatory glitzy showgirls. June 21: COLIN FRY - THE VOICES FRM HEVEN SHOW. One of the world’s most recognised spiritualist mediums and healers, Colin’s TV series 6ixth Sense has now been broadcast worldwide for 10 years, making him one of the most popular experts in his field.
June 22: THE ILLEGAL EAGLES. Now established as the world’s greatest Eagles tribute act, The Illegal Eagles continue to thrill audiences everywhere with their extremely tight harmonies and acute attention to detail.
June 26: JAZZ DANCE COMPANY. London Studio Centre’s acclaimed company present Circus of Dreams. Be transported into a mysterious and dazzling evening of dance athleticism and an uplifting theatrical experience.
June 27: SIMON AND GARFUNKEL STORY. Direct from London’s West End, award-winning actor Dean Elliott and a full cast of performers tell the compelling story, using both original photos and film footage, of the greatest music duo of all time in this 50th anniversary celebration.
June 28: THE BILLY FURY YEARS. Take a journey through the musical career of Britain’s best loved rock ‘n’ roller. Michael King and his fantastic collection of musicians bring you an exciting two-hour show filled with Fury’s greatest hits.