What’s On at The Gatehouse Theatre

Blues Band celebrate 39 years in the business – Saturday 24th February

Hailed as some of the finest purveyors of rhythm and blues, The Blues Band, are celebrating their 39th year together as a group with a special performance at Stafford Gatehouse Theatre next month.

Paul Jones, Dave Kelly, Tom McGuinness, Rob Townsend and Gary Fletcher.

The individual members of The Blues Band were already held in admiration by generations of rhythm & blues fans when they formed back in 1979. Almost two and a half decades and over 16 albums later they continue to add to their growing army of followers, and it’s not unheard of to find three generations from the same family at a gig. The band is today acknowledged throughout Europe and beyond as being amongst the very finest purveyors of rhythm & blues. They have inspired numerous other blues bands, many of which have come and gone…The Blues Band have remained a constant, increasingly popular fixture, however.

Such successful musical mavericks are fairly rare and are borne more from word-of-mouth than promotional hype. Either way they still have to cut the mustard. These boys have real feel – for their music, for their audience and for each other. Playing with maturity and passion is second nature to all of them…. Paul Jones has devoted much of a creative career spanning almost 40 years to this eternal, inspiring form – the very base and roots of rock & roll….. Dave Kelly, with his late, great sister, Jo-Ann, introduced a whole generation to the works of Memphis Minnie, Son House, Robert Johnson and Mississippi Fred McDowell …… the blues bit Tom McGuinness in the late ’50s and has never let go – the same sharp, tight grip which still holds Rob Townsend and Gary Fletcher within its spell.

So here they are, as enthusiastic as ever – Britain’s finest, most skilled practitioners in the art of the blues: The Blues Band.

The Blues Band will be performing at Stafford Gatehouse Theatre on Saturday 24th February 2018 at 7.30pm. Tickets are priced at £24 and are available from the Box Office on 01785 619080 or via www.staffordgatehousetheatre.co.uk


Sienna Miller stars in screening of 20th Century masterpiece – Thursday 22nd February

National Theatre Live screenings will continue next month at Stafford Gatehouse Theatre, with a revival of Tennessee Williams’ twentieth century masterpiece Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.

Following his smash hit production of A Streetcar Named Desire, Benedict Andrews’ “thrilling revival” (New York Times) stars Sienna Miller alongside, Jack O’Connell and Colm Meaney. The show played a strictly limited season in London’s West End in 2017.

On a steamy night in Mississippi, a Southern family gather at their cotton plantation to celebrate Big Daddy’s birthday. The scorching heat is almost as oppressive as the lies they tell. Brick and Maggie dance round the secrets and sexual tensions that threaten to destroy their marriage. With the future of the family at stake, which version of the truth is real – and which will win out?

★★★★ “A bold reimagining…innovative and powerfully acted” Sunday Times

★★★★ “A brilliant, lacerating account of the play… unforgettable” The Independent

★★★★ “Miller and O’Connell get to a raw and naked truth” The Metro

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof will be screened live at Stafford Gatehouse Theatre on Thursday 22nd February at 7pm. Tickets are priced at £13, with a concession price of £10.50, and are available from the Box Office on 01785 619080 or via www.staffordgatehousetheatre.co.uk

Age guidance: 15+


Knockout new drama at the MET – Friday 9th March

A high-octane new drama from award-winning writing company Smoke & Oakum Theatre is heading to the MET Studio this Spring.

Cornermen is a knockout production and follows the story of Mickey and his team of cornermen, who never seem to have much luck in the boxing world. The fighters they manage always end up losing and, after a disastrous last outing, no one wants to work with them. Until, that is, they sign Sid Sparks, a young boxer whose fast hands and winning ways catapult them into a world of success they’ve never known. However, you can’t win all the time and soon Mickey must chose between the life he’s enjoying, and the well-being of his young charge.

After opening at the Old Red Lion Theatre in London, Cornermen went on to play all over the country, running at the Edinburgh Fringe, Brighton Festival and the infamous VAULT Festival in London, where it was published by Nick Hern Books and described in The Stage as “a right-hook out of nowhere, a real knockout.”

Smoke & Oakum Theatre was founded by Oli Forsyth as a new writing company in 2013. Since then they have produced six shows that have played to thousands of people at venues all over the UK, with four of the plays having been published and bought by drama schools and companies across the country. Smoke & Oakum shows cover a range of topics, from homelessness to rave culture, and always have the same mix of urgency and crackling dialogue that led New Diorama Theatre Artistic Director David Byrne to label them ‘One of the best new companies around’.

For this tour of Cornermen, Smoke & Oakum will be partnering with Red Ladder Theatre and New Diorama Theatre.

As well as the national tour of Cornermen, Smoke & Oakum has just finished a 3-week run of its award-winning show Kings which ran at New Diorama Theatre in London where it was published by Methuen Drama and described in Everything Theatre as “One of the best shows this year.”

Cornermen will be performed in the MET Studio at Stafford Gatehouse Theatre on Friday 9th March 2018 at 7.30pm. Tickets are priced at £12.50 and are available from the Box Office on 01785 619080 or via www.staffordgatehousetheatre.co.uk

Age guidance: 16+


Nursery rhyme comes to life in family puppet show – Saturday 10th March

Can you and your family help Little Bo Peep find her sheep in a wonderful new puppetry show coming to the MET Studio this spring?

Little Bo Peep has lost her sheep and doesn’t know where to find them. Her friend Little Boy Blue is doing his best to help find the woolly runaways but he keeps falling asleep.

Meanwhile, The Nursery Rhyme Man is in his kitchen baking a surprise cake for Little Bo Peep’s birthday. As he works a mischievous mouse keeps stealing the ingredients.

Watch your favourite nursery rhymes come to life before your eyes in Sea Legs Puppet Theatre’s fabulous Tenth Anniversary show. Featuring magnificent puppets, fantastic scenery and of course lots of music and singing in a show especially created for little peeps and their families.

Recommended ages – families/ children age 2 – 7

Running time – 45 minutes + 15 minutes “Meet the Puppets”

Little Bo Peep will take place in the MET Studio at Stafford Gatehouse Theatre on Saturday 10th March 2018 at 11.30am. Tickets are priced at £9, with a family ticket priced at £34, and are available from the Box Office on 01785 619080 or via www.staffordgatehousetheatre.co.uk



Loudly Insecure Bobby heading to MET for comedy gig – Saturday 10th March

Popular stand-up comedian Bobby Mair is set to perform at the MET Studio this Spring with his new show ‘Loudly Insecure’.

Over the past couple of years, Bobby has become an instantly recognisable face on British television and the UK comedy circuit.

30 years ago, Bobby was put up for adoption and now he’s tracking down his birth family one by one. Saying his search has hit a couple of snags would be an understatement and he still has relatives out there who continue to elude him – except for Justin Bieber. Loudly Insecure gives Bobby a chance to fill you in on the wildly dramatic twists and turns of his quest, the accidental broadening of his search for next of kin, plus he’ll fill you in on a couple of other musings along the way; like his love of strangers, techniques to impress his personal trainer and if remembering virginity loss is inappropriate.

Recently, Bobby has supported the likes of Bill Burr and Doug Stanhope on tour and also took time out to professionally troll Julian Assange, garnering international press pick up. Katie Hopkins has also had a brush with Bobby after he donated his appearance fee from his booking on TLC series ‘What If Katie Hopkins Ruled The World’, to causes he knew she’d hate. This noble deed didn’t go unnoticed and earned him over 500,000 hits on YouTube, a figure far exceeding the number of viewers who watched the original appearance on Hopkins’s show.

Bobby is currently shooting his first comedy series for VICELAND, which airs this summer. Co-starring the love of his life Harriet Kemsley, the show follows the pair’s hilariously dysfunctional journey towards their impending marriage. Bobby is also a series regular in Channel 4’s ‘World of Weird’ and is the roaming reporter for satirical political show ‘Sam Delaney’s News Thing’ (RT). He also hosted and wrote ‘The Bobby Mair Show’ for Comedy Central online, which was quickly commissioned after his huge viral success on ‘KSI:Demolished’ for the channel. Additionally Bobby is a seasoned panellist on ‘8 out of 10 Cats’ (C4), ‘Never Mind The Buzzcocks’ (BBC2), ‘Virtually Famous’ (E4), ‘Sweat the Small Stuff’ (BBC3), and ‘Safe Word’ (ITV) to name a few.

Bobby Mair will be performing in the MET Studio at Stafford Gatehouse Theatre on Saturday 10th March 2018 at 8pm. Tickets are priced at £13 and are available from the Box Office on 01785 619080 or via www.staffordgatehousetheatre.co.uk

Age Guidance: 16+


Real stars of Brassed Off set for Gatehouse concert – Sunday 11th March

Grimethorpe Colliery Band – featuring the musicians at the centre of the smash-hit movie Brassed Off – is making its much-anticipated return to Stafford Gatehouse Theatre this Spring for another concert of brilliant British brass.

Formed in 1917, during the First World War, Grimethorpe Colliery Band is a British institution. National and British Open Champions on numerous occasions – the band’s contest successes remain legendary. These include 16 Brass in Concert Championship titles, 11 times Yorkshire Regional Champions, two English National Championship victories, four times British Open Champions and four times National Champion Brass Band of Great Britain.

Grimethorpe’s diverse noted concert performances include those at the FIFA World Cup, BAFTA Awards, BBC Proms, Eurovision and London 2012 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony, together with a wealth of national and international television / radio appearances and professional recordings. The band has been the recipient of two gold discs, as well as a BAFTA nomination for its contributions to the global hit movie Brassed Off for which Grimethorpe was the focal point.

“Tompkinson, Postlethwaite and Carter are stand-outs in an impressive ensemble cast, but for many, the brass band music of Grimethorpe comes as the real revelation” Time Out

The Royal Albert Hall, Symphony Hall, Barbican, Westminster Abbey, European Parliament, Sydney Opera House and more, have all played host to Grimethorpe. With tours to Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, and concerts & festival appearances throughout Europe, the band’s performance reputation remains unsurpassed.

“A thoroughly entertaining show & a must for all music enthusiasts” The Guardian

In addition to continuing to delight audiences across the globe, Grimethorpe also continues to invest in and support its local community in Grimethorpe, Barnsley and South Yorkshire, particularly through its youth music initiatives and community performances, both locally and on a national scale.

Grimethorpe Colliery Band will be performing at Stafford Gatehouse Theatre on Sunday 11th March 2018 at 5.30pm. Tickets are priced at £22.50 and are available from the Box Office on 01785 619080 or via www.staffordgatehousetheatre.co.uk


Grumpy Old Women in heroic return to Gatehouse – Friday 30th and Saturday 31st March

Making their much-anticipated return to Stafford Gatehouse Theatre this Spring, the Grumpy Old Women are set to delight local audiences once again with a new show, ‘To the Rescue’.

Starring Jenny Eclair, Dillie Keane & Lizzie Roper…

Fed up with flogging their guts out and always having to be in charge, the Grumpy Old Women have put their knobbly old feet up in glorious retirement, free at last to practise their extreme colouring-in, ukelele orchestra and novelty fudge-making.

But with the world in a bigger mess than ever before, is there anything that can tempt them off their backsides to unleash their superpowers and once more come to the rescue?!

Join us for 90 mins of brand new ‘full-fat’, ‘batteries included’ comedy from the mistresses of grump.

“Expect a party” The Times

Grumpy Old Women ‘To the Rescue’ will be performed at Stafford Gatehouse Theatre on Friday 30th and Saturday 31st March 2018 at 7.30pm. Tickets are priced at £25.50 and are available from the Box Office on 01785 619080 or via www.staffordgatehousetheatre.co.uk