2015: a round up

As 2015 draws to a close, I thought I’d look back on some of the amazing shows I’ve seen this year. After much deliberation, I’ve come up with a top five (in no particular order):

Top Hat (Manchester Opera House): a witty, glamorous and faithful adaptation of the Astaire Rogers classic packed with spectacular song and dance. I was smiling for weeks after seeing it.
Swan Lake (The Lowry): Birmingham Royal Ballet’s version stood out for its spectacular Odette (Momoko Hirata), gothic staging and some original twists on the traditional narrative.
Rites (Contact): Contact’s collaboration with National Theatre of Scotland resulted in a sensitive, intelligent and thought-provoking piece on the controversial subject of FGM.
The Car Man (The Lowry): Matthew Bourne’s dark, passionate take on Bizet’s opera is electrifying, combining a thrilling plot with full throttle dance performances.
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (The Lowry): I saw the National Theatre’s production twice this year and was captivated on both occasions by its ingenious staging and design, excellent supporting cast and strong central performance from Joshua Jenkins.
Special mentions also to Kafka’s Monkey (HOME), Shrine of Everyday Things (Contact) and Matthew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty (The Lowry).
This year, as well as presenting the first ever youth theatre award at the Manchester Theatre Awards – a big and terrifying honour – I also became a reviewer for the British Theatre Guide. Getting the extra experience has been invaluable and it’s been as exciting to see new, different fringe shows and companies as it has been to attend major show press nights. I can’t wait to see even more in 2016 and to keep blogging about everything – I’m especially excited about seeing Marianela Nunez as Giselle at the Royal Opera House in March!
All that’s left is for me to say Happy New Year to all my followers, readers and fellow theatre lovers. Here’s to a wonderful 2016!
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