The Independent Recommends: Theatre

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The Independent Culture
LEE HALL'S star couldn't be rising much faster. Following his award-winning radio play Spoonface Steinberg and a zippy translation of Mr Puntila and His Man Matti for the Right Size, his first stage play, Cooking with Elvis, has met with instant applause. A comedy about the wife and daughter of an amateur Elvis impersonator left paralysed by a car crash, it makes There's Something about Mary look like the last word in political correctness.

Live Theatre, Newcastle

(0191-232 1232) 8pm

The British premiere of Volunteers by Brian Friel, written in 1975, must rank as the theatrical event of the week. It is directed by Mick Gordon, the Gate's promising new kingpin, and is "a tangible precis of the story of Irish man" set on an archaeological dig in Dublin.

The Gate, London W11

(0171-229 5387) 7.30pm

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