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Preview: Call Mr. Robeson at Newcastle Alphabetti Theatre

From Carnegie Hall to The Alphabetti.
Award-Winning Play Comes to Newcastle

Call Mr. Robeson
Newcastle Alphabetti Theatre
Wednesday 7th- Saturday 10th October 2015

Call Mr. Robeson, an award-winning play which received a standing ovation at New York's Carnegie Hall in February 2012 and was staged in London's West End in October 2013, is to be performed at The Alphabetti Theatre between Wednesday 7th - Saturday 10th October 2015, as one of the highlights of Newcastle's Black History Month events.

Photo: Carol Rosegg
This rollercoaster journey through actor/singer Paul Robeson’s remarkable life highlights his pioneering and heroic political activism as well as his music. It features Ol’ Man River and other famous songs, much fiery oratory, and a defiant testimony to the House Un-American Activities Committee.

Written and performed by Liverpool-based playwright and singer Tayo Aluko with piano accompaniment by Glen Giffney, Call Mr. Robeson was chosen by The Guardian’s theatre critic Michael Billington as his top pick for things to see in London in January 2011.

Photo: Carol Rosegg
It has sold out several other established theatres around the UK, including The Lowry, Belgrade Coventry, Manchester's Royal Exchange Theatre, The Bolton Octagon, and Liverpool's Everyman Theatre. All seventeen performances of his recent tour of New Zealand and Australia also completely sold out.

During October 2014, it enjoyed a 4-week residency at the Tristan Bates Theatre in Covent Garden, where BBC Radio 4's Loose Ends presenter Clive Anderson saw it and later described it as one of the most memorable plays he had seen in 2013.

Photo: Carol Rosegg
Among the many awards in the Call Mr. Robeson cabinet, the latest was won at the Atlantic Fringe in Halifax, Nova Scotia in Canada in August 2013, where from an international field it was awarded Best Musical Performance. It also won Best Solo Show at the Stratford-upon-Avon Fringe in 2013 and the Argus Angel Award for Artistic Excellence and the Best Male Performer Award at the Brighton Fringe in 2008.

What some critics said:
"First-rate. A fine job” (4 stars) The Guardian
Simply told but immensely powerful.” (4 stars) The Scotsman
"A thrilling, moving and marvellously entertaining musical drama. ... totally soulful and convincing" Latest 7 Magazine
Aluko is a force of nature. Never less than utterly believable” (5 stars) British Theatre Guide
A stunning piece of musical theatre” (5 stars) Fringe Review
A must-see experience. A treasure of a show. TOP PICK!” D C Theater Scene

Aluko, who has performed the play on stages across the UK, USA, Canada, New Zealand, Australia and Jamaica, said, “It was interesting to see that Newcastle was where people turned out in greatest numbers to hear Jeremy Corbyn speak, filling the Opera House with a contemporary socialist message. Paul Robeson would have done that ten times round in his day, with songs thrown in. I look forward to sharing his inspiring story at the Alphabetti - and selling out too!”

Call Mr. Robeson. A Life, With Songs. Written and performed by Tayo Aluko, with Glen Giffney, Piano.
Directed by Olusola Oyeleye, Designed by Phil Newman
Wednesday - Saturday, October 7 - 10, 7.30pm

The Alphabetti Theatre.
18 New Bridge Street

Tickets £8 (£6 concessions)

Age Recommendation: 12+

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