Reasons to be Cheerful
by Paul Sirett
REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL
Reasons to be Cheerful nominated for Best Touring Production in the TMA Theatre UK Awards!
Graeae and The New Wolsey’s Reasons to be Cheerful has been shortlisted for the Best Touring Production award which is being voted for by the public on The Stage website. We need you to vote here to ensure we have a chance of winning.
Jenny Sealey said: ‘I’m thrilled that Reasons to be Cheerful has been shortlisted for this award. The show had a hugely talented cast, band, crew and creative team and this nomination is already a fantastic testimony to everyone’s hard work and passion. Graeae and the New Wolsey have a great working relationship and to win an award as co-producers would be a fitting acknowledgement of what we have achieved together.’
The collaboration has also been shortlisted for the Renee Shepham Award for Best Presentation of Touring Theatre. This nomination reflects the marketing, front of house provision and access support and we are proud to be on the shortlist.
This year, Reasons to be Cheerful was bigger, better and more rockin’ than ever before. With an epic 1,633 mile tour under its belt the show then performed a number of one off gigs including featuring at the London 2012 Paralympic Opening Ceremony. This culminated with the storming performance at Southbank Centre as part of Unlimited Festival which had the whole audience singing and signing along.
It’s 1979: Labour loses to the Tories, strikes rock the nation and Ian Dury and the Blockheads’ Reasons to be Cheerful (Part 3) climbs the charts. As the ultimate fans, Vinnie and his mates would do anything to see Dury at the Hammersmith Odeon, only the gig is sold out. But life has a habit of throwing strange things at you, and one night of frustration becomes something else entirely…
Written by Paul Sirett and directed by Graeae’s Jenny Sealey, this acclaimed coming of age tale featuring Ian Dury and the Blockheads’ greatest hits such as Sex and Drugs and Rock and Roll, Sweet Gene Vincent, Spasticus Autisticus and Hit Me with your Rhythm Stick has filled theatres with raucous glee. ‘Ave it!
‘A Masterpeice!’ Chaz Jankel – The Blockheads
If you are missing your fix of anarchy, you can always visit our REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL website for reviews, celebrity quotes and images of the show.Back to top ↑
Direction – Jenny Sealey
Musical direction – Robert Hyman
Design – Gaelle Mellis
Lighting design – Ian Scott
Choreography – Mark Smith
Sound design – Lewis Gibson
Video – Mark Haig
Original production co-produced by Graeae, New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich, and Theatre Royal Stratford East.
Reasons to be Cheerful (Part3) original track – Lyrics and music by Ian Dury, Chaz Jankel & Davey PayneBack to top ↑
Ha Ha Hackney: Maggie Maggie Maggie *** *** ***!
Saturday 1 September 7.30pm
Liberty Festival, Trafalgar Square
Sunday 2 September
Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank Centre, London
Sunday 9 September 2pm
2012 Spring Tour venue details
New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich
9 Feb – 18 Feb 2012
Hall for Cornwall
23 Feb – 25 Feb 2012
1 March – 4 March 2012
13 March – 17 March 2012
20 March – 24 March 2012
28 Mar – 1 April 2012
3 April – 7 April 2012
This opportunity has now passed. If you’re interested in further workshops e-mail training[at]graeae.org
Reasons to be Cheerful – Workshops
To accompany the REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL tour, Graeae is offering a workshop programme to groups that visited the show.
Suitable for: Participants aged 14 and above. Workshops can be adapted to suit students at BTEC, Diploma, A Level, and Higher Education degree level.
There were three workshop options, each drawing influence from the production:
Creative Access: The Graeae Aesthetic
Engage with Graeae’s exciting creative approaches, exploring how devised work is enriched by
the use of audio description, visual storytelling and accessible performance techniques in the
devising process. Outcome: to provide participants with practical tools enabling them to
devise and perform a short, accessible scene.
Song Writing: Your World, Your Voice, Your Story
Engage with the storytelling, poetry and lyrics of Ian Dury’s music, using his unique style as
inspiration to find the group’s individual or collective voice. Outcome: to offer participants
the opportunity to create/write a short song in their own style and perform it to the group.
Exploring Key Themes: Identity and Relationships
Engage with the above themes by exploring selected snapshots from the narrative using
various dramatic techniques (such as role play or forum). Outcome: to give participants
the opportunity to devise and perform a short scene inspired by the above themes.
Time required: Minimum 2 hours. Maximum number of participants: 25
Reviews / Feedback
‘Paul Sirett’s script snaps, snarls, laughs and leers, just like Dury’s music.’
‘REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL emerges not only as a funny, energetic and
moving show, but also one that pulses with a deep, natural human energy.’
‘The music is brilliant… there are moments of crude punk genius’
‘Oi, oi! Paul Sirett’s new musical fashioned around the music of Ian Dury is rough, ready and bloody brilliant.’
Time Out – Critics’ choice 4 Stars
‘The energy and anarchic attitude are faultless.’
The Daily Telegraph
‘Reasons To Be Cheerful – The Musical is a Graeae Theatre Company triumph. The BBC’s banned Spasticus Autisticus is joyfully defiant.’
‘REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL is a total blast: for the nostalgics it’s a truly touching and affectionate tribute to one of our great street poets; and for everyone one else it’s We Will Rock You and Matilda served up by the best ensemble cast I’ve seen in years. The instinct to get up on stage with them and dance is overwhelming. Whew!‘ Danny Boyle (Film Director)
‘Beyond emotional, beyond brilliant. Well done all involved.’ Baxter Dury (Ian’s son)
‘When the curtain came down everyone was on their feet applauding and wanting more. There was enough energy on stage to light up all of the West End. This production must have the chance to reach the large audience it really deserves. It is a timely, funny and immensely entertaining piece of theatre. I can’t wait to see it again’ Jenny Agutter (Actress)
‘Surely, what defined Ian Dury was his spirit, courage and wit… this is exactly at the heart
of Graeae’s production of REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL.When I saw the show I was amazed by the pace, vigour and attention to detail of these brilliant actors and musicians. Having worked and hung out with Ian Dury for so many creative years, I knew exactly what uplifted him and what irritated him – big time! He applauded strength of spirit and sincerity. I think I could truthfully say on Ian’s behalf that
had he been here to see these guys he would be proud, gob smacked and may even have
shed a tear for the sheer bravura of this musical. A masterpiece!’ Chaz Jankel (chief Blockhead & Ian’s former writing partner)
‘Great cast, very cool band, best night out for ages I hope it gets an extended run.’ John Turnbull (Blockhead)
‘There is energy and honesty, fantastic music and above all, excellent entertainment. I know
Ian would be overwhelmed with pride to see how his and the Blockheads’ music has been
brought to a new audience. The show really, really deserves to go further.’ Jemima Dury (Ian’s daughter)
MediaDownload The Easy Read Synopsis for REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL Download REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL plain text programme
Promo for Reasons to be Cheerful
BSL synopsis for Reasons to be Cheerful
Reasons to be Cheerful - A note from the writer
Download A note from the writer as an MP3
Reasons to be Cheerful - Audio description of the set
Download Audio description of the set as an MP3
Reasons to be Cheerful - Audio description of characters and costume
Download Audio description of characters and costume as an MP3
Reasons to be Cheerful - Cast and production team
Download Cast and production team as an MP3
Reasons to be Cheerful - Reasons to be Cheerful (Part3) original track – Lyrics and music by Ian Dury, Chaz Jankel & Davey Payne. Performed by the cast
Download Reasons to be Cheerful (Part3) original track – Lyrics and music by Ian Dury, Chaz Jankel & Davey Payne. Performed by the cast as an MP3
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