Melvyn Bragg and Howard Goodall’s award-winning musical, on national tour again, thrilled a capacity audience at Grange Hall. The New Perspectives Theatre Company production was excellent, with great set design, lighting, splendid costuming, wonderful music, sturdy singing, acting, and foot stomping dance numbers.
It followed a story spanning two generations of a farming and mining family during the early years of the 20th century. Honest, emotional, fiercely passionate and funny, it offered something for everyone in the packed hall. (A Village Ventures event)
We’ve never been to see a ballet before but we’ll go again if it comes back to Radcliffe. Always thought it was a bit too poncey for me.”
“I always like to watch ballet on the telly but it was totally different being there.”
“Just shows you that the word ‘ballet’ works for more people than you think. A great idea. You’ll be putting on the ‘small symphony orchestra’ next I suppose at this rate”
Magic Car Americana band
July 20th 2007
Magic Car’s great vocalist held together a band that covered a range of country styles and built an intimate atmosphere.
‘What a fantastic night, and that chap on the Kora was magnificent”
“If this is world music, I’m a convert – at 73”
The Small Ballet, REVIEW
Thursday April 26th 2007
Six ‘Small Ballet’ dancers hot from Netherlands State Ballet, Cuban Ballet and other major companies entertained a near-capacity audience at Grange Hall. They performed a varied programme on a specially designed performance ‘mat’ supported by professional sound and excellent lighting.
The five different dance ‘sets’ ranged from an update of the ballet favourite ‘Harlequin & Columbine’ to warm, sensual Cuban rhythms, featuring Ramon Diaz, who trained in Havana, and whose British fan base grew considerably following his Radcliffe performance – a wonderful, beautifully controlled dancer.
Audience feedback confirmed that whilst some of the music score was ‘challenging’ the quality of movement, creativity, costuming, outstanding strength, artistic dance skills displayed and ensemble work won the audience over completely. (A Village Ventures event)
“Interesting idea, made me think about asylum seekers differently”
“Good set – I laughed a bit – thought it was a bit gloomy for a comedy”
World Music – Seckou Keita Combo
Thursday February 15th 2007
One of the most popular events hosted by RadVentures, Seckou Keita wove together the best of Afro-Mandinka soul music, drawing musicians from Senegal, Italy, Egypt and The Gambia. The atmosphere was joyous. Young, middle-aged and older audience members were delighted by novel sounds, and youngsters danced happily through the bistro tables conga-style. Another sell-out event, the band, which is on international tour with a string of successful CDs to their name, has kept in touch with RadVentures.
They tell us that Radcliffe was one of their best UK gigs. See Seckou Keita site:www.seckoukeita.com (A Village Ventures event)
A new piece of writing by a local playwright, the play was a comedy about war, displacement, asylum and compost heaps. The theatre company played at the Edinburgh Fringe before coming to Radcliffe. (A Village Ventures event)
Nimbus with Karen Tweed
The best of European and traditional English folk music. (A Village Ventures event)
The Kremlinaires Russian Big Band Cabaret
The Kremlinaires, the ‘Commissars of Cool ‘and world leaders in Soviet Swing and Bolshevik Boogie kept a good size audience hugely entertained. Led by Chris Haigh on the fiddle, the band was his most recent, ambitious and completely inexplicable venture to date!
The seven-piece Soviet Swing Band mixed Russian Folk with 40s Swing. The audience wasn’t quite sure what to expect as they seemed hard to categorise, but the combination of humour, theatrics and excellent songs won them over. As well as Chris’s fiddling,there were combinations of vocals, accordion, guitar, clarinet, sax, drums piano and bass.
The band has appeared everywhere; from village halls to jazz fests and private parties. (A Village Ventures event)
Shifting Sands Theatre Company