Entertainment Views Interviews: Star of Matilda, Rebecca Thornhill

Matilda The Musical is on UK tour – book your tickets to see the show, here: Matilda the Musical Tickets

Rebecca Thornhill first became a familiar face and voice to me when she appeared in the National Theatre’s Oklahoma, starring alongside one other than Hugh Jackman! I also recall her performance as Mrs Banks in the stage version of Mary Poppins, she was outstanding. When I heard that she’s appearing as Mrs Wormwood in Matilda The Musical I was extremely excited to have the opportunity of putting some questions to her about the show – without further ado…

Thank you for talking to Entertainment Views, Rebecca. Tell me about Matilda The Musical and the part you’re playing…

I’m playing Mrs Wormwood, Matilda’s mum. Matilda’s mum is more occupied with herself that her daughter.

How familiar were you with the story before you joined the cast?

I had read the book a while back but I knew the film very well.

What’s your personal highlight in the show?

My number ‘Loud’ which is gruelling fun!

What are the challenges of your role? 

Like most roles, keeping It fresh as the first performance.

Which character would you like to play if you could swap for a day?

Miss Trunchbull. It’s the best!

Why do you think that Roald Dahl stories have remained such a firm favourite?

 People can relate to the characters in their own lives and love the morals he teaches us. Also, we all love a dark side.

What can the audience expect from the show?

To have their emotions woken up and be a child again and for the children to be inspired by the amazing kids!

Why should everybody book a ticket to come and see it?

It’s the best night out ever!

Huge thanks to Rebecca for a fantastic insight, looking forward to hearing my Guest Reviewer’s opinion after next week’s performance in Milton Keynes! 

Entertainment Views Interviews: Star of Matilda The Musical, Carly Thoms

Matilda The Musical is on UK tour – book your tickets to see the show, here: Matilda the Musical Tickets

Carly Thoms first appeared on my radar when she played the title role of Little Voice in the final production at the original Union Theatre. She shone and her performance resonated for a long time. Now, she’s playing the role of everybody’s favourite teacher, Miss Honey in the critically acclaimed, Matilda. The show will arrive in Milton Keynes next week so I was keen to catch up with Carly again to find out about her latest challenge. 

Thank you for talking to Entertainment Views, Carly. Tell me about Matilda The Musical and the part you’re playing…

I play Miss Honey, Matilda’s kind and caring teacher who is saved by Matilda’s strength!

How familiar were you with the story before you joined the cast?

Matilda was my favourite book when growing up so to be a part of this production is a real dream come true.

What’s your personal highlight in the show?

I love “When I Grow Up”. It is so relatable for children and adults alike! It makes adults think about their inner child and it’s a very magical moment of the show because of that.

What are the challenges of your role? 

Miss Honey can easily become a victim character so finding the points where she shows strength was very important to me when discovering the role.

Which character would you like to play if you could swap for a day?

Mrs Wormwood – I would love to wear that costume and she has some of the best lines in the show in my opinion!  

Why do you think that Roald Dahl stories have remained such a firm favourite?

They seem to always centre around an unlikely hero and I think the underdog winning appeals to all people whichever background they come from and whatever age.

What can the audience expect from the show?

A fun filled evening with laughter, tears and to leave with a warm feeling in your heart.

Why should everybody book a ticket to come and see it?

The show is in its 7th year and is still going strong. As the posters say, “believe the hype”!

Huge thanks to Carly for a superb interview, I’ll be excited to hear what my Guest Reviewer thinks of the production. Break a leg, Carly! 

Tartuffe ~ Theatre Royal Haymarket

Tartuffe stays at Theatre Royal Haymarket until 28 July 2018 – book your tickets here: Tartuffe Tickets

Guest Reviewer: Dil Marolia 

In 1664 Molière’s classic comedy Tartuffe caused quite a stir.  It’s a satire on how a religious figure resorts to bad behaviour and corruption.  It so enraged the church that it was banned by King Louis XIV and there were even calls for the writer to be burned at the stake.  Five years later it was restaged and became a big hit.  Today, everyone in France is familiar with Molière’s Tartuffe.

Theatre Royal Haymarket’s new production reimagines the classic Molière comedy in the West End’s first ever dual-language production.  The play is adapted by Christopher Hampton and is set in contemporary Los Angeles.  Supported by a cast of English and French actors with impressive CVs this satire is brought to life with funny lines and excellent story telling.

Directed by Gérald Garutti, Tartuffe tells the tale of a French billionaire film tycoon, Orgon who lives in Hollywood and is completely duped by a radical American evangelist and will go to any lengths to keep him in his house.

We meet Orgon’s family who are up in arms because Orgon (played by Sebastian Roché) and his mother (Annick Le Goff) have fallen under the spell of Tartuffe, (Debut by Paul Anderson) a bogus white robed holy man who pretends to be pious.  But Tartuffe’s antics don’t fool the rest of the family.  When Orgon promises his daughter, Mariane’s (played by Olivia Ross) hand in marriage to Tartuffe, even though she’s in love with Valère (played by Jaz Deol), the family devise a plan to expose Tartuffe as the fraud he is.

They scheme to trap him into confessing to Elmire (Orgon’s wife played by Audrey Fleurot) his desire for her but they are interrupted by Orgon’s son, Damis (George Blagden) who’s been eavesdropping on their conversation and jumps out of his hiding place to take a picture on his mobile phone as evidence to show Orgon.  Shocked, at this daring act the conniving holy man turns the situation around by confessing to Orgon and accusing himself of being the worst sinner.  The reverse psychology works and Damis is banished from his home.  Orgon’s so taken in by Tartuffe that he even suggests that he should spend more time with his wife, signing over all his worldly possessions to him.

Elmire now takes matters into her own hands and challenges Orgon to witness an encounter between herself and Tartuffe.  Orgon takes the challenge hoping to prove his wife wrong and hides under the table in the same room.  Only when Tartuffe’s incriminating behaviour is dangerously close to violating Elmire that Orgon reveals himself and orders Tartuffe out of the house.  But the vile guest has no intentions of leaving threatening to expose the contents of the box he’s acquired from Orgon containing incriminating letters written by a friend and orders Orgon to leave his own home.  But the biggest laugh is when Orgon’s problems are resolved by a presidential emissary as ‘the president loves a billionaire’!

The production is subtitled for the opposite language of whichever is being spoken at the time (when an actor is speaks in English, French subtitles appear and vice versa). Although several screens are placed throughout the theatre sometimes it felt like I was missing the action due to reading the subtitles.

The set, designed by Andrew D. Edwards, is contemporary with a perspex box in the middle of the stage which, although in keeping with Hollywood, doesn’t actually do justice to the production.

Excellent performances by Claude Perron as Dorine (Asmelie, Chrysalis) and Audrey Fleurot as Elmire (Spiral, Intouchables).

Paul Anderson’s (Tartuffe) almost laid back approach makes him seem even more sinister when he reveals his darker side.

Vincent Winterhalter as Orgon’s brother Cleanté was brilliant at delivery.

The productions runs until Sunday, 28 July 2018.

Images: Helen Maybanks 


A Very English Scandal ~ Episode Two

The second instalment of one of the best dramas to grace the screens of BBC One (since Call The Midwife disappeared until Christmas) was even racier, more scandalous and has been cast so superbly it’s resonating for all the right reasons.

Jeremy Thorpe (the incomparable Hugh Grant) is still on the warpath and baying for his ex-lover, Norma Scott (Ben Whishaw) to be killed. He’s let another friend and admirer, David Holmes (Paul Hilton) in on the plan he’s in favour of and he’s very clear on the way in which it should be carried out. Peter Bessell (Alex Jennings) isn’t at all keen on the idea and feels that he’s found a perfect get-out clause when it’s brought to his attention that Norman has fathered a child and he’s getting married. It’s a short-lived marriage though and not long before Scott finds himself in the arms of flaky ‘neighbour’ Gwen Parry-Jones (Eve Myles) who sets her sights on helping Scott to frame Thorpe for his misdemeanours. However, first there’s the tragedy of the sudden death of Mrs Thorpe in a car accident to deal with. Followed by Thorpe’s calculated second marriage to Marion (Monica Dolan) which is another shrewd politically motivated move.

I was delighted by the arrival of a new friend for Scott, aptly named Edna Friendship (Michele Dotrice), a character to be reckoned with, who offers bed, board and job to the vagrant when he arrives back in Devon. Too close to home for Thorpe who continues his quest to have his ex murdered. The assailant is selected and not entirely confident with his task, Andrew ‘Gino’ Newton (played by Blake Harrison of The Inbetweeners fame) is not the right man for the job at all, in fact.

The performances continue to be outstanding, it’s got more twists, turns and dark corners than the streets of London and it never ceases to amaze me what Thorpe will stoop to next. The mere idea of even a portion of this ‘story’ being factual adds a whole new dimension and must-watch factor to the series.

Catch up on episode two here: A Very English Scandal Episode Two

Episode Three airs on BBC One on Sunday 3 June at 9pm 


Photo Credits: BBC Pictures

The Band ~ Birmingham Hippodrome

The Band is on UK tour, catch it while you can and book your ticket for a venue near you, here: The Band

Guest Review by Claire Sidebottom

Star rating: ****

I arrived at the Birmingham Hippodrome knowing nothing but that it was a musical featuring Take That songs, but as soon as I entered the theatre the stagecurtain transported me back to 1993, with the sight of the familiar yet long forgotten view of good old Teletext screens projected onto it. From news of Jurassic Park being the film to see, to the top 40 single chart listings, bringing back songs and artists to many of the audience sitting around me, that were long forgotten along with the copies of the song lyrics in Smash Hits that used to fill our teenage bedrooms.

The show proceeded to take us further back to our teenage selves, with the time being 7pm on a Thursday, there was nothing else to be done than to watch Top of the Pops, well if you were going to have anything to talk about on Friday at school that is! From the classic BBC music show theme tune and straight into early Take That tunes, the music transported me back to my teenage memories. With a surprise twist though, the story wasn’t to be about a boy band, with expected reflections of the Take That boys’ journeys that had brought them to this point. In fact the plot was to follow the way in which music and love for a band during those all important teenage years can impact a group of girls as they reunite as women twenty five years older, but who were everything to each other during their adolescent years.

Straight away the group of five girls had such different personalities and lives, but that friendship and adoration of the popular boy band, saw them not only having all the same posters stuck on their bedroom walls, but a place within each other’s hearts forever, because those years before we enter the big wide world outside the school walls, can have a bigger effect on our lives than we sometimes realise.

The story’s journey takes us from those relatable girl characters of sweet sixteen, then becomes even more relatable to women in today’s modern world, and serves as a harsh reminder that it’s not very often that the childhood dreams that you hatched together with friends in the classroom (instead of doing your school work) actually end as reality. 

The flash backs to 90’s life at the beginning of the story, was very nostalgic and relatable for me, meaning the tragic twist in the storyline during the first half that moved the story into adulthood, wasn’t the only reason I felt emotional when the theatre lights came on for the interval. After a cursory check around me, I was happy in the knowledge that I was not the only one in the audience with teary eyes.

It was during the second half that it dawned on me that the five members of the band that had gone through agonising weeks of TV competition in BBC’s ‘Let it Shine’ were actually faceless characters throughout the performance. They were never referred to as Take That but to as ‘The Band’ or ‘the boys’, they didn’t have character names, but the occasional Take That reference here and there were comforting reminders, from the TT symbol being used, references to comebacks, and the image of the five boys’ comeback album cover ‘Progress’. Those five boys picked from the public vote, were actually the way the music was brought into the girls stories to show how those songs we have all listened to through the years of going from children to adults has related and entwined as we have grown. And how even a couple of notes or lyrics from a song can take our minds flooding back in time.

A little unfair that the boys didn’t age through the twenty five years like the main female characters, only joking of course, but then again that is life, we like to remember our idols as they were when we were young. And the ladies that did reflect those teenage characters in adult life all gave worthy, emotional performances in both acting and singing for their standing ovation, with the character of Heather being played by the familiar face from TV of Emily Joyce, and all of them having emotional and funny aspects within their roles. And then there was Jeff, played by Martin Miller, a boyfriend within the current day storyline that was to highlight that all those teenage plans of marrying a pop star end with a reality check of everyday relationships, but at the same time the friends and family in our lives, with all our different characters and flaws, are what makes life what it is.

The set design was spot on, for the 90’s teenager, and scene changes throughout the whole show were helped by the five boys, but the way the band emerged within scenes was done in a clever seamless manner with them emerging into song from school lockers, bedroom cupboards, statues, and the back seats of the bus, but it highlighted that music isn’t the main character in our lives but it encompasses so much we do, and a song can bring back so many memories within everyone lives, may it be a happy or sad memory.

During the entire show the comedy was perfectly timed, especially at certain vital intervals, when I would have to rummage in handbag for a tissue, the witty one liners saved my make-up! Especially the role of Every Dave (Andy Williams) who played various characters along the storyline, he brought a comedy element every time he set foot on the stage.

On reflection the show’s poster gives you a clue to the  way in which the musical’s title is a double sided sword to the word ‘Band’ and those colours within the 5 bands on the poster are reflected within the five main female character’s costumes though the show. No matter how the costumes changed throughout the story the girls kept to their allocated band colour. Whereas the boy bands’ costumes were by no means a complete reflection of Take That through the eras, but there were discreet links to fashion from their pop videos and concert performances.

In essence you don’t have to be a massive Take That fan (but knowing their popular songs is an obvious bonus) and you don’t have to have been a teenage girl during the 90’s to enjoy it at all, as the show has a solid storyline, a strong mixture of characters for a modern musical theatre show, and you will come out happy, singing ‘Shine’ and hearing many people saying they want to go in and watch it all again. However if Take That was your passion while growing up in the 90’s then this comes with the premise that if you are going to wear makeup, then make sure it is waterproof!

Photo Credits: The Band website 

Harry & Meghan: A Royal Romance

I’m a self-confessed royalist and I’ve always been interested in the Royal Family. The recent wedding was naturally exciting from my point of view, although I admit I haven’t taken much notice of the engagement and the build-up. However, what did grab my attention was a part fictional/part factual movie about the pair’s courtship and the pathway to matrimony.

My fascination with the Royal Family is such that I was unsure about watching actors portray them. Surprisingly, it was a joy to watch though and I was drawn to the nuances of Harry and Meghan’s relationship. There was an overall vibe of positivity throughout, even when cracks in the courtship appeared and the ‘roles’ were cast brilliantly.

We are led beautifully through the couple’s first date and follow them to Africa (a glorious setting) and through the inevitable ups and downs of their ultimately blissful relationship. There’s a wonderful contrast towards the close of the film, too where we see the real Harry and Meghan during one of their walk-abouts.

Parisa Fitz-Henley plays Meghan and she’s certainly a ringer for the newest Royal, the on-screen chemistry she shares with Harry (Murray Fraser) oozes and replicates the chemistry I feel we see in the real life pairing. Equally there’s great casting where Prince William (Burgess Abernethy) and Kate (Laura Mitchell) are concerned and there’s some fantastic scenes with them both, also concentrating on Kate’s relationship with Harry as her brother-in-law. Charles and Camilla are also played fantastically by Steve Coulter and Deborah Ramsay – not only are they excellent look-a-likes, their personas are accurate too. There’s a stunning moment where Harry tells them they ought to have been allowed to marry in the first place and Camilla replies that this would have meant that he didn’t exist and the world would have been a far less wonderful place. We are led to believe that Harry has a good relationship with Camilla and I would like to hope that this fictional instance is not beyond the realms of possibility and that a conversation of this description might well have taken place in reality.

Pippa Middelton’s wedding is the pinnacle moment of the dramatization which is quite an ideal mid-point. The happy ending we all know is coming arrives perfectly without force. I have been inspired by this movie and certainly won’t feel dubious about watching more of them in the future. If you’re undecided about tuning in, my advice would be to watch it with an open mind and enjoy!



A Very English Scandal ~ Episode One


British Liberal Party leader Jeremy Thorpe is accused of conspiracy to murder his gay ex-lover and is forced to stand trial in 1979.

Hugh Grant plays the role of Thorpe, a closet homosexual who pursued Norman Scott (Ben Whishaw), giving him a roof and keeping him for his own amusement. It’s a wholly different role for Grant and he is an inspired choice. Opposite Whishaw the chemistry was believable and intrigued me from the outset. Thorpe is soliciting the aid of Peter Bessell (Alex Jennings) to ensure Scott’s silence about their relationship when he calls time on their affair. To further his political career and assist the party in currying more favour, Thorpe is plotting to marry and portray himself as a family man.

Although Scott has secured himself a modelling job, he’s not going to keep quiet about Thorpe ‘infecting him’, not only has he been to the police, he’s also written to Thorpe’s unwitting mother, Ursula (Patricia Hodge) revealing all. With a wife, baby and family man public image – there’s only one way to ensure the scandal fails to surface. We were left on a cliff-hanger, however if you are aware of the history (and the premise gives it away, too) there’s further scandal to come.

A cast de force overtly portray this twisting, insightful story. Given the era we’re looking at, it’s interesting to see how far we’ve come where the issue at the heart of the scandal is concerned. It’s an apt time to choose to broadcast such a dramatization.

Missed the first instalment? Catch up here: A Very English Scandal Episode One

Watch the second episode on BBC One next Sunday at 21:00

Photo Credits: BBC Pictures

BAFTA Television Awards 2018

BAFTA Television Awards were a must-watch for us here at Entertainment Views on Sunday 13 May. I’ve had a week to reflect on the winners, they’re panel-selected so I often find that there is a vast difference between the calibre of choice at the National Television Awards, for example, and BAFTA choices. However, this year, although there were several worthy winners whom I could have predicted would lift the coveted trophy, there were a few rogue ones in there as well as some nice surprises too. Here are a few of my musings:

Super Sue

I though Sue Perkins was a superb host (forgive the pun!), her humour, verve and tenacity shone through – can we always have Sue, please?

At last, Casualty!

BBC One’s Casualty has been on the cups of winning more than once, I’m pleased that the panel came to their senses on this one and awarded the series the accolade it deserves. The One Shot alone was worthy of the trophy.

Cruising with Jane McDonald? Love Island? Really?

This is where the evening fell flat for me, personally. I’ve got nothing against Jane McDonald, in fact I think she’s a talented lady and I’ve even been in the audience at a number of her concerts. However, when you pit a show which features lovely Jane having a glorified jolly against the likes of The Secret Life of the Zoo, to name just one fellow nominee – there’s almost no comparison. It begs the question whether Ms McDonald’s programme was just in the wrong category. Although it was alright as far as she and her team were concerned as they accepted the trophy.

I had already fallen foul of confusion when Love Island nabbed an award, I accept that every opinion is different – however I don’t see what this show has to offer in terms of making it a BAFTA winner. Had it have been a public vote winner that wouldn’t have come as such a surprise.

Triumph for Three Girls

Three Girls thoroughly deserved their two accolades, there have been a number of true life dramas recently and this one towered above. Not only highlighting horrific events but portraying it sensitively without losing the gritty realism.

Britain’s Got Talent

ITV’s Britain’s Got Talent provided an opportunity for Dec (without Ant) to receive an award without the limelight. It was a sound choice, however it does beg the question was it a diplomatic choice? Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway is, in my humble opinion, the outright winner in the category.

The public got it right

There is one category the public could vote for – Virgin TV’s Must-See Moment and the public got it right! Blue Planet II still resonates now and Sir David Attenborough can never have enough awards!

For she’s a jolly good fellow

The Fellowship award went to the amazing Kate Adie, she’s an inspiration. As a role-model for women she is in a class of her own. A fantastic choice.

Here’s the full list of winners:



THE LAST LEG Production Team – Open Mike Productions / Channel 4
MURDER IN SUCCESSVILLE Andy Brereton, Avril Spary, James De Frond, Tom Davis – Shiny Button Productions / Tiger Aspect Productions / BBC Three
TASKMASTER Andy Cartwright, Andy Devonshire, Alex Horne – Avalon / Dave
WOULD I LIE TO YOU? Peter Holmes, Rachel Ablett, Ruth Phillips, Adam Copeland – Zeppotron / BBC One

RAPED: MY STORY Catey Sexton, Jonathan Braman, Emma Wakefield, Ollie Tait – Lambent Productions / Channel 5
SYRIA’S DISAPPEARED: THE CASE AGAINST ASSAD (DISPATCHES) Sara Afshar, Nicola Cutcher, Callum Macrae – Afshar Films / Channel 4
UNDERCOVER: BRITAIN’S IMMIGRATION SECRETS (PANORAMA) Karen Wightman, Joe Plomin, Callum Tulley, Gary Beelders – BBC Current Affairs / BBC One
WHITE RIGHT: MEETING THE ENEMY (EXPOSURE) Deeyah Khan, Darin Prindle, Andrew Smith, Melanie Quigley – Fuuse Films / ITV

THE CROWN Production Team – Left Bank Pictures / Netflix
THE END OF THE F###ING WORLD Production Team – Clerkenwell Films / Dominic Buchanan Productions / Netflix / All 4
LINE OF DUTY Production Team – World Productions / BBC One
PEAKY BLINDERS Production Team – Caryn Mandabach Productions / Tiger Aspect Productions / BBC Two

ADAM HILLS The Last Leg – Open Mike Productions / Channel 4
GRAHAM NORTON The Graham Norton Show – So Television / BBC One
MICHAEL McINTYRE Michael McIntyre’s Big Show – Hungry McBear / BBC One
SANDI TOKSVIG QI – QI Ltd / Talkback Thames – BBC Two

ANT & DEC’S SATURDAY NIGHT TAKEAWAY Pete Ogden, Saul Fearnley, Diego Rincon, Andy Milligan – ITV Studios / Mitre Television / ITV
BRITAIN’S GOT TALENT Amelia Brown, Lee McNicholas, Richard Holloway, Charlie Irwin – Thames / Syco / ITV
MICHAEL McINTYRE’S BIG SHOW Dan Baldwin, Claire Horton, Christian Fletcher, Michael McIntyre – Hungry McBear / BBC One
THE VOICE UK Production Team – ITV Studios / Talpa / ITV

AMBULANCE Jo Hughes, Bruce Fletcher, Kirsty Cunningham, Simon Ford – Dragonfly / BBC One
CATCHING A KILLER Anna Hall, Jezza Neumann, Erica Gornall, Brian Woods – True Vision / Channel 4
DRUGSLAND Sacha Mirzoeff, Xavier Alford, Bart Corpe, Simon Ford – BBC Studios’ Unscripted Productions / Open University / BBC Three
HOSPITAL Production Team – Label1 / BBC Two

ANTIQUES ROADSHOW Simon Shaw, Julia Foot, Robert Murphy, Sophie Wogden – BBC Studios’ Unscripted Productions / BBC One
CRUISING WITH JANE McDONALD Production Team – Elephant House Studios / Channel 5
NO MORE BOYS AND GIRLS: CAN OUR KIDS GO GENDER FREE? Javid Abdelmoneim, Helen Veale, Jeremy Daldry, Samuel Palmer – Outline Productions / BBC Two
THE SECRET LIFE OF THE ZOO Production Team – Blast! Films / Channel 4

ANNA MAXWELL MARTIN Motherland – Delightful Industries / Merman / BBC Two
DAISY MAY COOPER This Country – BBC Studios Comedy / BBC Three
SHARON HORGAN Catastrophe – Avalon Television / Merman / Birdbath Productions / Channel 4
SIAN GIBSON Peter Kay’s Car Share – Goodnight Vienna Productions / BBC One

BIG LITTLE LIES Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Bruna Papandrea, Per Saari – HBO / David E. Kelley Productions / Pacific Standard / Blossom Films / Sky Atlantic
FEUD: BETTE AND JOAN Ryan Murphy, Dede Gardner, Tim Minear, Alexis Martin Woodall – Fox 21 Television Studios / BBC Two
THE HANDMAID’S TALE Bruce Miller, Warren Littlefield, Kari Skogland – MGM / Channel 4
THE VIETNAM WAR Ken Burns, Lynn Novick, Geoffrey C. Ward , Sarah Botstein – BBC / Florentine Films / BBC Four

JACK ROWAN Born to Kill – World Productions / Channel 4
JOE COLE Hang the DJ (Black Mirror) – House of Tomorrow / Netflix
SEAN BEAN Broken – LA Productions / BBC One
TIM PIGOTT-SMITH King Charles III – Drama Republic / BBC Two

CLAIRE FOY The Crown – Left Bank Pictures / Netflix
MOLLY WINDSOR Three Girls – BBC Studios Drama / Studio Lambert / BBC One
SINEAD KEENAN Little Boy Blue – ITV Studios / ITV
THANDIE NEWTON Line of Duty – World Productions / BBC One

ONE LOVE MANCHESTER Production Team – BBC Studios / SB Projects / BBC One
WILD ALASKA LIVE Production Team – BBC Studios’ Natural History Unit / PBS / BBC One

ASIM CHAUDHRY People Just Do Nothing – Roughcut TV / BBC Three
ROB BRYDON The Trip to Spain – Revolution Films / Baby Cow Productions / Small Man Productions / Sky Atlantic
SAMSON KAYO Famalam – BBC Studios Comedy / BBC Two
TOBY JONES Detectorists – Channel X North / Treasure Trove Productions / Lola Entertainment / BBC Four

HOWARDS END Kenneth Lonergan, Hettie Macdonald, Laura Hastings-Smith, Sophie Gardiner – Playground Entertainment / BBC One
THE MOORSIDE Neil McKay, Paul Whittington, Ken Horn, Jeff Pope – ITV Studios / BBC One
THE STATE Peter Kosminsky, Steve Clark-Hall, Liza Marshall, Kris Thykier – Archery Pictures / Stonehenge Films / Channel 4
THREE GIRLS Nicole Taylor, Philippa Lowthorpe, Susan Hogg, Simon Lewis – BBC Studios Drama / Studio Lambert / BBC One

THE BATTLE FOR MOSUL (SKY NEWS) Production Team – Sky News
THE GRENFELL TOWER FIRE (CHANNEL 4 NEWS) Krishnan Guru-Murthy, Jackie Long, Cathy Newman, Ben de Pear – ITN / Channel 4
THE ROHINGYA CRISIS (SKY NEWS) Production Team – Sky News

CELEBRITY HUNTED Production Team – Shine TV / Channel 4
LOVE ISLAND Production Team – ITV Studios / Motion Content Group / ITV2
OLD PEOPLE’S HOME FOR 4 YEAR OLDS Trish Powell, Murray Boland, Benjamin Leigh, Belle Borgeaud – CPL Productions / Channel 4
THE REAL FULL MONTY Nick Bullen, Kevin Mundye, Daniela Neumann, Will Yapp – Spun Gold TV / ITV

CATASTROPHE Sharon Horgan, Rob Delaney, Ben Taylor, Jack Bayles – Avalon Television / Merman / Birdbath Productions / Channel 4
CHEWING GUM Production Team – Retort / E4
THIS COUNTRY Daisy May Cooper, Charlie Cooper, Tom George, Simon Mayhew-Archer – BBC Studios Comedy / BBC Three
TIMEWASTERS Daniel Lawrence Taylor, Barunka O’Shaughnessy, Josh Cole, George Kane – Big Talk Productions / ITV2

BRITAIN’S FORGOTTEN MEN Production Team – BBC Three / BBC Three
EATING WITH MY EX Production Team – Shotglass Media / BBC Three
MORGANA ROBINSON’S SUMMER Production Team – Merman / Sky Arts
PLS LIKE Production Team – BBC Three / BBC Three

CHRIS PACKHAM: ASPERGER’S AND ME Charlie Russell, Lizzie Kempton, Tom Barry, Will Grayburn – Raw TV / BBC Two
LOUIS THEROUX, TALKING TO ANOREXIA Louis Theroux, Ellena Wood, Simon McMahon, Peter Dale – BBC Studios’ Documentary Unit / BBC Two
ONE DEADLY WEEKEND IN AMERICA Sanjay Singhal, Ursula Macfarlane, Jon Alwen, Sarah Hunt – Voltage TV Productions / BBC Three
RIO FERDINAND: BEING MUM AND DAD Rio Ferdinand, Grant Best, Matt Smith, Martin Thompson – Only The Best Productions / BBC One

AGAINST THE LAW Aysha Rafaele, Scott Bassett, Fergus O’Brien, Brian Fillis – BBC Studios’ Documentary Unit / BBC Two
HANG THE DJ (BLACK MIRROR) Charlie Brooker, Annabel Jones, Tim Van Patten, Nick Pitt – House of Tomorrow / Netflix
KING CHARLES III Mike Bartlett, Greg Brenman, Rupert Goold, Simon Maloney – Drama Republic / BBC Two
MURDERED FOR BEING DIFFERENT Aysha Rafaele, Scott Bassett, Paul Andrew Williams, Nick Leather – BBC Studios’ Documentary Unit / BBC Three

CASUALTY Production Team – BBC Studios Continuing Drama / BBC One
CORONATION STREET Production Team – ITV Studios / ITV
EMMERDALE Production Team – ITV Studios / ITV
HOLLYOAKS Bryan Kirkwood, Emily Gascoyne, Vikki Tennant, Colette Chard – Lime Pictures / Channel 4

BASQUIAT – RAGE TO RICHES David Shulman, Janet Lee – BBC Studios’ Documentary Unit / BBC Two
BLITZ: THE BOMBS THAT CHANGED BRITAIN Tim Kirby, Emily Thompson, Francesca Maudslay, Cate Hall – Wall to Wall Media / BBC Two
BLUE PLANET II Production Team – BBC Studios’ Natural History Unit / BBC Worldwide / Open University / WDR / BBC America / Tencent / France Televisions / CCTV9/ BBC One
ELIZABETH I’S SECRET AGENTS Chris Durlacher, Bernadette Ross, Julian Jones, Claire Guillon – 72 Films / BBC Two

ANTHONY JOSHUA v. WLADIMIR KLITSCHKO Adam Smith, Ed Robinson, Sara Chenery, Jennie Blackmore – Sky Sports / Sky Sports Box Office
THE GRAND NATIONAL Paul McNamara, Richard Willoughby, Amy Lewin, Tony Cahalane – ITV Sport / ITV
SIX NATIONS: WALES v. ENGLAND Production Team – BBC Sport / BBC One
UEFA WOMEN’S EURO SEMI-FINAL: ENGLAND V. NETHERLANDS Sunil Patel, Mark Cole, Kay Satterley, Ian Finch – Whisper Films / Channel 4

ADRIAN DUNBAR Line of Duty – World Productions / BBC One
ANUPAM KHER The Boy with the Topknot – Kudos / Parti Productions / BBC Two
BRÍAN F. O’BYRNE Little Boy Blue – ITV Studios / ITV
JIMMI SIMPSON USS Callister (Black Mirror) – House of Tomorrow / Netflix

ANNA FRIEL Broken – LA Productions / BBC One
JULIE HESMONDHALGH Broadchurch – Kudos / Imaginary Friends / Sister Pictures / ITV
LIV HILL Three Girls – BBC Studios Drama / Studio Lambert / BBC One
VANESSA KIRBY The Crown – Left Bank Pictures / Netflix

VIRGIN TV’S MUST-SEE MOMENT (voted for by the public)
BLUE PLANET II Mother Pilot Whale Grieves – BBC Studios’ Natural History Unit / BBC Worldwide / Open University / WDR/ BBC America / Tencent / France Televisions / CCTV9 / BBC One
DOCTOR WHO The Thirteenth Doctor Revealed – BBC Studios Drama / BBC One
GAME OF THRONES Viserion is Killed by the Night King – HBO Programming / Bighead, Littlehead / Television 360 / Sky Atlantic
LINE OF DUTY Huntley’s Narrow Escape – World Productions / BBC One
LOVE ISLAND Stormzy Makes a Surprise Appearance – ITV Studios / Motion Content Group – ITV
ONE LOVE MANCHESTER Ariana Grande Sings ‘One Last Time’ – BBC Studios / SB Projects / BBC One

Photo Credits: BBC Pictures 



This Morning Live! ~ NEC, Birmingham

Put your hands up if you love ITV’s This Morning! I think it’s one of the best television shows and find it an amazing achievement that the award winning magazine programme has been on our screens for 30 years now. We’ve all got our favourite presenters and items on the show, This Morning Live! encompasses everything, it’s like the team stepped out of the television screen! You can:

  • Shop!
  • Meet the Presenters
  • Get your hands on a ton of freebies
  • Watch your favourite Cooks at work
  • Pick up make up and well being tips
  • …and much, much more

Plus the atmosphere is a combination of chilled decadence mixed with the thrill and excitement of walking amongst some of the most popular faces off the television. As an event it has it all, and I was only able to attend on the Saturday and Sunday this time. It’s actually a four day event and next year I’m going to make sure I’m there every day to get an even fuller picture of one of the year’s hotly anticipated shows.

The added bonus this year was that we were able to watch the Royal Wedding on the big screen on the main stage with commentary from Rylan Clark-Neal. It was great fun watching a milestone occasion with other This Morning enthusiasts, I’ll never forget it. Here’s some more memories from my weekend together with some useful hints and tips for your trip next year and a few reasons why you should go!

Top 5 Highlights Of The Weekend

  • Alison Hammond – Alison won one of my blog’s awards for Pantomime last year. Her performance of ‘Get Ya Freak On’ as the Fairy Godmother in Cinderella at Malvern Theatres. I was over the moon to be able to present her with the award, personally. She truly is the Queen of Birmingham.
  • The Speakmans – This inspirational pair are always a favourite of mine on This Morning and their session about teaching yourself to be happy was invaluable. They speak so much sense and their style of self-help is the best I’ve ever come across. An uplifting, life-affirming presentation.
  • Charlotte White – Charlotte White is one of my best-loved foodies and her session all about red velvet cupcakes made my day. She’s one of the most comprehensive Cooks in my humble opinion and her style adds to her natural vivacity. A fantastic piece to listen to and interesting too. Nobody makes red velvet like Charlotte does.
  • Ainsley Harriott – Ainsley is like a breath of fresh air and I can attest that his Rum punch packs a punch too. Watching him cook and create was a privilege, he’s a talented man and engaging to listen to.
  • Eamonn Holmes & Ruth Langsford – I love these two, their style of presenting and the way in which they complement one another makes Fridays one of my favourite days to watch This Morning, on. They were predictably superb on the Main Stage and my only regret is I didn’t manage to meet them, but everybody who did couldn’t stop gushing about them which was so awesome to hear. My little dream of a selfie with the inspirational duo can stay on the wish list for another time!

Top 5 Tips To Get The Best Out Of The Show

  • Meets and Greets: If you want to meet the This Morning Presenters and have a photograph taken with them as well as a bit of a chat – Gold tickets can be purchased (there are two type of ticket, with Silver being the basic admission ticket available). Gold tickets do sell out fast as meeting the Presenters is on many show-goers agenda so if you do fancy upgrading to get the VIP experience, book early. However, it is worth noting that where possible a few Silver ticket holders were permitted to join the queue for the meets and greets – although you’ll be queuing slightly longer due to the Gold ticket holders having booked their slot in advance. Is it worth queuing to meet the Presenters? If that’s your bag then a resounding YES!
  • Shopping: I was unprepared for the number of bargains to be had at a variety of different stalls, so if you’re the type of person who’s head is turned by a good deal have your purse or wallet to hand. From jewellery and books to food, there’s lots of choice and there are loads of gift ideas.
  • Schedule: If you want to make the most of the content on the various stages, make sure you take a look at the show schedule – you can find this on screens around the arena and I saw many people have the bright idea of taking a photo of it on their phones. It’s sound advice! There’s the Main Stage, Beauty & Well-Being and Food & Drink – make a note of the times your preferred article is scheduled for and get yourself to the appropriate area early if you want a seat. Seats for the Main Stage fill up very quickly with so many show-goers keen to get a good view of the main Presenters.
  • Book Signings: Another great way of meeting some of the Presenters if they happen to have a book out, times of the signings can be found near the book stand they’ll be appearing at. I made the mistake of realising too late that The Speakmans were signing their latest, so be sure to check out the book signing list early and be prepared to queue if you are up for this activity. I watched the interaction fans were having with Rylan and it looked well worth the queuing to me!
  • Competitions: There are loads of competitions so keep your eyes and ears peeled. Plus this year there was a selfie competition so make sure you’re connected with This Morning Live! on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Top 5 Reasons To Go Next Year

  • Stars of the small screen – where else will you see them all in one place?
  • Atmosphere – if you want to go to an event where you’re surrounded by the buzz of happy show-goers and plenty of exciting content for a full day’s outing, this is the place for you.
  • Bargains – it comes back to shopping again! The deals and offers are incredible, I’m still getting over it now… as you can tell!
  • Live demos – Cooking, Happiness Training, Beauty tips, there’s a long list of demos you won’t want to miss.
  • It’s a fantastic day out, fun and entertainment for all the family and worth going on more than one day if you can as no two days are the same.

Keep a look out on the This Morning Live! website for details of next year’s show and you can also sign up for news: This Morning Live! Website

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