Raising the curtain on a new season…

It’s that time again…the lights go down, the audience quieten and the curtain raises on a brand-new season here at Birmingham Hippodrome!

Slava's Snow Show

Slava’s Snow Show

This Winter a flurry of fantastic productions will be taking to the stage including Blood Brothers, Mariinsky Theatre’s epic Ring Cycle and a literal snow storm in the auditorium during Slava’s Snow Show. Grupo Corpo will be raising the temperature with hypnotic dance from Brazil whilst Birmingham Royal Ballet return with their ever-popular production of The Nutcracker and Britain’s biggest Panto, Jack and the Beanstalk bursts into life over Christmas!

Something extraordinary will also be taking to the stage this Winter as The Frozen Scream takes over our Patrick Centre with a chilling tale and theatre experience – don’t miss it! Plus, we bring the Southside district alive with unique video art installations in the FREE event, About Town.

In the new year we welcome back Matthew Bourne with his beautiful and haunting production of Edward Scissorhands, Birmingham Royal Ballet and Welsh National Opera return with brand-new seasons, the big, bright and beautiful Shrek – The Musical takes ogre Birmingham and Barnum rolls into town starring Brian Conley!

The Bodyguard

The Bodyguard

Now the moment you have all been waiting for…NEW SHOWS ANNOUNCED! We are delighted to welcome back the Olivier Award Winning musical Top Hat, a monster of a show for families – Dinosaur Zoo plus jaw-dropping circus, dance and performance from Cirque Eloize with Cirkopolis. The heart-racing Dirty Dancing will make a return due to popular demand next Spring, National Theatre’s multi-award-winning production of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nigh-Time plus a brand-new production of the all-time classic musical Oklahoma! We are also very excited to announce that next Summer we will welcome the West End smash-hit musical The Bodyguard featuring all the chart-topping hits of legendary Whitney Houston.

It’s sure to be a show-stopping season and tickets for all new shows are on sale to Birmingham Hippodrome Friends NOW! To find out more about becoming a Friend click here. 

Tickets go on general sale 10am Friday 12 Sep.

Birmingham Hippodrome guest blogger Chris Unitt on running away (to Boston) to join the Circus… and how it went viral!

Chris Unitt is Head of Social Media at Made Media. He also runs the Created in Birmingham arts and culture blog.  We sent him over to Boston earlier this year:

Back in May, I was asked to play the part of a roving reporter. I flew to Boston to see Cirque Eloize who were due to perform their show ‘iD’ at Birmingham Hippodrome later in the year. My job was to review the show, interview the performers and record some video.

I arrived at midday on a Saturday, just as the company were warming up for the matinee performance. As I chatted with the tour director, contortionists, break dancers, jugglers and trampolinists went through their warm-up routines. I snapped a few quick photos then took my seat in the auditorium.

The show was fantastic – colourful, energetic and inventive and performed by sixteen incredibly skilled artists. I was massively impressed and have been telling everyone I know to book tickets for the upcoming UK shows (if you’ve not yet, then you really must).

Watch the infamous clip!

After the show, the idea was for me to do my interviews and for someone to teach me a few skills – a bit of trampolining and some juggling – and we’d video it for the Hippodrome’s YouTube channel. I also asked Thibault Philippe, one of the artists, if he would perform his daring bike routine with me.

He said yes, and you can see the result in the video here.

Unexpectedly, the video went viral and has now been watched more than 500,000 times on YouTube alone. It was also picked up by the makers of Channel 4’s Rude Tube who used it in their recent round-up of impressive stunts. Meanwhile, over in the States, the video was featured on ESPN, ABC Eyewitness News and CBS News.

I get asked whether it was scary lying there with the bike tyre landing so close to me. Actually, it wasn’t so bad – if you’ve seen the show then you’ll know that Thibault is phenomenally talented and that he makes more difficult and dangerous tricks look effortless.

Ok, so it was a bit scary…

You can find out more about the show and book tickets by clicking here.

Cirque Eloize perform iD at Birmingham Hippodrome from 2-5 November.   Birmingham Hippodrome is only one of four venues in the UK to present this production, the tour in association with the Dance Consortium marks the first time it has been performed in Europe.

Birmingham Hippodrome sent Chris Unitt to Boston – for an ouch, oowah, scarey moment with Cirque Éloize

Mandy  Rose, Press & PR Officer writes:

Isn’t it great when a plan comes together especially when the result goes global on the internet.

Cirque Eloize perform id

We recently sent Chris Unitt, one of Birmingham’s leading social media types, on a plane to Boston to meet the cast and creatives of iD, a brand new creation blending circus arts and urban dance.

 Now, this production, performed by Quebec based Cirque Éloize, is a visual feast and copy doesn’t really do it justice.  So, armed with his video camera, Chris ‘volunteered’ to take part in a rather scary stunt which most viewers have already found to be rather ‘near the knuckle’ so to speak – especially the men amongst us.

 The resulting video footage was placed on Birmingham Hippodrome website (via Youtube) and within 3 days received over 200,000 hits! That figure has doubled to over 400,000 with postings on other internet sites such as The Huffington Post.  And we were more than a little excited when it reached the top five in most viewed video on Youtube last month.

If you watch this, be warned, it does contain some rather ouch and oohwa moments.

Click here if you dare to view!

Chris Unitt we salute you!

If you fancy a little bit more of Cirque Eloize they are performing at Birmingham Hippodrome for the very first time from 2 – 5 November click here to find out more and to book tickets.

Twitter:    @brumhippodrome; @mandyrose1 @chrisunitt

Facebook:  Birmingham Hippodrome

Chris Unitt is behind the award winning Created in Birmingham blog