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Into 1984 and it was Opera North again in April with Smetana's 'The Bartered Bride' being the only production I went to see.

 

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May 1984 and a comedy I remember only vaguely:

 

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I perhaps could have mentioned before a couple of points. One is that on Monday evenings (if I remember correctly) it was two tickets for the price of one for plays. 

 

The other is that apart from most musical offerings, including operas, which were usually packed out, it was the practice on any night of the week if there was not a large audience in, to not open certain parts of the auditorium and accommodate people in other areas. Most common in my experience was the Balcony (ex-Gods) would not be open and people with tickets for it would be put in the back rows of the Upper Circle - or even in the rear Stalls if business was so indifferent that the Upper Circle was also left closed. The idea being, I suppose, that fewer theatre staff would be needed on duty if not all areas were in use. Old hands such as I'd become by this time would allow for this, and I would always book a Balcony seat knowing that much more often than not I would be in a better seat than I'd paid for.

 

For all I know this is still done today!

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Still in May 1984:

 

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I'd seen them briefly some years before when they made a guest appearance in a D'Oyly Carte performance but this was the first time to see them in their own show. I always felt with Hinge & Bracket they could be enjoyed on two levels - the character comedy (and it was noticeable in their stage show how, unlike in their TV and radio appearances some of the comedy material was rather  near to the knuckle in terms of double entendres) and also simply for the performances of the old musical comedy songs.

 

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 Although I hardly ever watched it on TV I went along to see 'Last of the Summer Wine'. Only two thirds of the regulars were in it - presumably Brian Wilde was unavailable. In the action of the play we were told that Foggy was upstairs in bed.

 

By now I had begun to record where I sat and my rough estimate of how many people were in the audience. Further to what I said in a recent posting, this production was popular enough that I had to sit in the Balcony seat I'd paid for, and I estimated the theatre was more than three quarters full. 

 

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Opera North were back again July. I saw this piece by Delius (estimated the theatre just over three-quarters full) and Madam Butterfly (very nearly completely full).

 

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Such lovely stuff MI.

 

History.

 

Love it!

 

Col

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'The Royal Repertory Players' were back with a four-week run. I see from one of the previous programmes that you could see all four productions for the price of three. This year, apart from 'The Ghost Train' it was comedies instead of thrillers.

 

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For 'Bedroom Farce' (very good) I was in the Balcony, as I recorded the theatre as nearly two-thirds full - Alan Ayckbourn plays being popular.

 

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The other two offerings were 'There's a Girl in My Soup', about which I remember nothing, except that I see my Balcony ticket produced an Upper Circle seat (usually in the back two rows) and I estimated it was only about one third full.

 

Finally, 'A Bedfull of Foreigners' - again remember nothing, but was again upgraded to the Upper Circle and about 40% full.

 

 

 

 

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I have just found out that a relative of mine was a chorus girl at the Empire theatre does anyone know where I can find our about chorus girls and maybe playbills.

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50 minutes ago, freckles said:

I have just found out that a relative of mine was a chorus girl at the Empire theatre does anyone know where I can find our about chorus girls and maybe playbills.

 

Not as such, but there's quite a bit about the Empire on these sites:

 

http://www.arthurlloyd.co.uk/NottinghamTheatres.htm#empire

 

http://cinematreasures.org/theaters/37632

 

 

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It was Alan Ayckbourn again the following month. I do remember some of this and wasn't keen on it - much darker than most of his plays that I've seen.

 

Being Ayckbourn it was very popular, and despite no bigger star than Norman Rossington being in it I had to sit in the Balcony and there were very few empty seats in the house that I could see.

 

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Who remembers the Silk Cut adverts:

 

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Opera North were back again, but I only went to see 'Cav & Pag', giving Nabucco a miss for some reason.

 

A popular double bill, although I get the impression it's less often presented nowadays, I estimated the theatre as 90% full.

 

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Roy Hudd returned in October 1984 for another of his Music Hall shows - I'd forgotten I'd seen him twice. I think this was the one where he performed some of the old monologues, including 'The Green Eye of the Yellow God'.

 

House was over three-quarters full according to my estimate.

 

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The following month was another play about which I can remember nothing.

 

Less than half full, so my Balcony ticket got me into the Upper Circle.

 

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The National Theatre presented a classic comedy in early December 1984. Being them the theatre was almost full and I had to sit in the Balcony seat I'd paid for. The cast included Tom Baker, Dora Bryan and Hywel Bennett, but I can remember very little of it.

 

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Into 1985 and an adaptation of the true story of the suburban spy couple Peter and Helen Kroger.

 

I must say it's difficult to believe anyone's real name is Lizzie Queen.

 

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Gerald Flood was back in April 1985 in this comedy-thriller, which if I remember right was supposed to be 'prior to West End'. However, I don't think it made it to London due to having a rather ridiculous plot about a cleaner at 10 Downing Street having to masquerade as the Prime Minister in phone calls to the Kremlin. This required Amanda Barrie to do a not very convincing impression of Margaret Thatcher.

 

My Balcony ticket got me into the Upper Circle, and I reckoned the theatre as only a quarter full.

 

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The next month saw a production of 'Seven Brides For Seven Brothers'. No-one especially well-known in the cast as far as I'm concerned, except that looking through the cast list just now, I noticed one of the Brides was played by the then 19-year-old Michaela Strachan.

 

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At the beginning of August there was an Agatha Christie play starring Pat Phoenix and her husband-to-be. Apparently this was only just over a year before she died.

 

I don't remember anything of it, but the theatre was less than half full which was enough for me to have sit in the Balcony seat I'd paid for. 

 

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The usual four-week summer repertory season saw all thrillers again:

 

'Rope', which was very good, especially as I'd not seen the film at that time. I think it may have been all seats the same price, as I was in the Dress Circle for this, with the theatre estimated as just over a third full.

 

'An Inspector Calls' - I was in the Dress Circle again, theatre just over half full.

 

'Deathtrap'

 

Agatha Christie's 'And Then There Were None'.

 

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Turns out there was a fifth week of the summer repertory season. Not mentioned originally, and I vaguely remember it was a late addition.  Don't remember anything of the play, written by Brian Clemens who was best-known for 'The Avengers'.

 

I was in the Dress Circle again, theatre about a third full.

 

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On Opera North's next visit I only saw 'The Magic Flute' (typo in the programme), giving the Bellini a miss for some reason - I've a vague idea it was performed in the original Italian.

 

Theatre was practically full.

 

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Not sure of the date, but Hinge & Bracket were back, and with a non-standard programme. I remember the humour was less near-the-knuckle this time.  

 

Theatre was only about half full and my Balcony ticket got me into the Upper Circle.

 

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