Tag Archives: Event

mid * point: The Mikado at the Blue Orange Theatre

G & S at the Blue Orange


Thursday 5th June at 7.45pm

Friday 6th June at 7.45pm

Saturday 7th June at 7.45pm

Tuesday 10th June at 7.45pm

Wednesday 11th June at 7.45pm

Thursday 12th June at 7.45pm

Friday 13th June at 7.45pm

Saturday 14th June at 2.30pm

Saturday 14th June at 7.45pm


The Blue Orange Theatre presents another first – Gilbert and Sullivan’s eternal favourite THE MIKADO! This chamber version using six actors – multi-rolling, will be fast, funny, and thoroughly entertaining having all the hall marks of G&S.


Nanki-Poo, disguised as a wandering minstrel, arrives in the town of Titipu in search of his true love Yum-Yum. He is devastated to learn that his rival, the prisoner Ko-Ko, has been pardoned and appointed to the rank of Lord High Executioner. Ko-Ko has troubles of his own. Nobody has been executed in Titipu for a year and the Mikado of Japan is threatening to reduce the town to a village, bringing disgrace and ruin to the region. Seeing Nanki-Poo contemplating suicide, Ko-Ko seizes the opportunity to strike a bargain, a one-month marriage to Yum-Yum in exchange for Nanki-Poo’s head! And to top it all Katisha arrives to claim Nanki-Poo’s hand in marriage.


“If You Want to Know Who We Are”, “Three Little Maids”, “A Wand’ring Minstrel”, “I’ve Got a Little List”, “Willow, Tit Willow”, “Behold the Lord High-Executioner”, and “Here’s A How-De-Do” are just some of the favourite songs from the show.

mid * point: George’s Marvellous Medicine at The Blue Orange Theatre

Thursday 1st May at 7.30pm

Friday 2nd May at 7.30pm

Saturday 3rd May at 2.30pm

Saturday 3rd May at 7.30pm

Tuesday 6th May at 7.30pm

Wednesday 7th May at 7.30pm

Thursday 8th May at 7.30pm

Friday 9th May at 7.30pm

Saturday 10th May at 2.30pm

Saturday 10th May at 7.30pm




GEORGE is concocting a special Blue Orange Theatre Medicine as they prepare to present Roald Dahl’s GEORGE’S MARVELLOUS MEDICINE, This is one of seven Roald Dahl stage plays based on his children’s novels adapted by David Wood – including THE TWITS, THE BFG, FANTASTIC MR FOX, and JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH.

Loved by children, worldwide, Dahl’s tale is of a boy who creates a special medicine to cure his Grandma of her grumpiness that has unexpected consequences not only for his Grandma but the family too! Be prepared for laughter, fun and giant chickens!

mid * point: Page Talk young writers festival

Writing West Midlands are currently looking for 25 young people aged between 12 and 16 who have a passion for creative writing to join the Page Talk Collective.

Working with the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, Writing West Midlands will be running three creative writing festivals called Page Talk in 2014 to further engage and develop young people’s writing skills. The first, Page Talk: Life as We Know It, is hosted by the Royal Shakespeare Company. The young people involved will work with established writers from the UK to engage with a collection of weekly half-day writing workshops to produce creative literature responding to the theme of ‘Happiness’ that will be showcased at Page Talk; Life as we know it on June 8th 2014.

Participation in this project is completely free so if you have or know somebody who has a passion for creative writing from poetry to short stories and journalism, we want to hear from you! Young writers must be free to take part in the workshops from 11am – 3pm each Saturday in May and free for the day of the festival on Sunday 8th June, 11am – 6pm. If you would like to take part in Life As We Know It, or know somebody who will please send an email via parent or guardian to hayley@writingwestmidlands.org. Deadline to apply is Monday 21 April, 5pm.

mid * point: Pentabus 40th Birthday Season

The national rural theatre company celebrates 40 years of plays about the rural world

  • National tour of Every Brilliant Thing by Duncan Macmillan, co-produced with Paines Plough
  • Announcing world premiere of Each Slow Dusk by 2014 Pinter Commission playwriting award winner Rory Mullarkey
  • Pentabus Young Writers Festival
  • New Channel 4 writer in residence Simon Longman

Formed in Shropshire in 1974, “The Pentabus Concept” toured new plays to five counties in the West Midlands, using, of course, a bus. Forty years later this cutting edge company re-imagines traditional touring models to stage work that takes a variety of forms to appear in pubs, caves, village halls, theatres, festivals and fields to reach out and connect with rural audiences nationwide. With a new team including Artistic Director Elizabeth Freestone and Managing Director Rachael Griffin in the driving seat for 2014, the 40th birthday season brings a new opportunity to reconsider what it is to be a rural theatre company in a connected age, and take advantage of the extraordinary creative opportunities for writers and artists that lie beyond the city limits.

Artistic Director Elizabeth Freestone said: “We’re celebrating turning 40 with a jam-packed year that shows off the best new writing from and about the contemporary countryside. I’m incredibly proud to be launching the careers of eight new playwrights through our Young Writers Festival. They’ve written about unemployment and ghosts, isolation and sexuality, love and ambition. Their plays demonstrate a force of rural energy hungry to explore the things that are really going on in the countryside. I’m equally chuffed that we’re also working with established playwriting talents Rory Mullarkey and Duncan Macmillan. Rory’s play is a powerful story of conflict that will tour village halls and theatres all over the country, renewing our commitment to take the best new theatre to isolated communities. Duncan’s play is a co-production with our friends at Paines Plough. With both companies turning 40 this year it feels like an apt moment to come together and do what we do best – produce and tour quality new theatre. With 10 new plays by 10 outstanding writers touring all over the country, this year is going to be a blast.”

Pentabus’s 40th Birthday Programme Highlights include:

Every Brilliant Thingby Duncan Macmillan                                                                 Touring from 19 May

Paines Plough also see their 40th birthday this year, and Pentabus’s first collaboration with the company considers two big issues for rural communities: loneliness and isolation. This, funny, charming, moving and formally innovative new play about isolation and the lengths we go to for those we love makes each night unique, as the audience slowly form a community over the course of the evening, and end by telling the story for themselves.

The event is performed and hosted by comedian, musician and performer Jonny Donahoe.

Directed by George Perrin | Performed by Jonny Donahoe

Co-produced by Paines Plough, in association with Nabokov and the Jersey Arts Trust

Pentabus Young Writers Group:

Young Writers Festival (1st – 5th July) at Ludlow Festival & Stories From The Street     14th June to 6th July


Last year Pentabus ran free playwriting workshops in schools and colleges and selected 8 promising playwrights aged between 16 and 25 to establish the company’s first Young Writers Group. The writers meet regularly and take part in workshops with professional playwrights, actors, directors and theatre makers, including Phil Porter, Simon Longman and Francesca Millican-Slater. All of the writers have written a play which Pentabus will produce, presented at the first ever Young Writers Festival from 1st – 5th July, set in a pop up theatre venue in Ludlow created especially for the event.


The writers have also written short audio pieces in response to particular places in Ludlow. These Stories From The Street audio tours will run through the duration of the festival, consisting of 8 short pieces with tales of dragon slayers on the bridge to faith by the church. The festival is the culmination of the first year of Pentabus’s Young Writers Programme, which is open to any young person living in a rural area who wants to write for theatre. A new group will be recruited over the summer to start work in autumn.


Each Slow Dusk by Rory Mullarkey, directed by Elizabeth Freestone                     Touring Oct – Nov 2014

A thirty date tour with an innovative design set to transform village halls from Cornwall to Kent, Cumbria and everything in between, 2014 Pinter Commission playwriting award winner Rory Mullarkey’s piece considers the legacy of conflict from WW1 to Afghanistan to Flanders, and how we remember events by the art that follows, seeing the past through the filter of poetry. The title references the work of one of Shropshire’s favorite sons, Wilfred Owen.

Rory Mullarkey recently won the 2014 Pinter Commission, the Royal Court Theatre’s annual commission for new work. Previous winners for the Commission, previously known as the Harold Pinter Playwright’s award, include Nick Payne and Anders Lustgarten. On announcing the award, Vicky Featherstone, Artistic Director of the Royal Court commented Rory is “…a remarkable writer – an original fresh voice, with a sharp political edge.” His recent play, Cannibals, opened in April 2013 at the Royal Exchange Manchester to high critical acclaim, following his Decade for Headlong in 2011. He is also currently under commission to Headlong and the National Theatre.

Fun Palaces

In their birthday year Pentabus will also be taking part in the nationwide Fun Palaces adventure on the 4th and 5th October as they open up their doors and offer an exciting artistic weekend for the local Shropshire community, as well as transporting 40 years’ worth of scripts, photos and company records into a public archive facility in Shrewsbury, which will be available to view from May 2014 in person and online by the autumn.

Channel 4 Writer in Residence | Simon Longman

Simon Longman won a bursary from Channel 4 to spend the year with Pentabus as writer in residence. Over the next twelve months he’ll work on a new play, read incoming scripts and immerse himself in the life of the company as the recipient of one of this prestigious bursary. He will also curate the Pentabus Young Writers Festival.


Simon comments: “as a writer, having the support and opportunity to work with and write for Pentabus is a massive honour. The company’s commitment to new and exciting work is inspiring. The range of places the company have visited, from village halls to theatres, pubs to caves is amazing, and to have that much longevity and history, considering all the cuts to arts funding, is staggering.”

http://www.pentabus.co.uk | @PentabusTheatre |www.facebook.com/pentabustheatre https://www.youtube.com/user/PentabusTheatre

Company Information

Artistic Director Elizabeth Freestone                  Managing Director Rachael Griffin

mid * point: The Social Exchange – apologies for cross posting

On Wednesday 23rd April Beat Freeks are running an exciting event in partnership with mac Birmingham and UnLtd at mac from 3 – 8pm called The Social Exchange.

The event is a celebration of social entrepreneurs, talented young creatives and all of the great social action initiatives popping up across the West Midlands by and for young people! There will be performances, showcases, a marketplace with regional and national organisations, exhibitions, workshops in everything creative from storytelling to street drumming to photography as well as social enterprise workshops on sustainability and having impact through business.

Beat Freeks are really excited about this great free event and would like to invite you to be a part of the day!

There are sill a few spaces for stallholders. To have a space to exhibit your social enterprise, or if you have opportunities to offer to young people, then email Jerrel Jackson jerrel.jackson@macarts.co.uk by Wednesday 16th April 2014 at 5pm.

Please send the following information to any young people you work with:

Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/285041351654699/?fref=ts

Eventbrite link: thesocialexchange2014.eventbrite.co.uk

Twitter Hashtag: #socialexchangeWM (or #LivingIt or #NextGenBrum)

If you’d like to be involved in other ways, possibly offering a ‘Soapbox’ talk or offering some freebies for the Digital Goodiebags, just drop Laura Yates an email at laura@beatfreeks.com


Please forward on to any contacts you feel would benefit from this opportunity.


We look forward to seeing you on the 23rd!

mid * point: Toadally Free Improv Comedy for April – and we’re not fooling!

Don’t be an April Fool -

 - make sure you catch Toadally Free Improv Comedy from Box of Frogs on Monday April 21st.

Free Form Frogs – members of Box of Frogs workshop - present another overdose of their inimitable brand of high-octane improvised nonsense from audience suggestions, on Monday April 21st at the Blue Orange Theatre. 

All your favourite improv games, unrehearsed and improvised entirely live. No-one knows what will happen, least of all us! Expect to laugh, expect to be amazed – but most of all expect the unexpected.

Absolutely free, with our usual cast iron guarantee – “laugh, or your money back!” (but donations always welcome)

Monday April 21st, Blue Orange Theatre, 7.30pm.  Come early and buy a drink.

Tickets just £0!  For more information, contact The Blue Orange Theatre 

mid * point: ATRESBANDES Theatre Company to premiere new work at mac

BE Festival 2012 winners ATRESBANDES are back in Birmingham with their new piece, Locus Amoenus, which has been created in residence at mac, in Birmingham. They begin their final residency on 17th April and the finished work will premiere on 30th April as part of mac’s Exit Strategy season on death and loss. Locus Amoenus explores the idea of paradise through the last hour in the lives of three people travelling on a train that is about to crash. What thoughts go through the minds of people who don’t know that they are about to die?
ATRESBANDES are rapidly establishing a reputation as creators of sharp, perceptive work for international audiences. They have just completed a three week run of their award winning piece Solfatara at Circol Maldà in Barcelona and which will touring the UK in October, supported by Arts Council England.

Locus Amoenus – 30th April, 7.30pm
Tickets: http://macbirmingham.co.uk/event/locus-amoenus/


mid * point: CircusMASH Showcase Fundraiser!

Welcome to the CircusMASH Showcase Fundraiser! As many of you know, we have been searching for the perfect home for CircusMASH for over a year and guess what…? We have found it!!

As we continue to grow and make circus more accessible to the public, we want to create further opportunities for adults and children to explore physical and mental challenges in a safe and professional environment. Our next big step is to develop a community space in which all aspects of CircusMASH will be brought together. Our plans within this new space include developing our current programmes to accommodate the members of our communities and draw in professional development from around the UK. This would be a community centre unlike anything else in Birmingham… It will be our regions first and only Circus School ran by experienced professionals!

Our Showcase Fundraiser will include several circus performances, performances from other local groups in our region and loads of activities to help us raise the £25,000 we need to renovate our new home in Kings Heath.

Join us on the 25th of April from 6-10pm at Stciky Toffee Dance Studio, 5 Lower Trinity St Digbeth B9 4AG, for a night of amazing entertainment and a taste of what CircusMASH is all about. The event is free to the public, but we are trying to raise money, so donations are much appreciated. Thank you and we hope to see you there!

mid * point: Spectra – Save The Date

Fri 9 May | 2pm & 7pm | Theatre| Free


Spectra is a new performance project created in partnership between Kate DeRight, mac birmingham and young people & staff from Queen Alexandra College.  On Friday, 9 May 2014, at 2pm and 7pm, Spectra will premiere an original piece of performance, incorporating physical theatre, dance, live music – and a picnic.  Drawing on the different and exceptional abilities of its combined professional and community cast, this work invites its audience to join in a celebration of the challenges and joys of connecting to one another.  Spectra has been made possible through funding from Arts Council England and mac’s Next Generation programme. For more information, please contact katederight@gmail.com.

mid * point: Hop Down to the Blue Orange for Toadally Free Comedy!

Hop Down to the Blue Orange Theatre

 - for Toadally Free Improv Comedy from Box of Frogs on Monday March 17th.

Free Form Frogs – members of Box of Frogs workshop - present another overdose of their inimitable brand of high-octane improvised nonsense from audience suggestions, on Monday March 17th at the Blue Orange Theatre.

All your favourite improv games, unrehearsed and improvised entirely live. No-one knows what will happen, least of all us! Expect to laugh, expect to be amazed – but most of all expect the unexpected.

Absolutely free, with our usual cast iron guarantee – “laugh, or your money back!” (but donations always welcome)

Monday March 17th, Blue Orange Theatre, 7.30pm.  Come early and buy a drink.

Tickets just £0!  For more information, contact The Blue Orange Theatre