Tuesday, 12 September 2017
Virtual Reality - Benny Andersson has confirmed to a Swedish newspaper that plans for a virtual reality tour featuring all four members is in the works. He told Expressen: "We see each other every now and then, we've done a few different things, and now we've got a project ahead of us" The tour, featuring digital avatars of Benny, Bjorn lveaus, Anni-Frid Lyngstad and Agnetha Fältskog is planned to kick off in 2019. “It will take a bit of time, it takes time to digitalize a face,” he said, adding: "It's fun that it's so technologically advanced. It will be interesting."
Refurbishment - London’s Aldwych Theatre is undergoing a multimillion-pound refurbishment. The refit is taking place over 15 weeks between the closure of Beautiful – The Carole King Musical and the opening of La Soiree on 24 November. The refurbishment has been funded by a restoration levy of £1.25, which is added onto ticket prices. However, theatre operator Nederlander Theatres declined to confirm the total cost of the project.
It will include the redecoration of the auditorium and the foyer of the West End theatre, as well as the retouching of ornate plasterwork throughout the building. Seating in the auditorium and carpets throughout the building will be entirely replaced, and the toilets will also be redone. The stalls, dress circle and grand circle bars will also be refurbished, and a glass dome above the dress circle is to be entirely replaced. Additionally, a new surround system is being installed.
Steve Hughes, operations director at the theatre, said: “We are all very excited about the multimillion-pound refurbishment project that will transform the beautiful Aldwych Theatre, making it one of the most stunning theatres in the West End.” Hughes added that the result would be “exquisite” and would see the theatre “return to its former glory”.
Improvised Austen - Austentatious, an entirely improvised play in the style of a Jane Austen novel, will run at the Piccadilly Theatre later this year. The comedy play features comic performers, such as Amy Cooke-Hodgson and Andrew Hunter Murray, who improvise a ‘lost’ Jane Austen story based on title suggestions from the audience.
Underbelly Productions’ Ed Bartlam commented: “Austentatious has been one of the most successful and best-loved shows we’ve worked with in both Edinburgh and on the South Bank in recent years, so it’s a huge privilege to be able to bring them to a West End audience for the first time.”
While running at the West End, Austentatious embarks on it’s national tour, running from 22 September to the 23 November. Locations include Leeds, Salford, Nottingham and Bristol.
Tulsa Time - Don Williams, the Country Music Hall of Fame member whose imposing height and warm, reassuring voice earned him the nickname "Gentle Giant," has died after a short illness. An internationally popular country star, Williams recorded dozens of hit songs, including Tulsa Time and It Must Be Love. He was 78.
Farewell - Founder of the Royal Shakespeare Company and former National Theatre director Sir Peter Hall has died at the age of 86. He died on Monday at University College hospital in London, surrounded by his family, the National Theatre said. During his career he staged the English language premiere of Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot and the world premiere of Harold Pinter's Homecoming. There will be a private family funeral, with details of a memorial service to be announced at a later date.
12 September 2017