Nine top shows at theatres in Suffolk and north Essex in 2019

Peter Andre is coming to the Ipswich Regent in February. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Peter Andre is coming to the Ipswich Regent in February. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN - Credit: Archant

What are the big shows coming to the area in 2019? Here’s a look ahead to some of the top entertainment you won’t want to miss.

Grandma and the Giles family are the theme for a forthcoming musical at the New Wolsey theatre. Pict

Grandma and the Giles family are the theme for a forthcoming musical at the New Wolsey theatre. Picture: GREGG BROWN - Credit: Gregg Brown

The Band - musical, Ipswich Regent, February 12-16

Billed as one of the most successful musical tours ever, this jukebox musical featuring the songs of Take That is set to visit Ipswich before heading for the West End. Five to Five, the winners of BBC’s talent show Let It Shine, star in the show, featuring smash hit songs such as Relight My Fire, Back For Good and Shine. It follows the fortunes of five girls obsessed with the boyband in the early ‘90s. They reunite after 25 years apart and try once more to fulfil their dream of meeting Take That. Follow the link for more details and to book.

The Mousetrap, Mercury Theatre, Colchester, February 18-23

The longest-running show in the history of theatre, Agatha Christie’s classic mystery has been on stage in London since 1952, and is now coming to Colchester. The touring production has a cast headed by Gwyneth Strong, star of Only Fools and Horses and EastEnders. A group of people gather in a country house cut off by the snow, only to discover that there is a killer among them. If you’ve never seen this famous show, now’s your chance, but remember, suspect everyone! Follow the link for details and to book.

Peter Andre, Ipswich Regent, February 26

Celebrating 25 years since he first hit the charts in Australia, the singer and media star is carrying out a 25-date tour of the UK, including a visit to Ipswich. Peter Andre has had many hit singles, including Mysterious Girl and Flava, and appeared in TV shows including I’m a Celebrity ... Get Me Out of Here and Strictly Come Dancing. As well as tickets to the show, a limited number of “meet and greet experiences” are available, ideal for diehard fans. Click here to visit the box office.

Rock of Ages, Ipswich Regent, March 5 to 9

Set in Los Angeles, this hit West End and Broadway show is packed with big 1980s anthems, including We Built This City, The Final Countdown, Wanted Dead or Alive, Here I Go Again and I Want to Know What Love Is. If you enjoyed the movie starring Tom Cruise, now’s your chance to see the show on stage, with a live band. To book, visit the website.

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Hancock’s Half Hour, Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds, February 28-March 2

If you’re looking for a slice of classic comedy nostalgia, this show could be the answer. It brings three episodes of the legendary 1950s show to the stage, starring James Hurn from Deadringers as Tony Hancock and Colin Elmer as Kenneth Williams. Tickets for the Saturday matinee showing are almost sold out. For more details and to book, visit the website.

Ain’t Misbehavin’, Mercury Theatre, Colchester, March 15-30

The music of jazz legend Fats Waller is celebrated in this show, set in the raunchy nightclubs of 1920s Manhattan. It turns the spotlight on the Harlem Renaissance, an era where musicians experimented with new styles and talented dancers, singers and musicians got the joints jumping. Visit the Mercury website to find out more and book tickets.

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Grandma Saves the Day!, New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich, April 26-May 18

After the success of Our Blue Heaven, a musical based around Ipswich Town’s FA Cup win in 1978, the New Wolsey has come up with another musical based on Ipswich’s heritage. Once again, it’s directed by Pete Rowe. This musical takes place in the late 1980s, and combines Grandma and the other beloved cartoon characters created by Carl Giles with hit songs including Our House, Wake Me Up Before You Go-go and Simply the Best, all performed live by a company of actor-musicians in true New Wolsey style. Visit the website for more details and to book.

Julian Clary Born to Mince, Ipswich Corn Exchange, April 6; Bury St Edmunds Theatre Royal, May 25

There are two chances to see camp comedian Julian Clary’s Born to Mince tour in Suffolk, which will include songs and a sneak preview of his new memoir. Julian is promising to “pleasure the provinces with his particular brand of saucy innuendo” and says he will make withering remarks about anyone foolhardy enough to take a seat in the front row. For details of the Ipswich show, click here, and for details of the Bury St Edmunds show, click here.

We Will Rock You, Ipswich Regent, September 23-28

There might be nine months to go, but some nights for this smash hit musical have already almost sold out - showing just how popular Queen still are, in the wake of the film Bohemian Rhapsody. This show, with a script by Ben Elton, features 24 of Queen’s greatest hits, including Radio Ga Ga, Somebody to Love, We Are the Champions and Killer Queen. More than 16 million theatregoers around the world have already seen this spectacular production since it was launched in 2002. To find out more, visit the website.

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