Oh, Deary! Harrogate shows on Horrible Histories: Barmy Britain tour cancelled

History on the move: Neal Foster and Morgan Philpott will be performing Horrible Histories: Barmy Britain on later spring dates than first planned on the Car Park Tour. Picture: Mark Douet

HORRIBLE blow for Harrogate, as the Government roadmap out of the lockdown has consigned the April 3 performances of Horrible Histories: Barmy Britain at the Yorkshire Event Centre to history.

Other dates on the nationwide Car Park Tour booked originally for before April 12 have been rearranged after the proposed timing of the Government’s four-step plan necessitated a later itinerary.

Seventeen locations will accommodate the tour, ranging from racecourses to sports stadia, showgrounds to an airport, an exhibition centre to country houses, but no new space in the diary could be found for the Great Yorkshire Showground show in Harrogate.

By contrast, the April 5 performance of the live-action version of Barmy Britain at Harewood House, near Leeds, has been switched to Sunday, May 2 at 11am.

Tickets holders have been notified of the changes but tickets are still available via carparkparty.com, priced at £39.50 upwards, plus £2.50 booking fee. Further information can be found there too.

Heads you lose: Horrible Histories’ King Henry VIII will not be heading to Harrogate after all

The Barmy Britain tour will present two actors playing a multitude of classic characters from barmy and horrid British history, taking in Queen Boudica, King Henry VIII, Guy Fawkes, Dick Turpin, Queen Victoria and plenty more besides.

Based on Terry Deary’s broad-humoured historical books of the same name, Horrible Histories have transferred from page to stage for 18 live shows presented by Birmingham Stage Company, as well being made into a musical sketch comedy television series.

In the Covid-safe Car Park Tour show, on tour from April 13 to May 3, families sit in their cars watching the actors on stage and on a large screen while listening live on their radios and, if so inclined, honking their horns in appreciation.

Birmingham Stage Company and “concept creators” Coalition Agency “plugged the pantomime-less gap” with Horrible Christmas and now they are teaming up again for two Horrible Histories tour shows: Barmy Britain and Gorgeous Georgians & Vile Victorians.

Neal Foster, actor-director of Birmingham Stage Company, will be joined on stage by Morgan Philpott. I’m over the moon to be back on tour with Barmy Britain after its hugely successful tour last summer,” he says. “It’s weird and wonderful to be performing in car parks and to see the audience having fun behind their windshields. We can’t wait to get back out there”.

Harewood House, here we come: Morgan Philpott, left, and Neal Foster , will take a humorous journey through history in Horrible Histories: Barmy Britain on May 2 on the Car Park Tour. Picture: Mark Douet



Getting mighty Crowded at Scarborough Open Air Theatre next summer after Kaiser Chiefs and Bryan Adams confirm dates

Kaiser Chiefs: Never missing a beat at Scarborough Open Air Theatre next July

I PREDICT a trio!

First came Crowded House’s confirmation for June 8, next, Kaiser Chiefs for July 11, and now, this new rising morning, Bryan Adams for July 1, as Scarborough Open Air Theatre announces another burst of big signings for Summer 2021.

New Zealander Neil Finn’s re-grouped Australian band Crowded House will open the British leg of their first European travels in more than a decade on the Yorkshire coast to showcase Dreamers Are Waiting, next year’s fruits of Lockdown labours: their seventh studio album but first since Intriguer in June 2010. The release date is yet to be confirmed.

Leeds lads Kaiser Chiefs promise a “no-holds-barred rock’n’roll celebration” on their much-requested return to Scarborough OAT after their May 27 2017 debut. “We cannot wait to get back to playing live shows again and it will be great to return to this stunning Yorkshire venue,” says frontman Ricky Wilson. “We had a cracking night there in 2017, so roll on July 11!”

Expect a Sunday night of such Yorkshire anthems as Oh My God, I Predict A Riot, Everyday I Love You Less And Less, Ruby, Never Miss A Beat and Hole In My Soul from the Chiefs, whose last album, 2019’s top-five entry Duck, marked their return to their original label, Polydor.

Crowded House: Always take the Scarborough weather with you next June

That summer, they played Leeds United’s stadium, Elland Road, and this summer they were booked in for another open-air headliner at Dalby Forest, near Pickering, until Covid-19 said “No”.

Scarborough OAT venue programmer Peter Taylor, of promoters Cuffe and Taylor, says: “Ever since their show here in 2017, fans have been asking for us to bring Kaiser Chiefs back to Scarborough OAT.

“We are delighted to oblige, and this is going to be another all-action rock’n’roll show that no fan will want to miss.”

Completing the new additions to Scarborough OAT’s ever-expanding 2021 diary, Canadian singer Bryan Adams will play there as part of his ten-date UK outdoor tour that will conclude at Harewood House, near Leeds, on July 10.

Adams, 61, will be making his second appearance at the Scarborough arena after his sold-out debut on August 8 2016. Once more, he will do Run To You, Cuts Like A Knife, Summer Of ’69, I Do It For You et al for you.  

Bryan Adams: Scarborough return next July after 2016 show

Programmer Taylor says: “Bryan Adams is one of the world’s best-selling artists and an international music legend. We are beyond thrilled he is returning to Scarborough Open Air Theatre next summer.

“Bryan joins an incredible line-up of headliners for 2021 and we cannot wait for the season to start!”

That list now runs to: June 8, Crowded House; June 12, Lionel Richie; June 13, The Beach Boys; June 19, UB40 featuring Ali Campbell and Astro; June 20, Ru Paul’s Drag Race: Werq The World; July 1, Bryan Adams; July 3, Snow Patrol; July 7, Duran Duran; July 9, Keane; July 10Olly Murs; July 11, Kaiser Chiefs; July 25, Lewis Capaldi; August 17, Westlife, and August 20, Nile Rodgers & Chic.

Still more artists and dates are to be confirmed. Meanwhile, tickets for Crowded House, Kaiser Chiefs and Bryan Adams all will go on general sale at 9am on Friday, December 11 via ticketmaster.co.uk and scarboroughopenairtheatre.com.

Tickets for Adams’s Harewood House show will be available from the same time at ticketmaster.co.uk/bryan-adams-tickets/artist/734390 and aegp.uk/ba2021

Bryan Adams’s poster for his July 1 concert in Scarborough

Olly hits a hat-trick as Soccer Aid captain confirms Scarborough show next summer

Olly Murs: Hits and new material at Scarborough Open Air Theatre

OLLY Murs will play Scarborough Open Air Theatre on July 10 2021, completing a hat-trick of appearances on the Yorkshire coast .

Venue programmer Peter Taylor, of promoters Cuffe and Taylor, says: “Olly played two brilliant sold-out shows here in 2013 and 2017 and fans are constantly requesting we bring him back, which we are delighted to be able to do.”

The Essex singer, show host and talent-show judge, 36, will perform his biggest hits at Britain’s biggest purpose-built outdoor concert arena on a 25-date tour  from June 5 to August 29 that will take in a further Yorkshire show at Harewood House, near Leeds, on August 11.

“I’ve missed seeing my fans and having that connection with them when I’m on stage,” says Olly, who promises a fun, upbeat, cheeky live show on his return next summer. “There’s nothing better than being on the road and actually being able to see your fans singing and dancing to your music.

“I feed off people’s energy, so going back on the road all around the country, to places I don’t often get to go will be amazing. Also playing live with my band and having them all on stage with me bringing my music to life is the best feeling.”

Reflecting on the pandemic’s impact on the live music industry, Olly says: “It’s been a tough year for everyone, so it’s nice to have something to look forward to for next summer.

“I’m very aware that not only am I looking forward to it as playing live is the best part of my job, but also for all the people I employ to put on the shows – from my band, crew,  sound, lighting, producers, riggers – so many people that rely on live music to make a living. To go around the UK playing at loads of amazing outdoor venues is going to be pretty special.”

In this year’s unwelcome hiatus from performing, Olly’s thoughts turn to choosing his favourite tour memory. “It’s so hard to pick as I’ve been lucky enough to have so many amazing memories on tour but playing at Wembley Stadium with Robbie Williams really stands out for me,” he says.

“I was supporting him on his European tour in 2013, and to have 60,000 people singing back to me and waving their hands in the air to my music was pretty special. I was overwhelmed with the reaction.”

This year, Olly will be looking to retain his crown as winning judge on his third series of The Voice, at present postponed at the semi-final stages.

This year too, Olly captained the England team for Soccer Aid. “It was an honour to do so as we raised a record amount of money – over £9m – in the midst of a global pandemic. I played shocking, to be fair, probably my worst personal performance, but it will still be one of my most memorable Soccer Aids because of the circumstances in which we still managed to put it on.”

During lockdown, Olly underwent a body transformation, working in tandem with personal trainer Rob Solly. To see the results of your hard work is obviously the rewarding part, but for me it was more important in how it made me feel,” he says.

“At the start of lockdown, while still recovering from knee surgery, I was eating anything and everything out of boredom, but that made me feel less productive and more sluggish, so having Soccer Aid as a focus to get me fit again was a real drive.”

As for upcoming recordings, Olly is working on new material for 2021. “It’s been a while since I released my own music, so that’s the plan for next year,” he says. “I’m starting to work on writing now and figure out what the next sound is for me, so watch this space.”

Scarborough tickets for Olly Murs can be booked at scarboroughopenairtheatre.com; Harewood House tickets at AXS.com and ticketmaster.co.uk.

Olly Murs to play Scarborough Open Air Theatre and Harewood House next summer

Olly Murs: Completing a hat-trick of shows at Scarborough Open Air Theatre next summer

OLLY Murs is the first booking for next summer’s Scarborough Open Air Theatre season after Covid-19 ruled out the entire 2020 programme.

Tickets go on sale at 9am on October 9 for Murs’ July 10 2021 concert, when he will complete a hat-trick of shows on the North Yorkshire coast after playing Scarborough OAT in 2013 and 2017.

The Essex singer, show host and talent-show judge, 36, will perform his biggest hits at Britain’s biggest outdoor concert arena.

Scarborough OAT venue programmer Peter Taylor says: “We are really excited to reveal Olly Murs as our first headline announcement for the 2021 season.

“Olly played two brilliant sold-out shows here in 2013 and 2017 and fans are constantly requesting we bring him back, which we are delighted to be able to do.

“It goes without saying we cannot wait for live music to return to Scarborough OAT in 2021, so it’s fantastic to be able to kick off the announcements for our new season by revealing Olly Murs is returning.

“We have a brilliant summer of live music to reveal, so watch this space for many more headliners being announced very soon!”

This year, Murs has captained England in this year’s Soccer Aid and he is looking to retain his crown as winning judge on his third series of The Voice, at present postponed at the semi-final stages.

In lockdown, Murs “managed an impressive body transformation” in tandem with personal trainer Rob Solly. As for music, he is working on new material for release in 2021.

Next summer, his 25-date tour from June 5 to August 29 will take in a further Yorkshire show at Harewood House, near Leeds, on August 11. Scarborough tickets can be booked at scarboroughopenairtheatre.com; Harewood House, AXS.com and ticketmaster.co.uk, again from 9am next Friday.