Things to do: Fri Feb 16 – Sun Feb 18
FRI FEB 16 - SUN FEB 18
Bryony Kimmings’ A Pacifist’s Guide to the War on Cancer, Belgrade Theatre, Coventry, Feb 14- Sat Feb 17
Bryony Kimmings’ innovative musical is back and fully reimagined for a brand new tour. Drawing on real-life stories and experiences – including those of her producer, Judith Dimant, and her co-star, Lara Veitch – this unique collaboration with Complicité and the National Theatre challenges the conventional dichotomy of fight or fail, tragedy or inspirational recovery, with a moving exploration of newfound friendships, pain and death, mundane treatment cycles, hairlessness, scars – plus a whole load of fantastic songs! Get ready for a whole new way to think about illness. Award-winning director, writer and dramaturg Kirsty Housley returns to Coventry where she studied Theatre and Performance at the University of Warwick
Age recommendation 14+. belgrade
Twelfth Night, RST, Stratford, now – Feb 24 2018
Choke by Chris O’Connell, Shop Front Theatre, Coventry, Tues Feb 6 – Sat Feb 17
Check out the future City of Culture’s underground arts scene at the latest in Theatre Absolute’s innovative Are We Where We Are? two-year theatre project which has so far seen 6 new commissions, each exploring where we are now both personally and politically. Choke tells the story of lifelong friends Rob and Stu, each staring into the gap between who they thought they were, and who they are now. Choke is written and directed by Chris O’Connell, co-founder, writer and artistic director of Theatre Absolute with debut performances by Graeme Rose and Matthew Wait. A post-show discussion: Altruism in the Age of Neoliberalism chaired by David McKeegan takes place on Thurs Feb 8.
Matinee and evening performances. Tickets are £8 (full price) & £6 (concessions) via brownpapertickets
Celebrate the day of love at Shakespeare’s Birthplace Trust, Stratford-upon-Avon, Feb 7 – 14
Feeling romantic? Why not take a stroll through Hall’s Croft’s magical walled garden and add your Valentine’s message to the tree of love in the parlour. At Shakespeare’s Birthplace, visitors can delight in live performances from in house acting troupe Shakespeare Aloud! Join Shakespeare Aloud! As they perform Romeo and Juliet, the most romantic of Shakespeare’s plays. Walk to picture-box perfect Anne Hathaway’s Cottage following in Shakespeare’s footsteps as he went wooing his bride-to-be and post your Valentine’s message in the Love Post Box. The most romantic messages will be posted on twitter and displayed in the cottages visitor centre.
Son of a Preacher Man, Belgrade Theatre, Coventry, Wed Feb 13 – Sat Feb 17
Directed and choreographed by Strictly’s Craig Revel Horwood, no less darling! Featuring a soundtrack packed with hits of the legendary Dusty Springfield, the show follows the story of three strangers inexplicably drawn to the site of a 1960s nightclub, once famed for its wild nights out and for the romantic advice dispensed by its owner, the Preacher Man himself.
Knights Banquet & Medieval Banquet at, Coombe Abbey, Binley, Coventry, Fri Feb 16 & Sat Feb 17
It is the year 1265, and the country is blighted by civil war. Simon de Montfort has brought his army to Coombe Abbey ready to do battle tomorrow. Join the Knights for a last night of merriment and revelry before marching to war, £49 per person. Or enjoy a Medieval Banquet – a 4-course feast fit for a King and Queen, an arrival drink of mead, wine and ale with the meal, a full stage show and a post-banquet disco, £44.95 per person. Suitable for ages 16+.
Tango Siempre: Tangomotion, Butterworth Hall Warwick Arts Centre, Wed Feb 21
Britain’s sizzling hot top tango company take you on a breathtaking journey into the heart of Argentinian music and dance. From virtuoso displays of traditional tango dance in stunning costumes accompanied by the exquisite sounds of 1930s and 40s Buenos Aires, the company is set to dazzle Butterworth Hall. The company previously received acclaim for creating the musical score for Olivier-nominated Midnight Tango, featuring BBC Strictly Come Dancing’s Vincent Simone and Flavia Cacace, which they performed on tour and in the West End. The company’s dancers have also appeared on Strictly Come Dancing, The One Show and 1996 film, Evita.
Close your eyes and just imagine sweeping up this driveway in a vintage limousine as you gaze across the lake, with the magnificent house in the background…Fancy getting married in this stunning Grade 1-listed Georgian mansion and 120-acre park, landscaped by non-other than Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown? Meet Compton Verney’s wedding event team, along with some of the country’s finest dress designers, photographers and caterers. Visitors will be greeted with a complimentary glass of fizz on arrival, from you can view the fabulous art galleries and grand Adam Hall,
Free to attend, simply click on the link at http://www.comptonverney.org.uk/thing-to-do/wedding-fayre-2018/ and complete the form to reserve your tickets.
Book Now: Teen Direct’s BrandMe Workshop for 15 – 18-year-old, The Hall, Rugby Road, Wolston, nr Coventry, Tues Feb 20 2018
These hands-on 3 hour sessions cover interview skills, how to write a killer CV & Personal Profile, Linkedin and how to become known professionally, 10am – 1pm.
If you would like to book a place on a Teen Direct workshop, discuss how career coaching could support your son or daughter, or a young person you care for, email: email@example.com or Tel 07901 517012.
Lesley Ann French Ceramic Workshop, Rugby Art Gallery, Sat Feb 17
Create your very own ‘Made In The Middle’ ceramic masterpiece. Make vessels in clay and bring them to life with imaginative and inventive surface decoration with guidance from local ceramic artist Lesley-Ann French. Experiment with a variety of hand-building techniques including press-moulding, slab-work and extruded cylinders. £45 (incl materials), 10am – 4pm
Book now or Tel the Visitor Centre: 01788 533217
Half-term fun at Warwick Arts Centre, Warwick University, Coventry, Sat Feb 17 – Sun Feb 25
Award-winning musical comedian Jay Foreman breaks the traditional family show with his Fringe Fest sell-out Disgusting Songs for Revolting Children on Sat 17 Feb – a devilishly cheeky hour filled to the brim with comedy, poetry and song. Should you wish to encounter an epic adventure while remaining in the heart of England, then M6 Theatre’s A Tiger’s Tale (Fri 23 – Sun 25 Feb) sounds like a high-spirited balancing act of circus, puppetry and live music. And Hiccup Theatre masterfully re-invigorates The Gingerbread Man (Tue 20-Thu 22 Feb). Finally, don’t forget the centre’s free Stamp It! sessions. Drop in to the Box Office and collect a Stamp It! booklet which, once filled, will give you access discounted tickets.
Feb Half-term, Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, Stratford, Fri Feb 16 – Feb 25
How about some Elizabethan half-term fun? Kids can earn the trade of Shakespeare’s Father, John at Shakespeare’s Birthplace with the help of in-house experts stretching and working leather; discover A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Shakespeare’s New Place and bring the characters to life in a real shadow puppet theatre; while over at Hall’s Croft join the Live’n History team for a lesson on Jacobean medicine, 12-4pm, shakespeare
New Circus Show: Big Top Bonanza, Hatton Adventure World, nr Warwick, Sat Feb 17 – Sun Feb 25
Roll-up, Roll-up the circus is in town! Enjoy a 40-minute show performed by an international cast of comical clowns, acrobats, champion jugglers and awesome aerialists inside the warmth of a large heated 400-seater big top. Plus circus themed arts and crafts, indoor falconry and the usual Hatton favourites – animal handling, funfair rides (for younger children), Laser Combat (8 years +) and Snorty’s Superslide Mania.
hattonworld, Tel 01926 843411.
New exhibits, The MAD Museum, Stratford
Experience interactive new exhibits, interact with weird and wonderful inventions and build marble runs. The quirky museum takes about 1 – 2 hours to experience so is perfect for a morning or afternoon.
Talton Mill Roast Beef Sharing Board Supper, Talton Mill, Newbold On Stour, nr Stratford, Fri Feb 16
Home reared beef roasting joint, carved and brought to your table on a sharing board and accompanied by fresh locally sourced vegetables, roasted potatoes, Yorkshire pudding and gravy. Hot chocolate brownies and salted caramel sauce. Coffee and a sweet treat. All boards serve either 2, 4 or 6. Bring your own alcohol. £22.50 per head.
Online booking here
BOOK NOW: ORENDA ROADSHOW: 12 Crime/thriller authors from the UK, Norway, Iceland, Finland & Germany, Northgate Methodist Church, Warwick, Wed Feb 28
Join Warwick Books and 12 of Europe’s best crime / thriller novelists to discuss their work, their genre and their detectives. Authors include Louise Voss, Michael Malone (A Suitable Lie, House of Spines) Thomas Enger (Cursed, Killed) Antti Tuomainen (The Mine, The Man Who Died) Lilja Sigurdardottir (Snare) Steph Broadribb (Deep Down Dead, Deep Blue Trouble) Simone Buchholz (Blue Night) Su Bristow (Sealskin) Sarah Stovell (Exquisite) Louise Beech (How To Be Brave, The Mountain in My Shoe, Maria in the Moon) Matt Johnson (Wicked Game, Deadly Game, End Game). £5 tickets include refreshments from Oken Tea Rooms .
6.30pm for a 7pm start, Northgate Methodist Church, Barrack St, Warwick CV34 4SL, book in advance 01926 499939 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Stay the Night at Warwick Castle’s luxury Themed lodges
Each Lodge is fully set-up with a double bedroom, two bunks and an optional truckle bed. Equipped with a wet room, shower and towels, there is also cable TV, free WiFi and heating. Prices start from £38.25 per person, per night including breakfast and free second day entry to the castle plus parking. Guests can dine like a King in the Evening All-You-Can-Eat Mediaeval Dinner Feast.
‘Star Car’ Family Fun, British Motor Museum, Gaydon, Feb 10 – 25
Join Parker and Penelope on a family tour and explore the collection of Star Cars. Get creative with ‘Star Car’ crafts and Lego building, and have a go at the ‘Star Car’ family trail. All activities are suitable for 3+ years.
Younger children aged 5 and under can get creative in Arty Tots at Market Hall Museum, Feb 20 (£2.50 per child) Look behind the scenes at the Warwickshire Museum store at Montague Road on Feb 21. See some of the fossils and treasures of Warwickshire’s Jurassic past with Curator of Natural History, Jon Radley, and make a Jurassic treasure to take home, £5. On Feb 22 join in dino crazy games and crafts at Market Hall Museum – explore the museum for dino bones and meet the Warwickshire Dinosaur, £2.50 per child.
See a butterfly hatch at Stratford Butterfly Farm
See science in action and observe the life-cycle of a butterfly and you may even see a butterfly hatch! Minibeast Metropolis is teeming with life and home to a variety of creatures including a leafcutter ant colony, one of the largest on display in the UK. During half term the Education Team will be holding twice daily Meet the Mini-Beast handling sessions – a fantastic opportunity for all the family to find out about the creatures that live within the Butterfly Farm.
Coming Out: Sexuality, Gender and Identity, Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, until April 15
More than 80 modern and contemporary artworks by internationally renowned artists including Andy Warhol, Sarah Lucas, Grayson Perry, David Hockney, Francis Bacon, Steve McQueen, Derek Jarman, Sunil Gupta, Chila Kumari Burman and Gillian Wearing exploring themes of gender, sexuality and identity in art.
Made in the Middle, Rugby Art Gallery & Museum, Rugby, now to March 10
The exhibition runs Jan 20-March #madeitm30 #madeitm; http://madeinthemiddle.org
The Lights of Leamington, Leamington Spa Art Gallery and Museum, until April 15
During the ’50s an annual autumn festival known as The Lights of Leamington drew 300,000 visitors to the town. Thousands of coloured electric lights turned Jephson Gardens into a wonderland until the switch was turned off in 1961. This new exhibition curated by Birmingham-based artist Stuart Whipps illustrates the diverse ways light runs through the gallery collection. Lights used during the historic festival will be on display alongside light emitting objects linked to Leamington’s history, such as lights used in medical spa treatments, plus paintings and photographs depicting or utilising light. Free.
Clare Woods: Reality Dimmed, Mead Gallery, Warwick Arts Centre, now – Sat March 10
Mead Gallery’s Spring exhibition will see renowned Hereford based painter, Clare Woods, exhibit a solo show of never seen before paintings in Reality Dimmed. Her work is held in many international collections and this major exhibition will see her exhibit her raw and powerful painting, which are frequently vast in scale.
Mead Gallery, free
See Pogo Junior, the latest addition at Twycross Zoo, Atherstone
This super cute doe-eyed young female antelope, born in January, is the first ever baby of the Kirk’s Dik-Dik (Madoqua kirkii) to be born at Twycross Zoo, and is the first zoo baby of 2018. She joins 2,780 other individual animals (counted during the zoo’s annual stocktake earlier this month, not including the ant colony!) already living at zoo on the Warks/Leics border.
Visitors can now see Junior under the watchful eye of her family. Twycross Zoo is open to the public from 10- 5pm daily. twycrosszoo Tel: 0844 474 1777.
Imagine Children’s Festival, Southbank Centre, Weds 7 Feb – Sun 18 Feb
12 days of jam-packed half-term fun in this brilliant annual festival by kids for kids. Aimed at 0-12 year olds, there’s a mind-boggling array of activities and events, including a whole clutch of free possibilities in The Clore Ballroom, Roald Dahl’s Revolting Rhymes, dance-theatre Tidy Up, Fun DMC, Bedtime stories, plus debut authors comedian Harry Hill and Radio One’s Greg James.
Live Lambing every day @Cotswold Farm Park, now on
Live lambing takes place every day in the state-of-the-art animal barn right up until Easter. Established in 1971 and the home of rare breed conservation, Cotswold Farm Park offers a fun day out for visitors of all ages.
Birds Behaving Badly Week, Birdland, Bourton-on-the-Water, Saturday, Feb 10 – Sun Feb 18
From blood-sucking songbirds and puking penguins to stinking storks and spitting swallows, keepers at this Cotswolds wildlife attraction will reveal revolting facts about some of the world’s baddest birds. Expect toxic talks and terrible trails highlighting the horrible aspects of natural history and visitors will also be able to meet some real feathered fiends during special meet the creatures sessions.
Birdland Park and Gardens, Rissington Rd, Bourton-on-the-Water, Glos, GL54 2BN. Open Daily From 10am. Tel: 01451 820480, birdland
Amadeus, the National Theatre, London, until Tue April 24
Following a critically lauded sell-out run in 2016, Michael Longhurst’s production of Peter Shaffer’s play returns with the brilliant Lucian Msamati – who played Iago in the RSC’s 2015 production of Othello – as composer Antonio Salieri, who strikes a deal with God and is overtaken by a jealous vendetta against his musical rival, Mozart.
Another Kind of Life – Photography on the Margins, The Barbican, London, Feb 27 – May 28
Touching on themes of countercultures, subcultures and minorities of all kinds, the show features the work of 20 photographers from the 1950s to the present day. Featuring communities of sexual experimenters, romantic rebels, outlaws, survivalists, the economically dispossessed and those who openly flout social convention, the works present the outsider as an agent of change. From street photography to portraiture, vernacular albums to documentary reportage, the show includes the includes the Casa Susanna Collection, Paz Errazuriz, Pieter Hugo, Mary Ellen Mark and Dayanita Singh.
Book now: Laura Marling, St Giles-in-the Fields Church, London, Sat Feb 17
Pots With Attitude, British Museum, WC1, now to March 11
In the Georgian age, satirical art really did include images on the inside of chamber pots. Pioneering transfer techniques allowed caricatures to be reproduced on jugs, bowls and other ceramics, piss pots included, taking contemporary art of the day to a popular audience in alehouses and inns. One reviewer described as “like Grayson Perry on snuff”.
Speakers, by Nicolas Party, Modern Art Oxford, until Sat Feb 18 2018
This exhibition at Modern Art Oxford has been running since late November but if you’re yet to catch it now’s your chance. The Swiss artist Nicolas Party (formerly a graffiti specialist) has produced Speakers, a theatrical selection of five five foot female heads, complete with two hour looped soundscape that seems to speak to you as you brush past. The work is a response to the masculine architecture and institutions of Oxford, particularly the Emperors’ Heads outside the Sheldonian Theatre. Weird, and kind of wonderful.
Modigliani, Tate Modern, now – April 2 2018