What’s On in Yorkshire - July 2013

Dreamboats and Petticoats

Dreamboats and Petticoats - Credit: Archant

A guide to entertainment in Yorkshire this month that we think you will enjoy, compiled by Tony Greenway


July 24th

Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band

If you’re going to open a brand spanking new concert arena in the centre of Leeds, then getting Bruce Springsteen in for your first gig is a pretty impressive way of doing it. Actually, the arena doesn’t really open until September, when His Right Royal Rock Highness Sir Elton of John will be the official inaugural act. But, for a Brucey bonus, the powers-that-be have snagged a genuine US musical legend to road-test the facilities as part of his Wrecking Ball tour (an ironic title, really, since the shiny new venue has just been built to the tune of £60million). If you have tickets for this gig, we imagine you are going to feel the full Born to Run Springsteen tour-de-force and you should feel very lucky indeed. I don’t need to tell you that if you haven’t got tickets already, you’ve left it a bit late, it’s sold out.

There is, however, one thing that sticks in the craw about the new venue. Like similar concert halls up and down the land, it’s being sponsored by a corporate entity, in this case First Direct (and, in actual fact, has been christened the First Direct Arena) — so every time we mention it, the bank gets a free plug; which kind of makes me not want to mention it.

First Direct Arena Leeds 0844 248 1585 firstdirectarena.com

Most Read

July 4th

Leo Blanco

This is a Venezuelan pianist, arranger and composer whose jazz piano performance was a big hit at the Edinburgh Festival. ‘Blanco is a massive talent. His compositions teem with melodies, rhythms and counter-rhythms and his piano playing just explodes with creative impulses,’ gushes The Glasgow Herald.

Dean Clough Halifax 01422 255 266 deanclough.com


July 12th & 13th

Moonbeams Wold Top Folk Festival

A small but perfectly formed East Yorkshire folk festival (set in the grounds of the Wold Top Brewery) that’s been going strong since its director, Leila Slater, created it five years ago. In fact, festival-goers like it so much they now come from France, Scotland, Ireland and all over England. Leila runs the event as a hobby, she says, purely financing it on ticket sales. Acts for this year include Skerryvore, The Travelling Band, The Mighty Doonans, Blair Dunlop, Edwina Hayes and Richard Digance.

Wold Top Brewery Hunmanby 07810 831317 moonbeamsevents.co.uk

July 5th – 13th

York Early Music Festival

This year’s festival focuses on the musical heritage of Rome, from the time of the medieval Popes, through the Renaissance polyphony of Palestrina, to the exuberant baroque of Handel. Central to this theme is the 300th anniversary of the iconic Italian composer and violinist, Arcangelo Corelli, who devoted his entire career to Rome and became a pivotal figure in the development of classical music. Also celebrated is the 450th anniversary of the birth of the English composer, John Dowland. See the website for full details of all concerts.

Various venues 01904 658338, ncem.co.uk

July 4th-27th

Harrogate International Festivals

Ooh, where do we start? A month-long celebration of all things creative (see our main feature this month) with a stellar-line-up of artists including Doncaster soprano Lesley Garrett, Kildwick-born jazz star and Radio 2 presenter Clare Teal (appearing with Sir Tim Rice and the Leeds Community Big Band), Jacqui Dankworth, The Fabulous Baker Brothers, travelling Python Michael Palin, Richard and Judy, author Joanne Harris, Stuart Maconie, Ann Widdecombe, the BBC’s Jeremy Bowen talking about the Middle East, plus author Alex Preston and academic and author Sarah Churchwell on the Legacies of the Great Gatsby. Phew. See interviews and more information on page….

Various venues 01423 562 303 harrogateinternationalfestivals.com


July 9th – 11th

Great Yorkshire Show

The clue is in the title: it’s great, it’s a show and it’s in Yorkshire — an annual agricultural and lifestyle extravaganza that always pulls in vast crowds from across the county. Delights on display this year include the food hall, cookery theatre, fashion shows with regional and national designers, international sheep-shearing competitions and top-class show jumping. The Royal Signals Motorcycle Display Team will be also appearing. Find out more on page…

Great Yorkshire Showground Harrogate 01423 541222 greatyorkshireshow.co.uk


July 1st-13th


Ever wondered what happened to Marti Pellow from Wet Wet Wet? Well, I’m gong to tell you anyway. Partly, he’s been carving out a career as a stage musical star (Witches of Eastwick, Blood Brothers) and features in the cast of this touring version of the juggernaut-like Andrew Lloyd-Webber/Tim Rice show (he plays Che). The songs, if you don’t know by now, include Oh What a Circus, Another Suitcase in Another Hall, I’d Be Surprisingly Good For You, You Must Love Me and, of course, Don’t Cry For Me Argentina.

Lyceum Theatre Sheffield 0114 249 6000 sheffieldtheatres.co.uk

July 15th – 20th

Dreamboats & Petticoats

This 1960s jukebox musical (think Happy Days crossed with Mama Mia) seems to come around every year. It features songs from Roy Orbison, The Shadows, Eddie Cochran, Billy Fury and Chuck Berry among others, with a plot fashioned precariously around the music. Put it this way, one of the characters is called Sue — and she gives the male lead the run-around. Can you guess what happens next?

Alhambra Theatre Bradford 01274 432000 bradford-theatres.co.uk

July 22nd

Momentous Musicals

You know you’re getting older, they say, when policemen start looking younger. Well that maybe true but you’re also keenly aware you’re past it when you see a picture of the once fresh-faced Gareth Gates and think: ‘Gah: how old is HE now?’ (The answer, according to his Wikipedia page, is 28. Twenty-eight?! Wasn’t he, like, 16 a few years ago?). Here Gareth, a Bradford lad, sings classic and recent musical theatre songs including What I Did for Love (from A Chorus Line) and One Day More (from Les Misérables).

Alhambra Theatre Bradford 01274 432000 bradford-theatres.co.uk


Now open

Revealing York Minster

York’s newest visitor attraction is a network of interactive galleries, housed in the Undercroft and Treasury below the Minster, revealing stories and facts about the building’s past, present and future — and the significance of its most treasured artefacts.

The York Minster Undercroft 0844 939 0015 yorkminsterrevealed.org

July 6th- August 25th

Halifax Art Society’s Annual Exhibition 2013

The Halifax Art Society holds its annual show in the historic Piece Hall. Admission is free.

Halifax Visitor Centre and Art Gallery Piece Hall Halifax 01422 368725 calderdale.gov.uk


July 22nd

Sean Lock: Purple Van Man

Very rude, sometimes surreal and incredibly funny: it really is the way Lock tells ‘em that makes him stand out from the comedy crowd.

St George’s Hall 01274 432000 bradford-theatres.co.uk

July 9th

Piff the Magic Dragon

OK, so how to explain this? Well, a deadpan comedian and magician named John van der Put puts on a dragon suit (honestly), calls himself Piff, and performs incredible feats of trickery and illusion in front of your every eyes (Piff the Magic Dragon — geddit?). Piff is also aided by a ridiculously cute chihuahua, Mr Piffles. A huge hit at Edinburgh and seen on the Penn and Teller Show, Fool Us, and as the opening act for Mumford & Sons on the band’s UK tour.

Harrogate Theatre 01423 502116 harrogatetheatre.co.uk


July 4th-August 31st

Muddy Cows

Once upon a time, of course, John Godber, the third most-performed playwright in the UK behind Ayckbourn, A, and Shakespeare, W, would be presenting a world premiere of his plays at Hull Truck. Now, though, he’s unveiling them at Wakefield and, in this case, Scarborough. Muddy Cows is a comedy about female rugby players in Yorkshire and the cast includes Elizabeth Carling, Hayley Tamaddon and one Abi Titmuss.

Stephen Joseph Theatre 01723 370541 sjt.uk.com

Until October 4th

Time of My Life

This is the first major revival of a 1992 tragi-comedy by Alan Ayckbourn, an examination of messy family relationships, which runs in three time-streams, beginning and ending at a birthday party. New play lovers should hang-fire, a world premiere by Ayckbourn, called Farcicals, is coming next month.

Stephen Joseph Theatre 01723 370541 sjt.uk.com

July 16th

As You Like It

The Lord Chamberlain’s Men again (last month they were at Fountains Abbey) with their outdoor, all-male version of Shakespeare’s play. This time they’re performing at the 17th century manor house at Riddlesden, near, Keighley. (Hugely entertaining – Ed’s note)

East Riddlesden Hall 01535 607075 nationaltrust.org.uk/east-riddlesden-hall

July 5th

Hard Times

This is a production from the Paper Zoo Theatre Company, which was formed by graduates and staff of a drama course at Bradford College. After recent productions of The Tempest and Blue Remembered Hills, Paper Zoo is back with an original adaptation of Dickens’ Hard Times.

Otley Courthouse 01943 467466 otleycourthouse.org.uk

July 12th & 13th

The Time Machine: An Invention

Nunkie, the company behind the acclaimed M R James Trilogy, brings H G Wells’ science fiction classic to life, in another full-on one-man show.

Harrogate Theatre 01423 502116 harrogatetheatre.co.uk

July 16th-20th

Strange Case of Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde

Multi-award-winning actor James Hyland returns with a brand new one-man-show, based on Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic tale of good versus hairy-handed evil.

Harrogate Studio Theatre 01423 502116 harrogatetheatre.co.uk