Why not let your year end on an en­ter­tain­ing note


When you wake up to­mor­row, De­cem­ber has ar­rived. It’s a busy time. There are gifts to buy, fam­ily to or­gan­ise, end-ofyear concerts, Christ­mas par­ties and car­ols to sing.

There’s also a host of entertainment to take your mind off ev­ery­thing you have to do be­fore Santa comes down the chim­ney. Musicals Beauty and the

Beast and Dusty are en­joy­ing end-of-year sea­sons, Ben El­ton’s com­edy Silly Cow is at the Globe and Kane Par­sons’ unique trib­ute to co­me­dian/ pi­anist Vic­tor Borge, opens at The Globe on De­cem­ber 15.

Oper­atu­nity, the tour­ing com­pany that brought their trib­ute to flam­boy­ant Hol­ly­wood tenor Mario Lanza to Manawatu au­di­ences this month, re­turns with their 15th An­niver­sary Gala, on De­cem­ber 14. The con­cert prom­ises ‘‘the best of the best’’, show­cas­ing all the dif­fer­ent styles of mu­sic they’ve pre­sented over the years.

Both Abbey Mu­si­cal Theatre (AMT) and Re­gent on Broad­way Pro­mo­tions are look­ing ahead to 2017. AMT will present Willi Rus­sell’s Blood

Broth­ers from March 2-19 in The Au­di­to­rium, Cen­ten­nial Drive. Blood Broth­ers is a grip­ping story of twins, Mickey and Ed­die, who were sep­a­rated at birth. One was raised in a wealthy fam­ily and the other by par­ents who were fi­nan­cially poor. The twins con­nect as adults through their love of the same girl which causes huge emo­tion, con­flict and tragedy.

The Re­gent on Broad­way has cast a 50-strong com­pany to stage A Cho­rus Line from April 19-24. Marvin Ham­lisch’s show is rarely per­formed in New Zealand be­cause of the de­mands placed on per­form­ers. It’s a mu­si­cal about an au­di­tion and fo­cuses on the lives of dancers who want to suc­ceed and be in the lineup for the show. After the mass au­di­tion num­ber, the mu­si­cal tells their in­di­vid­ual sto­ries, their heart­breaks and tri­umphs. A

Cho­rus Line bears an un­canny re­sem­blance to Amer­ica’s Got Tal­ent and could have been mu­si­cal theatre’s an­swer to re­al­ity TV. How­ever, be­fore Blood

Broth­ers and Cho­rus Line next year, the Re­gent has con­firmed one of Bri­tain’s leg­endary rock groups will per­form here in Fe­bru­ary. The Hol­lies have in­cluded Palmer­ston North in their North Is­land tour.

Per­form­ing their High­way of Hits New Zealand Tour, the band in­cludes two orig­i­nals, Bobby El­liott and vo­cal­ist, Tony Hicks.

While Christ­mas is the rea­son for the sea­son, the Awa­puni Rac­ing Cen­tre of­fers some­thing com­pletely dif­fer­ent on Box­ing Day.

Yes, it’s the very pop­u­lar Manawatu Stan­dard Box­ing Day races which, in the past, has at­tracted up to 8000 peo­ple. It’s a great fam­ily day out after a busy De­cem­ber, and or­gan­is­ers en­sure there’s some­thing for ev­ery­one, in­clud­ing chil­dren.

The ma­jor race is the Manawatu Stan­dard Sum­mer Cup and, be­tween events, peo­ple have a chance to wan­der, chat and en­joy the food, re­fresh­ment and entertainment.

In ad­di­tion to the eight races, there’s the Undie One-Hundy where com­peti­tors strip to their grunds and sprint 100 me­tres to win prizes for both men and women.

So if you’re look­ing for a Christ­mas gift and go­ing to the Box­ing Day races, then un­der­wear is the per­fect choice.

Photo: SUEWILSON A Cho­rus Line prin­ci­pals and dancers un­der the lights on stage.

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