Look no further for some “proper stand up” than to Manchester’s finest and legendary comedian Justin Moorhouse, as he continues to corner the market as the unfalteringly charming master of laugh-out-loud comedy. He reflects on everyday life subjects such as holidays, relationships and being a dad, whilst throughout he is all about the warm hearted, soulful humour.
Justin hosts his own show. Tea Time with Justin Moorhouse, daily on Manchester’s Sony Award winning radio station Key 103 and his brilliant BBC Radio 4 sitcom Everybody Quite Likes Justin will be broadcast from 29 June for four weeks. TV credits include playing Young Kenny in the award-winning Phoenix Nights, Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Roadshow, The Charlotte Church Show, 8 Out of 10 Cats, The Grumpy Guides and Shameless. Justin also appeared in the 2009 Ken Loach feature film Looking for Eric.
If you are (or know someone who is) female aged between 8 and 15 years old and talented at singing, acting and dancing then the Oldham Coliseum Theatre wants to hear from you.
The Coliseum is looking to recruit two teams of eight girls to perform in this year’s pantomime, Dick Whittington.
Auditions will take place on the Sunday 18 September at the Coliseum. Please ask your parent or guardian to call 0161 624 1731 and speak to Anne-Louise to reserve your place.
Auditions will be held in height order so please have your details ready when you call and good luck!
Matt Healy and Roxanne Pallett star in Amanda Whittington’s heart-rending Satin ‘n’ Steel at the Oldham Coliseum Theatre this April.
Amanda Whittington’s play tells the story of jaded veteran performer Vince Steel who has been working the Northern club circuit for years, but his career has never quite reached the dizzy heights he dreamed of. When he meets aspiring karaoke singer Teena, he takes her on as his protégée in an attempt to add some glamour to his act, and it works.
As singing duo Satin ‘n’ Steel, Vince and Teena look like they’re heading straight to the top. Together they feel like they can achieve anything, and the pair fall deeply in love. But just when it seems all Teena’s dreams will come true, Vince’s guilty secret threatens to burst their bubble and shatter everything they have worked so hard for.
Amanda’s work has been performed at the Coliseum before, Be My Baby was here in 1998 and two other Coliseum shows - Saturday Night and Sunday Morning (2006) and Ladies Down Under (2007) – were both written by Amanda.
Roxanne will be playing Teena Satin, one half of Satin ‘n’ Steel. Roxanne found fame as the feisty Jo Stiles inEmmerdale. Her portrayal as a victim of domestic violence during Jo’s relationship with Andy Sugden earned her six nominations including Best Actress and Best Storyline. Her recent stage work includes The Vagina Monologues and the lead in the national tour of Rock Around the Clock. Roxanne also wowed audiences on the 2009 series of Dancing on Ice.
Matt will be completing the twosome by playing Vince Steel. Matt became a household name in 2004 asEmmerdale’s scheming Matthew King until his untimely death in 2008. Matt’s theatre credits include Abigail’s Party at the Coliseum in 2003, Inside Job (2010 Tour) and The Murder Game (The King’s Head, 2009).
Hilarious and heart-rending, and packed with hope, jealousy and love, Satin ‘n’ Steel is an exploration of the cruel realities lurking behind the glamour of show business.
Photos by Ian Tilton
The theatre will receive £600,000 in funding from ACE for 1212/1213 with inflationary increases for the subsequent two years.
Chief Executive and Artistic Director Kevin Shaw said: “I am delighted that the Arts Council has demonstrated such confidence in the Coliseum, enabling us to continue and develop our work both on stage and in the community. This is tempered by the fact that some very tough decisions have had to be made about levels of funding for our colleagues across the country.”
In addition Executive Director David Martin commented: “This is excellent news for the Oldham Coliseum. The increase in core funding that has been awarded to the theatre is a testament to the skill and dedication of our staff team, volunteers and trustees. It is also recognition of the position of the Coliseum in the cultural life of the borough of Oldham and the North West.”
Laurence Brewer, from Bolton, is using pioneering technology to record 1600 phrases and sentences that will enable him to preserve his voice for years to come.
If he completes the recordings he will be the first known MND sufferer in the UK to successfully bank his voice using the software – and it will enable him to leave a lasting legacy for his 13 month old son Stan.
His story is told on Inside Out North West, BBC One on Monday (March 7th at 7.30pm).
Laurence, who works at Salford University, was diagnosed with the degenerative illness three years ago and told that he may only have between two and five years to live.
There is no cure for the disease, which results in the loss of mobility in the limbs and difficulties with swallowing, breathing and speech. In many cases, MND sufferers lose their speech completely.
Many use a voice synthesiser, choosing from a selection of pre-recorded voices to communicate with – the same type of technology used by Professor Stephen Hawking. But the software Laurence is using is different in that it enables users to communicate using recordings of their own voice.
For Laurence, 43, and his partner, Danijela, it’s a major concern that their young son could grow up not knowing his father’s voice.
He is now working tirelessly in his spare time to record the 1600 sentences and phrases the software needs to create a whole database of speech – all in Laurence’s voice. It’s a long and time consuming process.
Laurence says: “I think personally that I wouldn’t be doing it if it wasn’t for Stan. I wouldn’t have that motivation, I really don’t. Knowing that he’s around…passing that on, it’s a key driver for me.
“If my voice goes within the next six months he might not recognise me, recognise my voice particularly, and also in five years time if I have the voice banked then he can hear what I sounded like or an idea of what I would have sounded like. So it’s a memory.”
“I quite like the idea that the technology’s not very advanced, it’s not word perfect and I imagine that the final outcome will be a bit like a Lancastrian dalek which makes me smile quite a lot. I quite like that idea, that Stan will hear that and it’ll be part of me and part of my cultural identity.”
It was while researching the disease on the internet that Laurence’s partner, Danijela, came across the new type of voice software, called ‘Model Talker’.
Danijela says: “I learnt that of all the losses with MND, that most people who have been affected with MND have felt that losing their voice was the biggest loss. It did come as a surprise because I felt that perhaps losing ones mobility or being unable to breathe properly would be more devastating, but it seemed to be something which is very closely tied up with ones sense of identity.”
She explains why recording Laurence’s voice matters so much to the family: “Laurence used to play and sing in a band, so his voice is important to him and I cannot imagine not having his voice around and I would certainly like Stan to know the timbre of Laurence’s voice in some form. I don’t know what kind of quality we’re going to end up with this product but it’s a try, it’s doing something positive and being proactive and just allowing Stan to have that part of his father even after he’s gone.”
Laurence’s story is told on BBC Inside Out North West, BBC One, Monday, March 7th at 7.30pm.
Viewers outside the North West can view the programme on digital channel 978 or at www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer
The TV soap Emmerdale is well known for giving actors a leg up with their careers. Two such actors will be performing in Satin ‘n’ Steel an Amanda Whittington play at the Oldham Coliseum from 14 April – 7 May.
Roxanne Pallett and Oldhamer Matt Healy will play Teena and Vince respectively in a story of a jaded veteran performer (Vince) who as been “doing” the Northern club circuit for years, but his career has never quite reached the dizzy heights he dreamed of. When he meets aspiring karaoke singer Teena, he takes her on to add some glamour to his act. They fall in love and just as it seems that Teena’s dreams will come true, Vince’s secret threatens to shatter everything they have worked so hard for.
So, if you fancy a night out you can book your ticket on Oldham Coliseum’s website.
The little known story of arguably one of the most important figures in the history of 20th Century European football is revealed on BBC One on Monday.
Jack Reynolds’ name seems to have been lost in the mist of time yet his arrival at Ajax in 1915 changed the club forever and created a legacy that still resonates today. His remarkable story is told on Late Kick Off (North West) on BBC One, Monday, February 14th at 11.05pm.
A former Rochdale and Manchester City player, not much is known about why Whitefield-born Jack left Manchester but after brief spells in Switzerland and Germany he took over a Dutch side which had never won a thing – Ajax Amsterdam.
But that all changed with the arrival of Jack who is today regarded as the club’s founding father. Within two years he had led the club to their first ever trophy, the Dutch Cup, and went on to win a total of 8 League Championships during his 27-year association with the club.
But his legacy was about much more than silverware. Jack was a football pioneer and it’s said that he helped to revolutionise how the game was played.
Wim Schooevart, 94, knew Jack because both his father and uncle played for the first team. Wim, still the Ajax archivist, says Reynolds transformed the club by introducing wingers, something they had never been seen before.
He says: “Ajax always played football in the same way because of Jack Reynolds, always with an outside left and an outside right and always open play. He’d say, ‘left half to the outside right, right half to the outside left’, always long balls.”
Dutch author, Menno Pot, says Jack Reynolds created a lasting legacy, not only with the Ajax philosophy, but also with their world renowned youth development programme that he created.
“Ajax would never have become the force that they are now without Jack Reynolds. There’s no way. Basically everything that this club is about and everything that this club is known for was invented and introduced by Jack Reynolds.”
Jack retired from management in 1947 to run a tobacconists shop, but his football methods live on and are still practiced today at Holland’s biggest, most successful club.
His standing within Ajax is obvious to this day. The Jack Reynolds lobby greets VIP guests to the Amsterdam Arena and is home to the plaque which used to grace the stand named after him at the old De Meer ground.
Late Kick Off has also obtained never-before-seen footage from 1961 – club film of a special reception to mark Jack’s 80th birthday.
Late Kick Off (North West), BBC One, Monday, February 14 at 11.05pm. Viewers outside the regions can view the programme on BBC iPlayer www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer
They are lending their skills to help improve the ambience of both Littleborough and Smithy Bridge stations.
Stuart Carmichael Secretary of Friends of Littleborough Stations said:
“One of our objectives is to make our local stations pleasant and welcoming gateways to the beautiful areas of Hollingworth Lake, Littleborough and the Rochdale Canal. By involving local schoolchildren in poetry and art projects we want them to feel part of a community that rates rail travel highly.
“The first mosaic, which consists of four panels totalling five metres in length has been organised by Artworks Co-op based in Littleborough and created by the children of Holy Trinity CofE Primary School, Alice Ingham RC Primary School, St.Andrew’s CofE Primary School and an ad hoc community group meeting at St.Andrew’s Church, Dearnley.
“Then senior citizens will work with local children on the construction of the fourth panel during school half term in February. We will then frame the mosaic and waterproof it ready for erection on Littleborough Station. After which we are hoping to work with the other local primary schools to design and build one for Smithy Bridge Station.”
Looking for an entertaining evening on a cold winter’s evening? The latest at the Oldham Coliseum will certainly warm you up.
Private Lives, one of Noel Coward’s most popular plays, is a clever comedy about the relationship between love, jealousy and petty violence. Strange combination you may say but in a sense this 1930’s play reflects those couples that divorce in haste and fall in love again. Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton come to mind.
The Oldham Coliseum and Harrogate Theatres partnership deliver a cracking evenings entertainment with this classy performance. In fact, back in the 1930’s this play may have been regarded as risqué by some.
Both ex’s (Elyot and Amanda) have remarried after being divorced for five years and find themselves on honeymoon with their new partners at the same hotel. They meet and it’s not long before they realise they are still in love.
Morrison, petite in stature, gives a big performance as the manipulating and temperamental Amanda who, after meeting Elyot, decides to join him in running away from her new, boring, old fashioned husband, Victor, played by Christopher Naylor.
Simmons (Elyot) at first sight is a charming fellow but underneath is a macho bully who believes that ‘women should be struck regularly’ but on the flip side shows he can be gentle and considerate when, in the opening scene with his new wife Sybil (Maeve Larking), he tries to put her mind at rest by confirming his love for her.
The costumes are well chosen; particularly the glamorous outfits for Amanda who looks fabulous in the vintage wear. The 1930’s set with the wind-up gramophone complements the cast.
An absolutely delightful play that is full of Noel Coward’s recognisable spirit and which is performed effortlessly.
Private Lives is running until 19 February so plenty of time to catch it.
Written by Noel Coward
Directed by Robin Herford
Designed by Michael Holt
Louise – Tess Alshibaya
Sibyl – Maeve Larkin
Amanda – Jackie Morrison
Victor – Christopher Naylor
Elyot – James Simmons
We are sure you will agree that it is certainly a wonderful cake – shame to spoilt it by eating it.