Muddy Guide: Thurs 12 – Weds 18 Jan
Stuff on this weekend and a few ideas to book for the next few weeks…
RPS International Print Exhibition 159, Museum of Somerset, Sat 14 Jan – 11 Sat 11 March
An eclectic mix of work by 75 photographers from 16 countries. This Royal Photographic Society annual exhibition (well, it’s a competition really) on a UK tour is now in its 159th year – and for the first time all four medal winners are women. Come away inspired.
An evening with astronaut Colonel Chris Hadfield, Bristol Hippodrome, Weds 18 Jan
You know, the Canadian one who recorded Bowie’s ‘Space Oddity’ while he was on board the International Space Station (34 million views and counting on YouTube). He’ll be sharing some rarely seen videos he recorded of space and the earth in a 90-minute talk about his multi-faceted career – he’s lived on the ocean floor a well as 400km out in space.
Djorde Ozbolt & Elisabeth Frink, Hauser & Wirth, Bruton, Thurs 19 Jan – Sun 7 May
Two separate solo exhibitions. Djorde Ozbolt spent most of the last year as artist-in-residency at The Maltings studios in Bruton; his ‘Brave New World’ exhibition features the paintings, drawings, sculptures and installations produced during this time. The other exhibition is ‘Transformation’, with Dame Elisabeth Frink’s distinctive bronzes and some of her drawings. The Roth Bar and Grill are on hand, as ever, to provide bodily sustenance after all the spiritual.
Ramin Karimloo, The Octagon, Yeovil, Fri 13 Jan
West End musical star sings songs from the shows and broadgrass (a Broadway and Bluegrass combo) before heading off to New York to star in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s new musical Anastasia. And he’s a handsome chap into the bargain.
Mindfulness Walk, Prior Park Landscape Garden, Bath, Sun 15 Jan
Focus on the moment and let your worries and tensions slip away on a peaceful mindfulness walk in the beautiful surroundings of this National Trust property. Count me in. Booking essential. 0344 249 1895.
BBC One’s Flog It! valuation day, Bristol Cathedral, Sat 14 Jan
Bring along up to three collectables or antiques between 9.30am and 4pm and experts James Lewis, Philip Serrell and Natasha Raskin will value them for free. If you’re selected for filming with presenter Paul Martin (new jacket perhaps, Paul?) you might make some money by selling them at auction a few weeks later – otherwise go home and log onto eBay.
Wassailing at Avalon Orchard, Glastonbury, Sat 14 Jan
If drinking cider and singing to trees to encourage a good apple harvest and scare away evil spirits is your cup of scrumpy, then gather up any kids and dogs and make your way over to Glastonbury Tor to celebrate this ancient custom.
La La Land, cinemas across Somerset, from Thurs 12 Jan
Jazz pianist boy (Ryan Gosling) and aspiring actress girl (Emma Stone) meet in LA and try to make their dreams come true, singing and dancing in glorious classic Hollywood technicolor. It’s scooped up more Golden Globes than any other film ever, has had rave reviews and I can’t wait to see it. If you do, let me know what you think. Find a cinema near you here.
Ceilidh with The Old Swan Band, Halsway Manor, Crowcombe, Sat 14 Jan
The last time I went to a ceilidh it ended in A&E and an emergency knee op (excessive booze was involved) but it doesn’t have to be that way. Lead by The Old Swan Band who’ve been doing this sort of thing for 30 years.
Promenade concert, Wells Cathedral, Wells, Fri 13 Jan
This promenade concert doesn’t involve singing ‘Land of Hope & Glory’ with a Union Jack painted on your face. Instead, you can wander (promenade) around the nave – emptied of all its seating – and soak up the beauty of the cathedral while Renaissance and early Baroque choral voices soar upwards – sounds kinda magical.
Screen Acting Workshop with Mark McGann, Merlin Theatre, Frome, Sun 29 Jan
If you’ve harboured a secret desire to be screen star, let famous thesp and Frome resident Mark McGann (yep, one of the famous brothers) direct you in a scene with another actor. You’ll be sent a script and shooting schedule a week or 10 days beforehand. On the day, you’ll arrive early to meet your co-star and discuss the scene with Mark. Then it’s your big moment. Afterwards you can rush home to mail your performance to Martin Scorsese or stay and watch others shooting theirs. Each role/scene is £125, so if you want to act in two scenes it’s £250, etc.
Shazia Mirza in The Kardashians Made Me Do It, Ustinov Studio, Bath, Thurs 19 & Sat 20 January
Controversial, provocative, Bath. Not three words often found in the same sentence but this stand-up show at the Ustinov from comedian and columnist Shazia Mirza reflects on one of the most politically charged years in living memory and has been described as ‘ on point, chilling and superb’. Remember those three schoolgirls who left Bethnal Green to join ISIS? Shazia wrote a piece for the BBC about it which got a record number of complaints. The show, exploring life, love and Jihadi brides came out of the confusion that followed.
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Bristol Hippodrome, Bristol, Tues 25 Jan – Sat 4 Feb
Get your tickets Toot Sweet: this production of the famous musical show is said to be supercalifragalisticexpealidoshus (oh, sorry, wrong musical but you know what I mean). This is a new stage version of the film scripted by Roald Dahl rather than of the original book by Ian Fleming (you didn’t know?) with sparking performances, some additional songs and ‘Me Ol’ Bamboo’ as a Morris Dance. Just hold onto your hats (or lunch) when Chitty flies off the end of Beachy Head.