Adelphi Club Stages Theatre Double Bill
By Michelle Dee.
Crisis can strike at any time as the television is so fond of telling us.
It can take many different forms but the important thing is how you respond. Do you have the tools in the locker to manage the crisis to recover; to survive?
Joanna Morris' A Delicate Man explores the unknowable quantity that is human nature.
What is an all too familiar set of circumstances: a family torn apart by philandering twists and turns as the once brilliant Paul
played by Wayne Dewsbury (Hull Blokes) battles his many demons. He's dwelling in the past and she's removed herself from the picture completely,
with the child in tow.
The majority of the play explores the possibility of redemption, for Paul this comes in the shape of 'damaged' Kate a brave,
emotional performance by Sharon Burton (Chameleon Players)
It was interesting to observe the two leads interaction, as despair gives way to desperation, passion to rejection.
Their relationship has the making of classic codependency, where the need and neurosis shifts from him to her like a ball being hit back and forth.
There are a few one liners that have the audience laughing and knowing that the writer Joanna Morris works in academia herself,
the line about 'not punching your students' provokes more than a little smile.
A Delicate Man, directed by David Burton, feels like quite a small story and staging it in the intimate surroundings of the New Adelphi Club, a venue better known for live music, allowed the audience to connect with the characters.
Live music in the form of singer/songwriter Martin Clappison accompanied the scene changes thus avoiding the potentially awkward silences as furniture is shifted and props brought on and off stage.
The staging itself was very simple a bench, a table, pint glasses on a counter representing the local pub where Paul used to be found drowning his sorrows
on a daily basis.
7 Iron, directed by History undergraduate Alice Whiteoak is described as dirty coppers and love but although the 'bad cops' were clearly on show I didn't see the love.
I don't think even a high court judge could have found any mitigation to justify the nocturnal past times of the two police officers played by
Jason Mayo (Hull Truck, NAPA) and Mike Black (National Youth Theatre, Hull Truck) So that being said the audience had little chance of understanding their motivation.
There perhaps once was an engaging premise, but it felt as though there was something missing, that awkward feeling when you say,
'Am I the only one in here that doesn't get this?' This second piece felt more like a work in progress, a Scratch performance rather than a fully formed work.
7 Iron, penned by the Editor and Journalist Julian Woodford, was a much shorter piece than the first,
and it ended, so abruptly that the person next to me, turned to ask if that was indeed the end.
Now I may have been spoilt of late, by the likes of Endeavour and Whicher, but I was looking for more layers and they just didn't seem to be there.
There just wasn't enough time to build up enough of the story. It may be that the writer's nerves didn't allow him to explicitly
explain the motivation or maybe he purposely left it to the audience to reach their own conclusions.
As is customary with events of this kind there were feedback sheets I noted with interest the bit where it asked whether I had any questions
about the characters' actions. It's almost as if they were prepared for the audience to be left slightly bemused.
On reflection 7 Iron worked more like a short story or film short, rather than a conventional narrative with beginning middle and end.
I enjoyed seeing theatre at the Adelphi Club the atmosphere was inviting, the hosts genial and it was good to see a full crowd for the
first night in Dale Theatre's short run. I'd heartily recommend other theatre companies explore the possibilities of using the club for their productions.
Reviews, Art Book Launch - Swear Down by Russ Litten at Pave - Wednesday April 10th 2013 By Michelle Dee.
If it is possible for poetry to rock a room, then on Wednesday Joe and Mike did just that.
It was author Russ Litten's book launch and a crowd of authors, poets, theatre-makers, movers and shakers from the Arts scene in Hull
including local press and radio, all gathered to celebrate the release of Swear Down, Litten's second novel,
but his first foray into crime-writing. The night was held at the popular drinking emporium,
Reviews, Theatre Phantom of the Opera at St. Mary's College, Tuesday 12th March 2013 By Michelle Dee
It has been years since I saw a school production. I remember my own performances as an overfed urchin, an unfunny jester and as a witch-doctor, with a mixture of nostalgic pride laced with pangs of sheer terror.
A friend's two daughters were in tonight's show, so I took my seat in the school hall dutifully: poised to cheer and applaud in all the right places.
Reviews, Art Sunday March 4th 2013 - Northern Elements at Fruit By Terry Ireland.
It was an evening of poetry
Of four different styles
An evening of belly laughs
And wry gentle smiles
As each of the ladies
In their own special way Read more...
Reviews, Art Sunday March 4th 2013 - Kate Fox Standing Up for Hull Poets By Michelle Dee.
Stand-up poetry or spoken word, call it what you will, is on the rise in Hull. Joe Hakim, curator for Northern Elements, said as much at the Kate Fox show held on Sunday night at Fruit. You can't fail to have noticed the many venues and night dedicated to this vibrant versatile and increasingly popular art form. Poetry is everywhere.
Whether it is mixed in on a variety billing of live music and theatre,
Reviews, Theatre Thursday 5th July 2012 - Fred Voss and Joan Jobe-Smith - The Longbeach Connection at Hull Truck - Humber Mouth Literature Festival By Michelle Dee
Photographs by Cilla Wykes
Tonight's poetry performance was the culmination of three years effort, to bring the highly respected Californian writer Fred Voss to Hull.
All week I'd been hearing reverential murmurings about the two visiting poets, particularly from the writers in my midst.
Wearing dark shades, dressed in black from head to toe, the flame haired Joan Jobe-Smith,
Reviews, Theatre Theatre Brothel 2.0 at Hull Truck Theatre - Saturday 29th September 2012 By Michelle Dee
Photographs by Cilla Wykes
In recent years, film and theatre reviews have become littered with the following: Spoiler Alert! So what can I tell you about
Theatre Brothel 2.0
without giving the game away?
The Theatre Brothel experience begins as you walk the back corridors and passageways of the theatre. Which two of the four shows you
got to see in any given night, depended on what answers you gave to some probing questions.
Reviews, Theatre Tuesday 3rd July 2012 - Hannah Silva and Helen Mort at Fruit - Humber Mouth Literature Festival By Michelle Dee
Photographs by Cilla Wykes
Not very often I'm lost for words after a performance. I can usually begin to frame my response, think in terms of genre, style, influences.
Not so for Hannah Silva. Ghost Running was a special collaborative spoken word performance with renowned Yorkshire poet Helen Mort,
and took place at Fruit in Hull's historic Fruit market area, for the Humbermouth Literature Festival.
Reviews, Theatre Monday 2nd July 2012 - Ross Sutherland: The Three Stigmata of Pacman at Fruit - Humber Mouth Literature Festival By Michelle Dee
Photographs by Cilla Wykes
The annual Humber Mouth Literature Festival in Hull moved into its second week; a week filled with innovative and acclaimed spoken word artists curated by Write to Speak and Fresh Ink in the Hard Rhymes & Great Exclamations strand of the festival.
The performers are arriving in Hull from as far afield as York, Devon, Los Angeles
Reviews, Art Revelations On The Edge by Sarah Pennington at Red Gallery - June 2012 By Michelle Dee. Photographs courtesy Sarah Pennington
A whale bone washed up on a distant shoreline; a battered old tin found loch side returning to its place of origin; strange crab claw tools; methodical
arrangements of chalky bone fragments from fish and fowl. These are just some of the curios that await you when you visit Revelations on the Edge.
Artist and sculptor Sarah Pennington left her home in Hull and spent 3 months on the Isle of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides.
Reviews, Theatre Reclamation at Hull Truck Theatre, Saturday 23rd June 2012 By Michelle Dee
Getting to Edinburgh Fringe is a milestone in every artists career, and performing at the
Arts and Culture Festival presents many challenges; least of all financing the escapade paying for travel and
lodgings while you attempt to put on a marathon of shows in a month.
Reclamation by Joe Hakim, Mike Watts and Ruth E. Dixon is about self discovery not in the namby-pamby
Reviews, Theatre Poems and Pints at The King's Arms, Salford, Friday 3rd February 2012 By Melanie Fullard
Poems and Pints; the brainchild of Paul Heaton ( The Housemartins, Beautiful South ) and his partner, Zena Barrie is a new monthly poetry event held in The King's Arms,
Salford, Manchester. Paul, who has recently become the new landlord was also in the line-up to perform.
Myself and thisisull's Cilla Wykes accompanied two of Hull's leading poets, Mike Watts and Joe Hakim who had both been invited to the opening night.
The King's ArmsRead more...
Reviews, Arts - The Liberation of Barton - A Poetry Evening at The Ropewalk, Barton on Humber - Saturday 8th October 2011 By Melanie Fullard
The Ropewalk in Barton is a listed building which was once used in the manufacturing of rope. It now doubles as an art space and performance venue. It's really awkward to find, sandwiched between Tesco and a housing estate (especially in the dark!) but it's well worth the trouble.
Tonight sees performances from the pick of Hull's finest poets and the debut of Barton's very own Lady Blah Blah (aka Ruth Dixon).
Reviews, Theatre Stags and Hens at Fruit - Tuesday 26th July 2011 By Melanie Fullard Photos by Neil Holmes
Have you been to the 3D cinema recently?
The characters are larger than life, there's surround sound and you become so engrossed that you feel like you're in the film. Well, that's what it's like watching Stags and Hens.
The audience is gathered - standing room only. A bloke walks down the middle aisle; he's swaying a bit and looks a bit pissed.
Reviews, Books - Stories From Potters Field by Andy Wilson and Joe Solo Reviewed by Tim Roux
Joe Solo is a prolifically and prodigiously talented Northern England singer-songwriter who since the turn of the millennium has produced a steady flow of stand-out albums.
The trouble with ol' Joe is that he is a dyed-in-the-wool uncompromising old-fashioned Socialist who refuses to 'tart' up his songs with ear-candy arrangements, so some day someone will make an absolute fortune