By Richard Watson
The Huddersfield Thespians return this October with an exciting mix of new and old plays for all tastes. There are provocative word games, a race against time, lakeside disasters and chilling psychological manipulation – it’s a packed 104th season!
The Thespians have two very different takes on couples and their communications, with Fringe hit ‘Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons’ and Patrick Hamilton’s topical thriller ‘Gaslight.’
Then there’s adventure and travel in a Christmas adaptation of ‘Around the World in 80 Days’ and they’ll be bringing the laughs with ‘Sheila’s Island’, from the writer of ‘Calendar Girls’ and ‘The Flint St Nativity.’
In the first play, Bernadette and Oliver are a couple limited to using only 140 words a day – just try it! – and have to choose their words very carefully.
‘Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons’ is a bold and brilliant, tender and funny rom-com about what we say, how we say it, and what happens when we can’t say anything any more. Catch it at the Lawrence Batley Theatre in October.
For the Christmas play, the audience joins the wealthy Victorian gentleman Phileas Fogg and his hapless valet Passepartout in a dangerous and dazzling escapade around the world.
This stage adaptation of Jules Verne’s well-loved book takes us from the misty alleys of London to the exotic Indian subcontinent and on to the Wild West, and should be great Christmas fun. It’s at Longwood Mechanics Hall in December.
Outdoor adventures of another kind throw up different challenges in the third play. From Tim Firth, the writer of ‘Calendar Girls’ and ‘The Flint Street Nativity’, comes a new comedy with a crisis in the Lake District and a team-building exercise gone horribly wrong.
Sheila, somehow nominated leader in the office outward-bound course, has used her cryptic crossword solving skills and got her team stranded on an island in the Lakes. What else could go wrong? Find out by visiting ‘Sheila’s Island’ at Longwood Mechanics Hall in March 2024.
The final play is a taut psychological thriller, in which Bella might or might not be going mad, and her husband might or might not be a killer on the run. Who can be sure?
Patrick Hamilton’s Victorian-set ‘Gaslight’ premiered in 1938, but has lost none of its relevance for the modern-day, and gave the world the term ‘gaslighting’ (Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Year 2022). Decide for yourself at the Lawrence Batley Theatre in June 2024.
The Thespians look forward to welcoming audiences once again to the Lawrence Batley Theatre and the Longwood Mechanics Hall, for their 104th season of quality local theatre in Huddersfield.
The Huddersfield Thespians’ 104th season is as follows:
- ‘Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons’ runs Wednesday to Saturday October 18-21 2023, at the Lawrence Batley Theatre. 7.15pm plus 2pm Saturday matinee.
- ‘Around the World in 80 Days’ runs Wednesday to Saturday December 13-16 2023, at Longwood Mechanics Hall. 7.30pm plus 2.30pm Saturday matinee.
- ‘Sheila’s Island’ runs Wednesday to Saturday March 13-16 2024, at Longwood Mechanics Hall. 7.30pm plus 2.30pm Saturday matinee.
- ‘Gaslight’ runs Wednesday to Saturday June 5-8 2024, at the Lawrence Batley Theatre. 7.15pm plus 2pm Saturday matinee.
Tickets for the Lawrence Batley Theatre plays will be available through the Lawrence Batley Theatre website and Box Office, on 01484 430528 or https://thelbt.org/what-s-on/drama/. Lawrence Batley Theatre, Queen’s Square, Queen Street, Huddersfield HD1 2SP.
Tickets for the Longwood plays will be available on the door and through Ticketsource from September 28 2023: https://www.ticketsource.co.uk/Huddersfield-Thespians. Longwood Mechanics Hall, Longwood Gate, Huddersfield HD3 4UU.