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Cheltenham College presents

Love In Idleness

22 January - 23 January

The year is 1944. The term 'teenager' is officially coined. 155,000 Allied troops are shipped to the beaches of Normandy in the D-Day landings.

After being evacuated to Canada in 1939, a now-17-year-old Michael returns home to London. Having grown strong socialist convictions during his time away, Michael is appalled to find that his mother is 'living in sin' with the wealthy, right-wing MP and minister for Tank Production, Sir John Fletcher. A battle of love and political rivalry ensues, while the Britain of old is left behind forever…

Rattigan's political comedy is explored through a post-modern lens, a punk soundtrack, and a sense of youthful revolution.

Cheltenham Playhouse presents

Malc's Ball

25 January

An evening to celebrate and remember the life of our much-missed theatre chairman Malcolm Ball and to raise funds in his memory for Sue Ryder. There will be excerpts from plays Malc directed, performances of some of his favourite songs and reminiscences from friends and family in the main auditorium followed, in the bar, by dancing to his beloved disco tunes!

Cheltenham Operatic & Dramatic Society presents

Goodnight Mr Tom

31 January - 8 February

One of the most uplifting stories ever written and set during the dark and dangerous build up to the Second World War, we follow sad young William Beech as he is evacuated to the idyllic countryside where he builds a moving friendship with the elderly recluse Tom Oakley and his dog Sammy.

A tale of two broken souls at very different ends of the age scale, this heart-warming and Olivier Award-winning play celebrates the value of love and proves that friendship knows no barriers.

John Thaw starred in the hugely successful television film version of the story in 1998 which won both a BAFTA and a National Television Award.

Suitable for young and old this inspiring story will send you home with a tear and a smile. Written by award-winning author David Wood, who also wrote the Playhouse 2019 Christmas production of Tom's Midnight Garden, missing this heart-warming show would be a crime.

"Enchanting, not a dry eye in the house" - The Independent

Comic Sans Script presents

Whose Show Is It Anyway?

15 February

Our hilarious resident improvised comedy group, Comic Sans Script return for the first time in 2020. Again, the two teams will play hilarious games to determine the kings of comedy improv!

As it's all improvised, we can't tell you what will happen but it's going to be a heap of fun! Our last show saw our teams create an improvised comedy contemporary dance, a highly entertaining interview with a two-headed 'expert', a knock-out version of the song Hush Little Baby; and unique attempts at doing two accents at once!

If you love Whose Line Is It Anyway?, fancy a night out with the family and waving glow-sticks to cheer your favourite team – grab your tickets now!

House Full Productions presents

Film: Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs (U)

18 February

It's half term, so here's a rare chance to see Walt Disney's original animated classic from 1938 back on the big screen.

The beautiful and kind-hearted princess Snow White charms every creature in the kingdom except one - her jealous stepmother, the Queen. When the Magic Mirror proclaims Snow White the fairest one of all, she must flee into the forest, where she befriends the lovable seven dwarfs - Doc, Sneezy, Grumpy, Happy, Bashful, Sleepy, and Dopey. But when the Queen tricks Snow White with an enchanted apple, only the magic of true love's kiss can save her.

House Full Productions presents

Film: Blue Hawaii (PG)

19 February

People asked for an Elvis film, so here he is, with the Grammy-nominated soundtrack that includes one of his biggest hits, Can't Help Falling In Love With You, plus Angela Lansbury with the most outrageous Southern accent ever committed to film.

Chad Gates has just gotten out of the Army, and is happy to be back in Hawaii with his surf-board, his beach buddies, and his girlfriend. His father wants him to go to work at the Great Southern Hawaiian Fruit Company, but Chad is reluctant. So Chad goes to work as a tour guide at his girlfriend's agency.

House Full Productions presents

Film: Bait (15)

20 February

Nominated for two BAFTAs including Outstanding British Film, Bait is a "genuine modern masterpiece, which establishes Jenkin as one of the most arresting and intriguing British film-makers of his generation" according to critic Mark Kermode who gave it five stars in The Observer; he also named it his favourite film of 2019.

Martin Ward is a cove fisherman, without a boat. His brother Steven has re-purposed their father's vessel as a tourist tripper, driving a wedge between the brothers. With their childhood home now a get-away for London money, Martin is displaced to the estate above the picturesque harbour. As his struggle to restore the family to their traditional place creates increasing friction with tourists and locals alike, a tragedy at the heart of the family changes his world.

House Full Productions presents

Film: Some Like It Hot (PG)

21 February

One of the greatest film comedies of all time.

When two Chicago musicians, Joe and Jerry (Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon), witness the the St. Valentine's Day massacre, they want to get out of town and get away from the gangster responsible, Spats Colombo. They're desperate to get a gig out of town but the only job they know of is in an all-girl band heading to Florida. They show up at the train station as Josephine and Daphne, the replacement saxophone and bass players. Enter ukulele player Sugar Kane (Marilyn Monroe)…

22 February

"The one thing I've always done - been lucky enough to do - in my career: take on challenges. I like things that are dangerous. I like a sense of danger." - Nickolas Grace

Celebrating 50 years in the business they call show, acclaimed actor Nickolas Grace will be spilling the beans with some cheeky gossip, amusing anecdotes, racy revelations and delving back into his characters he's brought to life from Brideshead Revisited to Robin of Sherwood and everything before, in-between and after! He's conquered stage, screen (big and small) and radio - all with equal aplomb.

Come and spend a day with His Grace at the Playhouse in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire. There will be interviews on stage, clips from his career, a special workshop session, some funny business and even more besides. You'll also have the opportunity to have your photo taken with His Grace, as well as an autograph or two.

Our event runs from 10:30 am - 4:30 pm. Your lunch will be provided - with Nickolas himself mingling among the munchers - and there is a licensed bar at the theatre which also sells snacks for the extra peckish.

At 6:00 pm, there will be a half an hour Q&A about the free screening of one of his favourite movies at 6:30 pm.

Interviews will be conducted by Paul Scott and Barnaby Eaton-Jones.

The National Production Company presents

Jekyll & Hyde - a very sensible farce

28 February

A show that stays true to the original tale whilst embracing the comedic magic of theatre in a hilarious fast paced spin! Full of unexpected highs and lows, quick costume changes and sharp wit, enjoy this classic novella as one wild ride that will leave you breathless and helpless with laughter.

Set against the backdrop of a charity organisation, the Catherstone Risdake Amateur Players, attempting to extort donations from their adoring local community to raise funds for lavish sets, high profile actors and a 'business trip' to the Bahamas. See how they creatively tell the tale of Dr. Henry Jekyll who believes there are two distinct sides to man - a good and an evil. Journey with this experimental scientist as he fashions a controversial concoction that transforms him, not only into an evil man, but a vile monster!

A comedy with all the drama left in!

Playhouse Company presents

Bombshells

4 March - 7 March

Meet the bombshells, six women on the edge - of greatness, of love, and their sanity.

Meryl fears she is the world's worst mother; Tiggy has taken refuge in her local cacti-appreciation society; Mary refuses to be upstaged by her arch-nemesis; Theresa couldn't be more excited to be in her wedding dress; Winsome has grown tired of being 'one of the widows'; and Zoe wants you to know that despite what you've heard, she's back and better than ever!

Delve into each character's life as they bare their most urgent wishes and thoughts - at times hilarious and, at others, heart breaking. Bombshells tells riveting personal stories that everyone can find themselves in, for better or worse...

Cheltenham Chamber Orchestra presents

Mozart, Bruch & Mendelssohn

7 March

The Cheltenham Chamber Orchestra was founded in 1966 by Laurence Hudson to harness the talents of professional musicians in the area. It has retained its tradition of performing music from the 17th Century to the present day and, through its regular concerts in Pittville Pump Room and St Andrew's Church, Montpellier, has built up an appreciative audience.

Mozart: Symphony No 32 in G Major, K318

Bruch: Violin Concerto No 1 in G Minor

Mendelssohn: Symphony No 3 in A Minor ("Scottish")

Please note that this concert takes place at St Andrew's Church, Montpellier and not the Playhouse. All seats are unreserved and any tickets not sold in advance may be obtained on the door.

Offstage Theatre Group presents

Total Commitments

14 March

According to the movie, The Commitments are the 'hardest working band in the world' - and If you've seen the film, written by Roddy Doyle and directed by Alan Parker, you'll know they're also the most hilarious and energetic band in the world too!

This 10-piece tribute to the soundtrack features Motown and Soul classics from the likes of Wilson Pickett, Dusty Springfield, James Brown and Otis Redding to name but a few. It's also a show that aims to bring the spirit of the film onto the stage, with an unpredictability that keeps the audience entertained, foot-tapping songs that can't help but make you move, and Irish accents that wander freely over borders. If you like to party, then buying a ticket is your invitation.

Being based in Gloucestershire, Total Commitments are delighted to return to The Playhouse and are hoping for another sold out show with an equally fun audience. Grab a pint of Guinness and, before it's had chance to settle, you'll be starting to sing along!

The Album Project presents

1973: A Year In Rock

20 March - 21 March

After an absence of 18 months, the hugely popular Album Project are back - and following their previous successful gigs recreating whole albums on stage from the likes of The Who, Fleetwood Mac, Pink Floyd and The Eagles - their new show is most definitely "the gig of the year"!

A cursory look at the music released in 1973 will show that some of Rock music's most seminal albums burst into the public consciousness. The Album Project will perform some of the finest tracks off these albums plus songs that were in the top 100 selling singles of that year. There will be some old favourites, and some surprises spanning a range of genres. Something for everyone!

This is obviously a slight change in direction for the band and there will be an increased emphasis on the multi media visual element of the show. Expect the usual standard of high class musicianship with some new faces added to take the band to what will be another level.

Ad Hoc Theatre Co presents

Happy Birthday, Mr Sondheim

22 March

Stephen Sondheim is one of the most important figures in 20th century musical theatre; he wrote the lyrics for West Side Story and Gypsy, and wrote music and lyrics for 15 shows including Company, Follies, A Little Night Music, Sweeney Todd and Into The Woods.

He has won an Academy Award, eight Tony Awards, eight Grammy Awards, a Pulitzer Prize, a Laurence Olivier Award, and has theatres named after him both in New York and London.

Sunday 22 March is his 90th birthday – and what better way to celebrate the occasion than an evening devoted to his songs?

House Full Productions presents

Film: Blithe Spirit (U)

31 March

The Playhouse opened as a theatre for the first time in April 1945 so we're celebrating by screening three films from the year we were born!

Novelist Charles Condomine (Rex Harrison) invites eccentric medium Madame Arcati (Margaret Rutherford) to his home to conduct a séance. As Charles, his wife Ruth and their guests barely restrain themselves from laughing, Madame Arcati performs peculiar rituals and finally goes into a trance. Charles then hears the voice of his dead first wife, Elvira.

After Ruth retires for the night, Elvira becomes visible, but only to Charles. He becomes both dismayed and amused by the situation. Relations between Charles and Ruth become strained until he persuades Elvira to act as a poltergeist and transport a vase and a chair in front of his current wife. Ruth seeks Madame Arcati's help in sending Elvira back where she came from, but the medium professes that she does not know how…

David Lean's adaptation of Noel Coward's supernatural comedy won an Oscar for Best Visual Effects.

Buy a ticket to two of our "Birthday Films" and ticket price drops to £6 each; buy a ticket for all three and ticket price drops to £5 each

House Full Productions presents

Film: Anchors Aweigh (U)

1 April

The Playhouse opened as a theatre for the first time in April 1945 so we're celebrating by screening three films from the year we were born!

Two sailors (Frank Sinatra and Gene Kelly) go on a four-day shore leave in Hollywood, meet a young boy and his aunt, an aspiring young singer (Kathryn Grayson), and try to help her get an audition at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. With fabulous songs by Jule Styne (who wrote the musical Gypsy) and Sammy Cahn, Anchors Aweigh was nominated for five Oscars including Best Picture.

Oh, and it's the one where Gene Kelly dances with Jerry Mouse of Tom and Jerry fame!

Buy a ticket to two of our "Birthday Films" and ticket price drops to £6 each; buy a ticket for all three and ticket price drops to £5 each

House Full Productions presents

Film: Brief Encounter (U)

2 April

The Playhouse opened as a theatre for the first time in April 1945 so we're celebrating by screening three films from the year we were born!

Every Thursday morning, the idealistic Dr. Alec Harvey (Trevor Howard) catches the train at the Milford railway station to the local hospital, while, every Thursday morning, the middle-class British housewife, Laura Jesson (Celia Johnson), takes the train to the nearby town of Milford to shop and go to the movies. However, can a tiny speck of soot unite two perfect strangers on opposing lanes?

In the following weeks, even though they are both married with children, Laura and Alec will seek each other's company over a cup of tea at the railway station's cafeteria; nevertheless, they both know that their intoxicating love affair can only be ephemeral. Can the clandestine lovers find the courage to claim back their innocence, and above all, their happiness?

Another David Lean adaptation of a work by Noel Coward.

Buy a ticket to two of our "Birthday Films" and ticket price drops to £6 each; buy a ticket for all three and ticket price drops to £5 each


Theatre Studio presents

Easter Workshops

6 April - 10 April

Love singing? Love dancing? Love acting?

Then sign up for these exciting Easter workshops and performance designed specifically for children aged between 4 - 11 years (Reception - Yr 6) with or without previous experience.

Led by experienced and highly talented tutors, the children will learn new theatre games that will increase their confidence both individually and when working within a group; story-telling, creating characters, learning songs, and movement, culminating in a final performance, fully costumed, on the main stage.

This fantastic course is also open to non-Theatre Studio students.

Please note you cannot book these Workshops through the theatre - book online HERE or email [email protected]k

JP Allstars presents

No Strings Attached

19 April

A night of brass magic like no other!

The JP AllStars (musical director Paul McLaughlin) are a fluid group of great musicians coming together to play great music. Tonight they're a traditional brass band playing very non-traditional brass band music. Rock covers, pop songs, show tunes...you name it. Forget marches and hymn tunes (although their pretty good at them too!).

If you've never heard a brass band before, you'll love them. If you've been brought up in the tradition, you'll love them. Music, laughter and joie de vivre is where we're at. Where are you?

Cheltenham Poetry Festival presents

John Hegley - The Sound of Paint Drying

24 April

John Hegley has captivated audiences all over the country and been described in Time Out as "fabulously funny" and in The Sunday Times as "scandalously talented".

Artworks created by the poet, his native French father and some of the greats of the public galleries are looked at, sniffed at and listened to, in this entertaining song and (a little bit of) dancing spectacular. Suitable for anyone who can attempt to draw a bicycle.

"Just because he is one of the funniest men alive, don't underestimate his dedicated gentleness." - Adrian Mitchell.

Early Bard Offer - book before 10 February and get £3 off Adult tickets, £1 off concession tickets

Cheltenham Poetry Festival presents

Slam to the Slaughter

24 April

It's the 10th, yes, 10th Cheltenham Poetry Festival Slam!

This Slam contest is sure to be a night to dismember. Come and watch our 12 spoken-word superstars go head-to-head armed with killer lines and blade-sharp wits. Scream support for your favourites or simply sit back and let our hilarious, witty and outspoken poets slay you with their brilliance. It's going to be last slammer standing, as our murderously good performers compete for the Cheltenham Poetry Festival Cup.

This smoking gun of a spoken word stand-off is hosted by the hilarious and "completely spellbinding" (***** edfringereview.com) slam champ Tina Sederholm and comedian and slammer Neil Spokes.

Early Bard Offer - book before 10 February and get £2 off all tickets

25 April

Cheltenham's resident burlesque queen, Missy Malone and her band of glamorous friends are extremely pleased to be bringing their hugely successful sell out show back to Cheltenham Playhouse for their 11th year running!

Presenting the very best in Burlesque and Cabaret from across the globe, this show incorporates vintage style glamour, dance, comedy, circus skills and music for a spectacular night out. The breath-taking costumes, musicality and award winning routines will leave you shouting for more!

Each show will contain different performances from the cast, as no show is ever the same! Watch this space for announcement of performers as they are confirmed.

"Sassy, slick and chic and all done in the best possible taste." – Simon Lewis, Gloucestershire Echo

Cheltenham Playhouse presents

The Counterfeit Sixties

2 May

Britain's No. 1 tribute show brings alive the magic of the sixties, with their tribute to over twenty five bands of that era and encompassing everything from the period, from the clothes that were worn to flashbacks from TV history.

The Counterfeit Sixties presents a showcase of the fantastic music of, among others, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Who, The Dave Clark Five, The Kinks and The Monkees; all are recreated in this stunning show.

The band members have performed all over the UK and abroad and have a wide range of experience in that field, having individually worked with notable sixties' artists such as The Searchers, The Ivy League, The Fortunes, The Tremeloes and many more.

House Full Productions presents

The Dowager's Oyster starring Dr Evadne Hinge

23 September - 26 September

We're very pleased to announce that a legend of British comedy is to come out of retirement in France to appear in a musical romp here this year as part of our 75th anniversary celebrations. The Dowager's Oyster is described as a light opera that captures the comic book charades of a 1920s murder mystery farce and at its heart is the return to the stage of Dr Evadne Hinge, one half of the enormously popular double act Hinge and Bracket which entertained audiences with their songs and 'theatrical memories' for 30 years.

The story so far...

Persephone, Lady Tindale, sits in her boudoir, deep in thought. Cynthia, her only daughter, has recently become engaged. The Honourable Freddy Marriott would appear to be on the surface an admirable choice of fiancé. But the Dowager has doubts about him. Serious doubts. And now feather-headed Cynthia seems to be set on planning a trip to France. And she wants her mother to accompany her. The Dowager has never up till now encountered a situation she was unable to dominate and control through the sheer force of her personality. But she is about to come up against circumstances unparalleled in her experience.

Musically, the show has a roaring 1920s dance band score that nods to Gilbert and Sullivan with a twist of Kurt Weill and with just four performances scheduled we are expecting a sell out run long before the show opens - be prepared to book early!

Cheltenham Chamber Orchestra presents

Bartok, Sibelius & Vaughan Williams

26 September

The Cheltenham Chamber Orchestra was founded in 1966 by Laurence Hudson to harness the talents of professional musicians in the area. It has retained its tradition of performing music from the 17th Century to the present day and, through its regular concerts in Pittville Pump Room and St Andrew's Church, Montpellier, has built up an appreciative audience.

Bartok: Romanian Folk Dances

Sibelius: Pelleas & Melisande

Vaughan Williams: Symphony No 5

Please note that this concert takes place at St Andrew's Church, Montpellier, and not the Playhouse. All seats are unreserved and any tickets not sold in advance may be obtained on the door.

Cheltenham Chamber Orchestra presents

A Baroque Evening including Vivaldi's The Four Seasons

17 October

The Cheltenham Chamber Orchestra was founded in 1966 by Laurence Hudson to harness the talents of professional musicians in the area. It has retained its tradition of performing music from the 17th Century to the present day and, through its regular concerts in Pittville Pump Room and St Andrew's Church, Montpellier, has built up an appreciative audience.

This will be a baroque evening including Vivaldi's The Four Seasons.

Please note that this concert takes place at St Andrew's Church, Montpellier, and not the Playhouse. All seats are unreserved and any tickets not sold in advance may be obtained on the door.