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This Weekend

Fri Aug 18-Sun Aug 20

Shakespeare’s New Place: One Year On, Shakespeare’s New Place, Stratford-upon-Avon, Sun Aug 20  

Shakespeare’s New Place turns one and to celebrate its paper anniversary, Shakespeare Birthplace Trust is having a little party with fun games, activities and live performances. Take part in origami workshops run by the British Origami Society and enjoy live music from Bukechi in the Great Garden at 12pm, 2pm and 4pm. For grown-ups, there’s free gin tasting courtesy of the Shakespeare Distillery and free biscuits for all visitors – while stocks last! Free entry for CV37 residents (with proof of address), 12pm – 4pm.

Moonorooni Colourscape, Compton Verney,  Sun Aug 20

For one-day only an extraordinary experience of colour and light, the Moonorooni Colourscape, comes to Compton Verney’s park. You can explore intense light, colour and space in 25 interlinked colourful inflatable chambers and encounter musical experiences during your journey. Colourscape is for visitors of all ages and promises to be an experience you will not forget.

Rugby Piano Week, Memorial Chapel, Rugby School Mon Aug 14 -Sat Aug 19

Piano Week comes to Rugby School for the first time in August 2017, coinciding with the 450th anniversary of its foundation. Violinist Fenella Humphreys joins pianist Samantha Ward to play Beethoven and Brahms on Mon Aug 14; Maciej Raginia plays an all-Chopin recital on Tue Aug 15; Samantha Ward & Maciej Raginia present Work for Four Hands on Wed Aug 16 and Thurs Aug 17 sees South African pianist Mark Nixon in Recital. Other highlights include Alexander Karpeyev. 1917: The Final Flowering gathers 4 pieces by Russian emigre composers: Rachmaninoff, Medtner, Stravinsky and Prokofiev on Fri Aug 18; culminating with guest artist, London-based American pianist and conductor Stephen Kovacevich & Samantha Ward: Celebrity Recital on Sat Aug 19.  All concerts start at 7pm.

Dinosaurs in the Wild, Hall 2, NEC, until Wed Aug 23

Travel back 67 million years and experience the greatest safari in your lifetime – with living dinosaurs! Ends next week.

Tom Hyatt, The Big Comfy Bookshop, Fargo Village, Coventry, Fri Aug 18

Lancashire-born Tom’s songwriting began to take form while studying Physics and Philosophy at Oxford Uni. He said: “I’d emerge bleary-eyed from the library post-midnight ready for bed, but head first to the college chapel piano to sing into the darkness”. He’s now a  stand-out singer-songwriter on the London live circuit with performances at the National Portrait Gallery, Danny Boyle’s Shuffle Festival and Bestival, but it was Spiritual Bar in Camden where he recorded his debut live album, Live at Spiritual (2017). Also performing are Me For Queen, Ellie Gowers, £5/£8.

1950s Tea Party, Rugby Art Gallery and Museum, Fri Aug 18

Step back to the 50s for some rock n roll, dancing from Strictly Jitterbug, dressing-up, crafts and games, 1pm-4pm.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Lost World, Coughton Court, Alcester, Sat Aug 19

Join al-fresco theatre company Illyria on a Jurassic adventure with prehistoric thrills, monster laughs and life-size dinosaurs in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Lost World performed in the gardens on this beautiful house. Four intrepid explorers travel to an uncharted plateau in South America and encounter living dinosaurs! Gates open at 6.30pm for a 7.30pm start. Recommended for older children and families.

Coughton Court, Coughton, Alcester, Warwickshire, B49 5JA

Knights and Princesses, Kenilworth Castle & Elizabethan Garden, Mon Aug 14-Fri Aug 18

Join an academy for trainee knights and princesses, with hands on medieval fun. Transform yourself into a courtly Lord or Lady with tips on everything from curtsies to combat. Activities between 11am and 5pm include visiting the knights camp and taking a look at his armour, learning weapon handling and sword-fighting skills. For young princesses there’s chance to the princess, be taught etiquette and learn a courtly dance.

War of the Roses Live! Warwick Castle, twice daily until Sun Sept 3

This summer Warwick Castle is staging a thrilling live action War of the Roses horseback battle twice-a-day. Think Game of Thrones for kids. The real-life War of the Roses story has something of a GoT quality to it – a series of battles fought in medieval England from 1455 to 1485 between the House of Lancaster and the House of York. It’s somewhat diluted for dramatic effect but perfectly pitched for bringing history to life to kids of all ages…Medieval Glamping in the Knight’s Village is also now available over the summer. Read my review here.

LAST CHANCE TO SEE: Titus Andronicus, Vice Versa, Julius Caesar & Antony and Cleopatra and Salome, RST & Swan Theatre, Stratford

Just a few weeks left to catch the RSC’s striking opening Rome season including Blanche Mcintyre’s modern take of Shakespeare’s goriest play with a powerful performance by David Troughton (above) as grief-stricken Titus along with Phil Porter’s hilarious Roman spoof Vice Versa and Oscar Wilde’s haunting gender fluid Salome. Shakespeare’s Coriolanus starring Sope Dirisu in the title role and Christopher Marlowe’s Dido, Queen of Carthage, the untold story of one of history’s greatest female leaders, will both be previewing on Sept 15.

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This Weekend

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The Urban Guide to the Countryside - Warwickshire