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18/19th September
irma vep

The Mystery of Irma Vep

by Charles Ludlum

On a dark and stormy night Lady Enid arrives at The Mandacrest Estate with her new husband, Lord Edgar, who is under the spell of his deceased first wife and haunted by something that's prowling the grounds. Strange things begin to happen around Lady Enid and she soon discovers the mystery of Irma Vep, whose portrait hangs over the fireplace

The Angus and Ross Theatre Company with Helmsley Arts Centre

2nd/3rd October
fur coat

Fur Coat & Magic Knickers

by Rona Munro

Maggie is a compulsive shopper with more cards than Hallmark. She just has to BUY BUY BUY! But why has she got her eye on that store detective? Personal Shopper Jenny is at breaking point, her job's on the line, she just has to SELL! But she has Second Hand Rose to contend with! Rose, has a hot date for her daughter's wedding and she just refuses to get into those Magic Knickers! Alarm bells ring and three women find themselves in the adventure of a lifetime, will they ever be the same again?

The MsFits Theatre Company

Sunday 2.00pm
18th October

The Isolani Quartet

The Isolani Quartet formed in late 2008 are four Japanese musicians who even though they are still in the early stages of development have been praised for their rare sense of communication and real musical flair. They recently won the RNCM Nossek Prize for String Quartets and have concerts scheduled throughout the UK and Germany in the 2009/2010 season. They were one of only six quartets chosen to participate in the prestigious Melbourne Asia-Pacific Chamber Music Competition held in July.

Royal Northern College of Music

23rd/24th October
jane austen

The History of England

by Jane Austen

Written in 1791 when Jane was only sixteen, this delightful burlesque romps gleefully through the reigns of English monarchs from Henry IV to Charles I and was probably the funniest little book of history before "1066 and All That". Jane's History doesn't care about dates, facts, or the truth - only about making you smile and laugh. Now her book is a stage show. This acclaimed adaptation by Tim Heath stars Carole Carpenter and is produced in association with Guildford's Yvonne Arnaud Theatre.

Tim Heath Productions

6th November

Percy Kelly

Chris Wadsworth an expert on the paintings of the late Percy Kelly gives an illustrated lecture on his work and life, parts of which were spent in Levens and Kendal. Born in Workington in 1918 into a poor working class family, Kelly left school at 14. His talent for painting and drawing became noted but he was 42 when he entered Carlisle College of Art. Just as his reputation was building, he chose not to exhibit and sell his work and eventually died, a lonely man, in 1993, leaving a wealth of largely undiscovered treasures spanning 50 years

Chris Wadsworth, Castlegate House Gallery, Cockermouth

13/14th November
alternative medicine

Alternative Medicine

Set in the waiting-room of a G.P.'s surgery, with the usual reception desk, chairs and table with magazines. At the beginning and end of the play, the time is the present. Between, we go on a ten-year journey of discovery with Enid Pringle, the receptionist. A 'liberating' experience for her, which includes green tea, cream cakes - and more. An accessible and entertaining production, blending humour and poignancy, bringing the messages that 'life should be fun', and 'it's never too late'.

Gloves Off Productions

27/28 November


by Kit Lambert

Gulliver's Travels brought to life by Hijinx in a unique and delightful style, in this biting new play by Kit Lambert, inspired by Jonathan Swift's fantastical satire, which explores the relationship between the mysterious Dr Gulliver and his tormented creator Swift, as they travel through the writer's unruly imagination and try not to lose their way. Capturing the humour and darkness of a man struggling to survive in an absurd world, this classic story is as fresh and relevant as ever!

Hijinx Theatre Company

11/12th December
voice male

Voice Male

The distinctive sound of men's voices in concert is an enduring combination in music and composers have frequently written their most informal work for such ensembles, usually in a convivial setting! The repertoire of Voice Male encompasses five centuries, from Tudor times to the present day, in a stimulating mix of styles, including Madrigals, Glees, Barbershop and part songs by Romantic and Victorian composers, the latest arrangements of some modern favourites and items for the festive season

Nicholas Drew, Alex Laing, William Coleman & Nicholas Perfect

7th February
Scherzo Brass

Scherzo Brass

Founded in 2006, this exciting brass quartet continues our matinee series in association with the Royal Northern College of Music. They have enjoyed remarkable success, establishing themselves as one of the country's leading young ensembles. They won the British Open Quartet Champions title in 2007 and the prestigious Philip Jones Brass Ensemble Competition in 2008. This is brass music playing of the highest quality performed in a manner to surprise and delight you.
Royal Northern College of Music
12/13th February

The Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band Changed my Life for Ever

Two Tribute Wannabees, Bob & Eric, meet at an audition that may be their last chance of fame, only a song away from their dreams coming true. Combining humour, nostalgia & sadness that will touch the hearts of anyone growing up from the 60s to the present, reflecting on rock & pop trivia, life in a struggling band & terminal illness. Pat Abernethy & Dave Marsden transform themselves into two humorous losers chasing their particular dream at the bottom end of the music industry.
Isosceles/Useful Idiots
26/27th February
talbot house

Talbot House

During the Great War, Talbot House in Poperinge, Belgium, a few short miles behind the front line, became a haven for thousands of allied troops - a 'home from home' where they enjoyed some home comforts and remembered the men that they really were. Run by a diminutive chaplain named Tubby Clayton, Talbot House became known by its army signaller's code of Toc H and ultimately would be the inspiration for the association with that name. This play recreates its humour, music and wonderful atmosphere.
Beyond Eternity Promotions
5/6th March


Tartuffe by Moliere

Lancaster Footlights recently presented the amateur premiere of this brand new sparkling and witty version of Moliere's greatest classic farce by Roger McGough at The Grand, Lancaster following it's triumphant premiere at the Liverpool Playhouse, as a major part of Liverpool's 2008 City of Culture celebrations.
Tartuffe appears a beacon of piety and in the home of wealthy merchant Orgon has his feet firmly under the table. But all is not as it seems and as Orgon becomes more enraptured the whole city is chattering. Is he a friend, a fraud, a miracle or a hypocrite?
Lancaster Footlights
12th March
chris abram

Travels With My Video Camera

Chris Abram is a local, internationally renowned, heritage film maker, currently recording the heritage and beauty of the Lune Valley and the Morecambe Bay area. He will be showing extracts from his award winning films, including his world travels and will also preview his, soon to be completed, 'Morecambe Bay - Our Heritage', including some priceless historical footage.
This highly entertaining raconteur, [he admits that he never knows what he is going to say until he says it], skilled cameraman and director is sure to provide an enjoyable evening.
Chris Abram
19/20th March
village life<

A Village Life

Toby and Jessica want a different life for their children, away from the carbon monoxide and blade-carrying gangs of the capital. They dream of moving to the idyllic village Toby remembers from childhood holidays with his Grandma. But when Toby meets a girl with a gun in his new front garden he realises there's more to village life than he'd imagined! A serious comedy by Mary Cooper "A Village Life" takes a hard penetrating look at rural life in Northumberland today.
Northumberland Theatre Co.
27th March

The Ludus Youth Dance Company

These young and talented dancers are auditioned annually, many from the thirteen youth dance groups that Ludus run across the county of Lancashire. They create new work as they rehearse, alongside Ludus Dance artists and resident choreographers. They also have the opportunity through intensive rehearsal when the company works with visiting choreographers, to make new and exciting dance pieces, some of which they will present at this performance.
Ludus Dance
16/17th April
joy of politics

The Joy of Politics

The Black Sheep invite you to an evening of lies, damn lies and silly Whigs! If you love "Yes Minister", the New Statesman and The Now Show, you'll love this irreverent romp through the corridors of power and Quangos. From the Magna Carta to this morning's headlines they pledge to deliver a manifesto of mirth that's guaranteed to bring down the house, updated daily with topical jokes and satirical sketches - so they say 'Order! Order!' order your tickets today! The Joy of Politics - it's completely parli-mental!
The Black Sheep
Sunday ONLY
25th April
Twelfth Day

Twelfth Day

Catriona Price, violin and Esther Swift, harp bring a different slant, from their time at the Royal Northern College of Music, to this matinee concert as they accompany each other in a mixture of traditional items and songs and tunes they have written themselves. This vibrant young duo have entranced audiences around the UK with music that can be fast and furious yet subdued, playful yet reflective, mixing everything from Scottish folk music to jazz, opera and anything in between!
The Royal Northern College of Music
30th April/1st May
five in a bar
Tickets - £9

Five in a Bar

Brought together in 1998 by friendship and the sheer joy of singing in harmony 'Five in a Bar' have since performed across the North West of England singing their a cappella arrangements of a wide variety of music from folk & traditional to contemporary classics & blues. Their songs are chosen using their guiding maxim "songs of meaning sung with feeling" making them their own by improvising harmonies and arrangements appreciated by a wide range of audiences
Five in a Bar
Friday ONLY
21st May
Tickets - £9

The Absolution Saxophone Quartet

In a few short years this quartet have achieved more than some groups do in an entire career and due to their recent successes in winning the Trevor Wye Memorial Prize and RNCM Chamber Music Grand Prize, they are recognised as the college's leading chamber music group. They head the way in expanding the repertoire for saxophone quartet, successfully premiering over fifteen full scale works in the past two years and are awaiting completion of two new commissions
The Royal Northern College of Music