York theatre blog: Shows to light up October

Bassianus dies in the Smooth Faced Gentlemen's production of Titus Andronicus
2 Oct 2013 @ 11.03 am
| News
Bassianus dies in the Smooth Faced Gentlemen's production of Titus Andronicus
Bassianus dies in the Smooth Faced Gentlemen’s production of Titus Andronicus

andy-curry-headshotTheatre blogger (and new dad!) Andy Curry picks out shows which will brighten up the gloomier October nights

As the dark nights begin to draw in and the distant buzz of festivals begins to fade, it seems that the theatre scene of York starts to fire back up again. Not that it was ever particularly quiet!

The big show literally hitting the streets is Blood + Chocolate, an absolutely fascinating collaboration between Pilot Theatre, Slung Low and York Theatre Royal.

No ordinary play, Blood + Chocolate will take place on the very streets of York, with a cast of over 200 telling the story of York’s chocolate factories and the intrinsic role they played during the First World War.

The audience are guided through the streets of York, watching the stories unfold at various landmarks, accompanied by headphone audio. A truly multimedia and epic scale proposition.

See How They Run


Also from Theatre Royal – and coming on very high recommendation – is See How They Run – Philip King’s classic family-farce. We’re hitting the Second World War this time, with a sleepy village turned upside down by mistaken identities, enemy invasion and utter chaos.

It’s got the fabulous Michael Lambourne in it too so I’m sold.

Titus Andronicus

Whilst I try and keep this column to local companies and productions, there are sometimes visiting productions that truly deserve a mention – and Smooth Faced GentlemensTitus Andronicus is one such show.

I’ve heard nothing but raves from Fringe festival goers, returning with sparkling eyed love for this all-female group’s interpretation of one of Shakespeare’s goriest and most challenging plays. I’d urge you to see this.

  • Titus Andronicus is at York Theatre Royal for one night, October 17
  • More details on the theatre website


Last but by no means least is Terminal from Whiteface Theatre.

Writer and actor Gemma Head has been building an enviable reputation as a powerful, dark and comic voice in new writing theatre – most recently with call-centre comedy Dial and revisionist history Dead Man’s Shoes.

Never afraid to run headlong into black as night comic subject matter, her company Whiteface Theatre return to York with Terminal. Thought-provoking and absurd, this is the darkly comic imagining of a future where people can legally end their own life.

It makes chilling yet hilarious comment on the complexion of our care industries, and asks if Britain – as a nation bent on profit – can really be trusted to tackle one of the most important humanitarian issues of our time.

Simply going from the basis of her previous productions – this is utterly essential!

And with that – don’t let SAD hit you too hard, go out there and support local talent and keep me informed if you have any news or productions you’d like to tell me about for November.