Two UK tour premieres and a world premiere tour are among the highlights of Blackpool’s Grand Theatre’s new season.
After a summer of Strictly dance fever in Puttin On The Ritz, the autumn promises hit shows The Full Monty and Thriller Live - both setting off on new tours from the theatre.
Meanwhile a new staging of futuristic novel Brave New World comes to the town on its first outing by the Touring Consortium Theatre Company, who brought Brassed Off and Regeneration in recent years.
Puttin’ On The Ritz opens in a fortnight, starring Strictly Come Dancing professionals Katya Virshilas and Jared Murillo, plus Britain’s Got Talent’s Becky O’Brien, celebrating the music of legendary composers Irving Berlin, George Gershwin, and Cole Porter.
The iconic film It’s A Wonderful Life, retold as a radio play, Sixties nostalgia trip Dreamboats and Miniskirts - the sequel to Dreamboats and Petticoats, and murder and mystery pieces A Murder is Announced: A Miss Marple Mystery, Murder With Love, and Sherlock Holmes And The Ripper Murders are all also scheduled.
Marketing manager Andrew Howard said: “This season we have an amazing line-up of shows, including the opening of two huge new tours of The Full Monty and Thriller Live, plus a world premiere.
“This season also showcases our new family-friendly programme of children’s shows, as well as two of the biggest names in contemporary dance, Candoco Dance Company and Joss Arnott Dance.
“We are delighted to welcome back some stalwarts of live theatre, including Ken Dodd for five unforgettable performances and the hilarious Su Pollard in our Christmas panto.”
The current refurbishment programme at the Grand is also due to be completed, with the revamped box office and a new performance space The Studio being unveiled in September with a special season including a monthly Lough Out Loud Comedy Club - with some of the best up-and-coming comedians, children’s puppetry show Chicken Licken, plus two heart-warming comedy dramas Lonely Hearts and A Translation of Shadows.
Chief executive Ruth Eastwood said: “With our box office and Studio space refurbishment, we are at the start of a very exciting time at the Grand Theatre.
“This September, customers will be able to enjoy more shows than ever with our new season of drama, family and comedy shows in The Studio, as well as our regular programme of top-quality plays, musicals and entertainment. “We want to make sure we offer something for everyone and that Blackpool Grand is the theatre of choice for local people.”