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MOAC/IAMBEC Theatre Trips

In the interests of the group's cultural education, especially for our non-Brits, we (well, me - if you want something done, do it yourself!) organised a few theatre trips...

[Warwick Arts Centre Logo]
Warwick Arts Centre


[RSC Logo]
Royal Shakespeare Company


[Heartbreak Productions Logo]
Heartbreak Productions

Trip One - Beauty and the Beast (February 2004)

A little outing to the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford, which is on the far side of Leamington - very easy with a car!

A large bear posing for a photo with me in Stratford:

We saw Laurence Boswell's play Beauty and the Beast, a top notch performance by the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Trip Two - The Tempest (April/May 2004)

This time we went to the Arts Centre (which, now that MOAC has moved to Senate House, is right on our doorstep) for Shakespeare's The Tempest.

[Except I also have emails relating to Othello. Maybe I have merged two trips into one?]

Despite having sat through Beauty and the Beast in apparent rapture, Raul ran away at the interval to get back to his Biology Lab work!

There was a much better turn out this time (over ten people!), which meant my ticket was free! So I got everyone ice cream at the interval.

Trip Three - Midsummer Night's Dream (6 August 2004)

An open air performance of Shakespeare's Midsummer Night's Dream by Heartbreak Productions at Charlecote Park, a National Trust country house near Stratford, complete with our very own picnic.

Want to know if anything is happening at Charlecote Park now? Try this link.

Kudos to John & Christina for spotting that this was on - they noticed it on a stroll near Warwick HRI, where John did one of his MOAC Mini Projects.

The Fairies (before the day light ran out!):

Trip Four - Treasure Island (19 April 2005)

Another visit to the Warwick Arts Centre which is just next door to MOAC, to see performed by Andy Cannon and Iain Johnstone of Scotland's Wee Stories. The text and picture below was taken from the Arts Centre website:

[Picture] Ages: 8+ and their families

Winners of the TMA Equity Award, Best Show for Children 2004

It's yo, ho, ho, and a bottle of rum when we set sail for some high jinks on the high seas with Wee Stories and their swashbuckling, critically acclaimed adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island.

In the shadow of the Jolly Roger, the trusty cast of Andy Cannon and Iain Johnstone play all of the characters from Jim Hawkins and Long John Silver to Jim's mum and the yelping marooned exile Ben Gunn.

Determined to find the treasure, Wee Stories bring us their wonderfully creative and thrilling re-telling of this classic text of pirates, shipwrecks, blood, guts and a double bass. This ripping yarn received standing ovations from the sell-out shows at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and the Bank of Scotland's International Children's Festival.

Wee Stories is the Scottish company who recently brought A Christmas Carol and Arthur, the Story of a King to Warwick Arts Centre.

"You can almost smell the seaweed... A potent mixture of fantasy, madness and adventure, this is a splendid production capable of sending a shiver through even the most stubborn of timbers." Edinburgh Evening New

I thought it was a great little pantomine, even if Alison's youngest daughter lost interest in the second half, and decided that after making a lovely mess with her ice cream, that playing with my beard was more interesting than the play ;)

Bonus points for the imaginative use of the props, e.g. bottles with hats on to represent other pirates, violins as ships.

Trip Five - Twelfth Night (28 May 2005)

Another visit to the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford, for a "modern" production of Twelfth Night, where Malvolio's yellow stockings and cross-gartered was more a yellow jump suit from Kill Bill.

Trip Six - The Importance of Being Earnest (20 August 2005)

A return to Charlecote Park (National Trust country house near Stratford) for another open air performance from Heartbreak Productions - this time of Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest.

And very good it was too!

Trip Seven - Labyrinth (15 February 2006)

Its back to the Warwick Arts Centre for this year's show from Wee Stories. The text and picture below was taken from the Arts Centre website:

[Picture] Ages 7+ 1hr 20mins

Labyrinth is the magnificent story of Theseus and the Minotaur, a classic tale from Greek mythology adapted by the award-winning theatre company Wee Stories.

Theseus sets out on the most daring adventure: first he has to find the Minotaur, the monster who lives in the maze, and then he has to fight it and then he has to find his way back home again.

With its unique blend of storytelling, live original music, drama, comedy and banter, Labyrinth is magnetic and hilarious entertainment for all the family.

Not bad, but I thought their Treasure Island (the year before) was much better.

Trip Eight - Romeo & Juliet (5 August 2006)

Another outdoor play from Romeo & Juliet by Heartbreak Productions, this time at Kenilworth Castle. Once again we were blessed with good weather.

Trip Nine - The Wizard of Oz (17 August 2007)

Only a little MOAC group this year for yet another outdoor play from Heartbreak Productions, this time at Charlecote Park. This is becoming something of an annual tradition!

Renowned for their innovative and atmospheric open-air productions, Heartbreak have also developed an outstanding reputation for their exciting and unique adaptations: this new production set in Engalnd in the Forties is no exception.

The story that started it all…. little English farm girl, Dorothy Gale, a London WWII evacuee and her dog Toto are blown away and end up meeting a very unusual cast of characters - the Scarecrow, Tin Man, and Cowardly Lion, and together they set out on a dangerous quest to see the Wizard of Oz, each of them seeking what they want most in life.

Making their way along the Yellow Brick Road through a series of hair-raising encounters, they arrive at the Emerald City only to be told by the Wizard that they first must kill the Wicked Witch of the West before he will grant their wishes.

Heartbreak’s unique interpretation and adaptation of the classic book by L Frank Baum, provides a multi-talented cast to create this wonderful story with live music that guarantees an exceptional evening of family entertainment.

The weather looked threatening, but the rain held off thankfully... so we could enjoy Dorothy's adventures in Oz, battling a wicked witch with a German accent, in her efforts to get back to Warwick (rather than Kansas).