Jason Blooms at Palace

Manchester comedian Jason Manford joins a star-studded cast of West End performers when The Producers returns to Manchester Palace Theatre next week.

Saturday, 14th March 2015, 2:00 pm
Comedian: Jason Manford
Comedian: Jason Manford

He plays timid accountant Leo Bloom alongside Olivier Award winning actor David Bedella as Roger De Bris; Broadway and West End star Cory English as Max Bialystock; West End leading lady Tiffany Graves as Ulla; and fellow comedian Phill Jupitus as Franz Liebkind.

Based on Mel Brooks’ Academy Award winning movie, The Producers is the musical comedy that took Broadway and the West End by storm, winning a record-breaking 12 Tony Awards and three Olivier Awards.

Impoverished by a string of flops, New York producer Bialystock recruits downtrodden Bloom to help him pull off Broadway’s greatest scam. Together they aim to produce the worst show in history and run away to Rio with millions...

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Phill Jupitus takes the role of Franz Liebkind; the short fused, carrier pigeon keeping, former Nazi, brought on board by Bialystock and Bloom to help them in their plot. From May 18 this role is taken by Ross Noble.

Box office: 0844 871 3018 or www.atgtickets.com/manchester

Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre launches its new season with Olivier-nominated Ellen McDougall directing Jo Clifford’s stripped-back adaptation of Tolstoy’s classic novel Anna Karenina.

It will be the Exchange’s second collaboration with Leeds’ West Yorkshire Playhouse following the success of Sweeney Todd in 2013.

Anna Karenina runs from March 19 to May 2 and transfers to Leeds on May 9.

It tells the tale of a dutiful wife and mother who, when she meets Alexis Vronsky, cannot deny her own heart.

In a parallel story, Levin is trying to live justly in a social system built on injustice. When his love for a childhood friend ends unhappily, he tries to deny its existence. But like Anna discovers he cannot.

Tolstoy’s epic masterpiece explores what happens when two very different couples grapple with the strongest emotion.

Ony Uhiara, who takes the title role, was last seen here in the world premiere of Rory Mullarkey’s Cannibals.

Playing alongside Anna Karenina, 2013 Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting winner The Rolling Stone by Chris Urch receives its world premiere at the venue from April 21 to May 1.

Box Office: 0161 833 9833 or www.royalexchange.co.uk

Manchester-based plasterer and tiler turned playwright Nick Yardley will have his debut play, Towers of Babel, performed in his home city next week.

It is the morning of Tuesday September 11 2001. A Jewish father, Vince, a Manchester resident but on holiday in New York, is visiting his son, Justin, at his place of work, in the shadow of the World Trade Center.

Vince is played by esteemed Manchester actor/director Kenneth Alan Taylor, while Justin is played by Jake Norton, who has TV credits in Coronation Street, The Bill, Emmerdale, The Royal Today, and Hollyoaks.

Leo Atkin and Simeon Trueby play radio hosts Bill and Baldy. Both are regulars on the stages of Greater Manchester and further afield. Lucy Lowe plays radio producer Issy and has also made TV appearances.

In only three performances to date, Towers of Babel has won a Bolton Octagon Theatre Prize for outstanding writing in drama, been nominated for a Best New Play award at The Manchester Theatre Awards, and been nominated for the Meyer Whitworth Playwright Award.

Catch it at Manchester Maccabi Community and Sports Club from March 14-22.

Box office: www.ibookedit.com/towersofbabel