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What's on at Ilkley Playhouse

The hunt for one of Britain’s most infamous serial killers is next at Ilkley Playhouse as Caroline Mutton previews for Ilkley Chat.

Prepare to be captivated by The Incident Room, opening on Thursday 2nd November in the Wharfeside Theatre, a riveting play that thrusts you into the heart of the relentless pursuit of one of Britain’s most infamous serial killers, Peter Sutcliffe. Experience the hunt for this notorious criminal who nearly brought the British Police Force to its knees. The play immerses you in the chaotic world of the Millgarth Incident Room, where Sergeant Megan Winterburn and the rest of the West Yorkshire Police Force grapple with mountains of paperwork, pervasive prejudice, and growing desperation. Playwrights Olivia Hirst and David Byrne were inspired to craft this powerful narrative after an unexpected encounter in a New York restaurant in 2018. They shared a fascination with the deeply flawed police investigation into the crimes, as detailed in Michael Bilton’s book, Wicked Beyond Belief. The Incident Room confronts the failures, biases and limitations of 1970s policing that allowed the criminal responsible for the brutal killings, to evade capture. It explores the harsh attitudes toward marginalised individuals whose lives were undervalued, and the escalating pressure from the media that pushed officers to their limits. This fast-paced and emotionally charged production interweaves moments that transcend time, offering glimpses into Megan Winterburn’s alternate scenarios for the investigation’s development. It challenges the audience to see beyond the victims’ tragic fates, restoring their humanity. Don’t miss this unflinching portrayal of a challenging period in British history and a stark reminder of human fallibility. The Incident Room will immerse you in the tense and desperate world of a police investigation pushed to its limits. The play runs until Saturday 11th November.

On Friday 17th November Roisin Ban return to Ilkley Playhouse following a sell-out show last year. Meaning White Rose in Gaelic, Roisin Ban is a Celtic folk trio playing a mix of mainly traditional Irish and Scottish folk songs and tunes. This accomplished, professional band is well respected on the UK folk scene, having performed at numerous folk festivals in the UK, including their annual fixture at the Whitby Folk Week where they play for the set dance night as well as other concerts. Join this talented trio for an evening of lively Celtic folk music and song. The bar will be open from 7pm, the performance starts at 7.30pm. Tickets are £10.

Stagefright Comedy Club returns to the Wildman Studio on Saturday 18th November. Frontlining this event is Stephen Bailey described as ‘a superstar in the making’ (British Comedy Guide) and ‘charming, sassy and very funny’. He is a star of Live at The Apollo and host of Celebs on The Farm. He was tour support for comedian Katherine Ryan and has starred in Roast Battle, Celebrity Coach Trip, Zoe Ball On Sunday, Safeword, Celebability and Big Brother's Bit On The Side. Joining him is Ant Dewson, a piano playing comedic tour de force with his incessantly hilarious songs and witty asides. Ant has written comedy for BBC Radio 4 and Sky TV. He performs on BBC Radio London and is the co-host of Carpet Martin’s Comedy Market on Riverside Radio. Also performing is Welsh comic Vix Leyton. Discovered by Mark Watson on Twitter in 2019, she is an affable and ebullient storyteller with a keen eye for observation. Her panel show podcast 'The Comedy Arcade' is both an audio success and compelling live show. She picked up a nomination for Leicester Comedy's best podcast in 2021 and is racking up sell-out shows at Edinburgh Fringe. Helen Rice will also be performing on the night. Helen has been Showing Off at various venues around Yorkshire and the Midlands for the past four years and within her home city of Sheffield she has developed something of a cult following. She writes quirky songs and poems exploring a broad range of themes and reflecting on her experiences as a middle-aged disabled woman who ‘likes bread a bit too much’. She plays the accordion, keyboard and guitar in her own ‘unique, lo-fi style’. Her work is hard to categorise but usually results in equal amounts of amusement, bemusement and general musement. Northern comic Ben Silver will be joining this line-up of talented comedians. He will deliver tales of the human spirit through an absurd kaleidoscope of impressions, mis-directions and sprawling vignettes. The evening will be compered by the fabulous Anthony J Brown.

Opening on 23rd November in the Wildman Studio is Nick Payne’s tale of love, loss and honey. Constellations is a spellbinding love story about an unlikely romance between Roland, a beekeeper, and Marianne, a physicist. When a chance encounter brings them together, the possibility of a spark seems unlikely, but what happens next defies the limits of our understanding of time and space. Unfolding in a series of parallel moments over the course of their relationship, the play explores the infinite trajectories that love can take to bring us together or indeed pull us apart. Constellations was originally performed at the Royal Court Theatre in 2012 and won the Evening Standard Award for Best Play. It received international acclaim and transferred to the West End and Broadway. Constellations runs until Saturday 25th November.

To book tickets for all our plays and events visit or contact Ilkley Playhouse box office on 01943 609539.


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