Ilkley Playhouse

ILKLEY Playhouse prides itself on offering high quality productions that engage with audiences of all ages, tastes and interests. Over the past few months we have brought you fast-paced comedy Teechers about life in a comprehensive school, to gentle and absorbing Ladies in Lavender set in 1930s Cornwall. If political drama is more your thing, we have just the ticket coming up on April 16th with Peter Morgan’s Frost/Nixon. The play, made into a film of the same name in in 2008, follows British talk-show host David Frost as he attempts to turn his career around with a story like no other – the confession of President Nixon and the Watergate scandal.

For those who don’t know the story of the Watergate scandal, or who can’t remember, here is a brief summary: in 1972, as the race for the United States presidency between Nixon and McGovern was heating up, five men were arrested after they broke into the headquarters of the Democratic National Party, located in the Watergate Hotel. A connection between the burglars and Nixon’s re-election campaign was discovered and Nixon attempted to use his power of office to cover up any involvement. Two years of bitter controversy ensued until the certainty of impeachment finally prompted Nixon to resign, although he never faced any prosecution for his crimes.

The play follows the events leading up to and including a series of momentous televised interviews that the disgraced former President granted British chat show host David Frost in 1977 covering Nixon’s life and presidency, including the Watergate scandal. The play, first performed in 2006 is written by screenwriter and dramatist Peter Morgan, whose writing credits include ‘The Queen’, ‘The Last King of Scotland’ and ‘The Damned United’. He has a reputation for being a master at bringing to life the drama of high office. The Stage describes the play as “a highly intelligent piece of political theatre that entertains as well as instructs.” Frost/Nixon runs from April 16th to 25th in the Wharfeside Theatre.

Coming up soon on Saturday, March 21st we welcome local band the Two Rivers Swing Band into our Wildman Studio. Directed by trumpeter and jazz arranger Trevor Vincent, their performance will include well known numbers by the great band leaders Glenn Miller, Count Basie and Duke Ellington. Expect sparkling vocals, tight ensemble playing and exciting solos. Please note that this is a seated event with limited dancing space.

We have our next instalment of Stagefright comedy on Saturday, April 4th featuring comedian Tom Binns (as himself) and his hospital radio DJ character Ivan Brackenbury. Tom Binns is New Zealand Comedy Festival Award winner and is the co-writer of BBC1’s Hospital People. Binn’s character Ivan Brackenbury can be seen on the BBC sitcom Hospital People and 8 out of 10 Cats Does Countdown. He has been described by Chris Evans as ‘absolute comic genius’.

Saturday, April 11th sees the return of our very popular vintage fair organised by Jill Coulson, of locally based vintage firm Alfie Robot Retro. Vintage lovers will have the opportunity to explore the 20 stalls of vintage clothing, homeware, kitchenware, furniture, toys, vinyl and many more items from the 1920s to the 1980s. Come and browse the goods on sale, have your hair styled in a retro fashion and relax with one of the many tempting cakes on offer from the tea room.

Don’t forget that our current play Ladies in Lavender is on for just a few more nights, until Saturday, March 14th and it has received brilliant reviews. So get the last few remaining tickets soon!

Caroline Mutton