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This week

MON 16 – SUN 22 MAR


COMEDY: The Horne Section, The Hexagon Reading, 16 Mar

Musical comedy troupe The Horne Section

A night with the Horne. Not a seedy sex club to spice things up, but the outlandish musical and comic talent of Alex Horne and his band of musicians. The man has had a hit series on Radio 4, sell-out shows at Edinburgh Fringe and in London’s West End, Dictionary Corner faves on 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown.

THEATRE: The Wicker Husband, The Watermill Theatre Newbury, now – 4 Apr

The Wicker Husband script

A captivating new musical, The Wicker Husband will have its world premiere at The Watermill. In a superficial world, where beauty is only skin-deep, meet the so-called ‘Ugly Girl’. Ostracised by the townsfolk, the Ugly Girl becomes the envy of her neighbours when the Old Basketmaker makes her a strong and loving husband woven from living wicker. As bitter rivalry threatens to tear the community apart, the townsfolk embark on a cruel and destructive plan. Suitable ages 10+.

MUSIC: An Evening with International Opera Stars, Cliveden House Taplow, 15 Mar

Royal Opera House young stars perform at Cliveden House Hotel Taplow Berkshire

Who needs a dramatic set design when you’ve got Cliveden House? It has to be the perfect setting for an classy evening of opera. It’s all very Pride & Prejudice as you gather for an intimate performance by the young international stars form the Jette Parker programme of Covent Garden’s Royal Opera House. Plus you get treated to Champagne and a three-course dinner. Dress code is black tie too. Tickets £160 per person.

DANCE: Sleeping Beauty, Theatre Royal Windsor, 16-21 Mar

Vienna-Festival-Ballet_Sleeping Beauty and wicked queen

How did you spend your 18th birthday? Dancing on a bar in fizz-fuelled party mode or spinning wool? I think we all know the answer to that one. But if your fairytales billowing in tulle, don’t miss the Vienna Festival Ballet as they struggle between good and evil.

FILM: Banff Mountain Film Festival, The Hexagon Reading, 18 Mar

Banff Film Festival Man walking on ridge of snow topped mountain range

Adrenaline fuelled while sitting down. This is an opportunity to see a brand-new collection of jaw-dropping short films from the world’s most prestigious mountain film festival. Witness epic human-powered feats and mind-blowing cinematography as the best adventure film-makers and explorers push themselves to the limits in the most remote and stunning corners of the globe.

Calligraphy Workshops


Handwriting looks like a child’s scrawl these days? Mine too. Here’s a chance to go back to school and learn calligraphy. You’ll learn letter formations and how to connect them. So you can go home and write a beautiful Mother’s Day card, an arty inspirational quote or just enjoy a mindful moment away from a screen. Local calligrapher Victoria Schute is teaching a class at The Swan At Streatley on 18 Mar (£55pp) and LouPaper Wedding Stationary is hosting an event at The Foxes Den Café in Binfield on 22 Mar (£40pp).

COMEDY: Jen Brister, Norden Farm Maidenhead, 19 Mar, South Street Arts Reading 20 Mar

comedian Jen Brister wearing yellow sat under a yellow flower hoop

This show will sell out because there isn’t a Berkshire gig Jen Brister’s (above) done in recent years that hasn’t. She describes herself as a stand-up comedian, writer, actor, d***head, and it’s that kind of self-deprecating humour, we love. Her show Under Privilege takes an irreverent look at the often controversial subject of ‘privilege’. Who has it? Who doesn’t? And why does no one like to admit they have any?

COMEDY: Iain Stirling – Falling Upwards, Corn Exchange Newbury, 20 Mar

Iain Sterling comedian

Bafta-winning stand-up and voice of Love Island is back on UK stages with his new stand up show as he ponders how people manage to be normal? Iain does. Join Iain explores his inability to function in the most basic of public settings, social media’s constant pressure to ‘live your best life’ and that one time a man stole his shoes.

EXHIBITIONS: Wildlife Photographer of the Year, The Base Greenham Common, now – 26 Apr

The Moment, Yongqing Bao Wildlife Photographer o the year fox about to pounce of shocked marmot
Image: Yongqing Bao

Wildlife photography requires patience, lightning reactions and a little bit of luck. But when they get the money shot… POW! the results are extraordinary. This year’s prestigious Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition is being held at The Base at Greenham Common Business Park in Newbury. It’s an international showcase of 100 images taken by the very best in nature photographers around the world.

EXHIBITION: India & Me, Basildon Park Lower Basildon, now – 23 Dec 

Basildon Park’s India-inspired Zuber wallpaper was designed in 1806 by a French artist who had never been to India. It makes the new audio-visual exhibition in the mansion’s Garden Room even more extraordinary, as it looks at personal stories from Basildon’s collaboration with the Reading Indian Centre.

WORKSHOP: Macrame Workshops, Craft Coop Maidenhead, 21 Mar

Macrame workshop

Macrame was huge in 2019, but if you didn’t get round to making a 70s-style hanging plant holder or a wall hanging, now’s your chance. The Craft Coop is running workshops at its Maidenhead shop on 7 and 21 Mar. Book up and make something crafty in advance of the big day or team up and tie yourselves in knots together. All materials provided, £10pp.

WORKSHOP: Mother’s Day Flower bouquet workshop, The Great House Sonning, 22 Mar

flower bouquet workshop

Nobody hates receiving a gorgeous bouquet of flowers unless you’ve grabbed the sad-looking ‘I totally forgot’ garage carnations, then you’re in trouble. We’re loving the idea of learning to make a bouquet and local florist Emma Curtis will be showing you how to create a blooming gorgeous bouquet at  The Great House in Sonning on 22 Mar (£40pp).

WELLBEING: Mother’s Day Relax & Restore, The Living Saucha Studio Newbury, 22 Mar

Yoga face down stretching

The perfect gift for frazzled mums? How does a couple of hours time out, a lie-down and the chance to go to the loo without someone hollering ‘Muuuuuuuuuuuum’? The Living Saucha Studio in Newbury is running a 90-minute relax and restore session with essential oils, followed by tea and cake. It’s all about balance, people. Suitable for all levels, £25pp


daffodils cliveden House national trust Gilded Gardens

Say goodbye to snowdrops and a big hello to daffodils that are springing up everywhere. Now in its second year, you can experience Cliveden‘s Gilded Gardens, inspired by the 24-carat gilded golden gates on the Sounding chamber and thousands of daffodils that grow across the estate. Head to the Water Garden and Blenheim Pavilion for the best of ‘em, or take a guided tour. Stowe and Greys Court will also be brimming with the yellow bloomer, along with other pretty spring foliage. Or head to Waddesdon who’ve named a whole patch of the grounds after the flower, Daffodil Valley – there’ll also be guided walks on 7 and 21 Mar.


THEATRE: Time Machine, London Library, London, until 5 April

The Creation Theatre crew are heading to the Big Smoke! In this moving (literally) production, small audiences will be led through the vast London Library as Time Machine, which explores themes of neuroscience, big data, genomics and global connectedness, unfolds. Knowing Creation, it’s bound to be brilliant.

EXHIBITION: Herstory, Maddox Gallery, London, now – 24 Mar

To mark International Women’s Day, this new exhibition aims to redefine the conversation around women in art and raise awareness for brilliant female artists that champion women in their work. Artists exhibiting include Coco Davez, Sophia Tea and Lauren Baker.

EXHIBITION: Andy Warhol, Tate Modern, London, now – 6 Sept 

This major new exhibition chronicles the life and work of the pop art icon Andy Warhol and offers a rare insight into how Warhol and his work marked a period of cultural transformation. Images on display include his renowned pop images of Marilyn Monroe, Coca-Cola and Campbell’s soup cans, plus work never seen before in the UK, including the largest ever grouping of Warhol’s Ladies and Gentlemen series. A must see.

EXHIBITION: BMW Tate Live, Tate Modern, 20 – 29 Mar 

For the fourth annual BMW Tate Live Exhibition, three artists are taking over Tate Modern’s Tanks (the gallery’s dedicated space for live exhibits). Each artist’s work will be themed around how history is held in the body and explore e questions about shared memory. Very Cool.

Alice In Wonderland, South Hill Park Bracknell, 15-19 Apr

Alice in Wonderland SHP Mad hatter Alice and the rabbit at the tea party

Make mine a double gin and I’ll happily disappear down a rabbit hole into the trippy world of Alice in Wonderland. Your kids will love it for entirely different reasons. South Hill Park always put on a damn fine school holiday musical with spectacular staging. They’re a talented bunch. Book in or the Red Queen will be “frumious”.

The Little Welly, HenleyShowground, 6-7 Jun

Little Welly adventure course pool of foam

Have the hose and a hot wash on stand by, this is gonna get really messy. The UK’s biggest children’s obstacle course returns to Henley for the sixth year – and it is going to be epic. It’s in a new location at Henley Showground, it offers a longer course option for kids with the energy of a Duracell bunny, new obstacles, activities and entertainers. Oh, and you can camp too. Throw your mud-seeking minis (4+) and they’re parents (sorry about that) at the slip-and-slide, the big tubes and new climbing rig. Or have a blast at Laser Tag, circus skill workshops, bungee trampolining and more.

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