Skiprap, Tiger’s Tale, Up ‘n’ Under, Great Expectations

Skiprap - tour starts 2 February

Mind the Gap associate artist Alan Clay premières his debut solo Skiprap at the start of a short tour.

Artist, performer, stand-up comedian and rapper Alan ‘Cool’ Clay's show is inspired by his own experiences.

Using hip-hop, theatre, digital imagery and junk, the show explores how Clay's challenging background and learning disability have affected him and his career which spans 20 years.

Written and created by Alan Clay, Skiprap is performed by Clay with MC, poet and theatre-maker Testament and Andy Brooks who is also musical director.

Clay's musical collaborators for the show are spoken word artist Baba Israel and Jez Colborne.

Skiprap is directed by Iain Bloomfield and the rehearsal director and support worker is Leah Francis.

Skiprap visits MTG Studios Bradford, Square Chapel Arts Centre Halifax, Theatre Deli in Sheffield and ARC in Stockton.

A Tiger’s Tale - tour starts 3 February

M6 Theatre’s new play for families A Tiger’s Tale is based on the true story of the Holmfirth Tiger and the book Tiger on a String.

Olivier award-winning Mike Kenny has written the show. He specialises in theatre for young people and his credits include an adaptation of The Railway Children.

This story follows a family of acrobats and their adopted tiger cub, Fenella, who journeys from a circus train in South Africa to a new home in West Yorkshire via steamboat across the Atlantic Ocean.

The show features a high-spirited balancing act of circus, puppetry, live music and song performed by Owen Gaynor, Sophia Hatfield and Nicola Jayne Ingram with the original music of James Atherton. Gilly Baskeyfield directs.

A Tiger’s Tale opens at Riverfront Newport then visits Nottingham Lakeside Arts, Theatre by the Lake Keswick, New Wolsey Theatre Ipswich, Pocklington Arts Centre, Lawrence Batley Theatre, Warwick Arts Centre, the egg Theatre Royal Bath, Rhodes Arts Complex Bishop’s Stortford, Half Moon Theatre, artsdepot North Finchley, Pitlochry Festival Theatre, Eden Court Inverness, Platform Glasgow, Lyric Hammersmith, The Lowry Salford Quays, Stamford Arts Centre, Norden Farm Centre for the Arts and Pontio Bangor.

Up ‘n’ Under - tour starts 7 February

A cast of deaf and hearing actors using BSL and spoken English perform in John Godber’s comedy Up ‘n’ Under on tour.

They are Adam Bassett, Stephen Collins, Willie Elliott, Matty Gurney, Nadeem Islam, Wayne Pickles Norman and Tanya Vital.

The comic play sees hero coach Arthur take on the challenge of a match between the laughing stock that is The Wheatsheaf Arms rugby team and the mighty Cobblers Arms team. His work is cut out for him but first he has to work out how to communicate with them.

Up ‘n’ Under is presented by fingersmiths in partnership with English Deaf Rugby Union / Tony Stoyles.

fingersmiths is a theatre company whose work engages primarily but not exclusively with deaf / disabled audiences presenting modern classics previously not available to deaf audiences in their own language. England Deaf Rugby is a charity leading the cross-community initiative Deaf Rugby for All.

fingersmiths' artistic director Jeni Draper directs.

Up ‘n’ Under tours to New Wolsey Theatre Ipswich, The Key Studio Peterborough, Canada Water Cultural Space London, Harrogate Theatre, Oxford Playhouse, Cast in Doncaster, The Lowry Salford, Derby Theatre Studio, Birmingham Rep Studio, Sheffield Theatre Studio and Northcott Theatre Exeter. All performances will have live audio description.

Great Expectations - tour starts 8 February

Nichola Mcauliffe plays Miss Havisham in Charles Dickens's Great Expectations when it tours from next month through to June.

Olivier Award-winning McAuliffe will be known to television watchers for Surgical Spirit, whilst her stage credits include The Night of the Iguana and The Lady in the Van.

Séan Aydon plays Pip and Isla Carter, Estella, with Edward Ferrow taking the role of Joe Gargery and Richard Earl taking those of Jaggers and Pumblechook.

The director is Sophie Boyce Couzens and the composer is Ollie King.

The adaptation of this classic novel is by Ken Bentley whose radio credits include adaptations of H G Wells’s The Island of Doctor Moreau, The Hunted which was short listed for a BBC Audio Drama Award and Doctor Who: The Eye of Harmony (which won him the BBC Audio Drama Awards for direction).

Great Expectations is presented by Tilted Wig Productions and Malvern Theatres. The tour visits:

Malvern Theatres, Yvonne Arnaud Theatre Guildford, Theatr Clwyd Mold, Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds, Richmond Theatre, Palace Theatre Southend, Devonshire Park Theatre Eastbourne, Buxton Opera House, Theatre by the Lake Keswick, Theatre Royal Winchester, Belgrade Theatre Coventry, Everyman Theatre Cheltenham, New Theatre Royal Portsmouth, Churchill Theatre Bromley, The Hawth Crawley and Exeter Northcott Theatre.