All stories by Nick Smurthwaite on BroadwayStars

Friday, October 12, 2018

Oxford Playhouse: the theatre where Burton, Taylor and Dench cut their teeth by Nick Smurthwaite

It is 80 years since Oxford Playhouse started with a weekly rep, and has staged professional and student shows since. Nick Smurthwaite

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Friday, October 5, 2018

Actor Bernard Cribbins: ‘My only regret is not doing a western’ by Nick Smurthwaite

As nearly 90, pop culture’s Renaissance man has published his autobiography looking back on a career encompassing everything from Shakespeare, pop hits,

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Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Obituary: Denis Norden – ‘Witty, clipboard-clutching host of It’ll Be Alright on the Night’ by Nick Smurthwaite

Though he became nationally known in the 1980s as the witty, clipboard-clutching host of It’ll Be Alright on the Night, Denis Norden’s

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Monday, October 1, 2018

How technical training keeps up with an evolving theatre industry by Nick Smurthwaite

As backstage technology becomes ever more sophisticated, staff from leading schools tell Nick Smurthwaite how they are equipping students with the skills

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Friday, September 21, 2018

The golden age of the playbill: how the British Library is rediscovering Victorian posters by Nick Smurthwaite

The British Library owns more than 240,000 posters and playbills, in some cases more than 300 years old, but to be protected,

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Tuesday, September 18, 2018

50 years since the end of theatre censorship: how the Lord Chamberlain was given the boot by Nick Smurthwaite

Half a century on from the end of official British theatre censorship, Nick Smurthwaite looks at writers and critics who campaigned for

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Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Exclusive interview: The Young Ones’ Nigel Planer and Adrian Edmondson reunite on stage by Nick Smurthwaite

More than 35 years since The Young Ones, Adrian Edmondson and Nigel Planer are working on a stage project. They tell Nick

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Friday, September 7, 2018

The Goon Show returns: how a new play is celebrating Milligan and co by Nick Smurthwaite

The Goon Show burst on to the airwaves in 1951 and changed comedy forever. As a stage version of the classic radio

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Friday, August 31, 2018

Singular talent: the one-act plays that helped Harold Pinter find his voice by Nick Smurthwaite

To mark the 10th anniversary of the playwright’s death, Pinter devotee Jamie Lloyd has assembled a stellar cast to bring all 20

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Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Actor and writer Brendan Cowell: ‘I fell to pieces every night playing Galileo. It was terrifying’ by Nick Smurthwaite

The Sydney-born actor and writer made his name in London by following his performance in Yerma with an equally acclaimed turn as

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Thursday, August 16, 2018

RSC automation technician Simon Crowley: ‘I thrive on the pressure when big audiences turn up’ by Nick Smurthwaite

Automation specialist Simon Crowley is responsible for ensuring the scene changes at the Royal Shakespeare Company are seamless. He tells Nick Smurthwaite

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Could Emilia Bassano, the ‘woman ignored by history’, be Shakespeare’s Dark Lady? by Nick Smurthwaite

Historians have argued whether poet Emilia Bassano was the muse of Shakespeare’s Sonnets. Nick Smurthwaite finds out more about the inspiration for

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Monday, August 13, 2018

Cilla the Musical designer Gary McCann: ‘Classist attitudes still exist in UK’ by Nick Smurthwaite

Gary McCann is one of UK’s most in-demand designers, working on shows from touring musicals to international operas. He tells Nick Smurthwaite

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Friday, August 10, 2018

Riddle’s Court: the venerable Edinburgh house that became a hotbed of talent by Nick Smurthwaite

Recently reopened after painstaking restoration, Riddle’s Court has had many guises in its 400-year history, from grand residence to 19th-century slum, before

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Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Obituary: William Hobbs – pioneering fight director for stage and screen by Nick Smurthwaite

William ‘Bill’ Hobbs, who has died aged 79, practically invented the modern-day fight director’s role. A champion fencer and co-founder of the

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Obituary: Manchester Royal Exchange co-founder Braham Murray by Nick Smurthwaite

One of the hardest working and most influential British directors of the past 50 years, Braham Murray was the last surviving member

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Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Su Pollard on Edinburgh Fringe debut: ‘I’m very happy to play myself, but I’ll give most things a go’ by Nick Smurthwaite

Having begun her career in Nottingham’s working men’s clubs, Su Pollard made her name in a series of 1980s sitcoms. Now she

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Friday, July 27, 2018

Manchester Royal Exchange founder Braham Murray dies aged 75 by Nick Smurthwaite

Braham Murray, the longest serving artistic director of the Royal Exchange Manchester, has died suddenly aged 75. Murray devoted most of his

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How Margo Lion, the real-life Sally Bowles, is being brought back to the stage by Nick Smurthwaite

In the 1920s and 1930s, provocative chanteuse Margo Lion wowed the Berlin cabaret scene before she fled to Paris. Nick Smurthwaite meets

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Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Obituary: Hugh Whitemore – ‘Breaking the Code playwright’ by Nick Smurthwaite

Like many other playwrights and screenwriters, Hugh Whitemore, originally wanted to be an actor. He trained at RADA, where one of his

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Monday, July 16, 2018

How Shakespeare Schools Foundation is ‘turning children’s lives around’ by Nick Smurthwaite

This month, Shakespeare Schools Foundation was gifted a Praemium Imperiale grant to boost its work with marginalised groups. Nick Smurthwaite looks at

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Friday, July 13, 2018

Alan Ayckbourn’s first ‘happy couple’ return to Scarborough stage in Joking Apart by Nick Smurthwaite

Later this month Joking Apart, Ayckbourn’s 21st play, returns to the Stephen Joseph Theatre – 30 years after its premiere there. In

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Monday, July 9, 2018

Musical director Gareth Valentine: ‘The more energy you give out in the pit, the more you’ll get back’ by Nick Smurthwaite

After starting out as a boy soprano singing at eisteddfods in north Wales, Gareth Valentine went on to become a top musical

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Friday, July 6, 2018

‘Fuck the critics’ – remembering the pithy advice of fearsome agent Peggy Ramsay by Nick Smurthwaite

Legendary writers’ agent Peggy Ramsay was known for offering forthright guidance to those she represented. A collection of her correspondence is a

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Friday, June 29, 2018

Grandes dames of the theatre connect past and present by Nick Smurthwaite

Firm friends for decades, Eileen Atkins, Judi Dench, Maggie Smith and Joan Plowright relive career triumphs and disasters in Roger Michell’s documentary, a

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Friday, June 22, 2018

The unlikely pair who built the Minack Theatre return to its stage by Nick Smurthwaite

When the wealthy Rowena Cade wanted an outdoor theatre for her amateur production of The Tempest, Cornish gardener Billy Rawlings made it

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Monday, June 18, 2018

Katherine Kingsley: ‘Dusty went through very, very difficult times. I want to go there’ by Nick Smurthwaite

With a string of stellar performances already illuminating her CV, the actor tackles her most challenging role yet as Dusty Springfield. Nick

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Friday, June 15, 2018

Meet company manager Ruth Morgan – the beating heart of Birmingham Rep by Nick Smurthwaite

Birmingham Rep’s company manager is a vital link between the production department, creatives and performers, while also managing the venue’s community shows.

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East End hero Joan Littlewood brought back to life at the RSC by Nick Smurthwaite

The revolutionary director behind Theatre Workshop at Theatre Royal Stratford East, Joan Littlewood, will be played by seven different actors on the

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Friday, June 1, 2018

The pride of reinventing Miss Jean Brodie by Nick Smurthwaite

For David Harrower, adapting Muriel Spark’s 1961 novel has been a project that has taken more than a decade of his time. Nick

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Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Actor and producer Oliver King: ‘Wouldn’t it be great to see more risks taken in the West End’ by Nick Smurthwaite

The producer who brought a season of Russian plays to Theatre Royal Haymarket is back with Tartuffe. He tells Nick Smurthwaite about

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