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Arts reviews

This excellent quartet proved they will go far

Zelkova string quartet, Stratford Chamber Music Society, The Shakespeare Institute. THE second concert in the 50th anniversary season of the Stratford Chamber Music Society was given last Sunday evening at the Shakespeare Institute, in Church Street, Stratford, by the young Zelkova string quartet, who originally studied at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, and who graduated in 2010.…

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A colourful show worthy of an Oscar

SOMETHING magical happened in Stratford ArtsHouse last Friday night when two Stratford schools joined forces with the town’s Orchestra of the Swan (OOTS), Talking Birds theatre company from Coventry, and a Birmingham school to perform Ant & Cleo — The Musical! Magical because you could see on the faces of the school children involved that this project has greatly enriched their lives.…

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THEATRE REVIEW: Horrible fun at its best

When Christmas comes under threat from a jolly man dressed in red, it’s up to one young boy to save the day – but can he save Christmas? From Victorian villains to Medieval monks, Puritan parties to Tudor treats, this latest terrible tale from the Horrible Histories stable is a wonderful hair-raising adventure through the history of Christmas.…

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TV host Graham shows he’s got the gift of the gab

Graham Norton Stratford Literary Festival Courtyard Theatre IT was a real coup for Stratford Literary Festival when they brought one of the best-known faces on television — Graham Norton — to town on Friday, 24th October . The popular Friday Night chat show host (The Graham Norton Show and now Eurovision Song Contest presenter) had hot-footed up to the Bard’s town immediately after appearing live on ITV’s This Morning programme. Of course, to warm the audience up there were some S…

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Trio pushed the boundaries of what is traditional jazz

Roller Trio Stratford Jazz, No.1 Shakespeare Street GENRE-BENDING Mercury Prize winners, Roller Trio, who have emerged from the dynamic Leeds jazz scene, made their debut appearance for Stratford Jazz last Wednesday evening. All three Rollers, still in their 20s, are products of the influential Leeds College of Music, which habitually turns out immensely talented jazz musicians.…

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Players impress with new director

STRATFORD’S Phoenix Players always seem to pull a little gem out of the bag at some stage during its season of productions. This year’s treasure was its recent production of Take Away The Lady, by Lancashire playwright Jimmie Chinn. The Players always boast they are an amateur company, but performances often hint of more talent and stage credit. And this production was such. Director Rebecca Alun-Jones had cherry-picked her cast well, and even took advantage of the new ArtsHouse audito…

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BOOK REVIEW: Stratford-upon-Avon’s history charted from the Middle Ages to modern times

STRATFORD-UPON-AVON has a lot to thank Nick Fogg for. Although he was born and bred in the town, he hasn’t lived here for a very long time. But he clings to it with a passion that knows no bounds. His love of Stratford and all that goes with it – including a poet and playwright by the name of William Shakespeare – is such that he’s produced several books on the town (and even a scholarly book on the playwright). His latest homage to this small settlement in Warwickshire is Stratford-upo…

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Debut show for young director

THE Phoenix Players’ next production, Take Away the Lady by Jimmie Chinn, is the directorial debut of enthusiastic young director, Rebecca Alun-Jones. Take Away the Lady runs at Stratford ArtsHouse from Thursday, 25th September until Saturday, 27th September at 7.30pm.…

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Photos: Nirvana Unplugged recreated in Alcester

NIRVANA Unplugged was recreated by a dozen musicians in Alcester on Saturday 17th May and the gathered crowd lapped up every second of the gig.…

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Othello at Stratford’s Attic Theatre a revelation

Misaki Morita from Japan visited England for the Shakespeare Birthday Celebrations and while here saw Tread the Boards Theatre Company’s Othello, which ran until Sunday and returns to the Attic Theatre for the Stratford Arts Festival……

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