2013 Plymouth theatre preview
MUSIC theatre fans can expect the time of their life this year.
Dirty Dancing later this month adds to the list of stage tellings of successful films – 2012's crop at the Theatre Royal Plymouth included Sister Act and Legally Blonde.
Also coming up is High Society, in February, which will be a must for all lovers of Cole Porter.
Of course the big summer musicals that spoiled audiences last year won't be heading our way this time because of the six-month closure for the £7million improvement project.
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There are plans for a limited programme using TR2, the education and rehearsal centre in Cattedown, while the theatre is closed.
There's plenty in the mix to get bums on seats before the curtain comes down for the building work.
The drama offering in February is particularly strong. There's the return of all-male Shakespeare with the fabulous Propeller.
Last year they brought Henry V and The Winter's Tale. This time their offering is a pair of comedies, Twelfth Night and The Taming Of The Shrew.
And there's the enormously popular Driving Miss Daisy running into the start of March.
The revival of the play that became the multi-Oscar-winning 1989 film has scooped awards and pulled in adoring audiences for the wonderfully drawn portrait of an unlikely friendship between a black chauffeur and prickly matriarch in the civil-rights-era American Deep South.
Dance looms large in March. Birmingham Royal Ballet present Aladdin – created in 2008 for the National Ballet of Japan – and Hofesh Shechter (last here in 2010 with exclusive preview performances of Political Mother) bring a pair of high-energy works, Uprising and The Art of Not Looking Back.
Drama in March includes Forever House, the debut play of West Country-born writer Glenn Waldron, and the stage telling of Sebastian Faulks's heart-breaking World War One love story Birdsong.
There's more tragedy in Madam Butterfly, one of Welsh National Opera's three offerings in April, with Berg's Lulu and Janácek's Cunning Little Vixen.
Sutra, the intriguing and unlikely collaboration between one of Europe's leading choreographers, Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, Turner-Prize-winning sculptor Antony Gormley and 17 Shaolin Temple Buddhist monks, provides a high note before the closure darkness.
The new-look Theatre Royal will welcome back audiences with one of the most eagerly awaited productions for several years.
The theatre will premiere the UK tour of the National's production of War Horse, Devon author Michael Morpurgo's emotionally drenched, award-laden WW1, man-and-steed drama. The run from September 27-October 12 is already very heavily sold.
Opera lovers will just as keenly welcome a frequent visitor: Glyndebourne's December visit offers Humperdinck's Hansel und Gretel and Donizetti's L'elisir d'amore and marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of Benjamin Britten with a new production of The Rape of Lucretia.