These are exciting times for Euan Rose and his latest musical, Charlotte Badger, the romanticised story of the 18th-century woman pirate from Bromsgrove.

The man who wrote Wallop Mrs Cox is off today to Florida for a week that will include a visit to the pirate territory of North Carolina – for discussions about the possibility of mounting a shortened version of the show, with the accent on the songs and the sword-fighting, as a permanent tourist attraction in a theme park.

Meanwhile, he has begun independently writing a scaled-down version for five people.

* Birmingham & District Theatre Guild plans to add a new dimension to its annual Birmingham Festival of Acting and Musical Entertainment (BFAME).

The festival’s awards ceremony at the Dovehouse Theatre, Solihull, on February 28, will include a production to be developed at a week-long drama workshop for 10-20-year-olds at The Hub, Kings Heath, during the spring half-term from February 16-20.

Lucy Bailey has more details of the workshop on 07961 018841.

* Janet Phillips wrote and directed the highly amusing version of the Gilbert & Sullivan’s final operetta, The Grand Duke, with which Tinkers Farm Opera regaled audiences at Birmingham’s Crescent Theatre last week.

It was a joy that took in such updated delights as buy-one-get-one-free, Russian oligarchs, Coronation Street, James Bond and illegal immigrants, and it worked very well in the hands of talented performers.

* Why did Robert Ball, arts manager of the Crescent Theatre, need to buy thermal underwear to help him to fulfil his duties?

Because in March the Crescent will be presenting the UK première of The Bus, by Lukas Bärfuss, and he had been invited to Germany to see Der Bus by the man who was directing it for a major theatre festival in Cologne – in an open-air production with temperatures below freezing. Back home again, Robert reports that the production, though very different from the one he will be directing, gave him plenty of ideas. There was, he tells me, a perfect feeling created by witnessing the play in the great outdoors. Quite apart from the odd chance of frostbite, of course.


Swing into Christmas, Midland Musical Theatre Group, Malvern Theatre (to Saturday).

Separate Tables, Moorpool Players, Moorpool Hall, Harborne (to Saturday).

Who’s Afraid of Virgina Woolfe? Up ’n’ Running Theatre, Lamp Tavern, Barford Street, Birmingham (to Saturday).

Who Killed Santa Claus?, Lichfield Players, Lichfield Garrick (to Saturday).

Jack and the Beanstalk, Hall Green Little Theatre (Dec 3-13).

Deck the Halls, Oldbury Repertory Players & Langley Band (Dec 3-6).

The Storm, Birmingham School of Acting, Crescent Theatre, Birmingham (Dec 3-6).

Sleeping Beauty, Youth Onstage, Dovehouse Theatre, Solihull (Dec 3-6).

Dick Whittington, Sutton Arts Theatre, Sutton Coldfield (Dec 4-13).

Harvey, Crescent Theatre, Birmingham (Dec 6-13).