theatreguys.net presents:
 
  
 
  
Fredo's Theatre Group 
Welcome to our Theatre Group website - we hope you will find all the information you need. This is a not-for-profit UK theatre-going group for our friends and colleagues (see foot of page).  
We do not sell tickets to the public.  
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MENU 
 
 
 
 
 
>Latest Offers: It's time to make a booking -  
Details of all Available Bookings are shown on the Current Bookings page - 
click HERE or on the ads above. 
Extra Discounts for our Donmar Friends 
Previously advertised shows are now sold out 
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>Next Theatre Visits:
 
Sat 19 October 
1.30pm perf at 
Covent Garden 
 
Early coach departure 
click HERE 
 
Thurs 24 October 
8.00pm at the 
Menier Chocolate Factory 
Mon 28 October 
at the 
Garrick Theatre 
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>OnOurOwn:
Updated 23/09/19 -   
What we see without the Group:  click  HERE or on the ads below to see our comments.
 
>News and Information: Please scroll down the page    
MAKING IT WORK 
  If you happen to walk down Earlham St one Sunday morning between shows at the Donmar, you may see an unusual sight.  This is the time when the set for one production is dismantled and removed, and the set for the next production is installed. 
Think of some of the unusual and intricate sets we have been surprised by in this apparently inflexible space – the apartment for A Streetcar Named Desire, the rainfall and the extraordinary scene change for Faith Healer, or the tree in Elegy. How did they arrive there? How were they taken away? 
At first glance, the most complicated feature of the set for Appropriate would appear to be the clutter on the stage, which hardly allowed room for the actors to move in Act One. Watching the stage crew tidy it up in the interval was another play in itself.
  That’s why Mike and I were fascinated to hear the Production Manager Igor explain when we attended the Director’s Forum performance (and by the way, despite the exotic-sounding single name, Igor is English and quite down-to-earth).  
  Artistic Director Michael Longhurst asked Igor to explain what the Production Manager actually does, and Igor patiently explained that he is the interface between the designer and the director of the play and the production team that has to run the show in performance. His job is to make the design function on stage, with all the effects and changes required by the director, and his involvement is from the blueprint and model of the design the installation of the set and ensuring that it works properly on the stage. 
  His list of credits in the programme is enormous, and includes such difficult productions as A View from the Bridge at the Young Vic, and The Curious Incident of the Dog the Night-Time at the National and in the West End. 
  The Donmar presents particular problems, Igor told us. There are only ever 2-3 days to remove one set and install the next one, and the scenery dock is on the first floor, above street level (look up the next time we visit: you’ll see the doors, and the hoist above you). It all happens on a Sunday morning, and has to be set up very quickly, so that the actors and production team can get in on Tuesday at the latest to run through the technical rehearsals. 
  Fly Davis, the designer for Appropriate, had the problem of needing to create....../continued HERE 
 
EDNA & ME   
 Although her name was often in the news when I was growing up in Ireland, I didn’t have much regard for Edna O’Brien and her novels. Not that I’d read them – oh no, but the women of my mother’s generation who had considered them smutty and lightweight, and that was enough for me. I still wasn’t persuaded when Dr Cronin lectured on her at university, and though I enjoyed the films based on her novels  - The Girl with Green Eyes, with Rita Tushingham, Peter Finch and Lynn Redgrave, and I Was Happy Here with Sarah Miles – I was stiil, to my everlasting shame, dismissive of her talent. 
 In my defence, this arrogance reflects horribly the experience Ms O’Brien had in Ireland, where her books were banned, and in her hometown, burned – but really, there is no defence for such ignorant prejudice on my part.
 Whe I came to London, I was recommended to go and see her play A Pagan Place at the Royal Court, with (surprisingly) comedian Dave Allen and a very young Veronica Quilligan. I’m sure if this play were revived, it would stand comparison with the work of Brian Friel. That was the end of it, though I enjoyed seeing her on television, and especially on the radio, when she refused to discuss a book on gossip, because she didn’t approve of the subject. 
 For some reason, many years later, I gave a friend a book of short stories by William Trevor and Edna O’Brien. I was surprised (can’t think why) when Clare told me that she had loved the stories, and that I must read them. It was a damasene moment for me: here were two writers who spoke my language, who understood my own experiences and could interpret them for me, and without whom my life would be far less rich. Since them, I’ve read extensively through their short stories – good novelists as they are, they excel in the short story form. Reading them is like getting a letter from an old friend. 
 It was therefore with great excitement that I went to see Edna O’Brien being interviewed by Eimear MscBride at the National Theatre. She is 88 now, and still elegant – one could even say glamorous. She walks with a stick and perhaps has some infirmities of her age, but her mind is sharp and clear. 
 “I’ve been told by Eimear that I should start by reading an extract from my book. I’m a good pupil, so that’s what I’m going to do,” she announced, and read from the opening of her new book, Girl.  
 This is based on..../continued HERE 
 
THEATRE NEWS HEADLINES 
Just click HERE to go to the whatsonstage.com Theatre News Headlines which are automatically updated throughout the day. You will find articles, reviews, interviews... 
and of course News. 
Alternatively click HERE to find Theatre News from officiallondontheatre.com. 
 
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OUR PREVIOUS NEWS ITEMS FROM THIS WEBSITE CAN BE SEEN HERE.
 
 ALPHA INDEX 
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This is a not-for-profit UK theatre-going group for our friends and colleagues and their own extended group of friends. It costs nothing to join us but must be by personal introduction from another member of the group. We provide tickets at group discounts for London theatres (and coach transport from Southend, if required).  
 
 
 
 
Click on the ear (above) to read about 
Hearing Devices 
now available in many theatres. They may be of help to YOU.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
theatreCat 
 
Libby Purves 
reviews
  
Click on the Cat 
to read Libby's reviews 
 
 
 
Ticket Price Watch:  
For updates on higher prices and what the producers want you to pay. We also give you occasional news on any Discount offers -  
Click HERE
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Venice Footnotes 
 
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Website security 
 
 
Ask us about 
Theatre Tokens: 
They make ideal gifts for theatre-going friends. They are available in denominations of £20, £10 and £5 and can be used to buy theatre tickets at all West End theatres and the half-price tkts booth in Leicester Square. You can buy them from us and we accept them too. 
 
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