Forty years of entertaining at Poole

2018 is a big year for Poole’s Lighthouse, celebrating 40 years since it opened in the town as Poole Arts Centre.

Chief executive Elspeth McBain and her team have planned a series of special events to run alongside a packed programme in the theatre, concert hall, studio, gallery, studio and other spaces in what is the largest multi-purpose arts centre outside London.

Highlights of the busy spring season include a visit by the students from Arts University Bourne­mouth from 15th to 18th February, performing Lillian Hellman’s The Children’s Hour and William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar in tandem.

On 7th April Angel Exit, the Dorset-based company that has made a home at the Poole centre, brings The Drive back to the Lighthouse stage.

Gandini Juggling returns on 20th January with a preview of the new show, Spring, and Ballet Boyz are back in town in April.

The Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra’s regular Wednesday dates continue to pack the concert hall, and they are interspersed with family musical events.

Other music ranges from Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro from ETO to country from Nashville and the usual range of tributeers. Americ­ana specialists The Grahams, local folk duo Ninebarrow and Gig­spanner join jazz performances from John Etheridge, Arun Ghosh and Christian Brewer.

Paul Gambaccini comes to talk about his life in pop in April, and comedians include Mark Steel, Jasper Carrott, Phill Jupitus, Croft and Pearce and Jon Richardson.

To find out everything in store at Poole’s Lighthouse, including a new Lightup Poole three-day light art festival from 15th to 17th February, pick up a programme  with a golden 40 on the front or visit the website, www.lighthousepoole.co.uk