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The Confidential Choice

Trudie Robinson’s seven day choice: the old days win out with Yazoo, Boy George, cover acts plus reality TV show shows

Published on January 31st 2008.

The Confidential Choice

Alison Moyet
Moyet has provided one of the most distinctive voices in pop over the last twenty odd years - the one constant throughout her different incarnations. Firstly she tried electro pop with Yazoo following years spent on the punk scene, then she belted out the popular but gutsy singles of All Cried Out and Love Resurrection plus covers of the likes of Love Letters followed by the more personal work of recent years all realised in her rich bluesy vocal. This date marks the release towards the end of last year of her latest album, The Turn, promising an eclectic mix of self penned work.
Bridgewater Hall Lower Mosley Street, City, M2. 0161 950 0000
Thu 31 Jan.

The Meat Loaf Trilogy
Take in any karaoke night and you’ll see many a Meatloaf impersonator, but one who raised himself, and his voice, above the backroom of the local pub is Steve Steinman. Thirteen years ago he appeared on Stars in Their Eyes as Meatloaf and became a star himself. Since then he’s appeared in The Meatloaf Story and Vampires Rock and even went on a UK arena tour playing to his own fans – who’s left watching the real life Meatloaf we cry? For this show though Steinman has closed the dressing up box and appears as himself to deliver the best of Bat Out of Hell 1, 2 and 3.
Manchester Palace Theatre Oxford Street, City, M1. 0161 228 6255
Fri 1 Feb.

The Nutcracker
As promised last week, here’s another major ballet as presented by the Ellen Kent lot. Once again Kristina Terentieva - still the Grand Prix winner of the International Dance Competition in Vienna 2007 – leads the way for members of the critically acclaimed Chisinau National Ballet accompanied by a live orchestra. Cast your mind back a few weeks and pretend it’s Christmas again, with this classic festive tale of a girl swept away on to a magical world on Christmas Day. This version is the famous 1966 Moscow production of the Nutcracker directed by Yuri Grigorovich who was the Director of the Bolshoi Ballet for 30 years and incorporates Tchaikovsky’s famous music including Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy. The production promises stunning scenery with flying boats, special effects and astonishing wizardry.
Opera House Quay Street, City. 0870 163 3402
Thu 31 Jan – Sat 2 Feb.

Paul Potts
TV talent shows, you want to hate them but so many people seem be inexplicably drawn into watching them - if the watercooler/bus/queue for the butcher’s conversation is anything to go by. There may be some sights to laugh at and many people to be bored by as they wheel out bland cover version after cover, but then someone pops up amongst the orange-skinned wannabes who appears to have genuine talent and a salt of the earth background, and even the wickedest of reality TV hardened hearts softens… a bit anyway. The first year of Britain’s Got Talent discovered a tenor amidst the disillusioned weirdos: an amateur and mobile phone salesman from Bristol who almost got Simon Cowell teary with his Nessun Dorma. Here he is on his own tour, after all there is a Puccini-singing tenor job going begging at the moment.
Bridgewater Hall Lower Mosley Street, City, M2. 0161 950 0000
Fri 1 Feb.

Strictly Come Dancing
Another day, another TV talent show linked event in Manchester… this week Strictly Come Dancing camps out at the Arena and recreates the show that taps into viewer’s inner desire to cha cha cha. Fox trotting their way across the Arena and competing for the audience’s votes and popularity are a variety of celebrities with varying degrees of fame, including presenter Zoe Ball, ex-Eastender Letitia Dean, athlete Denise Lewis and cricketer Darren Gough. Kate Thornton will host and the familiar judges in the form of Len Goodman, Arlene Philips and Craig Revel Norwood will cast an evil eye.
Manchester Arena Victoria Station, City, M3. 0844 847 8000
Sat 2 & Sun 3, Tue 5, Wed 6 & Thu 7 Feb.

Stitch and Creative Crafts Show
Naff tapestries of frolicking puppies and rugs made from Granny’s woolly off cuts is what usually springs to mind when thinking of arts and crafts. But as anyone with a degree in embroidery will testify the fusty old image of textiles was shrugged off – along with the hand knitted shawl - years ago. Though you can probably get some of those here too. This festival of all things thread features all manner of crafts from the traditional craft of patchwork and intricacies of crochet to pretty beading and sassy dressmaking.
Manchester Central Petersfield, City, M2. 0161 834 2700
Fri 1 – Sun 3 Feb.

Things We Lost in the Fire
With Sam Mendes as co-producer, starring Academy Award winners Halle Berry and Benicio Del Torro and with a title like Things We Lost in The Fire, you know that this one’s going to be a bit hefty – though in all likelihood worth it. Berry plays Audrey Burke who is devastated when her husband (David Duchovny) suddenly dies. As Burke and her children attempt to put their lives back together again, she befriends her late husband’s best friend Jerry Sunborne (Del Toro) former lawyer and a drug addict who’s looking for salvation.
Out on Friday.

Steve Day – Deafy’s Island Discs
Comedian Day has been mostly deaf since he was 18. But over the last few years, having surmounted his disability, he’s created a place for himself on the comedy circuit. In that time he’s written a few full length shows including one about his recently cultivated interest in art and this, his latest - first seen at the Edinburgh Fringe last year, where he revisits the music of his youth. In the last year or so advances in technology have increased Day’s ability to hear sufficiently that it was worth investing in a CD player. The tour through the myriad of tunes he used to listen to brings with it a memory and an anecdote that range from the funny to the downright poignant.
The Lowry Pier 8, Salford Quays, M5. 08707 875780
Fri 1 Feb.

Boy George
It’s 25 years since Boy George’s first appearance on Top of the Pops prompted home cooked chips to fall from the open mouths of men across the country as they exclaimed to their families – is it a girl or is it a boy? Thankfully times are more enlightened (although the chips are worse) and Culture Club and his braids have been left long behind by George, but one thing that hasn’t changed is his larger than life personality and his love for the flamboyant. In this rare appearance he’s selected Culture Club tunes to revamp alongside his own newer work. So don’t miss out.
The Lowry Pier 8, Salford Quays, M5. 08707 875780
Sun 3 Feb.

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