THEATRE: King John, RSC, Thu 19 Sep- Sat 21 March 2020
Catch one of Shakespeare’s rarely-performed works as director Eleanor Rhode makes her debut at the RSC. Stirring an uneasy semblance to the present day, the tale tells of a nation in turmoil and a king who will stop at nothing to keep his crown. Don’t miss the pre-show director talk with Rhode on Wed 25 Sep at 5.15pm, to hear the fascinating insights into characterisation, design choices, rehearsal room processes and other details that went into creating the production. Watch out for a huge on-stage food fight! Just don’t wear your best garb if you’re on a front row seat…
GIG: Pixies, O2 Academy, Birmingham, Mon 16 Sep
The summer festival season may have come to an end but some of the season’s most enthralling live show include The Pixies still going more than 30 years after they revolutionised the American indie scene, along with bands like Throwing Muses, paving the way for Nirvana. They’ll be performing songs from across their entire back catalogue including Doolittle and Surfer Rosa, changing their set list daily! If you’ve got tickets for this, you’re very lucky as they’re like gold-dust! More details here.
FESTIVAL: Kenilworth Arts Festival 2019, Thurs 19 – Sat 28 Sep
Artists, leading writers, human rights campaigners and top musicians from the UK and around the world will descend upon this up-and-coming Warwickshire town for a diverse 10-day programme of music, talks and readings art installations, family activities, film screenings, exhibitions, workshops and immersive events. Writers include best-selling novelist Clare Mackintosh, The Guardian’s Amelia Gentleman, who was awarded Journalist of the Year 2018 after exposing the Windrush Scandal, award-winning human rights campaigner, Caroline Criado-Perez OBE and Nathan Filer, mental health nurse and award-winning author of the international bestseller The Shock of The Fall.
Musicians include Nottingham born pianist Isata Kanneh-Mason (photographed above). A finalist in the BBC Young Musician of the Year competition in 2014, and the eldest of the talented Kanneh-Mason family (her brother Sheku played cello at the wedding of Harry and Meghan last year). Plus, singer-songwriter Nadia Reid, from New Zealand, who will be performing a rare UK concert in the beautiful surroundings of St Nicholas Church; celebrated jazz group Darius Brubeck Quartet; contemporary folk artists Joshua Burnside and Rosie Carney, and a double bill of cinematic, instrumental music featuring a joint performance from Polish cellist Resina and Brussels based composer Christina Vantzou.
Make the most of autumn’s rich bounty with an irresistible selection of glorious gourmet galas across the country this month:
- Leamington Food Festival, Sat 8 Sep-Sun 09 Sep – One of the most popular events in Leamington’s calendar, the Food Festival returns to the Pump Rooms Gardens – and this year, the live music comes from the newly-restored Victoria bandstand. There’s a staggering choice of food and drink, with many of the town’s restaurants, butchers, cafes, and bakeries offering their produce, plus loads more from the wider area. The Live Kitchen sees inspiring demos from excellent local chefs, including John Martin from the Muddy Award winner 2019 for best restaurant; Max Proudfoot from Muddy 2019 finalist Oscar’s French restaurant; Lee Sylvester from Tan Rosie Caribbean cookery school in Birmingham; Simon Kelly and Russel Allen from Leamington butcher’s Aubrey Allen; Sophie Hyam; Henley Chocolates; chefs from Bill’s, Cote and more. The Cook of the Year live final, hosted by Aubrey Allen, begins at 1pm on Sun 7 and promises heated, fast-paced entertainment. Free entry; 10am-6pm each day; full details here.
- Coventry Food Festival, War Memorial Park, Sat 21 Sep-Sun 22 Sep -Following their success in laying on fabulous food markets across Warwickshire, CJs events are running a 2-day gastro gala in Coventry for the first time. Expect the best in local produce plus kids’ treats including fairground rides, glitter painting and chocolate workshops, buoyed by the sounds of homegrown musicians and Fresh radio’s live broadcasting. More here.
- Southam Food Festival, Sun 15 Sep – Spilling over the town centre with 40 tempting traders from across the region, with entertainment, bouncy castles and kids’ activities thrown in for good measure. Free entry; takes place in Southam Town Centre, Coventry Road, CV47 1QA. Full info here.
- Stratford-Upon-Avon Food Festival, Sat 21-Sun 22 Sep – The bustling market, featuring over 120 stalls, is funded by businesses in the town centre to celebrate the abundance of local premium producers. Get interactive with demonstrations and workshops on cookery and wine tasting, plus the Food & Ale Trails that proved so popular in previous years (tickets for the trails are available online from 6 Sep – booking ahead is recommended). The festival takes place in the heart of Stratford, along High Street, Henley Street and Bridge Street. Visit the website for full info.
- Rugby Food and Drink Festival, Sat 28 Sep, Rugby Town Centre – A pop-up kitchen with lively demos (starring special guest chef Kwoklyn Wan), family entertainment, shopping and music accompany this town-centre soiree. Stalls sizzle with offerings from local businesses, producers and farms. Enjoy from 10.30am-5pm; visit the website here.
COMEDY: Live at the RSC: Comedy Festival, Stratford-Upon-Avon Comedy Festival, Thu 12 Sep-Sat 21 Sep
The end of summer signals the reawakening of the comedy calendar and look no further than Stratford to treat yourself to chortle, when 22 of the top comedians from the Fringe storm Shakepeare’s county. Highlights include Adam Kayt, with an “electrifying” (Guardian) evening of sharing his diaries as a junior doctor, in a stand-up spectacular with music. Other shows feature pillars of the UK comedy scene such as Bridget Christie, Milton Jones, Zoe Lyons, Rory Bremner and Rhys James. There’s also the award-winning phenomenon Showstopper! The Improvised Musical, which has awed audiences in Edinburgh for 11 years. Full line-up, tickets and offers here.
MUSIC: Stratford-Upon-Avon Music Festival, Fri 13 Sep-Sat 21 Sep
Championing accessible classical music, the festival, now in its 24th year, provides a soothing yet invigorating antidote to the sounds of modern life with performances featuring a number of BBC Radio 3’s New Generation Artists. Stratford’s own Orchestra of the Swan stage a 2-hour playathon of well-known favourites for you to enjoy from artist-designed deckchairs; children’s imaginations are set alight in storytelling sessions; and The Midlands Youth Jazz Orchestra bring the party to a close in Big Band brilliance. Browse the full programme of music, art and words here.
HERITAGE: Heritage Open Days: Coventry, Fri 13 Sep-Sun 22 Sep
Discover hidden places, try new experiences and explore the rich heritage on your doorstep. More than 50 venues in Coventry are participating in this year’s Heritage Open Days - England’s largest festival of history and culture – and throwing open their doors to celebrate their heritage, community and history. Check out the websites of Heritage Open Days and Coventry Council to plan your day trips. This year’s festival sees a cracking collection of new additions, including tours of the new Amazon warehouse (find out how those late-night clicks convert into next day treasure!); a high flying aerial display by Coventry’s own critically acclaimed performance company Highly Sprung and Circus pioneers Upswing on the Alison Gingell building at Coventry University; an immersive walking trail with Coventry’s quirky Talking Birds Theatre to investigate the historic neighbourhood of Stoke, invites you to take a trail of the unexpected around another of Coventry’s historic neighbourhoods, Stoke; a behind-the-scenes tour at the Belgrade Theatre; a ride on a miniature railway along the River Sowe with Bridge View Light Railway; and Stoney Road Allotment Gardens, a Grade II* listed site with seven fascinating Victorian and Edwardian Summerhouses.. Events and experiences free; check event pages for timings.
2019 is the 25th year of Heritage Days Out with loads of events, tours and National Trust gems, open to the public across Warwickshire – and the rest of the Muddy counties if you fancy a day trip. Find a full list of what’s on here. Across Warwickshire visit interesting landmarks from stately homes, ancient church to much loved building such as Chesterton Windmill, (Sept 14 & 14), St John’s House, Warwick (Sat Sept 21, 10am-3pm), Upton House and Gardens (Sat Sept 21 & Sun Sept 22) and a guided tour around historic Rugby School (Sat Sept 14 & Sat Sep 21, 2pm -3.30pm), the Royal Shakespeare Company, Baddesley Clinton and Packwood House (both Sept 14, 9-5pm).
Over in Brum, Birmingham Hippodrome will be hosting a packed week of activities to celebrate the theatre’s rich history celebrating 120 years as part of the national Heritage Open Days festival from Sat 14 Sep. Highlights include free mini taster tours, the unveiling of a giant playbill featuring some of the most famous artists who’ve tread the Hippodrome’s boards such as The Beatles and Judy Garland; two new visual art exhibitions, Pre-Windrush to the Present Day (presented with Blackstory Partnership) and If Memory Serves; and two new heritage talks reflecting on key moments of the theatre’s 120 year history.
JAZZ: Theon Cross, Hare & Hounds, Birmingham, Fri Sept 20
A key member of the the award winning Mercury-nominated four-piece, Sons of Kemet, Theon Cross is a London-based Tuba player and composer. He’s one of the key components of the city’s thriving young jazz scene and worked with well known musicians including Moses Boyd, Jon Batiste & Stay Human, Pharoahe Monch, Emelie Sande and Kano. His critically acclaimed 2019 debut solo album Fyah features horn player Nubya Garciaon tenor sax and drummer Moses Boyd, guitarist Artie Zaitz and alternate sax player Wayne Francis.
HERITAGE: The Visited Orchard, Anne Hathaway’s Cottage, Stratford-Upon-Avon, Sat 21 Sep
The summer art installation, which has seen visitors drawing their stories on ornamental apples and hanging them on The Visitant Tree, culminates in a harvesting by lead artist Francesca Millican-Slater. New stories are shared, to bring to a close a project telling tales of visitors past and present – including WWII sweethearts, migratory birds and celebrities. Full info here. Find out more about Francesca on her website.
ART & ENGINEERING: Imagineer’s Bridge, Coventry, Thu 26 Sep-Sat 28 Sep
Two days of intriguing events surround the giant bridge structure that suddenly appears in Coventry city centre. The mystery is finally solved in an enthralling live performance on the Saturday evening, featuring gravity-defying circus acrobatics, dance, comedy, theatre and live music, inspired by local peoples’ stories. A thrilling and moving montage tells of the courage, compassion and humour needed to bridge a divide. Bridge is a project that blurs boundaries between art and engineering, run by Imagineer with collaborations from artists and civil engineers Arup. Launched at Coventry Cathedral during the Festival of Imagineers in Sep 2018, the project began with visitors being asked to share their experiences of bridge building and feed back on some artistic ideas. Bridge is rooted in the community in which it is based, with local people making their own Bridges and contributing to the success of the project.
WRITING COMPETITION: Stitch a scary story ahead of new Frankenstein production (showing 2-12 Oct), Belgrade Theatre, Coventry
Can you concoct a terrifying tale to frighten socks off? Aspiring writers are invited to submit short stories or extracts of 2000 words, or even one-minute Instagram films if that’s more your thing, in celebration of the looming performance of Frankenstein next month. The competition carries eerie echoes of 1816, when Lord Byron challenged his friends to write a scary story – a challenge which led to the creation of both Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and John William Polidori’s The Vampyre. The deadline for submissions is 5pm Fri 27 Sep and a selection of entries will be read out at the Big Comfy Bookshop on Wed 2 Oct at 6pm, where the winner will bag tickets to the show and other exclusive goodies. E-mail your masterpiece to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Frankenstein will show from Wed 2 Oct -Sat 12 Oct; tickets and info here.
CLASSICAL: CBSO: Sheku Plays Elgar, Symphony Hall, Birmingham, Sat 28 Sept
Conductor Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla and the CBSO embark on a truly fantastic adventure in time and space – featuring Midlands-born cello superstar Sheku Kanneh-Mason in Elgar’s hugely popular Cello Concerto.
THEATRE & FILM: Royal Spa Centre, Leamington Spa, new autumn season
Leamington-based national touring theatre company Heartbreak Productions throw four enthralling performances on consecutive nights to kick off the season, with Romeo & Juliet, Private Lives, Wuthering Heights and Gangsta Granny. One of the best young climbers in the world, Hazel Findlay, presents her impossibly brave and inspiring talk The Climb Within on Sat Sep 7. Findlay explores how we can use a sport we are passionate about – such as climbing – to discover how our minds work (and how to hack them), so we can enjoy the experiences we want without the limits of fear. Nature lovers won’t want to miss the Ocean Film Festival World Tour, on Sat 14 Sep, brought to us by the team behind the awesome Banff Film Festival. A carefully created collection of short films showcase the spellbinding power and beauty of our oceans, using mesmerising cinematography. Further exploration of our planet comes when daring dance-circus production WILD leaps to the stage on Sun 22 Sep. Local production company Motionhouse use characteristic powerful physicality and daring feats to move through a ‘canopy’ of tall poles, looking down onto the forest floor and asking intriguing questions. In our increasingly urban lives, is the wild still shaping our behaviour? Where do we belong? Do we choose to survive as a lone wolf or engage with the pack and the tribe? There’s also a pre-show workshop, where all the family can shake their booty in a relaxed, informal session lead by one of Motionhouse’s professional dances.
Along with these spectacular stage performances there are stunning screenings, such as Only You, Pain and Glory film of the month Transit and National Theatre Live: One Man, Two Guvnors (Encore). Check out the full programme of rich autumnal offerings.
THEATRE & BALLET: New Season at Birmingham Hippodrome
Roll up, roll up! Birmingham Hippodrome’s new season is on sale now and it’s an unmissable roaring riot. As the Hippodrome continues its 120th Anniversary, we’re whisked back to its roots as a circus. On Sat 26 Oct the city centre is transformed into the greatest show on earth, where you can experience that parallel life where you ran away with the circus…learn performance skills, watch gravity-defying acts and listen to enthralling talks on the theatre’s rich history. The heritage theme continues when the main auditorium hosts Circus 1903 (Fri 25 Oct-Sat 2 Nov), fresh from a sell-out run at London’s Southbank Centre and Matthew Bourne’s eagerly anticipated Romeo and Juliet (Sep 10 – 14).
Huge names in comedy steam into town, including Lenny Henry (Sun 20 Oct); Ben Elton (Thu 14 Nov), Rob Beckett (Thu 6 Feb & Fri 7 Feb 2020) and Romesh Ranganathan (Sun 3 May & Mon 4 May 2020); and Snow White is this year’s panto, with slapstick silliness from Sat 21 Dec-Sun 2 Feb. Storming the main stage this season are MAMMA MIA! (Tue 12-Wed 13 May); SIX (Olivier Awards Best New Musical, Tue 21-Wed 25 Jul); Broadway and West End sensation Sister Act (Tue15-Sat 26 Sep 2020); haunting favourite The Phantom of the Opera (Wed 29 Jul-Sat 12 Sep 2020); and many more.
The Patrick Studio brings the best in new cabaret, comedy, dance and drama, including Mawaan Rizwan’s one man show Juice (Sat 12 Sep); Hippodrome Associate Rosie Kay’s brand new work Fantasia (Fri 25 & Sat 26 Sep); award-winning original musical Eye of the Storm – the tale of one young girl’s scientific quest to pursue her passion for tornados – by Theatr na nÓg (Thu 8 & Fri 9 Oct); plus more invigorating new shows. See the full programme for a host of all-singing, all-dancing, amazing ways to fill up your diary.
THEATRE: The Lovely Bones, Birmingham REP, Fri 6 Sep-Sat 21 Sep
Charlotte Beaumont (ITV’s Broadchurch) returns to reprise her role as Susie Salmon. You’ve probably devoured the book and loved the film, so why not treat yourself to the theatrical experience of Alice Sebold’s bestseller. This stunning stage adaptation, directed by Melly Still, includes spectacular set design and a rocking soundtrack with 70s favourites and original music to take you through the moving and uplifting story. Make a day of it with a backstage tour, available on September 14 and 21 at 11am. Book tickets here and a backstage tour available 14 Sep and 21 Sep at 11am. Also check out the fabulous autumn/winter season at The REP here.
Autumn Season, The Albany Theatre, Coventry
A sparkling autumn/winter programme of dance, music, drama and comedy at the beautiful art deco Albany Theatre includes the UK premier of Come Dance with Me, a poignant and darkly funny family saga with all the glory of ballroom and the golden age of Hollywood era dance. Based on a true story, this new play tells the compelling tale of two young girls’ hopes and dreams and their extraordinary survival through the challenges of the tumultuous years between WWII to 1951. The spectacular, heart-warming show stars Sam Archer, fresh from his lead in Emma Rice’s highly acclaimed Wise Children and is choreographed by award-winning Richard Marcel, who trained Madonna, Britney and the Strictly couples. Further drama comes from Beyond Therapy, a funny and touching rom-com looking at love in the modern world, starring Tracy Shaw (Coronation Street) and Matt Lapinskas (EastEnders). If music and spoken word poetry is more your thing there’s a series of stripped-back acoustic sessions including the Birmingham poet, activist and Peaky Blinders star Benjamin Zephaniah’s The Life And Rhymes Of Benjamin Zephaniah, based on his autobiography. Plenty for the youngsters too, including such treats as The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show, Dear Zoo Live and a stage adaptation of award-winning author Michael Morpurgo’s I Believe in Unicorns . The year is brought to a magical close with the funny, fantastical Snow Queen – but not before you’ve enjoyed the huge range of other delights in the full autumn/winter programme!
THEATRE: First Encounters with Shakespeare – The Merchant of Venice, RSC, Swan Theatre, Stratford upon, Avon, Mon 30 Sep-Sat 5 Oct
Robin Belfield directs Shakespeare’s Venetian tale of love, social injustice, money and prejudice storms the stage this season in a special 90-minute production for 7-13-year-olds touring schools and theatres across the UK including a 6-night run in Stratford-upon-Avon.
Full info and tickets here.
ART: Wonder by Davy and Kristin McGuire, Herbet Art Gallery & Museum, until Sun 15 Sep
Following their contribution to Hull’s successful year as UK City of Culture, artistic duo Davy and Kristin are exhibiting their work in Coventry ahead of its turn wearing the cultural crown in 2021. Their work is inspired by the shady underworld of Film Noir and concepts of femme fatale and the fallen heroine. A series of intricate, animated, wall-mounted dollhouses and bell jars with silent digital projections tell stories that juxtapose adulthood and childhood. Don’t miss this intense exhibition, along with the rest of the enchanting Wonder project which has received rave reviews since opening in June and has seen over 13,000 visitors immersing themselves in art through the medium of modern technology.
Wonder closes at 4pm on Sun 15 Sep.
POP-UP: The Modist, Bicester Village, Bicester, 12 Aug – 24 Sept
Dubai-based luxury online brand The Modest pops up in Bicester Village this summer with its first European boutique (I need that pink dress, like, immediately). The brand will have pieces from contemporary labels as well as from its own brand LAYEUR. bicestervillage.com
MUSIC: Uplift Weekend, The Albany Club, Coventry, Sat 27 Sep-Sat 29 Sep
A culture-fusing, prejudice-busting shindig to honour 10 years of Music Against Racism and Rock Against Racism. Live and local music comes from a quirky collective including Roddy Radiation and the Ska Billy Rebels (with ex-The Specials’ Roddy Byres); Stratford-born indie/alternative outfit Myriam Adams; funky five-piece The Upsiders, who began as buskers in Coventry and wound up rocking last year’s Godiva Festival; epic tribute acts including Legend (Bob Marley tribute), Band Called Malice (The Jam tribute) and The High Tones (who bring retro vibes from old favourites such as The Stones, The Beatles, The Kinks and The Monkees); and loads more! Check out the full line-up and book tickets here.
EXHIBITION: A Tea Journey – From the Mountains to the Table, Compton Verney, Sat 6 Jul – 22 Sep
Ever wondered how the nation’s favourite brew goes from plant to pot? Or how this Chinese tradition became to be to treasured by British society? Learn all about the humble cup of tea, from history to ecology. Be absorbed by The Tea Sensorium – a multi-sensory experience incorporating olfactory and visual exploration, plus workshops, discussions and a modern Japanese bamboo Umbrella Tea House being shipped especially from Japan for the exhibition! Rare teaware from China, Japan and India is on display, with responses by contemporary artists including Robin Best, Adam Buick, Phoebe Cummings, Charlotte Hodes, Takahiro Kondo, Ian McIntyre, Bruce Nuske, Selina Nwulu, Bouke ve Vries, Hetain Patel, Paul Scott, Julian Stair and Edmund de Waal. To find out more see here.
EXHIBITION: The Move and Play exhibition, Coventry Transport Museum, until Nov 10
A good one to visit with the kids during the summer holidays, this exhibition, created by Heureka Overseas Productions – a division of the Finnish Science Centre – has attracted hundreds of thousands of visitors during stints in Bangkok and Hong Kong, as well as Germany and the Netherlands. It consists of 19 different physical challenges designed to put your senses to the test. From disco donuts to nostalgic tennis, thermal cameras to tightrope walking – activities encourage visitors to be active through collaborative, non-sporting activities – the majority of which are accessible to visitors of all abilities. Team up in activities such as Team Stomp, a game where the more enthusiastically you stomp your feet, the faster your virtual character will advance in the competition. There are also individual activities, such as ‘How Accurately Can You Kick?’ where you must kick a ball at electronic targets to score maximum points and see if you have what it takes to be the next football star!
If you are a Coventry resident make sure you sign up to a GoCV card for free entry, www.go-cv.co.uk
THEATRE: Don Quixote, Covered Market, Oxford, until 28 Sept
I’m loving the idea of Creation Theatre’s production of Don Quixote – super-edgy locale in Oxford’s Covered Market and an updated plot-line where Sam (Sancho Panza) and Dom (Don Quixote) decide to kit out an ancient motor home and head off on a road trip down the A40 from Oxford.
Henley Literary Festival (28 Sept – 6 Oct)
MUSEUMS AT NIGHT 2019: House Party on Henley Street, Shakespeare’s Birthplace, Stratford-upon-Avon, Nov 1&2
Shakespeare’s Birthplace will be hosting a house party with a twist, as part of national Museums at Night festival. Outrageous characters from yesteryear will come to life for a House Party on Henley Street, performed by Bristol-based creative company, Compass Presents featuring mischievous hosts Puck and Ariel, who will travel through time to introduce guests to a motley crew for a social with the neighbours. Guests are invited to revel in the historic building and the famous street on which it stands, with a chance to enjoy performances and play a part in the quest to shape Shakespeare’s destiny. what better way to celebrate Halloween weekend than to party at Shakespeare’s pad…
There will be three performances each evening — 5.30pm, 7pm and 8.30pm, with each lasting around 90 minutes. Tickets cost £16 per adult and include food and drink, fancy dress optional. For tickets, go to: www.shakespeare.org.uk/whatson.
FESTIVAL: Stratford-Upon-Avon Literary Festival Winter Weekend, Fri 1 Nov-Sun 3 Nov
Indulging your passion for books, writing and reading doesn’t just have to mean staying inside with blankets and cocoa…there’s a super programme of talks and workshops to expand your horizons and inspire you this November. Tickets are now on sale for the wonderful Winter Weekend from the Stratford-Upon-Avon Literary Festival, which is one of the most significant literary events in the UK. Take your pick from captivating talks by the likes of Sir Trevor McDonald, Jess Philips MP, Ben Miller, Jenny Eclair and more. Children certainly don’t miss out on the fun, with a choice of craft workshops, Arty Splatz sensory play, the Really Big Pants Theatre Company and further treats.
Explore the schedule here.
BEEN & GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN:
THEATRE: Venice Preserved, Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon, now until Sept 7
Actor/Director/Writer Prasanna Puwanarajah, who recently appeared in Doctor Foster and Patrick Melrose, directs a dark, dystopian production of this rarely-performed Restoration cross-class love story by Thomas Otway, playing in the intimate setting of the Swan Theatre. Tickets here.
MUSIC: Johnny Marr, Albert Hall, Manchester Wed Sep 4 & Thur Sep 5
Did you see Johnny Marr on stage with The Killers at Glastonbury for their headline set? After a busy festival season the innovative former Smiths guitarist returns to Manchester for two home city gigs, the second was added due to demand. The tour follows on from the success of Call The Comet, Marr’s 2018 album.
COUNTRY SHOW: Moreton-in-Marsh Show, Sat 7 Sep
Nothing gets us excited for the colourful, bountiful autumn season like a traditional country show. Welly-clad with a flourish of tweed, we’re happy as pigs in mud to breathe in the beautiful Cotswolds countryside. We’re definitely ready for some hearty, harvest season food now – summer salads only go so far! – so the Food Market is the first stop, bursting with the best local produce around. There are heaps of things to see and do – from animal-based delights such as show jumping, heavy horses, mounted games, the dog show and the Grand Parade of champion livestock; to heritage demonstrations and activities; to the spirited competitions for rosettes in the Home and Garden marquee, featuring the best flowers, vegetables, handicrafts, home baking and more. And we haven’t event mentioned the 350+ trade stalls, selling everything you need and/or want for a quintessential country life. Takes place in Moreton-in-Marsh show ground; tickets and more info here.
COMEDY: Hancock and Co, Bear Pit Theatre, Stratford-Upon-Avon, Sat 7 Sep
Following his sell-out 2018 tour, James Hurn brings the classic days of radio comedy to life for one night in Stratford. Presented in the style of a radio performance for a live audience, his popular one-man show sees him exploit his extraordinary talent for recreating accents and personas in a celebration of vintage favourite Hancock’s Half Hour. The actor and impressionist performs two episodes of the series he wrote himself, plus one lost episode of the original by Ray Galton and Alan Simpson, voicing the entire cast himself. Tickets £15 (£13 concessions); show time 7.30pm.
LITERATURE: Dan Jones – Crusaders: An Epic History of the Wars for the Holy Lands, Bridge House Theatre, Warwick School, Sun 8 Sep
In the run up to this year’s Warwick Words History Festival, acclaimed historian and TV broadcaster Dan Jones returns to the county town to talk about his latest book, Crusaders. The Crusades were a sequence of religious wars fought from the late eleventh century to the late medieval period and saw European Christians battle with the Islamic rulers of the Holy Land. Show begins 7.30pm; tickets £15.00, available online or from Festival Box Office Box Office, Visitor Information Centre, The Royal Pump Rooms, Leamington Spa 01926 33 44 18 and Visitor Information Centre, Jury Street, Warwick CV34 4EW. This is a Warwick Words History Festival Extra Event.
This year’s Warwick Words History Festival runs from Monday 30 September – Sunday 6 October 2019. Warwick Words History Festival Extra Events run throughout the year. Warwick Words will also be presenting a new series of Tea Time Talks, in association with The University of Warwick, from 26 October – 23 November.
FOOD: Pizza and Prosecco Night, Hilltop Farm, Fri 6 Sep
If a food festival is a bit too full-on, take a more casual approach with an evening out in the countryside at Hilltop Farm’s rustically sumptuous restaurant. Thanks to the success of previous Pizza and Prosecco evenings, wood fired pizza outfit The Box will be a regular instalment on the first Friday of every month, beginning September! The menu changes each month, which seems the perfect excuse to make a habit of it. Bookings taken between 6pm-9pm.
CINEMA: Fleabag comes to Warks, Thur Sept 12
Didn’t bag West End Fleabag tickets earlier this year? No surprise there though as the tickets were hotter than Andrew Scott’s priest and sold out in minutes. So we’re thrilled to report there’s still chance to see Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s brilliant theatre production as the show is being beamed live from Soho Theatre on 12 Sep, into our local cinemas, courtesy of National Theatre Live. Hurray! Find your local screening (there are over 25 venues) here
SCIENCE: British Science Festival, Coventry & Warwickshire, University of Warwick, Coventry, Tue 10 Sep-Fri 13 Sep
More than 100 free events, performances and exhibitions to feed your fascination! Robots, driverless cars and phone conversations with the dead are among the mind-blowing events exploring the latest tech; mental health, feminism, gender and other social issues are highlighted and discussed; and the influence of the Youth Climate Rebellion is examined. Also on the menu is James Brown from Channel 4’s Old People’s Home for Four-Year-Olds, telling the heart warming tale of how spending time with little ones can improve the health and wellbeing of seniors. The festival sees experts and researchers from the University of Warwick and beyond open doors to their captivating, frontier-pushing realms. Check out the unmissable programme.
MUSIC: Live Music at the Belgrade Theatre, Coventry, Wed Sept 11 – Sat Sept 14
As the summer holidays come to a close, the party is just beginning at the Belgrade Theatre, with a live music line-up kicking off the Autumn 2019 Season. On Wed 11 Sep, audiences at The Sound of Springsteen will be the first to experience a live performance in the Belgrade’s newly revamped Main Stage, after a big refurbishment over the summer. Then on Thu 12 Sep, The King is Back as number one Elvis tribute Ben Portsmouth brings his world-famous live show to Coventry. In 2012, Ben made history as the first artist from outside the USA to win the prestigious title of Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist at the Elvis Presley Enterprises contest in Memphis. On Fri 13 Sep, The Edwin Starr Band invite you to join them for a soul and Motown party in Northern Soul Live, packed with non-stop classic hits from War to Higher and Higher to Stand By Me, accompanied by special guest Lorraine Silver – an original Northern Soul artist. Finally, on Sat 14 Sep, get ready to enter the House of Fun with Complete Madness.
Tel the box office on 024 7655 3055, or go to belgrade.co.uk where prices are cheaper. Book for two or more participating shows at the same time to claim 20% off.
Moonlit Cinema, Mill Gardens, Leamington Spa, Thu 5 Sep-Sat 7 Sep
A new outdoor cinema hits Leamington town centre, bringing 3 nights of feelgood classics plus live music. The Army Bar, Coffee Cart and Top Dog food van provide tummy-pleasing enhancements to 3 wonderful evenings under the stars. Gates open 6pm, live music begins at 6.15pm and the films start when the sun goes down (around 7.45pm). Tickets are £16.
- Thur 5 Sep Top Gun + live music from Levi Washington
- Fri Sep 6 Pretty Woman + live music from Chris Jenner-Jones
- Sat Sep 7 E.T. + live music from Chris Jenner-Jones
Luna Cinema, Warwick Castle, Tue 10 Sep-Thu 12 Sep
Warwick Castle’s inherent magic is sure to enhance your cinematic thrills! Three blockbusters grace the magnificent courtyard this month:
- Tue 10 Sep A Star is Born 8.30pm
- Wed 11 Sep Mammia Mia! Here We Go Again 8.30pm
- Thu 12 Sep Bohemian Rhapsody 8.30pm
The Luna Bar with Estrella keeps you well watered, with a selection of goodies including Estrella beer, prosecco, wines, spirits, soft drinks and hot beverages. And, because movie night wouldn’t be the same without the snacks, the Castle’s on-site gourmet partners offer a range of hot and cold food. Doors open 7pm and film begins 8.30pm each night. Tickets here.
AFTER HOURS: Drawing the Birthplace, Shakespeare Centre, Henley Street, Stratford-upon-Avon, 14 Sep
Artist Ed Isaacs is back by popular demand for a drawing workshop using Shakespeare’s Birthplace as the subject. Participants are required to bring their own sketchpads/sketchbooks. Tickets Adults £10, 5.30pm-7pm. www.shakespeare.org.uk/whatson
FAMILY: Harvest Home, Mary Arden’s Farm, Stratford-Upon-Avon, Sun 15 Sep
For a more historic take on a food festival, head to Mary Arden’s Farm to celebrate the autumn harvest with the resident Tudors. Puppet shows, face painting, Tudor music and crafts including candle making and willow weaving make for a traditional family day out. Normal admission applies – details here.
COMMUNITY ART: I see the future, Stratford-upon-Avon, Fri 6 Sep-Sun 8 Sep
Back in July, Stratford’s residents were asked: how do you see the town in 100 years? Now the hopes, dreams and visions they shared are converted into vibrant animations, layered over real-time footage of Stratford, shown through two giant pairs of binoculars. The binoculars appear on Henley Street and the Bancroft Gardens from Fri 6-Sun 8 Sep. It’s all part of a playable art project by Anagram, commissioned by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust and the Royal Shakespeare Company to explore the experiences and perspectives of local people. The project marks the 250thanniversary of David Garrick’s Shakespeare Jubilee of 1769. See the website for full details.