From a classic novel on stage to panto fun for adults and children, there's plenty to enjoy...
Jane Eyre, Little Theatre, Dunstable, January 19 to 27
Charlotte Bronte’s classic novel, Jane Eyre, is coming to the stage in Dunstable this week. Playwright Willis Hall has transposed the 19th century world of Jane Eyre into a modern stage play – and director Christine Rayment of Dunstable Rep believes it loses none of the novel’s emotional force in the transition. She said: “This is a wonderful complete adaptation of the famous novel. I have had a long-standing love of Jane Eyre so I am very privileged to be directing this production. We are very lucky at The Rep to have such a high standard of technical and stage crew. Our team of set-build crew work tirelessly to bring our sets to life.”
The story tells how, after a wretched childhood, Jane Eyre yearns for new experiences. Accepting a governess position at Thornfield Hall, she soon finds herself falling in love with the dark and impassioned Mr Rochester. As Jane wins his heart, they seem set to become man and wife, only for a shocking secret to be revealed.
Beauty and the Beast, January 13 to 21, and Beauty and the Beast Unleashed, January 18 to 27,
Luton Library Theatre
The Griffin Players, Luton’s very own panto experts, present this year’s show, Beauty and the Beast. Belle has her world thrown upside down when she is held captive by the Beast while trying to help her father. It’s a chance for families to enjoy another magical adventure with The Griffin Players. But that’s not all – The Griffin Players’ adult pantomime has become a much-loved institution too, and Beauty’s Beast Unleashed is packed full of traditional panto fun, but with uproarious adult humour. The story goes like this: Belle feels like an outcast in her village. Her only job prospect is working for the evil Madame in her house of sin. That is until an unselfish act leads to a potential new adventure with a Beast of a man. Will Madame succeed in her evil plan to trap Belle or will Belle be able to tame her Beast and live happily ever after? Who knows? It’s strictly for over-18s, so expect risque humour and adult content galore.
Iain Lee and Katherine Boyle, Bear Club, Luton, January 20
He’s the maverick radio presenter whose stint in the I’m a Celebrity jungle won him countless new fans – and now Iain Lee is coming to Luton. He will be performing his live phone-in podcast, The Rabbit Hole, alongside Katherine Boyle. The last time the pair worked in Bedfordshire was when they worked on BBC Three Counties Radio, on which he hosted the breakfast show before their much-publicised departure in 2015. Iain first found national fame on The 11 O’Clock Show on Channel 4 in the late 1990s, and has become a fixture in recent years on Talk Radio. The evening is hosted by the Happy Shark Comedy Club.
The Snow Queen,
Grove Theatre, Dunstable, Saturday January 20
Join Ballet Theatre UK in their re-telling of Hans Christian Andersen’s classic fairytale ballet, The Snow Queen. The production follows the story of Gerda and her quest to find her friend, Kay, whom the Snow Queen has placed under an evil spell.
Gerda’s fantastic adventure takes her on a journey across the frozen north where she encounters a band of Gypsies, enchanted reindeer and a mysterious and reclusive Lapland woman. Gerda is told by the mysterious woman to continue travelling north, where she will find Kay and the Snow Queen’s Palace of Ice. Only Gerda’s love for Kay can release him from the spell and break the Snow Queen’s curse of eternal winter.
Ballet Theatre UK’s renowned company of international dancers, costumes and glittering stage sets promise to combine to create a magnificent spectacle, all set to a glorious and magical score.
5 ART AND CRAFT
Tokko Youth Space, Gordon Street, Luton, January 22 to 26
Enjoy learning new skills in a week of free adult workshops. Work with clay to create your own coil pot, create a woven drinks coaster, try pom-pom making techniques, try out sun print photography and print making, design a T-shirt and more.
Details: Call 07510 917 517