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Confidential Choice

Trudie Robinson’s seven day guide: A spicy visit, the Godfathers of nu-metal and plenty of comedy

Published on January 16th 2008.

Confidential Choice

A Sexual Economy
Produced by Angry Puppy Art Productions (est. 2002), this exhibition takes as the basis of its pop art style work pictures that people have placed on the internet for ‘the purposes of sexual economy.’ President Angry Puppy, otherwise know as Donald Triumph to his neighbours, explains that the project aims to examine ‘maniakku’ a person with obsessive interests or hobbies when it manifests itself in sexual desire. The exhibition is up in the café and bar areas so those who are easily offended by cartoonised images of naughty acts would do best to keep their eyes firmly on their lattes.
Cornerhouse Oxford St, City, M1. 0161 200 1500
To Sun 20 Jan.

Spice Girls
Of all the people you really thought you weren’t likely to see back together in the same room again never mind performing together, the Spice Girls (plus Geri!) were pretty near the top of the list. It’s almost as incredulous as their pre-Christmas Tesco ads (so Posh forsakes Crimbo with the family to spend it with the Spices? Relations with Mr Beckham must be dire). Anyway you’re not dreaming it and the girl power bandwagon roles into town to squeeze more cash from every last zigzigah. Altogether now, (lighters optional) ‘viva forever…’ join a bunch of early twenty something females revisiting their pre-pubescence.Manchester Arena Victoria Station, City, M3. 0844 847 8000
Wed 23, Thu 24, Sat 26 Jan.

The nu metal (see I’m with the kids… I mean down with the kids – or something) combo from Bakersfield, California have been keeping metal fans happy (or should that be miserable) for two decades. So never mind being down with the kids, most original fans in the Apollo on this night will be into their thirties. In fact those that were fans of LAPD the band that spawned Korn could even be pushing 40 (horror!) and probably wondering whether they should have put the money into their pension instead. But Korn shouldn’t disappoint as with nine consecutive albums, six grammy nominations and slight tweaks to the line-up over the years, rest assured they know what they’re doing.
Manchester Apollo Stockport Road, Ardwick. M12 08444 777 677
Sat 19 Jan.

Count Arthur Strong
A bumbling old luvvie attempts to recount his life as an actor through the medium of song. It’s hard to imagine that this will be a barrel of laughs but for some this could be one of the funniest things you’ll see all year. Character actor Steve Delaney breathes life into the Count, a deluded old thesp who tells his tales of acting almost glory with a narrative full of malapropisms and burgeoning senility. Here he tries out his fledging musical show but is beset by lost novels, a mislaid hat and a hapless assistant. The Count can split a room, those that don’t get him finish up as befuddled as he is, but for those that love him he’s a special treat to behold and not to be missed.
The Dancehouse Theatre Oxford Road, City, M1. 0161 237 9753
Sat 19 Jan.

Paul Sinha
The self-proclaimed only ‘gay, Asian, comedian GP,’ Sinha has certainly had plenty of inspiration to write about. His first Edinburgh show Aspects of Love, Actually was entirely created for that year at the festival and was patchily received but two years later he hit back with a show that encapsulated all the ideas he had been honing on the circuit as he worked his way up. Consequently Saint or Sinha? was nominated for the if.comeddie award (formerly the Perrier) and last year he followed it up with King of the World exploring what a bad drunk he is and his taste in men – he’s fond a bit of rough, which can prove problematic when you’re gay and quite middle class…
The Lowry Pier 8, Salford Quays, M5. 08707 875780
Sat 19 Jan.

Mark Watson – Can I Briefly Talk To You About the Point of Life?
Though he’s only been on the circuit since 2002, Watson’s rambling, untamed style and endearing ‘Welsh’ stage persona with which he rails against the perplexing aspects of life – and for Watson that’s most of them – has proved a winner. Not only is he popular and critically acclaimed (he won the Spirit of the Fringe award in Edinburgh in 2006 and was Time Out’s critic’s choice) he’s also monumentally prolific. In the last year he’s appeared on BBC 2’s Mock The Week, starred in his own radio show, written this show and performed it in Edinburgh and in the West End plus he’s released a book A Light Hearted Look at Murder. Phew. After this tour he’s going to need a lie down.
The Lowry Pier 8, Salford Quays, M5. 08707 875780
Wed 23 Jan.

Dark Heritage
Continuing the commemorations of last year’s 200th anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade, Bee Arts exhibition goes some way to expressing the horrific experiences of Africans as they were transported across the Atlantic to their new lives as slaves in the Americas. The interactive, multi media exhibition set in a dark indoor tent recreates the experiences with a soundscape that relates amongst other things the stories of Liverpool sailor Edward Rushton, a young West African man Quamina and cruel ship’s captain John Newton. Catch it now on the last stop of its tour.
Zion Arts Centre Stretford Road, Hulme, M13. 0161 226 1912
Mon 21 Jan – Sat 16 Feb

Formed in 1994 and led by director Jeff Clarke, Opera della Luna’s remit is to create innovative yet accessible (and in English) productions of popular opera and musical theatre pieces. They achieved cult status with The Parson’s Pirates, a reworking of The Pirates of Penzance. Performed by a vicar and his parishioners and as well as major operatic pieces they’ve reinterpreted other Gilbert and Sullivan favourites including this version of The Mikado. Rich and sumptuous costumes inspired by the likes of Versace and Gautier couple with a comic outlook for this version of the oft performed operetta. Their first visit to the Lowry should bring them a whole host of new fans.
The Lowry Pier 8, Salford Quays, M5. 08707 875780
To Sat 19 Jan.

She’s Just Nipped Out For Fags
It’s all go with the comedy this week as this is a humorous look at life in modern Manchester – the lives largely untouched by the new Harvey Nicks and the gentrification of the city centre no doubt. Focusing on a mother, her four kids, her drunk of a husband, her father in law, a faded drag queen and the adventures of Man United in Europe the production by MaD bristles with energy. MaD are a local theatre troupe based in Middleton who have produced 30 innovative plays since their inception in 1996. Run by Jill Hughes and Rob Lees the players are whomever attends their workshops, so if you fancy yourself as a bit of a Julie Walters get in touch.The Met Market Street, Bury, BL9. 0161 761 2216
Wed 23 – Fri 25 Jan.

Movie Memorabilia
Whether it’s James Bond, Spider Man or whether you just love the movies, AMC will have something for all ages over the next two weekends. Comics, toys, posters, and other related collectable’s that appeal to fans of all ages.AMC cinemas(The Great Northern
235 Deansgate, Manchester, M3. 0161 817 3000 click here to visit the AMC cinemas microsite)
Thurs 17- Sun 20 Jan and Thursday 24- Sun 27 Jan.

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