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UK Roundup - Acorn Antiques, Joshua Jackson, Caroline O'Connor

Victoria/> Wood's comedy classic Acorn Antiques, a series of sketches taken from her series As Seen on TV, is to be staged 18 years later with the original cast all expected to take part. Julie Walters, Celia Imrie, Duncan/> Preston and, of course, Victoria/>/> Wood herself, will reprise their roles and be joined by others including Sally Ann Triplett, who lead The National Theatre's revival of Anything Goes. A venue has long been sought after but has now been confirmed as the Theatre Royal, Haymarket, currently home to Becket with Dougray Scott. That production will close early on December 11th. Trevor Nunn directs Acorn Antiques for a 6 week run from January 30th 2005.

The Apollo Theatre will play host to David Mamet's two hander A Life in the Theatre, starring Patrick Stewart and Joshua Jackson. Rather fittingly it's about a veteran actor teaching his craft to a younger newcomer – Stewart has appeared in numerous West End outings whereas Jackson/>, best known for Dawson/>'s Creek, is making his West End/> debut. The last time we saw Patrick Stewart on stage was in 2003 when he headlined Ibsen's The Master Builder - quite a contrast to Joshua Jackson, who has not appeared on stage since he was eight. The play is directed by regular Mamet director Lindsay Posner, who has attracted such celebrities as Matthew Perry, Minnie Driver and Julia Stiles.

Two of Australia/>/>'s leading musical theatre exports, Adam Garcia and Caroline O'Connor, will take to the stage at the English National Opera to star in a revival of Bernstein's On The Town. For Garcia it marks a welcome return; he made his name in Saturday Night Fever, for which he was nominated for an Olivier award, and O'Connor recently brought her one-woman show Bombshells to the capital. With director Jude Kelly and top choreographer Stephen Mear, this is a theatrical event that's bound to sizzle at the 2364 seater London Coliseum. The musical centres on three American sailors who arrive on a day-break in New York/> and features the classic hit New York/>/>, New York/>/>.

The Olivier Award winning musical Jerry/> Spring/>/>er the Opera will be filmed with a live audience ahead of a screening on British TV in January. The BBC are keen to show the opera as part of their vision to modernise their arts programming, though earlier this year they scrapped plans to televise the Laurence Olivier Awards, resulting in outrage from leading theatrical figures. The writers of the musical, stand-up comedian Stewart Lee and Richard Thomas, have also been commissioned to write six made-for-TV operas following the success of an earlier TV-opera Fla/>shmob, based on the cult of fla/>/>shmobbing. The BBC have previously filmed plays and musicals live including A Day in the Death of Joe Egg, with Eddie Izzard, and Our House, the Madness musical.

The winners of the reality TV programme Musicality took to the stage on Thursday to perform the roles of Roxie, Velma, Mama/> Mo/>rton and Billy Flynn in stage show Chicago/>/> at the Adelphi Theatre. The five, whose jobs range from a primary school teacher to a waitress, have also recorded an album out in time for Christmas. The series concludes next Wednesday when highlights from the show will be shown. The series followed a similar theatre reality competition called Operatunity, seeking to find amateur opera stars. The two winners, Jane Gilchrist and Denise Leigh, are still performing together on tour. Whether the same will become of the current five we will have to wait and see..


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From This Author Jake Brunger

Jake is currently studying at Bristol University and hopes to eventually pursue a career in the theatre industry as a writer/director. His favourite writers include (read more...)