BrassNeck Theatre

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BrassNeck Theatre
BrassNeck Theatre Logo.jpg
BrassNeck Theatre Logo
Formation

January 2010

Chairman

Richard Lloyd

Website

BrassNeck Theatre

Previous Shows

Footloose the Musical - May 2010

Our House - November 2010

The Producers - May 2011

Bouncers & Shakers - September 2011

RENT - Nov 2011

The Full Monty - May 2012

Calendar Girls - September 2012

Fiddler on the Roof - November 2012

Whistle Down the Wind - May 2013

Avenue Q - November 2013

The Wedding Singer - May 2014

Little Women - November 2014

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee - May 2015

The Addams Family - November 2015

The 39 Steps - May 2016

Current Show

Spamalot - November 2016

Next Shows

Rock of Ages - May 2017
Type Theatre group

BrassNeck Theatre is a theatre company based in Leeds, West Yorkshire, England. It was formed by the merger of The Grove & Rawdon Theatre Company and Stampede Theatre Company in January 2010.[1]

BrassNeck Theatre's first production was Footloose the Musical, performed at Yeadon Town Hall in May 2010.[1] Their most recent production was The 39 Steps, held at Yeadon Town Hall in May 2016, and their next production is Spamalot. It is planned for November 2016 in Yeadon Town Hall. The majority of the company's productions, and rehearsals, take place at Yeadon Town Hall and Guiseley Theatre.

Reputation[edit]

BrassNeck Theatre's reputation was formed in its two founding theatre companies. The Grove and Rawdon Theatre Company and Stampede Theatre Company were both well known for producing professional standard theatre, with local reviewers often comparing the standard to that of London's West End.[2][3]

In recent years, BrassNeck Theatre has built on this reputation by successfully staging a wide range of plays and musical theatre, all receiving positive reviews in local media and from audiences. Reviewers often comment not only on the high quality of their acting, singing and dancing, but also on technical expertise with custom built sets and a very high standard of lighting and sound.[4][5][6][7][8]

Future shows[edit]

BrassNeck Theatre have recently held auditions for Rock of Ages, which is due to be performed in May 2017.[9]

Previous shows[edit]

Footloose the Musical[edit]

The first production by BrassNeck Theatre was Footloose the Musical, and was performed in May 2010 at Yeadon Town Hall.[1]

Our House[edit]

BrassNeck Theatre's second production was the Madness musical, Our House, and was held at Yeadon Town Hall in November 2010. The show was a big success, earning a rave review in local media.[5]

The Producers[edit]

BrassNeck Theatre's third production was the Mel Brooks musical, The Producers based on the 1968 film of the same name, performed at Yeadon Town Hall in May 2011. The production earned rave reviews in the Wharfedale & Aireborough Observer,[10] and in the Yorkshire Evening Post.[11] The performance was noted in particular for the scale of the production given the limited space available in Yeadon Town Hall, with one reviewer commenting "To put such a large scale musical on in such restricted stage conditions is a work of genius".[4]

Bouncers & Shakers[edit]

This was BrassNeck Theatre's first play, and was performed in September 2011. The play was a major success, again receiving a rave review from John Burland of the Wharfedale & Airedale Observer.[12]

RENT[edit]

BrassNeck staged Jonathan Larson's hit production RENT in November 2011 to standing ovations and a rave review from John Burland of the Wharfedale & Airedale Observer.[13]

The Full Monty[edit]

In May 2012 BrassNeck Theatre staged the musical The Full Monty based on the hit 1997 film The Full Monty, which was a new cast and staging of the musical after one of the founding companies, Stampede Theatre Company, enjoyed great success with the musical in February 2008.[14] This show was again a success, with one local review stating it was "one of the strongest casts ever to perform the show".[15][16]

Calendar Girls[edit]

In September 2012, BrassNeck Theatre staged arguably their most successful production to date, the play Calendar Girls, based on the film of the same name. The play largely sold out, again to rave reviews.[17]

Fiddler on the Roof[edit]

In November 2012, BrassNeck Theatre made the brave decision to do a brand new staging of the musical Fiddler on the Roof, to be performed at Yeadon Town Hall. This version of the popular musical reset in the Jewish Ghetto in Kraków during World War II, with the occupants using Brechtian techniques to tell the well known story. BrassNeck Theatre stated prior to the show "this is Fiddler as you've never seen it before", which turned out to be the case with an excellent review stating it was "A great show by this extremely talented company!"[6]

Whistle Down the Wind[edit]

Arguably their largest production to date, BrassNeck Theatre's production of Whistle Down the Wind in May 2013 was a great success, earning great reviews in the Gazette & Observer and on website www.pickledegg.info.[7][8]

Avenue Q[edit]

BrassNeck Theatre were invited to perform the critically acclaimed musical Avenue Q in November 2013. The show once again earned rave reviews.[18]

The Wedding Singer[edit]

Another huge show for BrassNeck Theatre as the performed the movie musical The Wedding Singer in May 2014, with great success.[19]

Little Women[edit]

BrassNeck Theatre took on the very challenging Little Women in November 2014, with great reviews for an innovative show.[20]

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee[edit]

Another very challenging show for BrassNeck Theatre, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee with its high improvisation was a huge success.[21]

The Addams Family[edit]

A massive show with innovative set and a great cast, The Addams Family performed by BrassNeck Theatre in November 2015 was another big success, again earning great reviews.[22]

The 39 Steps[edit]

In May 2016, BrassNeck Theatre put on their first play for four years by presenting The 39 Steps. The show was a great success.[23]

History[edit]

The Grove and Rawdon Theatre Company[edit]

The Grove and Rawdon Theatre Company were formed in 2002 by the merger of Horsforth Grove Amateur Operatics Society and Rawdon Amateur Operatics Society.

From 2002 to 2009, The Grove and Rawdon Theatre Company staged 16 productions, and became renowned for producing difficult musicals to a high standard. Their shows, including Jesus Christ Superstar,[24] Seussical the Musical,[25] Buddy![2] and Wizard of Oz,[26] frequently received rave reviews in local papers.

They also gained a reputation for their willingness to tackle new and challenging musicals, in particular their productions of Bat Boy,[27] Spend Spend Spend[28] and Jekyll and Hyde.[29]

The Grove and Rawdon Theatre Company Productions

The Music Man - May 2002

Swing, Sing and Tango - November 2002 (Cabaret style show)

South Pacific - May 2003

Chicago Nights - November 2003 (Cabaret style show)

My Fair Lady - April 2004

Return to the Forbidden Planet - November 2004

Jesus Christ Superstar - May 2005

Seussical the Musical - November 2005

Spend Spend Spend - May 2006

Buddy! - November 2006

Carousel - May 2007

Bat Boy - November 2007

Jekyll & Hyde - May 2008

Boogie Nights - November 2008

Wizard of Oz - May 2009

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum - November 2009

Stampede Theatre Company[edit]

Stampede Theatre Company was founded in 2006, "in response to a growing need for a 'youth based' theatre company in the Wharfedale area".[30]

The theatre company produced 9 musical shows and became well known in the local area for their quality productions, in particular the high standard of their youth members. Like The Grove and Rawdon Theatre Company, their productions earned rave reviews in local news, including their productions of the schools version of Les Miserables,[31] We Will Rock You,[3] and West Side Story.[32]

Stampede Theatre Company maintained that while they had an emphasis on youth, they were not only a youth company, and staged a number of successful productions with an "adult" cast, including The Full Monty[14] and Sweeney Todd.[33]

Stampede Theatre Company Productions

Les Miserables (Schools Version) - July 2006

Cabaret 2006 - December 2006 (Cabaret style show)

Annie - December 2006

Little Shop of Horrors - April 2007

We Will Rock You - July 2007

The Full Monty - February 2008

Back to the 80's - July 2008

Sweeney Todd - February 2009

West Side Story - July 2009

Controversies[edit]

Bat Boy[edit]

In 2007 the Grove and Rawdon Theatre Company staged the controversial modern-gothic musical Bat Boy. Whilst the production received many positive comments during the performance, there were also a number of complaints received about the content. Val Pennett's review in the Wharfedale & Airedale Observer and Telegraph & Argus stated that while the show was produced well, she thought the content was 'distasteful'.[27] This article gained numerous retaliatory comments supporting the bravery of the Company.

Jekyll & Hyde[edit]

Following on from Bat Boy, in 2008 the Grove and Rawdon Theatre Company staged Jekyll & Hyde. A combination of Val Pennett's review of Bat Boy and the fact that many people saw Jekyll & Hyde as an equally 'dark musical', saw ticket sales drop compared to previous years. This provoked Rachel O'Connor to comment in her review of Jekyll & Hyde that people should encourage innovative theatre, and praise the bravery of the theatre company.[29]

'Bat Boy' their latest offering generated much comment but if that put anyone off 'Jekyll & Hyde' then just open your mind and your soul and get along to Yeadon Town Hall before the show ends on Saturday.

— Rachel O'Connor, Wharfedale & Airedale Observer

Spend Spend Spend & Boogie Nights[edit]

A number of complaints were received after The Grove and Rawdon Theatre Company's productions of Spend Spend Spend and Boogie Nights, as scripted scenes that include sexual content were included in both shows.

Notable members[edit]

Both companies involved in the BrassNeck Theatre were known for having a high standard of membership.[according to whom?] Previous and current members have studied at leading drama schools such as GSA Conservatoire and Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts. Past and present notable members of the theatre include:

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Rachel O'Connor, Rachel O'Connor reviews Footloose The Musical by BrassNeck Theatre at Yeadon Town Hall, Wharfedale & Airedale Observer, 28 May 2010
  2. ^ a b Rachel O'Connor, 'Buddy The Musical' by The Grove and Rawdon Theatre Company at Yeadon Town Hall, Wharfedale & Airedale Observer, 16 November 2006
  3. ^ a b Val Pennett, We will Rock You by Stampede Theatre Company at Yeadon Town Hall, Ilkley Gazette, 19 July 2007
  4. ^ a b Pam Booth, BrassNeck Theatre's The Procuders Archived 5 April 2012 at the Wayback Machine., NODA Reviews, 18 May 2011
  5. ^ a b Rachel O'Connor, BrassNeck Theatre's Our House, Wharfedale & Airedale Observer, 25 November 2010
  6. ^ a b John Burland, BrassNeck Theatre's Fiddler on the Roof, Wharfedale & Airedale Observer, November 2012
  7. ^ a b John Burland, BrassNeck Theatre's Whistle Down the Wind, Gazette & Observer, May 2013
  8. ^ a b Pickled Egg, BrassNeck’s polished performance of Whistle Down the Wind, www.pickledegg.info, May 2013
  9. ^ Rock Of Ages at Yeadon Town Hall Review, BrassNeck Theatre Website - Future Shows, May 2017
  10. ^ John Burland, BrassNeck Theatre's The Producers, Wharfedale & Airedale Observer, 26 May 2011
  11. ^ Charles Heslett, BrassNeck Theatre's The Procuders, Yorkshire Evening Post, 19 May 2011
  12. ^ John Burland, BrassNeck Theatre's Bouncers & Shakers, Wharfedale & Airedale Observer, September 2011
  13. ^ John Burland, BrassNeck Theatre's RENT, Wharfedale & Airedale Observer, November 2011
  14. ^ a b Rachel O'Connor, Courageous cast of 'The Full Monty' bare all at Yeadon, Ilkley Gazette, 25 February 2008
  15. ^ John Burland, BrassNeck Theatre's The Full Monty, Wharfedale & Airedale Observer, May 2012
  16. ^ Charles Heslett, BrassNeck Theatre's The Full Monty, Yorkshire Evening Post, May 2012
  17. ^ John Burland, BrassNeck Theatre's Calendar Girls, Wharfedale & Airedale Observer, September 2012
  18. ^ Charlotte King, Avenue Q at Yeadon Town Hall Review, BrassNeck Theatre Website - Wharfedale Observer, November 2013
  19. ^ John Burland, Wedding Singer at Yeadon Town Hall Review, BrassNeck Theatre Website - Wharfedale Observer, May 2014
  20. ^ John Burland, Little Women at Yeadon Town Hall Review, BrassNeck Theatre Website - Wharfedale Observer, November 2014
  21. ^ John Burland, Spelling Bee at Yeadon Town Hall Review, BrassNeck Theatre Website - Wharfedale Observer, May 2015
  22. ^ John Burland, The Addams Family at Yeadon Town Hall Review, BrassNeck Theatre Website - Wharfedale Observer, November 2015
  23. ^ John Burland, The 39 Steps at Yeadon Town Hall Review, BrassNeck Theatre Website - Wharfedale Observer, May 2016
  24. ^ Val Pennett, A Simply Stunning 'Jesus Christ Superstar' by Grove and Rawdon, Wharfedale & Airedale Observer, 16 May 2005
  25. ^ Val Pennett, The unknown `Seussical' proves a great delight, Bradford & District, 17 November 2005
  26. ^ Richard Lloyd, Wizard entertainment by Grove and Rawdon, Wharfedale & Airedale Observer, 21 May 2009
  27. ^ a b Val Pennett, Fine acting can't hide horror of 'distasteful' musical, Telegraph & Argus, 23 November 2007
  28. ^ Val Pennett, 'Spend' is a difficult show to get into, Wharfedale & Airedale Observer, 15 May 2006
  29. ^ a b Rachel O'Connor, Grove and Rawdon Theatre Company's Jekyll and Hyde, Wharfedale & Airedale Observer, 15 May 2008
  30. ^ Stampede Committee,About Us Archived 19 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine., Stampede Website, April 2006
  31. ^ Val Pennett, ‘Les Miserables’ by Stampede Theatre Company, Ilkley Gazette, 20 July 2006
  32. ^ Rachel O'Connor, Stampede Theatre Company’s West Side Story, Ilkley Gazette, 16 July 2009
  33. ^ Rachel O'Connor, Rachel O'Connor reviews Stampede's Sweeney Todd at Yeadon Town Hall[permanent dead link], Wharfedale & Airdale Observer, 5 March 2009
  34. ^ Peter Grant Official Website, Official website
  35. ^ "Lauren Andrews profile". Shed Media. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  36. ^ Jack Shepherd,Independent Game Of Throne Article, Independent, 4 October 2016

External links[edit]