Escaped Alone, Bristol Old Vic

PLAYWRIGHT Caryl Churchill is, according to Wikipedia, “known for dram­a­tising the abuses of power, for her use of non-naturalistic techniques, and for her exploration of sexual politics and feminist themes.” She is also 78 years old. The only stage direction she gives for her latest work, Escaped Alone, is that the four women who make…

Read more...

Sandwiches for the family

NEW Perspectives brings its latest show. The Giant Jam Sandwich, to the Salberg Studio at Salisbury Playhouse for two performances on Saturday 25th March. Set in the quiet village of Itching Down, it’s all about what happens when four million wasps turn up.  Picknickers panic, farmers stop haymaking and no-one knows what to do…. Until…

Read more...

Hounslow Girl back in Dorset

AMBREEN Razia, the performer and writer of The Diary of a Hounslow Girl, returns to Dorset on Saturday 1st and Sun­day 2nd April to perform her debut play at Bridport Arts Centre and Dorchester Corn Exchange. The first tour visited Lyme Regis and Poole in 2016, and now a second UK tour is under way. The…

Read more...

Leap of faith in love for APS

AMATEUR Players of Sherborne have chosen Abi Morgan’s play Lovesong for the spring production, on stage at the Digby Hall from Thursday 30th March to Saturday 1st April at 7.30pm. The acclaimed British playwright, who wrote The Hour for televsion and the film scripts for Suffragette and The Iron Lady, saw her first play Skinned…

Read more...

Joel Dommett and Rich Hall stand up at Westlands

SOMERSET’s newest venue, the revamped Westlands, has a brace of top comedians lined up to wow fans of stand-up, with Joel Dommett on Friday 31st March and Rich Hall on Saturday 1st April. Dommett, a brilliant comedian and talented actor (he was in Channel 4’s Skins), was a memorable contestant in I’m a Celebrity ……

Read more...

Twin passions in electronica

FOUNDER of the London Electronic Orchestra Kate Simko brings her musical compatriots to the Lantern at Bristol Colston Hall on Thursday 30th March at 8.30pm. Pianist Kate’s training in classical and jazz playing feeds directly into her lively multidisciplinary approach to composition. Her impressive ensemble marries her twin passions: live orchestral performance and electronic music….

Read more...

O dainty duck, O Dear

DEVERILLS Performing Arts starts its new-style season for 2017 with a visit from Door Ajar Theatre, performing Thisbe at Longbridge Deverill Village Hall on Saturday 25th March at 7.30. The multi-talented, character-changing, instrument-swapping cast fuses magic, music and levity in this sequel to A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The lovelorn Thisbe has perished by her own…

Read more...

Portman paddles Coracle on Parrett

EMILY Portman and her Coracle Band stop at Bridgwater Arts Centre on Satur­day 25th March as part of a five-venue spring UK tour. The band includes violin virtuoso Sam Sweeney and the percussion leader of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, in a five peice line up that creates a magical sound sometimes reminiscent of early Incredible String…

Read more...

Material: Earth at Messums

THE  new exhibition at Messums Wiltshire in the 700 year old tithe barn at Tisbury celebrates the use of clay in contemporary art, by leading contemporary potters and ceramic artists, including Grayson Perry, Edmund de Waal, Hans Coper and Sandy Brown. On show until 1st May, Material: Earth is the first in a series of…

Read more...

Dazzling design – the joy of the Jazz Age

IF you have often thought about visiting the American Museum at Claverton just south of Bath but have never got round to it – make this the year you remedy that, because this year’s special exhibition, The Jazz Age, has to be one of the region’s unmissable 2017 events. Through the beautiful fashions of the 1920s,…

Read more...

Somerset County Drama Festival

ILMINSTER’S Warehouse Theatre hosts the 2017 Somerset Fellowship of Drama county drama festival on Saturday 25th May, with two sessions starting at 1pm and 6pm. The afternoon is given over to three new plays, performed by Teignmouth Players, Weston super Mare Echoes, and Taunton Thespians. The later session has plays from Taunton Thespians and two…

Read more...

Ferociously collecting

FEROCIOUS Dog is always about more than the music, although their signature sound of folk with rock, reggae and Celtic vibrations is what brings the fans back again and again. They have three more south west dates, starting on 25th March, on the current tour. Led by Ken Bonsall, the Dogs are proudly political, singing…

Read more...

New play by Graham Harvey

GRAHAM Harvey is best known, particularly to BBC Radio 4 listeners, as a long-time scriptwriter and the agricultural story editor of The Archers, but he has now written a play based on a real-life farmer. No Finer Life, staged by Dogwood Productions, is touring to Dulverton, Warminster, Taunton, Sturminster Newton and Bristol, from 30th March…

Read more...

Materials, makers and Messums

THE current exhibition at Messums Wiltshire at the Tisbury tithe barn is a wide-ranging look at contemporary ceramics, Material: Earth, with work by leading makers including Grayson Perry, Sandy Brown and Edmund de Waal. Alongside the exhibition, which continues to 1st May, there is a series of talks, beginning on Saturday 25th March at 11am…

Read more...

Confusion in a Pronoun

DORCHESTER Youth Theatre’s senior company will perform Evan Placey’s 2014 Nat­ional Theatre Connections play Pro­noun, at the Corn Exchange on Thursday and Friday 30th and 31st March at 7.30. Suitable for audiences aged from 14 upwards, this very relevant play confronts  an issue of increasing importance for young people and their parents in the 21st…

Read more...

AUB and Kokoro in Sondheim classic

STUDENTS from the performing arts de­p­artment at Arts University Bourne­mouth are again working with the musicians from Kokoro, this time to produce Stephen Sondheim’s Into the Woods, at Poole’s Lighthouse from Thursday 30th March to Saturday 1st April. It is a brilliant re-imagining of the world of fairy tales, in which Cinderella, Jack, Little Red…

Read more...

New music for Emily Dickinson

AMERICAN poet Emily Dickinson is “having a moment” again, with the publication of Envelope Poems in 2016 and the release of the film A Quiet Passion scheduled in April. On Saturday 1st April, Shaftesbury-based composer and musician Karen Wimhurst, a long-time admirer of Dickinson’s poetry, leads her choir Palida in the premiere performance of her…

Read more...

A bear in the army

THE remarkable story of a bear who served in the army will be brought to the stage of Bath’s egg theatre on Saturday and Sunday 25th and 26th March. The Quarter Too Ensemble is touring the UK with Wojtek: The Happy Warrior, and it is performed in Bath at 11.30am and 3pm on both days….

Read more...