The Digital Divide

The University of Winchester presents an inaugural lecture by Marcus Leaning, Professor of Digital Media Education on Thursday 29 November at 6pm (6.30pm start).

The public event is free to attend and all are welcome. Plus there will be wine, soft drinks and nibbles.

In 2001 Kofi Annan, the then Secretary General of the United Nations, announced a redoubling of the UN’s effort to bridge the ‘digital divide’.

The digital divide refers to the differences in people’s opportunities to access and use digital media and has been understood to be a barrier to development that stops individuals and countries from achieving their potential. Since Kofi Annan’s announcement, billions has been spent on seeking to address the digital divide. This lecture looks at these efforts, the nature of the problem itself and whether we are actually any closer to solving the digital divide.

Marcus Leaning is Professor of Digital Media Education and teaches on the Media and Communication degree. He is a National Teaching Fellow and a Fellow of the Royal Society for the Arts. He is the author or editor of seven books and has written numerous articles, book chapters and magazine articles on various aspects of digital media education and related topics. He has lectured and given papers in 25 countries and has been a visiting researcher and visiting professor at Hokkaido University, Japan; the University of Limerick in the Republic of Ireland and the University of Costa Rica.

Booking is required in advance:  book here

Date: Thursday 29 November
Time: 6pm for 6.30pm start
Location: The Stripe, King Alfred Quarter, University of Winchester, Sparkford Road, Winchester, Hampshire SO22 4NR

Win Guide to November

Remember, remember, it’s time for a Win Guide to November. From fireworks to film festivals, here’s our guide to some sizzling events in the city this month:

It’s the 60th Charity Winchester Bonfire & Fireworks on Saturday 3rd November. Starting at 6pm on The Broadway by King Alfred’s Statue, the torchlight procession makes its way through the historical streets of Winchester to the fields behind River Park. At 7.15pm, the Bonfire will be lit, and at 7.45pm you can enjoy the legendary Fireworks Spectacular. Visit the website here for more details or to book tickets.

The Winchester Film Festival takes place from 3 – 10 November. Enjoy feature film premieres and award-winning short films selected from over 50 countries, at venues across the city of Winchester. For a full programme of films including dramas, thrillers, documentaries and animations, visit the 2018 programme here.  To find out more about the Winchester Film Festival or to book tickets, visit the website here.

You Are Here! closes at the Winchester Science Centre and Planetarium on Saturday 4 November. Join the hosts of Wow Tours on an out-of-this-world immersive adventure as they attempt to put everything in its place – in our Solar System, the Universe and beyond! It’s a 30-minute show designed for children and their families. Be inspired to look up at the night sky and it could be the start of a lifelong adventure. For more details, visit the website here. And here’s a trailer:

On 7 November, there’s a special screening of War Horse in the Nave of Winchester Cathedral. Tickets are £10 (£7 for under 16s) available from the Cathedral Box Office 01962 857275.

The annual Christmas Light switch on, takes place on 15 November! Celebrate the start of the festive period and join Heart Radio’s Rich Clarke, who will be hosting an evening of live entertainment and fun, with the city’s wonderful Christmas lights being switched on by local Winchester heroes nominated by members of the public. The festivities start at 4pm and will end by 7pm (lights switched on at 6pm).

And whilst we are in the festive mood, the Cathedral Christmas markets and ice rink will open on 16 November. The official opening includes professional ice skating displays and music from the Cathedral Choristers along with the blessing of the tree. Following the Opening Ceremony, you will be free to explore the Christmas Market until 8pm.

Don’t forget to get booking for the Panto at the Theatre Royal which opens 1 December and runs until 6 January. This year, it’s Beauty and the Beast. Can Fairy Fifi bring Belle and the Beast together in time or will the evil Malevolent win the day? There’s only one way to find out. Visit the website here for times and tickets.

Speaking of the Theatre Royal, it’s a bumper month following on from the 40th anniversary celebrations since it was saved from demolition and re-opened as a performance venue. The one and only Nicholas Parsons will be starring in Just A Laugh A Minute on Saturday 3 November at 7.30pm. Book online here. The Winchester Musicals and Opera Society will be presenting Singing In The Rain from 7 – 10 November at 7.30pm.  Tickets are available here.

The Armistice Centenary Recalled takes place on 11 November at 7.30pm featuring Michael Pennington, Pamela Miles and John Miller. Exactly a hundred years after the Armistice marking the end of the First World War, this dramatic recital draws on the contemporary writings in poetry and prose to recreate the moods and passions of those involved at the time. For more details, or to book tickets, visit the website here.

Also commemorating the 100th year anniversary of the end of World War I, Scamp Theatre’s award-winning production of Private Peaceful is full of vivid detail and dramatic narrative, superbly brought to life by Andy Daniel. For tickets, visit the website here.

BBC TV wildlife presenter and cameraman Gordon Buchanan will be sharing insight into his incredible experiences with some of the world’s most fearsome and majestic animals on 12 November. Book here. 

If you missed our feature on the fantastic Welsh National Opera workshop for young people aged 10 – 18 years, you can read it here. The workshop takes place on 17 – 19 November. And, the Welsh National Opera cordially invites you to the World Premiere of the rip-roaring, uproarious musical comedy Rhondda Rips It Up!  The production takes you on an unforgettable journey through the life and adventures of that unsung heroine of the Welsh Suffrage movement, Margaret Haig Thomas, the Viscountess Rhondda. Tickets are available to book online here.

Fans of comedy will be delighted to hear that Stewart Francis, star of Mock the Week, Live at the Apollo and Crackerjack embarks on a brand-new show, Into the Punset on 21 November at 7.30pm.

Tickets are available here.

The Chesil Theatre will be presenting Honour by Joanna Murray-Smith, directed by Heather Bradford, 17 – 24 November. Honour is a provocative drama that challenges our notion of honour, our sense of decency and our belief that love will prevail. The Singer by Nick Joseph will also be hosted 28 November – 1 December. After the sell-out success of ‘The Railway Plays’ in 2017, award-winning writer-director Nick Joseph presents another foray into the absurd and the unpredictable with the story of a man, so cut-off from society that his name has become a musical note (so cannot be written). For more details and to book tickets, visit the website here.

On Thursday 22 November, Dr Vanessa Harbour will be talking about the issues writers face when ‘Writing History as Fiction’ as part of the University of Winchester Tavern Talks. Dr Harbour is a writer whose recent novel Flight was published by Firefly Press in August and was described by the New Statesman as “an adventure mixing horses and Nazis” which balances its “gripping plot” with “real-life inspiration”. She will suggest that, as a writer, she aims to create narratives that engage the imagination using voices that are unlikely to have left any written records behind them, as she tells the stories of the invisible characters of history.

Finally, The Kings Chamber Orchestra are on a journey exploring time and space on the road to Christmas, 24 November at 3pm at The Middle Brook Centre in Middle Brook Street. Under 3’s go free and tickets are £5! What did the shepherds actually see? Why? How? When? What has that got to do with the note “C”? What is the most dazzling music of all?All these questions and more will be considered through a musical journey with fun for all the family in our day time teddy concerts, presented with wit and spontaneity by cellist Gerard Le Feuvre. Bring a Teddy! Tickets are available here.

It’s going to be quite a month in Winchester. We’ll be bringing you more updates on Twitter @Win_Guide. Enjoy one and all!

Win Guide to Half term

It’s half term in Winchester and time for some entertainment ideas. Here’s a Win Guide to what this week has on offer for families:

It’s all gone Boo at the Zoo. That Zoo of course is Marwell, where a resident wizard Lowedalf will be assisting aspiring flyers to earn their Level 3 broomstick license. Sessions last 20 minutes and will be taking place on the front lawn of Marwell Hall. For more information about this and other special events, as well as details about admission prices, visit the website here.

The Winchester Science Centre will be Firework and Fairground themed for half term week. What gives fireworks their different colours? Why do they go whizz and bang? Explosive live science shows will run hourly from 11:00am until 15:00pm. Visitors are invited to create fairground rides from recycled materials in the inventors studios. The week will finish with a big flourish on Friday 26 at 5pm in the form of a sing-a-long screening of The Greatest Showman in the  planetarium. It will be a relaxed screening for younger viewers and costs £2 if you have paid to visit the centre, or £5 if you just want to sing like you’re Keala Settle or Hugh Jackman.

There’s a lot of entertainment on offer at the Theatre Royal this half term.  Pigtails Productions, Polka Theatre and Oxford Playhouse present How to Hide a Lion based on the story by Helen Stephens, 22 – 23 October. Iris embarks on a mission to squash her new friend into a variety of sneaky tight spots as the misinformed town folk try and track him down. Suitable for viewers 3 years and upwards. Check out the trailer here:

Young Theatre Royal is offering a musical theatre workshop, Sing it in A Day for children aged 8 to 18 years on 24 October.  All abilities are welcome.

Milkshake! Live arrives at the Theatre Royal on 25 October, 11.30am and 2.30pm. Starring Milkshake! favourites; Bob the Builder, Little Princess, Noddy, Fireman Sam, Shimmer & Shine, Pip from Pip Ahoy!, Winnie and Wilbur, Wissper, Milkshake’s very own Milkshake! Monkey and two Milkshake! presenters, this all singing, all dancing, musical masterpiece, will take audiences on a journey through the world’s favourite fairy tales. And just in case all those celebrity character names didn’t give you a flavour, here’s a trailer:

Time-travelling magicians Morgan & West return to the stage with a marvellous magic show full of crazy capers for the young, old and everyone in-between! Morgan & West: More Magic for Kids is recommended for children aged 5 years + but all are welcome. And you can round a week of family theatre off with the 45th Anniversary of Pam Adams’ best selling book There was an Old Lady who Swallowed a Fly.  It’s the perfect treat for anyone aged 2 to 102. For more details or to book tickets, visit the Theatre Royal website here.

The Discovery Centre is offering some Gruffalo storytelling and craft sessions all week. Half term is a great time to get down to the library. On 20 & 27 October, join the Let’s go! Construction Club for all budding lego builders aged 5 years and over. Duplo and colouring will be available for younger construction fun seekers. Nick Cope will be performing his family concert on 27 October at 10.30am. Nick has over 20 years of experience in music, including international success as lead singer and songwriter with The Candyskins in the 1990s. He now writes and records music for families. Tickets are £6 and available to book online here.

Join the #SpookyWinch Winnie the Witch word search trail around the city organised by Winchester Bid. Pick up your trail from the Winchester Tourist Information desk or the Discovery Centre, or download one here.

Winchester Cathedral is offering a Family Stained Glass trail this half term. Pick up a trail from the entrance desk and discover the beautiful shimmering stained glass that can be found around the Cathedral. Finish up at the craft table where you can create your own ‘faux’ stained glass window. Children under 16 go free but must be accompanied by an adult. For more details and times, visit the Cathedral website here.

Visit Winchester City Mill for the Hansel and Gretel trail. Things are getting spooky with the tale of Hansel and Gretel and their battle with the Wicked Witch. Explore the Mill  to spot the trail of hidden breadcrumbs that Hansel has left. Use these to solve the cryptogram and lead you to the Wicked Witch’s cottage where there might be something sweet to take away. There will also be some Halloween pumpkin carving, 23 & 25 October from 11am – 3pm. Don’t forget to bring a pumpkin! Mike Rogers will be telling spooky stories on Friday 26 October. For more details, times and prices, visit the mill website here.

We’ll be bringing you more half term tips on Twitter @Win_Guide. Enjoy, one and all!

Feature: University of Winchester Tavern Talks

The University of Winchester’s Faculty of Arts has teamed up with St James Tavern at the bottom of Winchester’s Romsey Road to launch Tavern Talks, a new series of public conversations aimed at bringing people together to engage in lively discussions about the creative arts and contemporary discourse in the contexts of cultural history and modern politics and society.

These Thursday evening meetings will convene once a month in the upstairs room of the St James Tavern, and will feature short informal talks on intriguing topics designed to prompt further discussion. The evenings will start with drinks from 5.30, with the talks kicking off at about 6.00pm.

There’s no charge for entry and everyone is welcome, space permitting.

“We’re not planning to lecture people for an hour,” said the University’s Dean of Arts, Professor Alec Charles. “We’re offering something a bit different – something much more social and interactive, an opportunity for everyone to speak, share and learn.”

Tavern Talks has now announced the first three events in its autumn/winter programme.

On Thursday 25 October, Professor Peter Billingham will be introducing the idea of ‘Putting the Demo into Democracy’. A playwright and the author of many books and articles on theatre, television and music (including recent work on Leonard Cohen and Edward Bond), Professor Billingham will discuss the relationships between democracy and civil disobedience in these politically turbulent times. He will ask how far the limits of conventional democracy might stretch, and under what circumstances demonstrations and acts of civil disobedience might come to seem desirable and necessary.

On Thursday 22 November, Dr Vanessa Harbour will be talking about the issues writers face when ‘Writing History as Fiction’. Dr Harbour is a writer whose recent novel Flight was published by Firefly Press in August and was described by the New Statesman as “an adventure mixing horses and Nazis” which balances its “gripping plot” with “real-life inspiration”. She will suggest that, as a writer, she aims to create narratives that engage the imagination using voices that are unlikely to have left any written records behind them, as she tells the stories of the invisible characters of history.

On Thursday 24 January, Professor Tim Prentki will propose that, insofar as we process and perform reality in the same ways in which theatre operates, we might all be said to be ‘Acting on the World Stage’. Tim Prentki is a playwright and the world’s first Professor of Theatre for Development. The author of numerous books on such subjects as Applied Theatre and Popular Theatre in Political Culture, he will argue that, when our opportunities to develop as social performers and audiences are thwarted, we lose empathy and resort to tribal identities at odds with our cerebral wiring.

Tavern Talks are aimed at providing a space for constructive discussion and creative interaction that shifts the emphasis from the fusty to the fun, and welcome all who’d like to take part.

For more information, please contact: inga.bryden@winchester.ac.uk

Workshop with the Welsh National Opera

Welsh National Opera hosts bespoke workshop course in Winchester

This autumn Theatre Royal Winchester is partnering with Welsh National Opera, Mayflower Theatre and University of Winchester to offer young people the opportunity to take part in a two-day musical workshop course.  The Opera Engage weekend is inspired by Welsh National Opera’s new uproarious musical comedy Rhondda Rips it Up!

Rhondda Rips It Up! tells the story of the unsung heroine of the Welsh Suffrage movement, Margaret Haig Thomas, the Viscountess Rhondda. As well as campaigning tirelessly for women’s suffrage, she became the lightning rod for women’s efforts during World War One, survived the sinking of the Lusitania and created the radical feminist magazine Time and Tide.

Opera Engage will take place across two days on Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 November. The course has been created to offer young people aged 10-18 a supportive environment to develop new skills in composing, singing, acting and designing. Participants will work with a professional creative team from Welsh National Opera and the weekend will culminate in a devised performance inspired by Rhondda Rips it Up! on stage at Theatre Royal Winchester. Young people who take part in the course will also receive a ticket to see the sold-out performance of Rhondda Rips it Up! at the venue on Tuesday 20 November.

With 70 years of experience and an international reputation for performing and touring world-class productions, Welsh National Opera is dedicated to providing a springboard for the next generation of talent, delivering unique workshops and courses around the country.

Working with Theatre Royal Winchester, Welsh National Opera’s Opera Engage will provide local young people the opportunity to take part in a transformative experience through music, delivered in partnership between Hampshire’s leading arts venues.

The cost to take part is £50 per person and bursaries are available.

Opera Engage: Rhondda Rips it Up! takes place on Saturday 17 and Sunday 18, with a performance on Monday 19 November, at Theatre Royal Winchester. More information and tickets are available online at theatreroyalwinchester.co.uk and from the on Box Office 01962 840 440

Fagin’s Twist comes to the Theatre Royal Winchester

Avant Garde Dance and The Place present

Tony Adigun’s Fagin’s Twist at the Theatre Royal Winchester.

Following the critically-acclaimed 2016 premiere of Fagin’s Twist and last year’s highly successful tour, Avant Garde Dance and The Place collaborate once again to present the 2018 UK autumn tour. The story unravels and explodes into a captivating performance and ambitious dance show, based on Charles Dickens’ much-loved classic. Fagin’s Twist is the untold story of a notorious and complex villain with a mischievous twist.

This explosive retelling throws a less sympathetic spotlight on orphan Oliver. Fagin’s Twist follows the gang leader in his youth, driven by greed and ambition in the face of overwhelming poverty. The dark Victorian streets are a place of little comfort and fairy-tale endings are hard to find in this poignant coming-of-age tale.

Tony Adigun’s dynamic choreography uses dance motifs taken from the streets to bring to life this adaptation set on the streets themselves, flipping the audience’s expectations of the five familiar characters – Oliver, Fagin, Nancy, Bill Sykes and the Artful Dodger – with an unmatched hip-hop contemporary style.

Tony Adigun comments, I’m excited to be bringing back Fagin’s Twist this autumn with new cast members, new energies, new spirit. I can’t wait to share this show with new audiences and surprise those who have seen it before. I’m motivated to bring hip-hop and physical theatre to inspire a new generation.

Fagin’s Twist is a daring, dynamic and hugely enjoyable rethink of a much-loved Victorian tale seen through the eyes of its infamous villain. (★★★★ The Times).

Fagin’s Twist was originally commissioned by Theatre Bristol, East London Dance, Pavilion Dance South West, Dance East and The Place, and co-produced by The Place. Fagin’s Twist has already performed around the country to critical and audience acclaim, including a run at leading London contemporary dance venue The Place and was performed in August 2017 at Edinburgh Fringe as part of the British Council Showcase.

Continuing to push the boundaries of Hip-Hop Contemporary dance, Avant Garde provides an intensive participation model for people all around the country to give easy access to dance industry. Fagin’s Twist is generously supported by Arts Council England.

Check out the trailer here:

Dates: 2nd – 3rd October

Theatre Royal, Winchester
Book here: www.theatreroyalwinchester.co.uk
01962 840440

NEW DANCE GOES VIRAL

By our editor in chief, Donald Hutera
Exclusive to The Winchester Guide

This autumn Shobana Jeyasingh Dance brings its latest work ‘Contagion’ to six science, art and war-related sites across the country. The tour opens September 15 and 16 at the Gymnasium Gallery in Berwick-upon-Tweed, a former army barracks where soldiers were sent to keep fit during the First World War. The good news for residents of Winchester and environs is that the second stop of the tour is September 22 and 23 at the Great Hall in Winchester – a truly stirring location.

Co-commissioned by 14-18 NOW, the UK’s arts programme for the First World War centenary, and supported by Wellcome, ‘Contagion’ commemorates the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic which ravaged the world to a greater degree than the Great War itself. Directly exacerbated by troop and civilian migrations from the First World War, the pandemic infected one third of the world’s population and killed over 50 million people.

‘Contagion’ is a promenade performance which underlines the irony that, while human warfare raged in the trenches, a silent and far deadlier enemy was waging war within the human body itself. The choreography echoes the scientific features of a virus: rapid, random, constantly shape-shifting. A cast of eight female dancers contort, strategise and mutate as they explore both the resilience and the vulnerability of the human body. The extraordinary work of artist Egon Schiele, himself a victim of the pandemic, is a powerful artistic footnote to the performance. His depiction of twisted bodies and expressive lines perfectly captures the physical and psychological anxieties of the times.

As a Winchester Guide exclusive, our editor and contributor Donald Hutera interviewed one of the dancers in ‘Contagion’ via email. Avatâra Ayuso is both a long-time member of Shobana Jeyasingh Dance and the company’s Associate Artist, as well as being an experienced and celebrated dance-maker herself.

Donald Hutera: How has Shobana Jeyasingh gone about finding movement with the cast of ‘Contagion’ that might correspond to and convey symptoms of the Spanish flu?

Avatâra Ayuso: Shobana has been reading a lot about the Spanish flu and talking to expert virologists to understand the disease. She shared her knowledge with the dancers in the studio, and via a process of creative tasks we gave shape to those words, images and behaviours of the virus and its symptoms.

DH: What determined the casting of eight women in the piece?

AA: Women actively took caring responsibilities during the pandemic. Men were busy at war, but women were fighting another kind of war at home. Most of the information we have about the flu is thanks to the letters these women wrote. They are actually the heroines in this episode of history. Having an all-female cast made total sense.

DH: How is the performance structured over-all?

AA: The audience is going to experience a journey that will take them from the most personal stories to the inside of the virus. The visuals, music, costumes, lighting are in close relation with Shobana’s choreography, helping the audience to travel with us, the dancers.

DH: What is the soundtrack for the show?

AA: That is going to be a very special part of the work! I cannot reveal part of it, but I can assure you it will create a very touching atmosphere. The soundscape is supported by real texts of some survivors of the flu.

DH: What are you wearing in the performance?

AA: Very simple costumes. The body is the protagonist in this choreography. Seeing the muscles in action, the lungs, the face and the backs is very important to understand how the virus affected the body.

DH: Are there any direct historical sources in ‘Contagion’, or is it more of an abstract work? I am wondering how much of its historical time it might be…

AA: As I mentioned, there are some texts extracted from real testimonies made at the time. They are very moving. The work flows from literal sources to an abstract representation of the effects of the virus. Both extremes complement each other very well.

DH: What new discoveries are you making about dance and yourself as an artist as a result of being involved in this project?

AA: More than a discovery, it is a re-confirmation that I love working with set designs – despite the difficulties! Working with an active set design like the one we have is always a challenge for the dancers. The body suffers to start with, as a new element enters your creative life. This means your brain and body have to be in total awareness every single minute to avoid accidents, and to develop a strong relationship with the set. Despite all of this, I love it! Once you and the set ‘understand’ each other, you can deliver the emotional story in a much deeper way.

DH: In what ways might ‘Contagion’ be considered new territory for Shobana? What do you think she might be discovering about her art-making as related to the making of this work?

AA: In the ten years I’ve been with Shobana Jeyasingh Company, it is the first time we have used such a big set design. On its own it is a beautiful work of art that will get ‘re-dimensionalised’ by the dancers in motion. Shobana enjoys any new creative challenge and with every one of these challenges, new movement ideas and relationships with the space emerge.

DH: Is there anything else you think it might be useful for a prospective audience member to know about ‘Contagion’ or Shobana’s work?

AA: It will be very moving and visually stunning. Don’t miss the opportunity to see this work. We, the dancers, are looking forward to meeting you. And remember, Shobana is one of the greatest choreographers in the UK!

Contagion is being performed on Saturday 22 & Sunday 23 September at 11am, 1.30pm and 3.30pm in Winchester Great Hall, The Castle, Castle Avenue, Winchester SO23 8UJ.

Booking: 023 8065 2333 / www.thepointeastleigh.co.uk

Tickets: Contagion is included in the entry fee to Winchester Great Hall – £3 for adults, £2 for children under-16 with concessions and family tickets available.

For information on Shobana Jeyasingh Dance:
https://www.shobanajeyasingh.co.uk/

For information on AVA Dance:
http://www.avadancecompany.com/

Preview – Exploded Circus at Theatre Royal Winchester

The big top at the end of the world

Theatre Royal Winchester will be welcoming the formidable Mimbre and their touring production Exploded Circus, 7 – 8 September, 7.30pm with a Saturday matinee at 2.30pm. Here’s a preview for the must see event:

Mimbre is a female-led contemporary circus company. They use their unique blend of physicality and narrative to tell intimate stories about human connections.

Featuring a breath-taking mix of acrobatics, surprising aerial feats and masterful juggling, The Exploded Circus weaves a story without words, where six women come together to seek order in the chaos and create a new normal. In this new production, Mimbre’s Joint Artistic Director Lina Johansson joins forces with critically-acclaimed designer Loren Elstein and experimental composer Quinta.

The Exploded Circus invites audiences into a moment where an explosion has been frozen in time, the remnants of a big top caught mid-air – with everything from the circus ring, sequins and fairground horses suspended above the ground. With striking imagery and subtle humour, the show explores themes around change, hope and belonging.

Director Lina Johansson comments, With a feeling that the world around us is on the cusp of big changes, I want to create a performance reflecting on this in a microcosm. Be it Brexit, global warming or the refugee crisis, there is a strong feeling of change and upheaval around us. I want to use the show to reflect, as well as imagine what could come from this change and how we can use it to grow. I want audiences to feel the palpable uncertainty around us, but also nurture a feeling of hope. The Exploded Circus mixes spectacle and visual impact with heart and personal stories. The risk and trust inherent in circus – the falls and the balances of the performers – allows me to explore a physical narrative that the audience feel in their bodies as well as follow with their minds.

Mimbre’s work pushes the boundaries of contemporary circus with a cast made up of six versatile artists: French performer Alice Allart on trick bike and slack rope (Stumble Dance Circus, Keziah Serreau, Ilmatila, Osborne&What); physical theatre actor and aerialist Farrell Cox (London 2012 Olympic Ceremonies, Charles Chipperfield Circus, LAS Theatre); physical performer Coral Dawson who specialises in corde lisse and aerial harness (Cirque Bijou, Citrus Arts and Full Tilt Aerial), Canadian acrobat Arielle Lauzon with Chinese hoops and slack rope (Festival Montreal Complètement Cirque, Cirque Eloize), aerialist Rebecca Rennison (Upswing,The New Vic Theatre, The London Cabaret Club) and juggler Lynn Scott (Gandini Juggling, Upswing).

Composer Quinta (The Paper Cinema, Rambert/Cunningham, Ockham’s Razor) creates an ethereal score – combining her flair for improvisation, non-conventional scoring, electronic interfacing and work with new instrumentation. Designer Loren Elstein (Rent, Hangmen, The End of Longing) ingeniously creates a three-dimensional world inspired by artworks such as Cornelia Parker’s Exploded Shed, David Spriggs’ Half Explosion and Ori Gersht’s Time after time photographs.

The show is supported by Arts Council England through a Strategic Touring grant, Foyle Foundation, PRS Foundation, 101 Outdoor Arts Creation Space, Worthing Theatres, Imagine Luton, Merchant City Festival, Brewhouse Arts Centre Burton upon Trent, Lancaster Arts and Circus250.

Fri 7 – Sat 8 September
Fri 7.30pm
Sat 2.30pm, 7.30pm

To book tickets, please visit the theatre website here or telephone 01962 840440.

Win Guide to August

It’s sizzling out there. Here’s our Win Guide to a chilled out hot summer in the city of Winchester:

The Winchester Guildhall is running a Summer Film Fest, with a great programme of family films.

For a full programme or to book tickets, visit the website here.

For a relaxed folk music treat to distract us from the heat, the Wickham Festival is on, 2-5 August. It’s a bumper line up this year. For full details, visit the website here.

Fancy getting involved with the Chesil Theatre? Find out what’s behind the Little Red Door on the first Saturday of every month in an open morning, 10.30am-12.30pm. Visitors can learn about what goes on behind the scenes and meet members of the theatre as well as finding out how to sign up. The next session is on 4 August. Visit the website for more details here.

There are some great community events on at the Theatre Royal this August. Support Hampshire Hospitals Got Talent on 11 August. Money raised will go to the Winchester Hospice charity. Ricnic Hampshire is staging the musical great Gypsy, 22 – 25 August. Petersfield Shakespeare Festival present The Taming of the Shrew, 29 August.

The Boom Town Fair Festival is back between 9-12 August on the Matterly Estate in its 10th Anniversary Edition. Gorillaz will be headlining and other music highlights include Damon Albarn, Jimmy Cliff, DJ Goldie and Limp Bizkit, and many, many more.

Hampshire Open Studios runs between 18 – 27 August.

Check out the local arts scene as over 500 local artists open their doors to show original artworks. For a full programme visit the website here.

Celebrate Cheese and Chilli in the Cheese and Chilli Festival, 18-19 August. There will also be plenty of other entertainment to amuse the family, including pig racing,  face painting, magic shows and live music.  Visit the website here for more details.

The City Mill will be hosting their annual Grand Duck Race, back by popular demand on 25 August.   Complete your ‘Design-A-Duck’ sponsorship certificate to take part in the ‘Best Dressed’ racing duck competition. Submit your design by 25 August and the winner will be announced, along with the fastest race finishers, on the duck race day. The fun starts at 11am. With cake and craft stalls, food and drink, fete games and chances to win prizes, there is plenty for all the family to enjoy and take away.

Graze Festival returns this year, 26 August in Twyford.  There will be live music, food stalls and entertainment for children. For details, visit the website here. Here’s a trailer from last year’s festival for a flavour of what you can expect to graze upon:

We’ll be bringing you more highlights throughout the month on Twitter @Win_Guide.  Have a great summer one and all…

Win Guide to June

There’s lots going on in our fair city this month, from festivals to theatre costume sales and of course our beloved Hat Fair. To find out more, here’s our Win Guide to June.

Head on down to the Chesil Theatre for some folk music on 1 June, performed by the Itchen Folk band. The Compton & Shawford based group will play music from the British Isles and the US. While we’re at the Chesil Theatre, don’t miss their costume sale on 9 June. There will be a range of items on offer from various periods reflecting the range of repertoire that has been dressed over the years. Prices range from just 50p to £50 so get ready to rummage.

The Theatre Royal has an exciting programme on offer this month. Events include Germaine Greer, 3 June and her talk on the inevitability of ecofeminism.  Robert Habermann will be Mad about Movies on 7 June in his history of Hollywood musicals. The show climaxes with a marvellous medley of 20 Oscar winning songs. Shappi Khorsandi will be portraying Emma Hamilton in Mistress and Misfit, 8 June. Dance-wise, you can book to see the sizzling Flamenco Express on 9 June or Ballet Central on 12 June, featuring work by world renowned choreographers.  Families can enjoy the Integr8 Dance school showcase, 15 – 17 June.  Le Navet Bete & Exeter Northcott Theatre bring us Dracula: The Bloody Truth on 13 – 14 June. Kids will be interested in Tall Stories The Snail & The Whale, 10 – 11 June.

Blue Apple Theatre will be filling us in on some history with Winchester! The First 100,000,000 Years, 21 – 23 June. Where did those first settlers on the banks of the Itchen get a decent cup of coffee and did Jane Austen ever get caught up on the one-way system? And finally, don’t miss Reflections of Johnny Cash, Karen Carpenter, Judy Garland & Eva Cassidy, 24 June.

Winchester Cathedral has a packed June full of events to enjoy. Here’s a list of what’s on:

Stone Festival 2018 Friday 15 – Sunday 17 June 2018,

10.00am – 4.00pm Daily. Free Entry – All Welcome

Jane Austen: Tour and Tea Saturday 2 June,10.00am
Tickets: £12.50 Includes hot drink and a slice of cake

Garden Tour  Saturday 2 June, 10.00am Tickets: £6.50

Spiritual Tours with Rev’d Katie Lawrence
Monday 4 June & Wednesday 6 June, 7.00pm – 9.00pm Tickets: £5

Lunchtime Recital – Mikhail Lezdkan (Cello)
Tuesday 5 June, 1.00pm Free to attend

Modern Art Tour and Tea Saturday 9 June, 10.00am
Tickets: £12.50 includes hot drinks and a slice of cake

Britten’s War Requiem Saturday 9 June, 7.30pm
Tickets: £20- £35

Film Night: Stations of the Cross (2014)
Tuesday 12 June, 7.00pm Tickets: £5

Lunchtime Recital: Paul Turner (Piano) & Enigma 14.
Tuesday 12 June, 1.00pm Free to attend

Shipping Festival Service
Thursday 14 June, 7.30pm

Tour: Magnificence Revealed
Saturday 16 June, 10.00am
Tickets: £12.50 includes hot drinks and a slice of cake

Lunchtime Recital: Winchester College Music Scholars
Tuesday 19 June, 1.00pm
Free to attend.

Yanomamo – Featuring Winchester Cathedral Junior and Youth Choir
Saturday 23 June, 7.30pm Tickets: £15 & £20

Professor Alister McGrath – On the Trinity
Tuesday 26 June, 7.00pm
Tickets: £5

Lunchtime Recital – Wells Cathedral School Specialist Music Department
Tuesday 26 June, 1.00pm Free to attend

First World War – In my end is my beginning: Tour and Cream Tea
Friday 29 June, 2.00pm
£12.50 includes a cream tea

For the wordsmiths among us, it’s the Winchester Writers Festival, 15 – 17 June. The festival includes some interesting networking opportunities, including the chance to meet editors and agents.  The keynote speaker for this year’s festival is the novelist Patrick Gale. To book your place, visit the website here.

Winchestival takes place 16 June in North Walls park.  There will be music, comedy and street food to enjoy with the 1980’s synth pop band Fickle Friends headlining the event.  Winchester Comedy Festival will be ensuring that there will be plenty of giggles on the day.  To book tickets for beats, eats and comedy treats, visit the website here.

Hat’s at the ready, the UK’s longest running outdoor arts festival Hat Fair takes place Friday 29th June – Sunday 1st July. On Friday and Saturday there are two jam-packed dates of arts and culture all around Winchester city centre. On Sunday, all are welcome to picnic on North Walls recreation ground where there will be more entertainment to enjoy. For the full programme, which includes an inflatable Whale venue and dancing on giant Jenga, visit the Hat Fair website here.

With so much culture on offer this June, it’s going to be a great month in the city. We’ll be bringing you more updates on Twitter throughout the month. Have fun one and all.

The arts & culture guide for the city of Winchester in Hampshire.