The Core theatre in Corby has revealed the finishing touches to its autumn season, including work created locally and presented around the town in venues such as community centres and the town’s swimming pool.
Corby-born Neil Bettles and his company ThickSkin return with new play The Static and a project involving local young performers, and a brand new song cycle inspired by Corby will feature top singer and Core-regular Barb Jungr with local musicians and singers.
There will be comedy and dance, along with a selection of children’s shows, leading up to two family Christmas shows – The Night Before Christmas and Grisly Tales From Tumblewater – to celebrate the festive season.
There will also be plenty of classes and projects to take part in and a huge variety of films to see.
Following on from the success of their award-winning production of Blackout in 2011, ThickSkin will be rehearsing new play The Static at The Core before taking the show to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, returning to perform at The Core from September 26 to 28, as the start of their UK tour. The play is a coming-of-age story about desire, guilt and mind over matter.
Young people from Corby and from Greenock in Scotland will work together on a ground-breaking digital performance called White Noise, which will be performed simultaneously in the two communities on September 1, with a live link between the two shows.
Other drama in the season includes Bones, presented by Fifth Word in association with Nottingham Playhouse, an honest portrayal of a boy struggling to find his place in a world that doesn’t want him.
The Core’s Creative Director Chris Sudworth directs Stephanie Ridings’ one-woman black comedy Me, Mum and Dusty Springfield. Peppered with lyrics and songs from the iconic singer, the show examines the bonds between mothers and daughters, and how they cope with loss.
For those who enjoy both theatre and dance there is Agnes and Walter: A Little Love Story, by SMITH dancetheatre. It is a love story inspired by the classic book The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, combining dance, physical theatre, clowning and music, featuring professional dancers aged 25 to 75.
In celebration of The Core’s second birthday in November, a brand new song cycle is being created by singer and international recording artist Barb Jungr, inspired by the people and stories of Corby. Deep Roots, Tall Trees will be performed by Barb along with top local musicians and a new community choir.
Last year’s sell-out success Strictly Sixties returns to The Core, featuring top 1960s act The Swinging Blue Jeans and Bip Wetherell’s tribute band The Telstars, with all proceeds going to Northamptonshire’s prostate cancer support charity Prostaid.
Other music includes The Bay City Rollers Story, an evening of reminiscences and music with the band’s lead singer Les McKeown, and top tribute act Limehouse Lizzy, recreating the sounds of Phil Lynott ‘s iconic band Thin Lizzy.
The Words and Music Weekender, running from November 2 to 4, gives the opportunity to aspiring poets, MCs, writers, musicians, bands and DJs to take part in workshops, Open Mic sessions and showcase performances. The line up includes poet and performer Mark Grist of Dead Poets who shot to internet fame after his Teacher vs Student Rap Battle went viral on YouTube.
There’s a wide selection of comedians coming to The Core this autumn, ranging from Scottish comedian Danny Bhoy, with his dry observational humour, comedian, writer and political activist Mark Thomas returning with his new show Bravo Figaro, and regular TV and radio comedy quiz panellist Fred Macaulay, to up and coming talent in The Best of the Chortle Awards and a Laughing Boy Christmas Special.
The Core continues to present a great selection shows for younger audiences to enjoy with their families. Coming up this autumn are Freehand Theatre’s Little Red...You Know What, a retelling of a classic tale, with puppetry, beautiful special effects and specially composed music, and Little Angel Theatre – who were last at The Core with sell-out success The Fabulous Flutterbys – return with Handa’s Surpise, an intimate and magical production with physical performance, puppetry and live music, transporting audiences all the way to Kenya. There will be free drop in craft sessions before many of the Family Fun performances.
There is more great entertainment for families at Christmas with two shows aimed at different age groups. For children aged three and upwards, Big Wooden Horse Company present the delightful tale of The Night Before Christmas from December 4 to 9 in the theatre auditorium.
In the intimate space of The Lab from December 12 to 16, Teasel Theatre Company presents Grisly Tales From Tumblewater, following the adventures of Daniel Dory, a fearless orphan who enters the world of Tumblewater armed only with his wits and a satchel of spine-chilling stories.
Carrying on the Christmas theme, Chelsea Flower Show medallist, celebrity florist and international floral demonstrator Mig Kimpton also visits Corby with his new show, Christmas At Home – The Floral Tour, an evening of floral inspiration, theatrical chat and gossip.
The Core is also pleased to be hosting shows from local community groups, including Corby Amateur Theatrical Society’s Christmas pantomime Aladdin, and an evening of music from the Wadzanai Project, celebrating African culture.
The Core’s work is also spreading further afield out into the local community with performances taking place in a number of different venues. Urban Angel and The Core will be working with young people in the local area who are not currently in work or education to create a new performance, Short Shift, which can be seen at The Church of the Epiphany in Elizabeth Street. A snew dance piece, SwimMorphosis, is inspired by and performed at Corby East Midlands International Pool, forming the centrepiece of a Festival of Dance which also features many performances in unexpected places, by local schools and community groups. Finally, created by improvisation company Fluxx, Without Planning Permission will feature local performers and will be presented in a number of Corby community centres, giving audiences the chance to determine how each show ends.
The Core continues to offer a wide range of classes and activities for all ages with its Get Involved programme, including youth theatre, street dance and digital arts. Many of the young people taking part in these activities will get the chance to showcase their work at the next Corby Youth Arts Slam at the end of the term. For the school holidays The Core offers the opportunity to create a Film In A Week this summer, and a Play In A Week for the autumn half-term. Following a highly successful residency in February 2011, renowned physical theatre company Frantic Assembly returns this autumn with its acclaimed programme Ignition, aiming to find the next generation of male physical theatre performers. To find out more about any of these opportunities, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01536 470 473.
In addition to all the live entertainment and activities The Core also will be showing a wide range of films throughout the summer and autumn. Highlights include animated family film Ice Age 4: Continental Drift, Scottish hit of the year The Angels’ Share, a new twist to the classic fairytale with Snow White and the Huntsman, super-hero adventures with The Amazing Spider-Man and the new sci-fi blockbuster Prometheus from Ridley Scott.
For more information, and details of dates, times and prices for all of these events and films, pick up a brochure, visit the website www.thecorecorby.com or call The Core’s Ticket Line on 01536 470 470.