In this week’s edition of The Stage:
Is it time to start building virtual theatres and concert halls in Second Life? Sofie Mason embraces the virtual insanity to find out whether the concept has any practical benefits
The campaign against bogus up-front fees is gaining strength as the TUC pledges support and a government consultation document finally acknowledges the scale of the problem. But the solution may not be simple, writes Nuala Calvi
Dear John: “I’m trying to make my final decision on the right training course, but I’m equally keen on music and drama. Are the skills involved in dramatic and musical theatre very different?”
Training: Susan Elkin looks at the success of a scheme encouraging back and Asian women into stage management and technical theatre
Rupert Goold, artistic director of Headlong, tells Aleks Sierz about his current projects - a “mesmerising” production of Macbeth starring Patrick Stewart and a stage adaptation of Simon Schama’s book about African slaves, Rough Crossings
Comedian, actress and writer Sandra Bernhard talks to Tony Cooke about ‘that affair’ with Madonna, her six-year stint in US sitcom Roseanne and why her signature critiques at celebrities should not be taken as sarcastic
Star of ITV’s popular drama series Doc Martin Martin Clunes tells Matthew Hemley why it’s time he took a break from filming and reveals why he’s not keen to return to his theatrical roots
Adult live entertainment: Many big stars have dipped their toes into the adult entertainment industry over the years, but they rarely like to dwell on it once they make it big. Tony Cooke examines the most controversial area of showbiz to find out what happens once you answer the advertisement for beautiful dancing girls. PLUS industry experts on the changing attitudes towards exotic dancing, why tease is more important than sleaze, and agony uncle John Byrne gives advice for those considering entering this sector of the industry.
Backstage Focus: A special report from the annual PLASA exhibition at Earls Court
Cartoonist Barry Fantoni tells Maureen Paton about his exhibition of entertainment caricatures at the National Portrait Gallery, working for Private Eye and drawing Prince Philip in his pants
Showpeople: Winston Harrold, the Singing Farmer; Siobhan Reilly, appearing in The Winter’s Tale at the Royal Lyceum, Edinburgh; Jatinder Verma, co-founder of Britain’s first Asian theatre company, Tara Arts; Tim Lutkin, lighting design student at Guildhall
Columnists: Ian Herbert on a welcome display of foreign writing; John Plews, artistic director of Upstairs at the Gatehouse, on a few “beacons of hope” for musical theatre; Howard Bird on the use of handguns on stage; and Patrick Newley on having your best punchlines stolen by other acts
Plus all the usual news, reviews, national UK theatre listings and recruitment ads.
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