Another very busy week ahead. John Simm opens in Hamlet at Sheffield; 'Tis Pity She's a Whore is revived at the Liverpool Everyman; Jack Scout opens in Morecombe Bay; Arcadia is revived by the Library in their temporary home at the Lowry; Harold Brighouse's The Game opens at Liverpool Playhouse, and 1984 at the Dukes in Lancaster.
And the list doesn't stop there: there's also The Talented Mr Ripley at the Royal and Derngate in Northampton; the latest from Alan Ayckbourn, The Life of Riley, at Scarborough's Stephen Joseph; and Desire Under the Elms, directed by James Dacre (who made a good job of this year's unlikely Olivier award-winner, The Mountaintop, at Theatre 503). Bryony Lavery's Stockholm is revived at the Mercury, which later in the month also has the third, and most overlooked, Hamlet of the autumn: a production hailing from Macedonia.
That's before we even think about London, where we have The Aliens at the Bush; Passion opens at the Donmar; Michael Gambon stars in Krapp's Last Tape at the Duchess; Richard Bean's The Big Fellah opens at the Lyric Hammersmith and a new production of Les Miserables returns the show to its birthplace, the Barbican. That means there will be two productions of Les Mis running simultaneously in the same city – strange, but true. Meanwhile, the Hugh Hughes season continues in the Pit.
Other shows you don't want to miss include All My Sons, which only has another couple of weeks in the West End, and Complicite's A Disappearing Number , which is at the Arcola until 25 September. Willy Russell's Our Day Out at the Royal Court in Liverpool is clearly a winner, and Dr Faustus at the Royal Exchange in Manchester is quite a spectacle. I also like the sound of Theatre Delicatessen's Theatre Souk, but sadly can't fit it into my schedule – at least not this week. I've heard very good reports, too, of Love on the Dole at the Finborough.
There are lots of high-quality touring shows around, too. Punk Rock – Harry Potter meets Lord of the Flies meets The Bell Jar – finishes at the Lyric Hammersmith this Saturday before hitting the Sheffield Lyceum next week, and then the King's theatre, Edinburgh. Tim Crouch's controversial and engaging The Author is at the North Wall in Oxford from Friday before heading to Bristol Old Vic. Filter's Twelfth Night is at the Corn Exchange in Newbury until tomorrow, and then heads to the Tobacco Factory in Bristol next week. Idle Motion's lovely little Edinburgh Fringe hit, The Vanishing Horizon, is at the newly re-opened Pegasus in Oxford next Friday.
Enron heads for the Birmingham Rep, and Sunshine on the Leith is at Dundee Rep until tomorrow and then goes to Inverness and Glasgow. Talking of Glasgow, the Arches Live season really rocks this week. Another Glasgow date for your diary is the return of Vanishing Point's Interiors, at Tramway from the end of the month.
I'm going to Druid's The Silver Tassie at the Lowry and then to A Streetcar Named Desire at the Bolton Octagon over the weekend – but do please let me know what you are seeing and enjoying, and the shows that are worthy of attention. Have a good weekend.