Tuesday 23 February 2016

Avenue Q UK Tour | Our Day Out

Hello beautiful's! If you follow me on my twitter or my snapchat then you'll know that last night Phil, Samantha and myself attended one of the best musical theatre play's to ever be made which is the amazing Avenue Q at Liverpool's Empire Theatre so I wanted to do a blog post and tell you all about this awesome musical and hopefully persuade you to go and get tickets yourself to see it.

I must admit, although the play itself is fantastic, the actual venture wasn't that great. Disabled access is fine, but the staff are not helpful at all. I was firstly told when getting the tickets I mentioned that I needed wheelchair access for them, they told me that I couldn't have wheelchair access for this show as the show couldn't accommodate wheelchairs - which is bollocks because I've seen Avenue Q in the past and also bollocks because I've had wheelchair access loads of times at the Liverpool Empire Theatre so me being me, I went onto my twitter and had a mini rant explaining that I'm going to be doing a review of the night and about how interested I am in how the theatre treat people with disabilities. Avenue Q got in touch with me firstly and asked me to DM them on twitter and give them more information, I did so and then Liverpool Empire Theatre got in touch with me on my twitter and asked if I could call a number they left me. I did so and got a voice mail so left a massage and within 10 minutes got a call back from a lovely women who sorted out the messing about and sorted out my ticket issues giving me wheelchair access and giving me my money back. Whoever that woman is I really can't thank you enough as to how helpful and caring you were to me.

The woman explained that I needed to pick the tickets up before 6pm at the box office outside St John's Market in Liverpool city centre. Well we got there at 6.10pm (damn traffic!) and it was closed, so Phil pushed me in the wheelchair over to the Liverpool Empire Theatre to ask where we could pick them up and as there were people inside standing about chatting, we knocked on the doors and waved our hands as if to say "come here a minute please" they looked at us, and carried on chatting. Were we were left outside in the rain and cold for nearly half an hour with staff inside noticing us and walking past the doors, there was even staff who seen us and then when they walked past the doors looked in the other direction as if they hadn't seen us! Shocking! Finally a young guy came down the stairs seen us and came and opened the door, we asked where we could pick up the tickets and he told us the box office three doors up, we thanked him and went to the box office. The conversation we had with him took up about 30 seconds of his and our time - how hard would that have been to all the other staff who walked past us and ignored us? Not long at all. A massive thank you to this guy whoever you are as you really helped us out and everyone working in the theatre should be like you.

Firstly, the Liverpool Empire Theatre's staff should have been more helpful to us. Not because it was freezing, not because we took outside them doors for nearly half an hour, not even because I was in my wheelchair, but because that is the human thing to do. And secondly, what if something was seriously wrong? I am in a wheelchair and my husband is knocking on the glass doors asking for help and not one person came over. That is shit Liverpool Empire, sort your stuff out.

Once we had met up with Samantha and we were in the main entrance inside theatre, we got funny looks, huffs and puffs from people who had step a side a little so I could get through but we are used the that anyway, but not one staff member asked if we were okay, if we needed anything, asked people to move aside so the wheelchair could be pushed past so that I wouldn't end up banging into someone's legs or anything at all. We got our seats which were awesome, right in the centre of the stage at the very back of the ground level with Samantha one side of me and Phil next to her, and an older gentleman sat in a wheelchair at my other side. The woman he was with sat in the row in-front of him, you could tell he needed assistance through-out the first act and even though on the back row to my right the disabled seats with a "normal" seat were free they sat him there on his own, whilst his friend had to fit in front of him. Not one staff member came over to ask if he was okay or needed any help and I could tell he struggled all the way though the first part of the play, they didn't even bother coming back for the second part of it. Which is a real shame because Avenue Q is and was amazing!

I suppose if you are a "normal" person without disabilities the Liverpool Empire would be great for you, but if you are a person who needs a little bit more care or help then I would suggest finding the show some place else and travelling there to see it. I do highly recommend you checking Avenue Q out though!

I don't want to give you too much about the play without spoiling it for anyone as it really is amazing and a must-see. Avenue Q is an 16+ only musical theatre show which tells the life of recent college graduate Princeton, who moves to a shabby New York apartment all the way out on Avenue Q. Whilst living there be meet Kate (his next door neighbour), Rod (the Republican), Trekkie (the internet sexpert), Lucy (the Slut) and other colour types who help Princeton finally discover his true purpose in life! Avenue Q is the winner of the TONY "Triple Crown" for Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book... and well deserved! Avenue Q is great for not just adults but teenagers too because it’s all about real life. It may not be appropriate for young children because Avenue Q addresses issues like sex, drinking, and surfing the web for porn.

Note: Most theatre’s will advise around the 14+ or 16+ year old mark depending on their experiences with local audiences but really, it’s hard to say what exact age is right to see Avenue Q – parents should use their discretion based on the maturity level of their children. Although, if you do bring teenagers along to Avenue Q, they'll think you're really cool. Avenue Q is part flesh, part felt and packed with heart.

Join Avenue Q on their UK tour, where the internet is for porn and everyone’s a little bit racist, as this smash hit musical embarks on a brand new UK and Ireland Tour. Click here to find yourself and book yourself some tickets to the Avenue Q UK tour now; and don't forget to follow them on the official Avenue Q UK Tour twitter account for updates and more information.

I hope you all enjoyed reading this blog post. We had such a good time last night!

With love, Alisha Valerie. x

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