From a journey into the world of Trainspotting to a family panto, there's lots going on...
Trainspotting Live, The Assembly, Leamington, February 6 to 10
Audiences are invited into the world of Irvine Welsh’s Trainspotting in an immersive theatre production. Against a dynamic soundscape of ‘80s dance music, the stories of a group of friends living through the Edinburgh heroin scene - Renton, Tommy, Sick Boy, Begbie and Alison - are brought to life with humour, poetry and provocatively graphic scenes. The production aims to capture the passion and the controversy of the novel, which became a globally successful film, and repackages it into a full-throttle show in which the audience are literally part of the action, including the notorious ‘Worst Toilet in Scotland’ scene.
Treasure Island and The Little Mermaid, Grange Hall, Southam, February 2 to 4
Dive into an ocean adventure of pirates and mermaids with a pantomimic fusion of two much-loved stories as the Grange Hall is transformed by the Grange Players. Jim and Dame Hawkins team up with Squire Trelawney and his son Jam after finding Billy Bones’ treasure map. They hire a ship to search for gold buried on Treasure Island. Little do they know their newly recruited crew are pirates, led by the devious Long John Silver and Short John Gold.
Beneath the waves lives a young mermaid. Unhappy with her life as a mermaid princess, she swims to the surface. Rising above the waves she falls instantly in love – with a pirate. Ignoring the pleas of her family and best friend, iForgot the Goldfish, she visits the evil sea witch to be transformed into a human. This modern mix of two timeless stories is filled with music, explosions, fun and humour.
Shazia Mirza: From St Tropez with Love, Spa Centre, Leamington, February 3
Following her critically acclaimed 2016, 103 date sell-out international run of The Kardashians Made Me Do It and fresh from being ravaged by hunger and sand-flies on Channel 4’s Celebrity Island, Shazia Mirza returns with her new show. It’s billed as a show about ‘lies and truth, nudity and the periodic table’.
Absent Friends, Talisman Theatre, Kenilworth, February 5 to 10
Alan Ayckbourn’s classic comedy Absent Friends takes to the stage in Kenilworth next week. It tells how a woman named Diana has organised a tea party to cheer up an old friend, Colin, whose fiancée has drowned recently. Her husband, Paul, and his employee, John, are unenthusiastic and the third friend, Gordon, is absent due to illness. But Gordon’s wife, the long-suffering Marge, turns up, as does John’s wife Evelyn, along with their very young baby. The group is a powder-keg, threatening to explode just as Colin’s arrival forces everyone to be on their best behaviour. But his apparent happiness, despite his loss, highlights the misery of those around him and his attempts to sort out their problems only builds more tension and conflict...
The Sound of Music, Belgrade Theatre, Coventry, February 6 to 10
One of the world’s favourite musicals comes to Coventry.