FRI JUNE 1 – SUN JUNE 3
FRI JUNE 1 - SUN JUNE 3
Rugby and Coventry Bikeathon, Draycote Water, Kites Hardwick, Sat June 3
RSC Mischief Festival, The Other Place, Stratford-upon-Avon, Thurs May 31 – June 23
This innovative month-long festival features two new plays #WeAreArrested and Day of the Living. Led by Deputy Artistic Director Erica Whyman, the festival will include:
- Double-bill: #WeAreArrested, the true story of Turkish journalist Can Dündar’s commitment to expose the truth in the face of huge personal risk; Day of the Living, inspired by the events in Ayotzinapa, Mexico 2014 when 43 students were forcibly taken and disappeared, Thur May 31 – Sat June 23.
- Written and performed by Nell Leyshon, Three Letters, is one woman’s story of how her reinvention of herself after having had children is halted by illness, Wed June 6 and Fri June 8, 1.30pm, £5.
- Research & Development work-in-progress public reading of Redefining Juliet, Fri June 22, 2.30pm, £5.
Book on 01789 403493, rsc
Izzy Loops Home Interiors – 1st Birthday Party, 20 Regent Street, Rugby, Sat June 2
Our lovely 2018 Muddy Award winner Izzy Smith – Best Interiors – is celebrating the first birthday of her Rugby store with a party. You’re invited to pop in for Pimm’s & canapes, free colour and style advice for your home, 15% discount on Annie Sloan Chalk Paint and Chalk Paint demos & mini-workshops throughout the day.
Horrible Histories: More Best of Barmy Britain, Belgrade Theatre’s Main Stage, Coventry, Wed May 30 – Sat June 2
A gag-filled gallop through history in the latest chapter of Birmingham Stage Company’s adaptation of Terry Deary’s best-selling kids’ books. Prepare to brave the Vicious Vikings, party with the Puritans, clap along with Crazy King Charles, or go wild with Wordy Will Shakespeare. It follows recent productions of David Walliams’ Gangsta Granny and Awful Auntie. Directed by company founder, Neal Foster.
Tel 024 7655 3055, belgrade
Mountains: The Dreams of Lily Kwok & pre-show cooking demo, Belgrade Theatre, Coventry, May 30 – June 2
Following its critically-acclaimed premiere at Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre, Yellow Earth Theatre’s powerful new play has been adapted by In-Sook Chappell from Helen Tse’s bestselling memoir Sweet Mandarin. Three generations of women in one British Asian family will have their extraordinary true story told. The production charts an evocative, multi-sensory journey across continents, tracing Helen’s family history from occupied Hong Kong to the founding of the famous Manchester restaurant that gave her book its name. Combining live onstage cookery with a slippery, dreamlike narrative. As an added extra, audiences can also book in for a pre-show cookery demonstration on Thurs May 31.
Tel box office on 024 7655 3055, belgrade
Wars of the Roses Live & the UK’s first family Escape Room, Warwick Castle, Sat May 26 – Sun June 3
May half-term sees the return of this jousting spectacle with a new challenge –and the launch of the UK’s first family Escape Room set in a medieval jail. Set in the underground prison, the challenge provides a thrilling live actor-led experience for visitors as they battle the clock to set a knight free in time to return to the arena and join the famous Lancaster versus York battles. Available in timed sessions, £5 per person when booked online in adv. plus admission fee.
Romeo & Juliet, RST, Stratford, April 21 – Sept 21/ Live in Cinemas: Jul 18
Check out the RSC’s youthful, gender-fluid revival with Coventry’s Bally Gill and Glaswegian actress Karen Fishwick as the doomed teen lovers. Erica Whyman examines Generation Z, grime culture and the destructiveness of knife crime in this present-day production.
The Duchess of Malfi, The Swan, Stratford-upon-Avon, now until Aug 3
Tel: 01789 403493, rsc
Woolly Week, Mary Arden’s Farm, Sat May 26 – Sun June 3
Come and see traditional sheep-shearing demonstrations daily, or try your hand at spinning wool and discover how to make a Tudor braid which you will be able to proudly display at home. The Stonemason and Blacksmith will return bank holiday weekend for a special demonstration of their craftwork.
shakespeare, Tel: 01789 338536
Pirate Festival, Hatton Adventure World, nr Warwick, Sat May 26 – Sun June 3
Discover your inner Jack Sparrow or Elizabeth Swann for more skulduggery and pesky pirate antics during the Whitsun half term. The Pirate style entertainment includes a live Pirate Show in the family theatre, Pirate Battles, finding smuggled booty in the hidden Treasure Hunt and panning for gold. Not forgetting, there’s also the Guinea Pig village, snake handling, tractor safari, falconry demonstrations and outdoor laser combat (8yrs+).
hattonworld.com/adventure-world, Tel: 01926 843411
Shakespeare’s Assembleth: Age of Obero, Shakespeare’s New Place, Stratford-upon-Avon, Fri June 1 & Sat June 2
Ever wondered what would happen if Shakespeare was kidnapped by a crazed fairy in an enchanted forest? With the fate of the Bard and his mystical infinity quill in the balance, can Shakespeare’s heroes save their creator from the evil machinations of Oberon, Lord of Midsummer? Presented by Drake’s Drummers Theatre Company, this fast-paced new comedy featuring fairies, Romans and a whole host of madness. For ages 10+. Tickets cost £10 adult, £8 child/concession.
shakespeare, Tel: 01789 338536
Children’s Crafts with Jo Chorley and Tools with a Mission, Chedham’s Yard, Wellesbourne, Sat June 2
Children can make a variety of items at this prize-winning heritage site – a restored historic blacksmith’s and wheelwright’s workshop – with experienced crafter Jo Chorley of Chase Meadow Crafts. It’s also another great opportunity to clear your garage, loft or shed of inherited or unused tools. A representative from Tools with a Mission will be talking about how tools are refurbished and sorted into useful kits and shipped overseas to developing communities. Garden, farming, DIY and mechanics tools are all wanted. Guided tours, the mouse trail, films and refreshments in the café will also be available.
1940’s Tea Party, Anne Hathaway’s Cottage, Shottery, nr Stratford-upon-Avon, Sat June 2
Feeling nostalgic? You’re invited to a 1940’s Tea Party commemorating the centenary of the RAF and sharing stories of visitors who brought their sweethearts to Anne Hathaway’s Cottage through the war years. Swing by in your best 1940’s attire and enjoy vintage music and entertainment, traditional games and evacuee dressing-up competition, as well as delicious, non-rationed afternoon teas. During half-term children can create a bird feeder with recyclable materials in the family activity tent.
shakespeare, Tel: 01789 338536
The Fantastic Follies of Mrs Rich, Swan Theatre, Stratford, until June 14
Arts Fair Discover: Gather:Give, Stratford-upon-Avon Town Hall, Fri June 1 – Sun June 3
See more than 40 local artists exhibiting over 500 pieces of original art, offering a mix of paintings, illustrations, ceramics, jewellery, drawing, textiles, sculpture and book binding at Stratford’s fifth contemporary art fair. Relax in the Golden Cup Café with tea & coffee from Monsoon Estates Artisan Coffee plus cakes by Knead It! The Fair is free to view.
Stratford-upon-Avon Town Hall, 1 Sheep Street, Stratford-upon-Avon, CV37 6EF, discovergathergive
Make and Take – Mercuralia! Lunt Roman Fort, Tues May 29 – Fri June 1
Pay tribute to Mercury, speediest of the Roman gods, by making your own winged sandals (v fetching!) and headdress to whisk you on your way…10.30am – 3.30pm, for ages 5+. Free but site fee applies.
STOMP & free musical half-term workshops, Birmingham Hippodrome, Tues May 29 – Sat June 2
STOMP takes everyday objects like newspapers, bins, plastic bags and even the kitchen sink, and uses them to create a universal language of rhythm and movement that’s playful, thrilling and full of energy. Running alongside the show are series of fun, free and interactive family-friendly workshops inspired by rhythm, instruments and music-making. On Fri 1 June (10am – 12noon), everyone who has taken part in the week-long workshops is invited to join Daz Dolczech and Bongo Damo to be part of the Hippodrome’s very first ‘Live and Legendary One Day Orchestra’ featuring an end-of-week performance plus special guests from the cast of Stomp.
All workshops are free. Simply pop along on the day and register at the Information and Sales desk, Tel 0844 338 5000, birminghamhippodrome
May Half Term at Warwickshire’s National Trust homes
Discover Adventure, Animation and Land Rovers, British Motor Museum, Sat May 26 – Sun June 3
During May half-term, the Warwickshire car museum is celebrating the 70th birthday of Land Rover. Visitors can make their own animated film by creating a storyboard and building a Land Rover model to star in their own animation using ‘Animate It!’, the animation software and app developed by Kudlian Software and Aardman – creators of family favourites such as Wallace & Gromit, Shaun the Sheep and Morph.
See the world’s largest spider, May Half-term, Stratford Butterfly Farm, Sat May 26 – Sun June 3
The Goliath Bird Eating Spider is the largest spider in the world and was named by explorers who saw one eating a hummingbird and reported the sighting. Plus, visitors can see a venomous Vietnamese Centipede which has a venomous bite that causes extreme pain but is not fatal to humans. Lots of beautiful, rare and exotic butterflies to admire for those not keen on creepy crawlies!
Become a scientist with Operation Earth at Thinktank, Birmingham
Thinktank, Birmingham’s Science Museum, has half term covered, with the Operation Earth show running throughout the holiday, inspiring little minds to become environmental specialists. On Mon May 28 there’s the first multi-Doctor, multi-verse, fulldome Planetarium show. Not one, but ten Doctors battle it out with their darkest enemy ever. Starting at 7pm, this is a perfect evening for Dr Who fans.
For dates, times and prices of all events across Birmingham Museums check out birminghammuseums.org.uk/whats-on
Macbeth, RST, Stratford, March 13 – September 18
Wander into Hall’s Croft and discover the magical world of the fairies. Have a go at making your own head-band using flowers or leaves and learn about their influence in Jacobean folklore. Which Shakespeare characters would you class as heroes or villains? Uncover the truth in Heroes vs Supervillains at Shakespeare’s New Place. ‘Draw me…As You Like It’ at Shakespeare’s Birthplace. Get yourself drawn by our caricature artist, with a Tudor twist. Transform into one of your favourite Shakespearian characters – Lady Macbeth, Hamlet, Puck or don a Tudor ruff… you decide! (May 26-28 only).
All activities included with admission, unless otherwise stated. For more info and to plan your visit, see www.shakespeare.org.uk/events
Playful Artful Stories, The Herbert Art Gallery and Museum, Coventry, Sat May 26 – Sat June 2 (except Sun)
Children can create crafty artwork inspired by the world of storytelling and the folk-lore-themed exhibition Fevral from yarn painting to patch-working and making their very own story spoon person, £2.50, drop-in. Day-by-day events here. Ages 3+
Creepy Crawly Castle, Kenilworth Castle, until Sun June 3
From Tues May 29 – Sun June 3 meet some amazing animals with ZooLabs rangers. Encounter creepy crawly creatures and discover what makes them so special, 11am – 5pm.
Ticket to Ride: Bus Journeys, Coventry Transport Museum, Sat May 26 – Sat June 2
Invent a futuristic bus. mark out your travels on a map or make a suitcase collage inspired by this summer’s Ticket to Ride exhibition all about buses, 10.30am – 3.30pm, drop in £2.50. Kids can also explore the Half Term Trail.
Dippy at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, Sat May 26 – Sept 9
The Natural History Museum’s iconic Dippy is on tour. The Diplodocus arrives just in time for the May half-term, so there’s lots of dinosaur inspired activities including handling real fossils, making dinosaur masks and badges, and dinosaur fabric painting. There will also be a special Little Dinos Messy Play for the under 3s and the Captain Cretaceous family show. Children can also experience what it’s like to be a real palaeontologist at a Dino Dig excavation sessions.
For dates, times and prices of all events across Birmingham Museums please visit birminghammuseums.org.uk/whats-on
All Points East Festival, London, May 25 – Sun June 3
A brand new 10-day event in East London’s beautiful Victoria Park encompassing a three day music festival, community focused programme of midweek entertainment and three huge headline shows with a glittering array of artists including Bjork, Beck, LCD Soundsystem, The xx, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Patti Smith and her band, St Vincent, Courtney Barnett, The National and Catfish and the Bottlemen.