Circus of Horrors phenomenon returns to Warrington with new show

The phenomenon that is Circus of Horrors is returning to Parr Hall next year with its latest incarnation.

After taking to the road over 22 years ago and touring all over the world, the alternative circus troupe, which mixes horror and burlesque with the bizarre, is back with new show Voodoo.

Awoken by a Ouija board, a Voodoo curse causes devastation; while the city sleeps the night creatures rule the underworld.

This new show features bizarre and amazing circus acts from all over the world, some never seen before in the UK, all performed to devil-driven rock n roll and interwoven with the darkest of magic.

Voodoo promises to be the biggest revolution of the Circus of Horrors for many years; a spectacular event which takes the show to a whole new level, driven by a largely original soundscape and performed with a forked tongue firmly in each cheek.

Audiences will certainly die laughing.

Wednesday 21 March 2018, 7.30pm, £26/£23/£22/£19/£18, Parr Hall.

Buy tickets here

Top touring theatre company’s latest show to entertain town’s kids next month

Warrington families are in for a festive treat next month with the new show Father Christmas Comes up Trumps!

Hugely popular touring company TaleGate Theatre is returning to Parr Hall following the success of family favourites Father Christmas Needs a Wee and The Giant’s Loo Roll which both entertained the Warrington audience last year.

Now Father Christmas is back and this time he’s had three helpings of sprouts!

As he tries to deliver the presents, his tummy rumbles, gurgles and groans but Father Christmas knows he must keep it in – he doesn’t want to wake anyone up!

TaleGate Theatre productions hit the perfect combination of witty humour, fantastic music and that little extra sparkle for which they have become known and loved.

Father Christmas Comes Up Trumps! is a fabulously funny and brilliantly bouncy musical adaptation of Nicholas Allan’s sequel to Father Christmas Needs a Wee.

Artistic director James Worthington said: “We are very excited to tour our new festive musical across the UK.

“It promises to beat our own high standard and really pack a tuneful punch.

“We are really lucky to be working with Nicholas Allan again on another of his books as they are perfect for cheeky children everywhere.

“When even the title makes you laugh you know you are in for a good time!”

Sunday 3 December, 11am and 2.30pm, £12/£10/£40 family ticket, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

Frank, funny and filthy comedian Sarah Millican announces extra Warrington date

The frank, funny and unapologetically filthy comedian Sarah Millican has announced an extra date at Warrington’s Parr Hall next year.

Already signed up for Wednesday 5 and Thursday 6 December 2018, the much-loved funny girl will now also be gracing us with her presence for a performance on Tuesday 4 December 2018.

Tickets for the extra date go on sale at 10am this Wednesday, 8 November, and are sure to sell fast.

Sarah Millican is not a control freak, she’s a control enthusiast; she even controls her own insults.

On this new tour, Control Enthusiast, she asks “do you arrange the nights out?” and “are you in charge of passports on holiday?” If so, then you’re a control enthusiast too!

The Warrington audience will learn about Rescue Men, farting in hospital pants, what can happen at a bra fitting and the benefits of casserole, plus tips on how to talk to shop assistants and the correct way to eat a biscuit, as Sarah shares fresh stories of her “super normal life”.

Sarah rose to fame by telling painfully honest but immediately identifiable stories about her divorce and has since become a much-loved comedian who is never afraid to draw on her real life experiences for inspiration, no matter how embarrassing or cringeworthy they may be!

Tuesday 4, Wednesday 5 and Thursday 6 December 2018, doors 7.15pm, starts 8pm, £27.50, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

Celebration of Whitney Houston’s life and music on route to Warrington

A celebration of the life and music of Whitney Houston is on route to Warrington.

Whitney – Queen of the Night is a stunning celebration of one of the greatest singers of our time.

This award-winning production features breathtaking performances from a sensational line-up of musicians and artistes, and delivers a show that exceeds expectation on every level.

The Parr Hall audience will be taken on a magical rollercoaster ride through three decades of classic hits, including I Wanna Dance with Somebody, One Moment in Time, I’m Every Woman, My Love is Your Love, So Emotional, Run to You, Saving All My Love, I Will Always Love You, and many more.

Whitney – Queen of the Night beautifully remembers the most highly-awarded female artiste in the world; her one true legacy was her music, which touched millions of people around the world.

Get ready for the “greatest love of all” with Queen of the Night.

Saturday 14 April 2018, doors 6.45pm, starts 7.30pm, £23, Parr Hall

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‘Fastlove’ tribute to George Michael booked for unforgettable night in Warrington

George Michael fans are being advised to prepare for an unforgettable evening celebrating the global superstar.

Fastlove – A Tribute to George Michael promises to “put the boom boom” into your heart in an all-new production packed full of the musical icon’s biggest hits.

From the Wham classics of the new pop revival to the chart-topping success of the eighties album Faith, plus the awesome tunes of the nineties and noughties, this is a spellbinding experience fans will not want to miss.

Expect to hear Careless Whisper, Freedom, Faith, Father Figure, Outside, Jesus to a Child, and many more.

Relive the passion, the flare and the unique sensitivity of George Michael in this incredible concert sensation.

NB Disclaimer: this show is not affiliated with or endorsed by George Michael or his estate.

Saturday 17 February 2018, doors 6.45pm, starts 7.30pm, £24,Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

 

Warrington musician kicks off festive season with home town gig

Internationally renowned Warrington-born musician Peter Price will be starting the festive season with a home town performance this December.

The singer and guitarist will be returning to Pyramid with another top quality show on Friday 1 December and tickets are on sale now.

Peter has a brilliant international reputation, having played festivals and concerts across the UK, Europe and North America.

His audiences are taken on strange and exotic journeys, from the folk and country blues style of Robert Johnson, Blind Willie McTell and Lead Belly, to jazz, Latin and world music.

A gifted artist, Peter’s performances demonstrate a mind-boggling mastery of the acoustic guitar, a rich singing voice and a relaxed yet compelling stage presence.

For this show he will also be joined on stage by some very special guests, guaranteeing an evening not to be missed.

The Guardian described him as “an acoustic blues virtuoso” and leading acoustic blues singer-songwriter Eric Bibb said Peter was “one of those wonderful British guitarists… a great musician.”

Friday 1 December 2017, 7.30pm, £15, Pyramid

Buy tickets here

Public asked to help make Warrington Festival bigger and better

Residents are being asked to help make Warrington Festival bigger and better by answering a short questionnaire.

The first Warrington Festival took place in 2015, organised by a board of partners from major organisations in the town including LiveWire, Warrington Borough Council and Culture Warrington.

25 events attracted more than 20,000 people – Pixie Lott headlined an open air gig at Bank Park, with other attractions including the English Half Marathon, a cycle festival, a medieval market and country fair.

2017’s highlights included the RivFest outdoor music festival, Warrington MELA, Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival, youth volunteering events and a family mile.

Organisers now hope to make Warrington Festival even bigger and better by asking the public to provide feedback to help enhance the offer for 2018, ensuring it meets the needs and expectations of visitors.

To complete the short questionnaire visit http://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/WARRFEST/

The closing date for responses is Friday 8 December 2017.

Parr Hall panto cast to spread festive cheer at Christmas lights switch-on

Cast members of this year’s Parr Hall panto will once again be spreading some festive cheer at the Golden Square Christmas lights switch-on.

The talented team, who will be bringing us Jack and the Beanstalk in January, are to entertain the crowds in Market Square on Friday 10 November from 6pm as part of a special free event to mark the official start of the Christmas period in Warrington.

They will be joining popular CBBC characters Dick and Dom, children’s favourite Justin Fletcher, Warrington Wolves players and the man of the moment, Father Christmas.

Jack and the Beanstalk, which will be entertaining audiences at Parr Hall between 5-14 January, promises to be a giant of a pantomime, full of beans and packed with “fee, fi, fo, fun”!

After getting into big trouble with his mother for selling their cow for a handful of beans, Jack’s dreams come true when they start to grow.

Tony Peers, of Tony Peers Productions which produces the panto, said: “Join Jack on the adventure of a lifetime as he outwits the giant and makes his fortune.

“This is a timeless tale which continues to capture the imagination of children of all ages.

“The cast are very excited to meet all the boys and girls of Warrington during the run in January and can’t wait for an early visit in November to share in the magic of the Christmas lights switch-on.”

Friday 5 – Sunday 14 January 2018, various times, £12.50/£10.50/£40 family ticket/offers available, Parr Hall

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Parr Hall celebrates timeless sound of The Magic of Motown

The timeless soundtrack that is The Magic of Motown is returning to Warrington next month for a spectacular show.

Music fans are invited to the biggest party of the year as this unstoppable genre steams into town with a performance at Parr Hall on Saturday 18 November, 8pm.

Now seen by more than 1 million people all over the world, the Warrington audience should prepare itself for 40 back-to-back classic Motown hits, glittering costume changes, dazzling dance moves and outstanding musicianship in this explosive concert experience.

The enduring music of Marvin Gaye, Diana Ross, Stevie Wonder, The Temptations, The Supremes, The Four Tops, Martha Reeves, Jackson 5, Lionel Richie, Smokey Robinson and many more is sensationally recreated by an exceptionally talented cast and band.

This breathtaking spectacular takes audiences on a musical journey through the best Motown songs including Ain’t No Mountain, Signed Sealed Delivered, Grapevine, Get Ready, Dancing in the Streets, My Girl, Blame it on the Boogie and many, many more.

Saturday 18 November 2017, 8pm, £27/£25/10th ticket free, Parr Hall.

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Original bagpipe band Red Hot Chilli Pipers celebrate 15 years with Warrington gig

There has never been anything quite like Red Hot Chilli Pipers: the original bagpipe band are celebrating 15 years with a gig at Parr Hall.

From their formation in 2002 and a cameo appearance at with The Darkness at T in the Park in 2004, to opening the festival’s main stage in their own right in 2014, the past fifteen years have seen the Red Hot Chilli Pipers become the most famous bagpipe band on the planet… ever!

Bagpipes with attitude, drums with a Scottish accent and a show that carries its own health warning are heading to Warrington on Friday 17 November.

The band’s achievements have reached incredible heights thanks to their ground-breaking fusion of traditional Scottish music and rock/pop anthems which they proudly call “bagrock”.

Red Hot Chilli Pipers are a genuinely unique experience and they have never been more in demand for their infectious style of feel-good music which appeals right across the age range to people all over the world.

They have collected together an impressive group of musicians from Scotland and further afield, many holding World Championship titles and all seriously good players with impressive credentials and qualifications.

In 2014 the Chilli Pipers released a live DVD and CD entitled Live at the Lake, which captured an explosive evening of entertainment at Milwaukee Irish Fest, the band’s US spiritual home, on the shores of Lake Michigan.

During the winter of 2015/2016 the Pipers recorded new tracks and released a new studio album, Octane, which represents a high energy, powerful, intense and inspiring album; it’s a continued fusion of traditional tunes and rock classics which takes bagrock to a whole new level.

Friday 17 November 2017, 8pm, £22.50, Parr Hall

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Scottish comedian Daniel Sloss to visit Warrington next month

NOW is the stunning new show from Scotland’s internationally acclaimed and award-winning stand-up Daniel Sloss, and it’s coming to Warrington next month.

The comedian has made no less than a record seven appearances on late-night talk show Conan, and to date has performed nine sell-out Edinburgh Fringe shows and two solo off-Broadway seasons.

He has also released a DVD, given a Tedx Talk at 19 years old and toured extensively to rave reviews throughout Australasia, the USA, UK and Europe.

Australia’s Herald Sun said: “Sloss is simply world class, endearingly unabashed, hilarious… intelligently and ironically calling out the hypocrisy of human nature.”

The New York Times described him as “dirty, sweet and clever”, Mail on Sunday said he performed “deliciously dark stand-up” and Sunday Times said he was “brilliantly dark” and “razor-sharp”.

Daniel Sloss will be performing at Pyramid on Friday 17 November, 7.30pm; tickets are on sale now.

Friday 17 November 2017, doors 7pm, starts 7.30pm, £14.50/£12, Pyramid

Buy tickets here

WArrington Music website to celebrate fifth anniversary with live music night at Parr Hall

Popular website WArrington Music is celebrating its fifth anniversary next year with a special night of live music at Parr Hall, headlined by Slydigs.

WArringtonMusic.co.uk was set up by [WAM] five years ago to champion live music in the town and has worked with hundreds of artists during that time.

The event on Friday 16 March 2018 will showcase the best of local talent including a headline set by rock and roll four-piece Slydigs.

Special guests will be funk-rock/soul collective The Winachi Tribe, psychedelic rockers Psyblings and fuzz-pop four-piece The K’s.

2016 saw Slydigs embark on a 19-date North American and European arena tour supporting The Who, which earned them rave reviews.

In 2017 the band released their latest EP, How Animal Are You, backed by a headline tour around the UK and Europe which proved that Slydigs have a thriving fan base.

Frontman Dean Fairhurst said: “This gig is a milestone for us and signifies just how far we have come from starting out in Warrington many years ago.

“It will be our biggest headline show to date and for it to be in our home town is incredible; it’s our true homecoming.

“There’s a great supporting line-up of local acts also on the bill, making this an event not to be missed; we are planning something very special so buy your ticket now and we’ll see you down the front.”

Friday 16 March 2018, doors 7pm, starts 7.30pm, £10, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

In-demand Irish country star Nathan Carter plays extra Warrington date next month

Irish country star Nathan Carter’s extra Warrington date, announced after huge demand, is fast approaching.

The tour comes on the back of his huge 2016 album Stayin’ up all Night which reached No 1 in the charts.

Following on from a year that saw him beat both Beyoncé and Drake to the top spot in his native Ireland, country-pop crossover star Nathan announced a huge run of UK tour dates for 2017.

The charismatic performer then confirmed 16 extra dates due to phenomenal demand, including a show at Parr Hall.

Now one of Ireland’s biggest live music acts, Nathan grew up in a house where country and western music filled the air and was exposed to classic songs by Johnny Cash, Don Williams and Dolly Parton.

From the tender age of four years old, he learned to play guitar, piano and accordion, which play a vital part in his live show now, and quickly became head chorister in the Liverpool Boys Choir with which he toured the world and even performed in front of the Pope in Rome.

Nathan Carter is now developing into a household name, with tracks from Stayin’ up all Night such as Wagon Wheel and Wanna Dance becoming huge hits, and audiences up and down the country demanding tickets to his shows.

He has become a firm favourite for audiences of all ages.

Wednesday 15 November 2017, 7.30pm, Parr Hall, £26

Buy tickets here

Duo of emerging artists lead Warrington contemporary arts extended programme

Holly Rowan Hesson – Echo

Two emerging artists whose work is currently being displayed as part of Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival (WCAF) are leading an exciting new programme of events and exhibitions.

Ellen Sampson and Holly Rowan Hesson are heading up a new year-long programme of events and exhibitions designed to continue the promotion of contemporary arts after the festival’s Open exhibitions come to a close this weekend.

Ellen has used film, photography and installation to explore the relationships between bodily experience, memory and footwear in her exhibition, Worn: footwear, attachment and affective experience, which is on display now at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery.

Fascinated as a child by the magical shoes in fairytales, Ellen trained as a shoemaker before becoming an artist.

Ellen Sampson – Worn

Worn examines our relationship with and attachment to shoes, and suggests that through use shoes become records of their wearer’s experience and extended parts of the self.

She said: “By focusing on the shoe as an everyday object, and on the experience of wearing, I explore how through touch and use we become entangled with the things we wear.

“I look at how, through wear, our shoes become records of our journeys and lives, and how the marks upon the shoe, as traces of these experiences, can be read.”

Holly Rowan Hesson’s Echo, a projection and sculptural installation, creates dialogues with materials, memory and the physical space at Pyramid Arts Centre.

Holly Rowan Hesson – Echo

She said: “Through intuitive and process-led image-making, I create dialogues with material, sites and residual memories.

“This regularly starts with interrogations in specific man-made structures, buildings and physical spaces.

“Exploring uncertainty and transience, my work is concerned with the actual fragility and transitory nature of what seems solid, weighty and permanent, both physically and also in the way things are perceived.

“Using the visual language and formal concerns of abstraction, my resulting sculptural and installation work is multi-layered, often with uncertain depth of focus.”

Both exhibitions are on display until Saturday 27 January 2018.

Thanks to support from Arts Council England, Culture Warrington, the charity which runs WCAF, the museum, art gallery and arts centre, is now developing a year-round contemporary arts engagement and development programme, starting with Ellen and Holly’s exhibitions.

By working with partners from across the North West, the charity plans to commission local, regional and national artists to connect with Warrington’s neighbourhoods throughout the year, culminating in WCAF 2018.

Maureen Banner, Culture Warrington board chair, said: “While we look forward to Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival as an annual highlight it’s exciting to consider that this year we’ll have a new ongoing programme of events to keep the momentum going.

“With help from Arts Council England we’ll be able to continue bringing contemporary art to a wider audience by creating ambitious and inclusive projects.”

NB Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival is part of a wider calendar of events held across Cheshire in association with Slant, the county’s cultural destination programme.

Listings information

Exhibition title: Ellen Sampson – Worn: footwear, attachment and affective experience

Dates: Until Saturday 27 January 2018

Times: All day

Admission: Free

Location: Warrington Museum & Art Gallery, Museum Street, Warrington, WA1 1JB

www.warringtonmuseum.co.uk

Listings information

Exhibition title: Holly Rowan Hesson – Echo

Dates: Until Saturday 27 January 2018

Times: All day

Admission: Free

Location: Pyramid Arts Centre, Palmyra Square South, Warrington, WA1 1BL

http://www.pyramidparrhall.com/

Not Going Out funny man Tim Vine confirmed to bring stand-up silliness to Warrington

Not Going Out funny man Tim Vine will be bringing his unique brand of silly stand-up to Parr Hall next year.

The Sunset Milk Idiot tour, which visits Warrington on Thursday 1 March 2018, promises lots of silly jokes, new homemade props and the singing of daft new ditties, all with “the appearance of confidence”.

Tim said: “The following subjects will be touched upon briefly: pixie football, ice cream and nibble feeders; so come along, sit down, and laugh.

“The quantity won’t let up; this is comedy without a message.

The show will leave audiences thinking “what an odd person”, “what a lot of nonsense” and “what else is he going to do?”

“Sunsets are in the sky, milk’s nice and I’m an idiot,” he added.

Tim appeared in five series of the award-winning sitcom Not Going Out alongside Lee Mack, played Beach the Butler in series two of Blandings with Timothy Spall and Jennifer Saunders, and has appeared on Live at the Apollo and QI.

A man of many talents, he has also won Celebrity Mastermind, hosted ITV game show Don’t Blow the Inheritance, been a regular on Countdown’s Dictionary Corner and appeared on Comic Relief takeovers of Fame Academy, Let’s Dance and Let’s Play Darts, as well as popping up on a Downton Abbey spoof.

On Celebrity Total Wipeout he fell off everything.

In 2010 and 2014 Tim won the Dave TV channel award for ‘Best Joke at the Edinburgh Fringe’, the only person to have won it twice; he has successfully toured all of his stand-up shows, with five accompanying DVDs under his belt and has released two books.

Thursday 1 March, 8pm, £23.50, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

Last few tickets remaining for Irish superstar Imelda May at Parr Hall

There are now only a few tickets remaining for diverse singer-songwriter Imelda May’s Parr Hall performance in November.

The Warrington date was added to the tour, which includes London’s iconic Royal Albert Hall, following phenomenal demand.

Imelda has been enjoying a positive response to her top five album Life. Love. Flesh. Blood. which features singles Girl I Used to Be, Call Me, Black Tears and Should’ve Been You.

Hauntingly beautiful acoustic ballad, Girl I Used to Be, is a memoir of Imelda’s life growing up in the Liberties area of Dublin and the lessons learned which she will pass on to her daughter.

She said: “I love those old story songs where you’re taken on a journey from beginning to end; songs you’re riveted with, like when you’re in the car and you sit in the driveway because you can’t turn the radio off, you have to listen to the end of the story.

“The lyrics are about my family and my daughter, and myself and my life growing up in Dublin.

“We didn’t have much money but my parents are fabulous, creative and open-minded people; they gave me art and literature and encouraged me to do whatever was in my heart, and I want to do that with my daughter.”

One of the most critically-acclaimed releases of 2017, the album spent over a month in the Top 20 and recently returned to the Top 10.

Produced by the legendary T Bone Burnett, Life. Love. Flesh. Blood. was recorded over seven days in Los Angeles and features musical contributions from Jeff Beck, Jools Holland (who “discovered” Imelda) and an accomplished group of backing musicians who between them have performed with the likes of Tom Waits, Robert Plant and The Last Shadow Puppets.

Imelda has become one of Ireland’s most celebrated female artists, has performed alongside legendary artists including Lou Reed and Smokey Robinson, and can count high profile artists like Bob Dylan and Bono as fans.

Monday 13 November 2017, 7pm, £99 VIP package/£35/£25, Parr Hall

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Hilarious musical about the menopause brings TV stars to Warrington

Menopause the Musical promises to have its Warrington audience giggling like schoolgirls when the hilarious show visits town next year.

This hysterical production stars Cheryl Fergison from EastEnders, The Nolans’ Maureen Nolan, Rebecca Wheatley from Casualty, and comedienne and impressionist Hilary O’Neil, ensuring a top quality performance every night.

Packed full of one-liners about night sweats, hot flushes and memory loss, the action is backed by an instantly recognisable soundtrack of innuendo-laden versions of 60s, 70s and 80s pop classics.

Menopause the Musical is an all-singing, all-dancing comedy set in a department store, where four women with seemingly nothing in common meet by chance and make fun of their woeful lives experiencing “the change”.

They soon bond as they realise the menopause is no longer “the silent passage” but an unavoidable stage in every woman’s life.

This ultimate girls night out, which has enjoyed sold out tours around the world, will have the Parr Hall audience laughing and singing all the way home.

NB Age guidance 16+

Friday 23 February 2018, doors 6.45pm, £27.50, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

 

Comedian Paul Foot with surreal sense of humour makes first trip to Warrington next month

Surreal comedian Paul Foot is making his first trip to Warrington next month and he is bringing his alter ego and sidekick pig with him.

In Paul’s first new show in two years, Professor Ketchup and his camembert piglet join forces to tackle the big issues like terrorism, Ant and Dec, immigration, The X-Factor and breakfast, in a show intriguingly called Tis a Pity She’s a Piglet.

The multi-award winner has appeared on numerous TV and radio programmes including Never Mind the Buzzcocks, Would I Lie to You, 8 Out of 10 Cats, If Katie Hopkins Ruled the World, Russell Howard’s Good News and BBC Radio 4’s The Infinite Monkey Cage.

Time Out magazine described him as “utterly outlandish” and said that “beneath layers of absurdity is Foot’s sharp eye for satire”.

And Edinburgh Festival magazine Three Weeks said: “He’s a comedy whirlwind from the school of Spike Milligan.  It’s risky to call someone unique but Foot is certainly pretty close.”

Saturday 11 November 2017, 8pm, £14, Pyramid

Buy tickets here

New Parr Hall children’s booking Don’t Dribble on the Dragon features magic by Paul Daniels

A new children’s show just confirmed to visit Warrington features magic designed by legendary entertainer Paul Daniels.

Don’t Dribble on the Dragon, presented by The People’s Theatre Company, is based on the fabulous new book by Steven Lee and follows Tom the toddler, his cool older brother and a secret dragon.

Tom has a dribbling problem that just won’t stop and when his endless drooling threatens to tear the brothers’ friendship apart the dragon’s amazing magic skills are called upon to put it back together.

Or will it only end up making things worse?

This entertaining musical adventure about growing up and the importance of family is the perfect feel-good show for big-hearted adults and loving little ones alike.

As an extra treat, author Steven will be available to sign copies of Don’t Dribble on the Dragon which audiences are invited to bring along or buy at the show.

Sunday 18 February 2018, 11.30am & 2.30pm, £11/£9/£35 family ticket, Pyramid Arts Centre

Buy tickets now

Less than a month until much-loved band The Undertones visit Parr Hall

Much-loved band The Undertones are building on the success of their comeback tour last year with a raft of UK dates, including a trip to Warrington.

Their biggest hit Teenage Kicks became the anthem of a generation and legendary Radio 1 DJ John Peel, who the band listened to religiously as aspiring musicians, was famously so smitten with the track he played it twice back to back and declared it his favourite song of all time.

The Undertones will enjoy support from Warrington folk punk band The Roughneck Riot when they visit Parr Hall on Saturday 11 November, 7.30pm.

2016 marked the band’s 40th anniversary and the Derry boys celebrated with a variety of scorching live performances at festivals and venues throughout the UK and Europe.

The reviews were glowing and many critics and fans said the band are playing as well as, if not better, than ever before.

The shows were an exhilarating live experience for the band and the fans evidently felt the same way.

This success spurred the band on to announce a string of further dates in the UK, including Parr Hall on 11 November, as well as a European tour and their first ever forays into Australia and New Zealand.

Bassist Mickey Bradley said: “To be honest, we had such a great time on the last tour that we thought we’d try our luck again. And I promise to use new bass strings to celebrate.”

2016 also saw vinyl remasters of the band’s first two LPs, The Undertones and Hypnotised, and a 7-inch vinyl remix of the 1979 single Get Over You.

Michael Bradley also published his book Teenage Kicks: My Life as an Undertone.

Saturday 11 November 2017, 7.30pm, £20 advance, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

Classic tale of The Sleeping Beauty told at Parr Hall in beautiful ballet

The classic tale of The Sleeping Beauty will be told at Parr Hall in a beautiful production by Vienna Festival Ballet.

The much-loved fairytale of the beautiful princess and the handsome prince will amaze the Warrington audience on Sunday 13 May 2018, complete with Tchaikovsky’s magnificent score, stunning choreography and beautiful costumes.

The story explores the age-old struggle between good and evil as the wicked Carbosse casts a spell on Princess Aurora, proclaiming that she will one day prick her finger and die.

The Lilac Fairy changes the spell and instead, on that fateful day, the princess and the entire palace fall into a deep sleep.

A century later Prince Désiré revives the princess with a kiss, the palace awakes and a parade of fairytale characters attend the wedding.

Following the traditional tale of Sleeping Beauty, this ballet is sure to enchant audiences of all ages.

Sunday 13 May 2018, 2.30pm, £19.50/£17.50/£12.50, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

Rock royalty Black Star Riders to visit Parr Hall next month with team of special guests

Rock royalty Black Star Riders will be calling in to Parr Hall next month as part of a tour to celebrate the release of their third studio album Heavy Fire.

Ricky Warwick, from Black Star Riders (BSR), said: “There’s nothing more exciting than playing live. BSR are absolutely thrilled to get back out in the UK, it’s a wonderful way to round out a great year.”

Formed in 2012 and taking inspiration for their name from a gang of outlaws in the 1993 western film Tombstone, Black Star Riders are a band of impressive pedigree.

Featuring lead guitarists Scott Gorham (formerly of Thin Lizzy) and Damon Johnson (Thin Lizzy, Alice Cooper), lead vocalist/guitarist Ricky Warwick (Thin Lizzy, The Almighty), bassist Robert Crane (Vince Neil, Ratt) and drummer Jimmy DeGrasso (Megadeth, Alice Cooper, David Lee Roth), BSR are now in their fifth year with three albums under their belt.

February 2017 saw Black Star Riders release their third studio album Heavy Fire to widespread critical acclaim.

The record went on to gain worldwide chart success, reaching No 1 in the UK rock and indie charts, No 3 in the UK vinyl chart and No 6 in the UK national chart, as well as enjoying success in Germany and USA.

The band are due to share their colossal talent with the Warrington audience on Friday 10 November as part of the Coming Under Heavy Fire tour with support from special guests Blues Pills, Tax the Heat and Dirty Thrills.

Formed in 2011, the multinational quartet Blues Pills released their exciting self-titled debut in 2014 before following up with their sophomore release Lady in Gold in 2016.

They’ve toured non-stop for the past few years playing with the likes of Deep Purple, Rival Sons and Kadavar as well as headline shows; their organic blend of blues, classic rock and soul wins over audiences around the world.

Zack Anderson, from Blues Pills, said: “We are really excited to warm up the stage for these legends. We hope to see a lot of familiar faces in front of the stage and are really looking forward to meeting a lot of new people.”

Tax the Heat have just come out of the studio where they have been recording their follow up to the critically acclaimed debut album Fed to the Lions.

The highly-anticipated, as yet unnamed, second album is scheduled for release by Nuclear Blast Entertainment in early 2018.

London-based Dirty Thrills will open the bill with a set containing songs from their debut album Heavy Living.

Friday 10 November, 6.45pm, £28 advance, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

80s soul/RnB music legend Alexander O’Neal to grace Parr Hall stage next month

The music legend that is Alexander O’Neal is to grace the stage of Warrington’s Parr Hall next month.

Alexander is reputedly the best pure singer to come from the 1980s soul/RnB era, when he released a string of memorable hits which are still broadcast as radio requests and played at thousands of events around the world.

His most popular tracks include Fake, Criticize, If You Were Here Tonight, Saturday Love, Never Knew Love Like This, Sunshine, Secret Lovers and many more, and his album Hearsay sold nearly a million copies in the UK alone.

To this day he still holds the record as the only performer to sell out for six consecutive nights at London’s Wembley Arena.

This soul man still has an undying passion to perform and his live shows reflect that, so come and join the party for an evening not to be forgotten.

Tuesday 7 November, 7.30pm, £30, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

Prepare for A Country Night in Nashville from comfort of Parr Hall

Country music fans are in for a treat next month when Parr Hall hosts A Country Night in Nashville.

The show, which comes to town on Friday 3 November, will take the Warrington audience on a musical journey through the popular genre by recreating a buzzing honky tonk in downtown Nashville.

A Country Night in Nashville perfectly captures the energy and atmosphere of an evening out in the home town of country music; prepare to be transported through the colourful history of country, featuring stars both past and present.

Expect to hear hits from Johnny Cash to Alan Jackson, Dolly Parton to the Dixie Chicks, Willie Nelson to Little Big Town, showcased by the amazing Dominic Halpin and the Hurricanes featuring Shelly Quarmby.

Fans of songs like Ring of Fire, Crazy, Follow Your Arrow, It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere, Need You Now, 9 to 5, and The Gambler, do not want to miss this incredible celebration of the very best of country music.

Friday 3 November, 7.30pm, £23.50, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

Extra Warrington dates announced for hugely popular comedian, musician and actor Bill Bailey

Hugely popular comedian Bill Bailey has announced two extra Warrington dates to share his unique meld of music, political satire and flights of surreal fancy.

The comedy veteran, famed for his signature stand-up style and appearances on Never Mind the Buzzcocks, QI, Have I Got News for You and Black Books, will now delight the Warrington audience with his energetic charm on Wednesday 13 and Thursday 14 June 2018, as well as the previously announced Friday 9 March 2018 show.

His new tour, Larks in Transit, is a compendium of travellers’ tales and general shenanigans from Bill’s 20 years as a comedian.

With musical virtuosity, surreal tangents and trademark intelligence, Bill Bailey tackles politics, philosophy and the pursuit of happiness.

Plus, he fashions a symphony from a ringtone, tells the real story of Old McDonald and re-imagines the Stars and Stripes.

This show will feature two decades of touring larks from a comedian described by The Daily Telegraph as “the brainiest comic of his generation”, and give a glimpse into the colourful life of a much-loved man and the adventures he has experienced along the way.

There’s no wonder The Guardian Guide said Bill was “approaching the status of national treasure”.

Tickets for the second and third performances on Wednesday 13 and Thursday 14 June 2018 go on sale this Friday, 13 October at 10am.

But tickets here

Outstanding musical production celebrates The Elvis Years in Warrington

The Elvis Years is an outstanding musical production which brings to Warrington’s Parr Hall the incredible and compelling story of the “king of rock and roll”.

With a top line-up of actor-musicians, multiple costume changes and nostalgic film footage, this glittering two-hour show charts the musical and emotional highs and lows of Elvis Presley’s’ amazing journey, from poor truck-driving teenager from Tupelo, Mississippi through the army, Hollywood and finally the legendary Las Vegas concerts.

The Elvis Years also remembers milestones like his first legendary The Sun Sessions compilation, the Grand Ole Opry and Louisiana Hayride performances, the death of his beloved mother and the 1968 Comeback Special.

Six decades after Elvis first walked into Sun Studios in Memphis as a teenage truck driver, the story of “The King” is being brought to life on stages across the UK in this authentic concert, featuring Mario Kombou from the highly acclaimed West End musical Jailhouse Rock and led by legendary producer, musical director and Ivor Novello Awards-winner David Mackay.

This energetic show is a complete theatrical experience which transports the audience on a musical and emotional journey they will never forget.

Friday 27 October, 7.30pm, £22/£19.50/10th ticket free, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

Cult performance poet Dr John Cooper Clarke to share musings with Warrington this month

Poet, movie star, rock star, TV and radio presenter, comedian, and social and cultural comedian; not many people can claim to be all of the above but Dr John Cooper Clarke can.

He shot to prominence in the 1970s as the original people’s poet and since then his career has spanned cultures, audiences, art forms and continents.

Today, JCC is as relevant and vibrant as ever, and his influence just as visible in today’s pop culture.

Aside from his trademark look which continues to resonate with fashionistas young and old, and his poetry being included on the national curriculum syllabus, his effect on modern music is huge; his influence can be heard within the keen social observations of the Arctic Monkeys and Plan B to name a couple.

His latest show, which comes to Warrington’s Parr Hall on Saturday 28 October at 7pm, is a mix of classic verse, extraordinary new material, hilarious ponderings on modern life, good honest gags, riffs and chat; it’s a chance to witness a living legend at the top of this game.

Saturday 28 October, 7pm, £24.50/£19.50/£15, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

American rock band Dr Hook’s extra date at Parr Hall now just a month away

The Warrington date added to Dr Hook’s Timeless tour due to overwhelming demand is now just a month away.

Starring original singer Dennis Locorriere, the band enjoyed a series of sell-out performances in 2016 and to celebrate added a string of new shows, including one at Parr Hall on Saturday 21 October, at 7.30pm.

From the very beginnings of Dr Hook to the height of their success, Dennis Locorriere was the unmistakable voice of the American rock band’s biggest hits and best-loved songs.

Receiving more than 70 Platinum and Gold Discs, Dr Hook have reached legendary status in many countries.

The current tour promises the revival of special memories, with classics such as Sylvia’s Mother, Sexy Eyes, A Little Bit More, When You’re in Love with a Beautiful Woman, Sharing the Night Together, The Cover of Rolling Stone and Queen of the Silver Dollar.

Don’t miss this opportunity of seeing Dr Hook live!

Saturday 21 October, 7.30pm, £35/£32/£29, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

‘Remarkable’ jazz pianist and composer Zoe Rahman to visit Pyramid next month for top quality show

Jazz pianist and composer Zoe Rahman is to perform with the Inner City Ensemble at Warrington’s Pyramid arts centre next month.

Described by the Observer as “a remarkable pianist by any standard”, Zoe Rahman has firmly established herself as one of the brightest stars on the contemporary jazz scene.

A vibrant and highly individual artist, her style is deeply rooted in jazz yet reflects her classical background, British/Bengali heritage and her very broad musical taste.

Known for her powerful technique, wide-ranging imagination and exuberant performances, Zoe has become a highly sought-after musician, recently working with the likes of George Mraz, Courtney Pine and Jerry Dammers’ Spatial AKA Orchestra.

She is a winner of the prestigious UK Parliamentary Jazz Award and has previously been nominated for the Mercury Music Prize.

For this third edition of the Jazz Directors Series, presented by Band on the Wall, Rahman is performing with the Inner City Ensemble, an evolving nine-piece group of the UK’s most promising emerging professional musicians, selected through an open call application process.

The current lineup is: Aleksandra Topczewska – alto saxophone; Arnaud Guichard – tenor saxophone; Daniel Mitchell – trombone; Faye MacCalman – clarinet; Hanna Mbuya – tuba; James Brady – trumpet; Maria Rehakova – flute; Roz McDonald – bass; and Yusuf Ahmed – drums.

The ensemble will play Rahman’s arrangements of pieces from previous trio and quartet albums including her latest solo album Dreamland, plus additional repertoire by jazz greats Duke Ellington and Abdullah Ibrahim, and new material never previously performed live.

Saturday 21 October, 8pm, £14 advance/£16 on the door, Pyramid

Buy tickets here

Charity presents unique musical performance to raise awareness of dementia

Charitable organisation Music in Mind is presenting a unique performance at Pyramid arts centre to raise awareness of dementia.

Hidden Voice, which takes place on Friday 13 October, features composer John McHugh and the Mishima Quartet in a unique multimedia composition based on the melodies and rhythms in the speech of people living with dementia to create a powerful and emotional musical experience.

Live musicians, audio and film will take the audience into the innermost thoughts of the people on the screen.

Described by NHS clinical director for dementia Professor Alistair Burns as a “unique relationship between music and dementia”, Hidden Voice uses the melodies from speech to capture the individual stories in a unique and beautiful way.

John McHugh is a widely experienced composer, performer and music educator who has composed music in many forms ranging from advertising campaigns for Lucozade and Delta Airways to ballets, music theatre, classical and multimedia works for the concert hall.

The Mishima Quartet have played together for many years as part of The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.

They have worked with John McHugh on many projects including large scale concert pieces, educational works for schoolchildren and music for the string quartet and Balinese gamelan style of music.

Tickets for the performance, which starts at 7.30pm, are on sale now.

Friday 13 October 2017, 7.30pm, £13.50/£9/£11 groups of 10 or more, Pyramid

Buy tickets here

Chris & Pui bring friends back to Warrington for family show

Everyone’s favourite CBeebies double act Chris & Pui are bringing their popular family show back to Parr Hall next month, just in time for the school holidays.

The two shows, on Sunday 22 October, promise songs, comedy sketches, a dash of magic and heaps of joining in for all the family.

Familiar Chris & Pui TV characters including Incy Wincy, Twinkle, Old MacDonald, Humpty and Granny Humpty will be dropping by, along with the toys – Tom, Momo, Teddington, Stuffy and Miss Mouse.

Catch the Gingerbread Man, marvel at the Ugly Duckling becoming a beautiful swan and “oooh” and “aaah” as Miss Mouse attempts to zoom zoom zoom to the cheesy moon in her rocket.

Chris & Pui have been a double act for over a decade working every day on CBeebies, the BBC’s pre-school brand.

They currently star in their own programme Show Me Show Me, which airs twice a day and fulfils the old Play School remit with its promise of discovery through songs, rhymes and imaginative play. Last summer they filmed series six.

Most recently Chris starred in CBeebies’ Stargazing, featuring astronaut Tim Peake in the International Space Station along with Miss Mouse who has been floating around in zero gravity much to the amusement of her fans and followers.

The show promises to entertain any age, from 2 to 102, and tickets are on sale now.

Sunday 22 October 2017, 11am & 2pm, £12/£10/£40 family ticket, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

Vintage band Stiff Little Fingers bring sounds of the punk generation to Warrington

Vintage band Stiff Little Fingers are bringing the sounds of the punk generation to Warrington’s Parr Hall next month.

After many studio albums and countless tours, the band are finding themselves more in demand than ever; they are currently working on a new album with many of the songs being debuted at live gigs, to a tremendous response from the fans.

Stiff Little Fingers (SLF) were formed in 1977 in Belfast and, along with the likes of The Clash, Sex Pistols, The Jam, Buzzcocks, The Undertones, Sham 69 and The Stranglers, they were at the forefront of the punk movement.

SLF’s signature style comprises lyrics that meld the personal and political, music that combines the energy of punk with infectious hooks, and delivery that rings of honesty and commitment.

Their live shows continue to be special events of energy and power and, though now focused on their new material, the band continues to play the old favourites at gigs.

Saturday 7 October, 8pm, £20, Parr Hall

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New music night joins old favourite in bringing classic sounds to Parr Hall

Warrington will boogie the night away this September with a brand new music event to run alongside an old favourite at Parr Hall.

Music lovers are being invited to don their dance shoes for a weekend of 70s disco, Motown and club soul’s most memorable melodies.

Returning to Parr Hall on Friday 29 September, 70s Disco has proven itself to be an unforgettable night which fans flock to as they step back in time to the disco era, complete with all that glitters, and all that hair!

National DJs will be playing original vinyl and bringing back the sounds of Billy Ocean, Barry White, Edwin Starr, Chairmen of the Board, Bay City Rollers, Detroit Spinners, Donna Summer, Three Degrees, Chic, Kool and The Gang, T. Rex, Sister Sledge, and many more.

For those who prefer something a bit more soulful, we have a new night starting the following evening, Saturday 30 September – Motown and Club Soul.

Be there for the first event of its kind at Parr Hall and enjoy the sounds of the 60s and 70s: expect to hear music by Stevie Wonder, The Four Tops, The Temptations, Diana Ross and The Supremes, The Contours, Edwin Starr to name a few.

These two fantastic nights out are not to be missed! Tickets are on sale now.

70s Disco, Friday 29 September, 8pm, £7, Parr Hall. Buy tickets here.

Motown & Club Soul, Saturday 30 September, 8pm, £7, Parr Hall. Buy tickets here.

 

INTERVIEW: Jimmy Carr shares inspiration for upcoming ‘Best Of’ shows at Parr Hall

This ‘Best Of’ tour is your 12th tour show. How have you continued being so prolific?

This one’s slightly different as obviously most of the jokes were already written – all I had to do was choose my favourites and then try and remember them! There’s no secret to being prolific in general though, really. Mostly it’s down to how I work. A lot of comedians build a show off one flash of inspiration. My process isn’t like that at all. For tours when I’m doing predominantly new material, I will have come up with about 1,000 jokes or so but only use about 250. The trick is to be writing constantly. Chuck Close once said “Inspiration is for amateurs, I just get to work” – could not agree more with that statement.

Why are you doing a Best Of show?

Well partly it’s because I wanted to see if it was possible, to see if you could do a stand-up show where you just played the hits like a gig from a classic band. I also remember seeing John Maloney at the Comedy Store 15 or 16 years ago, right when I started, and he came on stage and said “I’ll start with some jokes”. He did ten one-liners off the bat – boom, boom, boom, boom – and then told a longer story. I remember thinking I would like to do a show where it is just that, where you have that first opening salvo of bang, bang, bang and it never lets up. And that’s part of the reason to do this tour, the idea of just dropping bombs for two hours. One liner after one liner – all killer, no filler. Also I really love these jokes and, unlike a musician, I don’t get to perform them once the show’s finished touring. You just sort of put them away forever. That always struck me as kind of a shame.

Will the show be the same every night?

Hopefully not. Obviously there will be a lot of written stuff but I like to find a balance between the guaranteed laughs of jokes I’ve come up with in advance and the off-the-cuff stuff. I think on a good night it is 80/90% of jokes that I have written and am performing to the best of my abilities. But the best bits always involve the audience, the bits where I don’t know what’s going to happen or where it will lead. Why go and see a show live? Why not just watch it on Netflix? It’s because the funniest bits are always the things that happened in the room that night. You’ve got to have a show ready though, just in case the crowd is reluctant to get involved.

You often joke about supposedly taboo topics onstage. Why is that?

Comedy is all about building up tension and then releasing it. Talking about taboo topics is a fast way to build tension, and the more tension, the more laughs when you finally release it. I’d also say that one of my favourite sounds in the world is laughter turning into shock. I’m obsessed by cognitive dissonance – the idea that you can make people laugh and be disappointed in themselves for laughing at the same time. And as long as the laugh comes first, even if it’s half a second before, it’s fine. I like the idea that you don’t choose what you laugh at, it chooses you.

Is there anything you won’t joke about?
No.

That’s quite a frank answer. Why?

Well I feel like it’s all about the intention, the meaning behind it. My jokes are just that, jokes. There is no grand vision, no political or social message. If the joke is funny enough then the ends justify the means. Look, I say some horrific things in my act and, yes, if you take those things at face value then clearly they are unacceptable. But I think it’s pretty obvious that, in context, those subjects or ideas are merely vehicles for comedy, that they are designed to elicit laughter and nothing more. If I was using my shows to put forward a manifesto on how we should live our lives then maybe it would be a different story, but I’m not. I’m just trying to make you laugh.

Do you ever worry about offending people?

Not really. If you believe in free speech, you have to be prepared to hear things you don’t like – that’s kind of the deal. If you say someone is “offended”, what you’re really saying is that their feelings got hurt. That doesn’t put you in the right. If you’re not laughing, you’re well within your rights to just not listen. That’s absolutely fine.

You came to stand-up comparatively late at the age of 26. Why was that?

Well I just wanted to do something different, really. I had a very cushy job in marketing having worked very hard at university to get there. But I wasn’t satisfied. If I’d known that it was possible to work in television earlier, I would have probably wanted to be a producer or something. I didn’t know anyone in that world though, it wasn’t an option. So instead I decided to join the circus in my mid-twenties and do stand-up comedy instead.

You obviously combine doing stand-up with a lot of TV work these days. Which do you prefer?

It’s an odd one for me, they feel very distinct. Making television is collaborative – being the host is great because there’s a whole group of people working to make you look good. Live stand-up is very different. You’re on your own and that can be stressful. You’ve got more freedom though. With TV, even if it’s late night, you’re ultimately being beamed into people’s homes, sometimes uninvited. With a live gig, people have paid to see you. That allows you to push it that little bit more.

How do you feel about being famous?

I like it. I think comedy brings a nice shade of fame though, because you’re well-known but no one puts you on too much of a pedestal. It’s not like being another kind of performer, an actor or singer say, where people are perhaps more reverential of your talent. Everyone – or nearly everyone – has a sense of humour, so people just tend to try and make me laugh. What’s not to like?

Saturday 23 September 2017, 7pm & 10pm, £27.50, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

Two Warrington shows from top comic Jimmy Carr now just a month away

Top comedian Jimmy Carr’s two performances at Parr Hall are now just a month away and tickets are running out fast.

There are only a handful of tickets left for the 7pm performance at the Warrington venue on Saturday 23 September and the 10pm slot is filling up fast. 

The stand-up comic, TV star and all-round entertainer is returning with a selection of his very best jokes and brand new material in this ‘Best of, Ultimate, Gold, Greatest Hits Tour’.

A man who has devoted his life to crafting perfect jokes and has left a trail of laughter in his wake, Jimmy Carr’s new show promises to distil everything we love to laugh at and be shocked by into one incredible, unparalleled night of entertainment.

In short, it promises to be the ultimate comedy show.

Jimmy Carr has been on the stand-up scene for a decade and a half, and in that time he’s performed nine sell-out tours, playing nearly 2,000 shows to over 2 million people across four continents.

He’s won the British Comedy Award for Best Live Stand-Up Tour and been nominated for the Perrier Award.

Now, all that experience is being put to good use with the greatest material from his extraordinary career brought together in one show.

This is the very best of Jimmy Carr.

Saturday 23 September 2017, 7pm & 10pm, £27.50, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

Sir Ken Dodd returns to Parr Hall with his famous Happiness Show

The nation’s favourite comedian Ken Dodd, recently made Sir Ken Dodd, is bringing his Happiness Show to Warrington again next year.

The 89-year-old’s incredible and hugely-successful career as a professional entertainer now spans more than 60 fun-filled years and he’s decided it’s high time he revisited Parr Hall.

Ken is a comedian of unrivalled legendary status, an icon and national treasure, who has been entertaining audiences for a lifetime of happiness and laughter.

And that dedication was rewarded with a knighthood earlier this year in the Queen’s New Year Honours.

Anyone who comes along to enjoy his famous Happiness Show will be absolutely discumknockerated (Knotty Ash for over the moon) by a truly tattifelarius (fun-filled) evening of laughter and songs.

With a supporting company, non-stop gags and a selection of songs presented in his uniquely versatile style, there’ll be everything from ballads to grand opera.

The comedian is a multi-award winning entertainer who loves nothing more than performing for theatre audiences, so don’t miss his fun-filled Happiness Show; it promises to be a great night out for all the family.

Saturday 27 January 2018, 7pm, £22.50, Parr Hall

But tickets here

Enjoy the time of your life with ultimate tribute to Dirty Dancing at Parr Hall

No film has captured the hearts of a generation like Dirty Dancing and now there’s a chance to relive the excitement as a top quality tribute show travels to Warrington.

A Night of Dirty Dancing is the ultimate tribute to the original film which saw an entire generation fall in love with Patrick Swayze and long to be Jennifer Grey.

The Parr Hall performance on Sunday 17 September is a chance to relive the passion, indulge in the romance and celebrate the greatest movie soundtrack of all time.

Recast and re-scripted for 2017, it’s all down to Kellerman’s end of season show: revel in the cherished moments, the memories made and the music that resonated throughout the years in this timeless theatrical treat.

Expect to hear She’s Like the Wind, Big Girls Don’t Cry, Hey Baby, Wipeout, Do You Love Me, Be My Baby, Hungry Eyes and of course, the Academy Award-winning (I’ve Had) The Time of My Life in the ultimate coming of age romance.

Sunday 17 September 2017, 7.30pm, £24/£22, Parr Hall

Buy tickets here

No. 1 tribute band The Doors Alive bring sounds of the 60s to town

The Doors Alive, the No. 1 tribute band to legendary rockers The Doors, are bringing the psychedelic sounds of the 60s to town with a performance at Pyramid next month.

The band perfectly and effortlessly re-create the sound, look, presence and feel of a real 1960s Doors concert, transporting the crowd back in time.

In their homage to the Californian rockers they will play classic hits such as Light My Fire, When the Music’s Over, Riders on the Storm, The End and more when they visit Warrington on Saturday 16 September.

The singer, Willie, captures the attitude, look and voice of the late, great Jim Morrison, and the rest of the band have honed the other members’ playing styles immaculately.

To achieve that authentic 60s sound, the band use the very same instruments that members of The Doors used, including a vintage Fender Rhodes Bass keyboard, a vintage Vox Continental keyboard and a vintage Gibson SG guitar.

For true The Doors fans this really is a show not to be missed.

Saturday 16 September 2017, 7.30pm, £14 advance/£17 on the door, Pyramid

Buy tickets here

The Houghton Weavers keep folk smiling with Pyramid show

The Houghton Weavers have been entertaining for more than 40 years with their unique blend of popular folk music, humour and audience participation.

During their time together as a group – comprising Tony Berry, David Littler and Steve Millington – they have performed thousands of concerts, recorded more than 30 albums, starred in several of their own highly successful BBC radio and TV series, and made countless appearances on other programmes.

Their next outing is a tour which aims to “keep folk smiling”, taking in a date at Warrington’s Pyramid arts centre on Friday 15 December.

The Houghton Weavers guarantee a top quality show suitable for all the family honed to perfection over four decades in the business which, combined with their individual style and professionalism, adds up to a wonderful night of entertainment.

Friday 15 December 2017, 7.30pm, £14, Pyramid

Buy tickets here

Warrington musician with international reputation announces home town gig

Internationally renowned Warrington-born musician Peter Price has announced a home town performance this December.

The singer and guitarist will be returning to Pyramid with another top quality show on Friday 1 December and tickets are on sale now.

Peter has a brilliant international reputation, having played festivals and concerts across the UK, Europe and North America.

His audiences are taken on strange and exotic journeys, from the folk and country blues style of Robert Johnson, Blind Willie McTell and Lead Belly, to jazz, Latin and world music.

A gifted artist, Peter’s performances demonstrate a mind-boggling mastery of the acoustic guitar, a rich singing voice and a relaxed yet compelling stage presence.

For this show he will also be joined on stage by some very special guests, guaranteeing an evening not to be missed.

The Guardian described him as “an acoustic blues virtuoso” and leading acoustic blues singer-songwriter Eric Bibb said Peter was “one of those wonderful British guitarists… a great musician.”

Friday 1 December 2017, 7.30pm, £15, Pyramid

Buy tickets here

Rock royalty Black Star Riders to visit Parr Hall with team of special guests

Rock royalty Black Star Riders will be calling in to Parr Hall in November as part of a tour to celebrate the release of their third studio album Heavy Fire.

Formed in 2012 and taking inspiration for their name from a gang of outlaws in the 1993 western film Tombstone, Black Star Riders (BSR) are a band of impressive pedigree.

Featuring lead guitarists Scott Gorham (formerly of Thin Lizzy) and Damon Johnson (Thin Lizzy, Alice Cooper), lead vocalist/guitarist Ricky Warwick (Thin Lizzy, The Almighty), bassist Robert Crane (Vince Neil, Ratt) and drummer Jimmy DeGrasso (Megadeth, Alice Cooper, David Lee Roth), BSR are now in their fifth year with three albums under their belt.

February 2017 saw Black Star Riders release their third studio album Heavy Fire to widespread critical acclaim.

The record went on to gain worldwide chart success, reaching No 1 in the UK rock and indie charts, No 3 in the UK vinyl chart and No 6 in the UK national chart, as well as enjoying success in Germany and USA.

The band are due to share their colossal talent with the Warrington audience on Friday 10 November as part of the Coming Under Heavy Fire tour with support from special guests Blues Pills, Tax the Heat and Dirty Thrills.

Ricky Warwick, from Black Star Riders, said: “There’s nothing more exciting than playing live. BSR are absolutely thrilled to get back out in the UK, it’s a wonderful way to round out a great year.”

Formed in 2011 the multinational quartet Blues Pills released their exciting self-titled debut in 2014 before following up with their sophomore release Lady in Gold in 2016.

They’ve toured non-stop for the past few years playing with the likes of Deep Purple, Rival Sons and Kadavar as well as headline shows; their organic blend of blues, classic rock and soul wins audiences the world over.

Zack Anderson, from Blues Pills, said: “We are really excited to warm up the stage for these legends. We hope to see a lot of familiar faces in front of the stage and are really looking forward to meeting a lot of new people.”

Tax the Heat have just come out of the studio where they’ve been recording their follow up to the critically acclaimed debut album Fed to the Lions; the highly-anticipated, as yet unnamed, second album is scheduled for release by Nuclear Blast Entertainment in early 2018.

London-based Dirty Thrills will open the bill with a set containing songs from their debut album Heavy Living, due to come out in September.

Friday 10 November 2017, 6.45pm, £28 advance, Parr Hall

Buy tickets now

TV presenter and ex-elite forces soldier Ant Middleton to share daring exploits with Warrington audience

Adventurer, survival expert, TV presenter and ex-elite forces soldier Ant Middleton will be sharing his amazing experiences on a new tour, which visits Warrington next year.

As seen on Channel 4 programmes SAS: Who Dares Wins, Mutiny and Escape, Ant’s appetite for adventure and extremes has no limit, and it’s led him to take on some amazing challenges both in the military and in his TV roles.

He will be sharing his experiences and exploits as a modern day explorer and expedition leader on a new UK tour, An Evening with Ant Middleton, which visits Parr Hall on Thursday 15 March next year.

In this adventure-filled one-man show, Ant recounts his extraordinary life in the military, having achieved the elite forces “holy trinity” by serving in the Parachute Regiment, Royal Marines and SBS, the UK’s naval special forces unit.

Expect tales which defy belief for their sheer bravery and danger, behind the scenes moments, revelations and gossip from his TV shows, and an exclusive insight into his life and exciting future TV projects.

Ant Middleton’s third series of SAS: Who Dares Wins and new programme Escape will air in the autumn this year and spring 2018.

Thursday 15 March 2018, 7.30pm, £22.50/£17.50, Parr Hall

Buy tickets now

80s soul/RnB music legend Alexander O’Neal to grace Parr Hall stage

The music legend that is Alexander O’Neal is to grace the stage of Warrington’s Parr Hall this November.

Alexander is reputedly the best pure singer to come from the 1980s soul/RnB era, when he released a string of memorable hits which are still broadcast as radio requests and played at thousands of events around the world.

His most popular tracks include Fake, Criticize, If You Were Here Tonight, Saturday Love, Never Knew Love like This, Sunshine, Secret Lovers and many more, and his album Hearsay sold nearly a million copies in the UK alone.

To this day he still holds the record as the only performer to sell out for six consecutive nights at London’s Wembley Arena.

This soul man still has an undying passion to perform and his live shows reflect that, so come and join the party for an evening not to be forgotten.

Tuesday 7 November 2017, 7:30pm, Parr Hall, £30

Buy tickets now

Turn back the clock with 80s band Johnny Hates Jazz at Parr Hall

Iconic 80s band Johnny Hates Jazz will be visiting Parr Hall in December as part of a new tour to celebrate the 30th anniversary of hit album Turn Back the Clock.

The duo will be performing their acclaimed debut album in its entirety to celebrate 30 years since its release on a full UK tour this December, with a visit to Warrington on 5 December.

In 1987, as the era of electronic pop and New Romanticism was reaching its culmination, Anglo-American group Johnny Hates Jazz, featuring Clark Datchler and Mike Nocito, were catapulted to success with the release of their single Shattered Dreams.

It became a Top 5 hit worldwide, reaching No.2 in the USA and Japan, and has since been played over 3.5 million times on American radio alone.

It was followed by other hits including the anti-war anthem I Don’t Want to be a Hero, Turn Back the Clock featuring Kim Wilde and Heart of Gold.

Their debut album entered the UK charts at No.1, going double-platinum and selling 4 million copies in the process; it is arguably one of the definitive albums of the 1980s and is one of only two debut albums released by Virgin Records that immediately went to the top of the charts upon its release – the other being Never Mind the Bollocks by The Sex Pistols.

The band went their separate ways shortly afterwards, deciding to focus on other musical projects instead – over the next 20 years they completely lost contact with one and other.

But in 2010, original members Clark Datchler and Mike Nocito decided to come back together to write, record and produce a brand new Johnny Hates Jazz (JHJ) album.

Entitled Magnetized, the album was released in 2013 and the single of the same name became a huge radio hit in the UK and Germany.

Unfortunately, Clark collapsed in London shortly afterwards, and was diagnosed with a serious illness.  All promotion came to an abrupt halt and he spent much of the following year recovering.

Johnny Hates Jazz began performing again at festivals in Europe and Asia and toured the UK in 2016, appearing at theatres across the country.

During this time Clark also joined forces with Genesis legend Mike Rutherford to co-write the new Mike and The Mechanics album Let Me Fly, released in April this year.

2017 began with JHJ being launched in China with a remix of the track Magnetized and a new video to accompany it; Clark and Mike are now back in the studio recording new material.

Tuesday 5 December 2017, 7pm, £89 VIP/£35/£25, Parr Hall

Tickets go on sale here this Friday, 14 July at 9am.

Scottish singer-songwriter Amy Macdonald chooses Parr Hall for intimate acoustic tour

Scottish singer-songwriter Amy Macdonald has announced a special intimate acoustic tour for the autumn, with a night in Warrington.

The new dates follow a sold-out UK tour earlier this year and have been announced to coincide with the release of her new single Down by the Water.

Amy, who is currently in the midst of festival season playing to huge crowds across Europe, said: “It has been such a crazy year.

“The music industry has changed so drastically that I didn’t quite know what to expect, but I have to say I’m blown away by the strength of the live music scene.

“I feel like this year has been my busiest year ever for live shows; I have been all over the place playing so many amazing places in front of so many wonderful fans.

“Something that has struck me this year is the really positive feedback I’ve received from the stripped down part of the shows.

“I always worried that people would get bored without my band thrashing away in the background but it’s been quite the opposite.

“The same goes for the feedback on my new album, Under Stars.  People seemed to be most excited by the stripped down acoustic songs.

“With all of this in mind, and my love for getting out there and performing live, I’ve decided to go on a very special acoustic tour.

“There will only be a handful of dates in smaller, intimate venues.  It’ll be back to basics but I think it will make for a really special tour.

“I can’t wait to see you there!”

Described as “uplifting power-pop indie” by Metro and “extraordinary… Macdonald’s strongest album since her 2007 debut”, Under Stars reached No.2 in the UK album charts, and is Amy’s fourth top 5 album in the UK.

This success has been equalled internationally, with the album also debuting at No.2 and No.1 in the German and Swiss album charts respectively.

The beautiful and powerful new single – accompanied by a picturesque video shot on the idyllic Isle of Sheppey – features backing vocals from Juliet Roberts, who also joined Amy at her recent sold out Royal Albert Hall show.

The video can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eh6mrl8fpjA

Thursday 2 November 2017, 7pm, £25/£35/£45, Parr Hall

Tickets go on sale here at 10am this Friday, 14 July.

‘Remarkable’ jazz pianist and composer Zoe Rahman to visit Pyramid for top quality show

Jazz pianist and composer Zoe Rahman is to perform with the Inner City Ensemble at Warrington’s Pyramid arts centre this October.

Described by the Observer as “a remarkable pianist by any standard”, Zoe Rahman has firmly established herself as one of the brightest stars on the contemporary jazz scene.

A vibrant and highly individual artist, her style is deeply rooted in jazz yet reflects her classical background, British/Bengali heritage and her very broad musical taste.

Known for her powerful technique, wide-ranging imagination and exuberant performances, Zoe has become a highly sought-after musician, recently working with the likes of George Mraz, Courtney Pine and Jerry Dammers’ Spatial AKA Orchestra.

She is a winner of the prestigious UK Parliamentary Jazz Award and has previously been nominated for the Mercury Music Prize.

For this third edition of the Jazz Directors Series, presented by Band on the Wall, Rahman is performing with the Inner City Ensemble, an evolving ten-piece group of the UK’s most promising emerging professional musicians, selected through an open call application process.

The ensemble – which includes piano, double bass, drums, flute, clarinet, trumpet, alto and tenor saxophone, trombone, and tuba – will play material written by Rahman for a Guildhall School of Music and Drama project, plus new material never previously performed live.

Saturday 21 October 2017, 8pm, Pyramid, £14 advance/£16 on the door

Tickets go on sale here tomorrow, Wednesday, 5 July at 9am.

Irish superstar Imelda May adds Warrington date to upcoming tour after phenomenal demand

Diverse singer-songwriter Imelda May has added extra dates to her upcoming tour due to phenomenal demand, and Warrington’s one of them.

The Irish superstar will be hitting the road in November and the tour includes a headline show at London’s iconic Royal Albert Hall, where Imelda supported The Who in April in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust.

Imelda’s new single Girl I Used to Be, out now, is taken from her top five new album Life. Love. Flesh. Blood and follows the BBC Radio 2-playlisted singles Call Me, Black Tears and Should’ve Been You.

A hauntingly beautiful acoustic ballad, Girl I Used To Be, is a memoir of Imelda’s life growing up in the Liberties area of Dublin and the lessons learned which she will pass on to her daughter.

She said: “I love those old story songs where you’re taken on a journey from beginning to end.

“Songs you’re riveted with, like when you’re in the car and you sit in the driveway because you can’t turn the radio off, you have to listen to the end of the story.

“The lyrics are about my family and my daughter, and myself and my life growing up in Dublin.

“We didn’t have much money but my parents are fabulous, creative and open-minded people; they gave me art and literature and encouraged me to do whatever was in my heart, and I want to do that with my daughter.”

One of the most critically acclaimed releases of 2017, the album spent over a month in the Top 20 and recently returned to the Top 10.

Imelda has promoted the new album with performances on BBC1’s The One Show and The Graham Norton Show, and ITV’s Tonight at the London Palladium.

She also appeared on Chris Evans’ BBC Radio 2 show to perform a brilliant cover of U2’s I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For, and recently joined The Guardian for a webchat.

Produced by the legendary T Bone Burnett, Life. Love. Flesh. Blood was recorded over seven days in Los Angeles and features musical contributions from Jeff Beck, Jools Holland (who discovered Imelda) and an accomplished group of backing musicians who between them have performed with the likes of Tom Waits, Robert Plant and The Last Shadow Puppets.

Imelda ended her recent UK and Ireland tour with three sold-out shows at Dublin’s Bord Gais Energy Theatre, following a triumphant sold-out gig at London Palladium.

She then headed to the US where she performed a series of prestigious headline shows, including New York’s Webster Hall, after several support dates with Elvis Costello.

Imelda has become one of Ireland’s most celebrated female artists, has performed alongside legendary artists including Lou Reed and Smokey Robinson, and can count high profile artists like Bob Dylan and Bono as fans.

Monday 13 November 2017, 7pm, Parr Hall, £99 VIP package/£35/£25

Tickets go on sale here this Friday, 7 July at 10am.

Vintage band Stiff Little Fingers bring sounds of punk generation to Warrington

Vintage band Stiff Little Fingers are to bring the sounds of the punk generation to Warrington’s Parr Hall this autumn.

After many studio albums and countless tours, the band are finding themselves more in demand than ever; they are currently working on a new album with many of the songs being debuted at live gigs, to a tremendous response from the fans.

Stiff Little Fingers (SLF) were formed in 1977 in Belfast, Ireland and along with the likes of The Clash, Sex Pistols, The Jam, Buzzcocks, The Undertones, Sham 69 and The Stranglers they were at the forefront of the punk movement.

SLF’s signature style comprises lyrics that meld the personal and political, music that combines the energy of punk with infectious hooks, and delivery that rings of honesty and commitment.

Their live shows continue to be special events of energy and power and, though now focused on their new material, the band continues to play the old favourites at gigs.

Saturday 7 October 2017, 8pm, Parr Hall, £20 advance

Buy tickets now

Top touring theatre company brings latest kids’ show to town

Warrington families are in for a festive treat this December with the new show Father Christmas Comes up Trumps!

The hugely popular touring company TaleGate Theatre is returning to Parr Hall following the success of family favourites Father Christmas Needs a Wee and The Giant’s Loo Roll which both entertained the Warrington audience last year.

Everyone’s favourite Christmas character is back and this time he’s had three helpings of sprouts.

As he tries to deliver the presents, his tummy rumbles, gurgles and groans but Father Christmas knows he must keep it in – he doesn’t want to wake anyone up!

TaleGate Theatre productions hit the perfect combination of witty humour, fantastic music and that little extra sparkle for which they have become known and loved.

Father Christmas Comes Up Trumps! is a fabulously funny and brilliantly bouncy musical adaptation of Nicholas Allan’s sequel to Father Christmas Needs a Wee.

Artistic director James Worthington said: “We are very excited to tour our new festive musical across the UK.

“It promises to beat our own high standard and really pack a tuneful punch.

“We are really lucky to be working with Nicholas Allan again on another of his books as they are perfect for cheeky children everywhere.

“When even the title makes you laugh you know you are in for a good time!”

Sunday 3 December 2017, 11am & 2:30pm, Parr Hall, £12/£10/£40 family ticket

Buy tickets now

Amazing story of the Bee Gees returns to Parr Hall after success of new tour

Following the early success of the new tour, the spectacular You Win Again – Celebrating the Music of the Bee Gees is returning to Parr Hall.

Fans of the ultimate disco trio will be delighted by the announcement which comes hot on the heels of Barry Gibb’s eagerly-awaited performance at Glastonbury this weekend.

The new show embarked on its first ever nationwide tour earlier this year, including a stop in Warrington, after a successful West End debut at the Leicester Square Theatre.

The Parr Hall audience will now have another chance to immerse itself in the Gibb brothers’ hits through the 1960s, 70s and 80s, not to mention the glittering array of classics they wrote for other stars.

This dazzling production tells the incredible story of the Bee Gees in an unrivalled musical experience.

Follow the band and their lives through the early charting triumphs, their fall from grace and their meteoric climb back to the top to become the multi-million selling supergroup known and loved by millions across the globe.

This breathtaking concert spectacular will take the Warrington audience on a musical journey through all the best songs including Night Fever, Stayin’ Alive, More Than a Woman, You Should Be Dancing, Tragedy, How Deep is Your Love? and Words.

Sunday 8 April 2018, 7.30pm, £25/£23/10th ticket free, Parr Hall

Buy tickets now

Frank, funny and filthy comedian Sarah Millican announces two Warrington dates

The frank, funny and unapologetically filthy comedian Sarah Millican has announced two dates at Warrington’s Parr Hall next year.

Tickets for the shows, on Wednesday 5 and Thursday 6 December 2018, go on sale at 10am this Friday, 30 June, and are sure to sell out fast.

Sarah Millican is not a control freak, she’s a control enthusiast; she even controls her own insults.

On this new tour, Control Enthusiast, she asks “do you arrange the nights out?” and “are you in charge of passports on holiday?” If so, then you’re a control enthusiast too!

The Warrington audience will learn about Rescue Men, farting in hospital pants, what can happen at a bra fitting, the benefits of casserole, plus tips on how to talk to shop assistants and the correct way to eat a biscuit, as Sarah shares fresh stories of her “super normal life”.

Sarah rose to fame sharing painfully honest but immediately identifiable stories about her divorce and has since become a much-loved comedian who is never afraid to draw on her real life experiences for inspiration, no matter how embarrassing or cringeworthy they may be.

And that’s why people love her so much!

Wednesday 5 & Thursday 6 December 2018, 7.15pm, Parr Hall, £27.50

Tickets go on sale at 10am this Friday, 30 June.

Rock icon Steve Harley heading to Warrington next month

Classic rock icon and original Cockney Rebel Steve Harley will be playing at Parr Hall next month as part of a busy UK tour.

Steve Harley, who has written and recorded 11 albums in a prolific career spanning four decades, recently returned to the public eye for re-releasing former No. 1, Make Me Smile (Come Up and See Me), following the tragic murder of MP Jo Cox.

Originally formed in 1973, Cockney Rebel enjoyed top 20 hits with Judy Teen, Mr Soft, Mr Raffles, Here Comes the Sun and, of course, the huge hit Make Me Smile.

The latter is regularly voted among the top singles in the history of the charts – which covers six decades of releases – and The Performing Rights Society has confirmed Make Me Smile as one of the most played records in British broadcasting.

The song has been covered more than 100 times in seven languages, has been featured in several movies including The Full Monty, and been used on more than twenty TV and radio advertising campaigns around the world.

Steve has written lyrics for artists including Rod Stewart, who called him “one of the finest lyricists the UK has ever produced”, and continues to play live concerts most years.

He said: “I love it, more now than ever. I cannot imagine stopping, it’s what I do – play and sing.”

Saturday 22 July 2017, 7:30pm, £27.50 advance, Parr Hall

Buy tickets now

 

Prepare for A Country Night in Nashville from comfort of Parr Hall

Country music fans are in for a treat this November when Parr Hall hosts A Country Night in Nashville.

The show, which comes to town on Friday 3 November, will take the Warrington audience on a musical journey through the popular genre by recreating a buzzing honky tonk in downtown Nashville.

A Country Night in Nashville perfectly captures the energy and atmosphere of an evening out in the home town of country music; prepare to be transported through the colourful history of country, featuring stars both past and present.

Expect to hear hits from Johnny Cash to Alan Jackson, Dolly Parton to the Dixie Chicks, Willie Nelson to Little Big Town, showcased by the amazing Dominic Halpin and the Hurricanes, featuring Shelly Quarmby.

If you can’t get enough of Ring of Fire, Crazy, Follow Your Arrow, It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere, Need You Now, 9 to 5, and The Gambler, then don’t miss this incredible celebration of the very best of country music.

Friday 3 November 2017, 7.30pm, £23.50, Parr Hall

Buy tickets now

Best of blues rock returns to Warrington with Joanne Shaw Taylor next month

The best of blues rock is returning to Warrington next month in the form of Summertime Festival, headlined by Joanne Shaw Taylor.

Joanne is a blues rock sensation who is taking the world by storm and will be top of the bill at the event, presented by The Gig Cartel, on Saturday 15 July.

With tracks performed on BBC2’s Later with Jools Holland, her latest album Wild entered the UK album charts at number 20 and was welcomed with rave reviews by the press and her peers; American blues rock legend Joe Bonamassa recently described Joanne as a “superstar in waiting”.

Also on the bill will be Stevie Nimmo, Bad Touch, and Xander and the Peace Pirates.

Stevie Nimmo has been successfully recording and touring for the last two decades.  Born and raised in Glasgow, there was always music around as Stevie grew up.

Maverick Magazine said: “Stevie’s voice is at times gritty, other times emotional, but all times perfection.”

Bad Touch are a new young rock band from Norfolk, fresh from a Planet Rock radio station Roadstars tour which earned them recognition as ones to watch for 2017.

And Xander and the Peace Pirates are Liverpool boys who will open the show with a combination of soul, blues and rock; their pervasive blend of inspired song-writing and memorable performances has already seen them enrapture audiences from around the world.

Tickets for this great value event are on sale now.

Saturday 15 July 2017, 5pm, Parr Hall, £20 stalls/£25 circle

Buy tickets now

No.1 tribute band The Doors Alive bring sounds of the 60s to town

The Doors Alive, the No. 1 tribute band to legendary rockers The Doors, are bringing the psychedelic sounds of the 60s to town with a performance at Pyramid.

They perfectly and effortlessly re-create the sound, look, presence and feel of a real 1960s Doors concert, transporting the crowd back in time.

In their homage to the Californian rock gurus they will play classic hits such as Light My Fire, When the Music’s Over, Riders on the Storm, The End and more when they visit Warrington on Saturday 16 September.

The singer, Willie, captures the attitude, look and voice of the late, great Jim Morrison and the rest of the band have honed the other members’ playing styles immaculately.

To achieve that authentic 60s sound, the band use the very same instruments that members of the original band used, including a vintage Fender Rhodes Bass keyboard, a vintage Vox Continental keyboard and a vintage Gibson SG guitar.

For true The Doors fans this really is a show not to be missed.

Saturday 16 September 2017, 7:30pm, £14 advance/£17 on the door

Pyramid, Palmyra Square South, Warrington, WA1 1BL

Buy tickets online

Nation’s sweetheart Martine McCutcheon announces new tour featuring Warrington date

Singer and actress Martine McCutcheon has been back in the studio and now has plans to go on tour, with a show at Parr Hall.

With the imminent release of her first album of original music in over 15 years, Lost and Found, and a new single, Say I’m Not Alone, the nation’s sweetheart has announced five UK dates including a visit to Warrington on Sunday 12 November 2017.

Now 41, happily married and mother of a 2-year-old, the time felt right for Martine to return to the studio.

Martine has co-written most of the songs on the new album with her husband, the multi-instrumentalist and vocalist Jack McManus, and she has never sounded better!

The new single Say I’m Not Alone is a song like nothing Martine has ever recorded before; it’s big, bold and brash, and merges clanging guitars, thumping drums and a hard-hitting lyric.

Other album highlights include the rocky Any Sign of Life, the beautiful Stay with Me, which is a duet with Jack, and album closer Rebellion.

The album is a deeply personal record that deals with everything from relationships to Martine’s debilitating illness which saw her unable to work.

“Life brought this album about very gradually,” explains Martine. “It was a really unconscious thing; I started writing the songs at a time in my life when I’d lost everything.”

One of the nation’s original sweethearts, Martine McCutcheon first found fame as Tiffany Mitchell in EastEnders before releasing her platinum-selling debut solo album You, Me & Us in 1999 which contained the Number 1 single Perfect Moment.

In 2003, Martine memorably played Natalie in Love Actually before reprising the role for a one-off Comic Relief special earlier this year.

Sunday 12 November 2017, 7pm, £37.50/£27.50

Parr Hall, Palmyra Square South, Warrington, WA1 1BL

Buy tickets online

 

Fascinating free talk to give insight on Victorian Warrington

Bridge Street in 1897

Culture Warrington is teaming up with Warrington Civic Society for its second public talk of the year, and this time the topic is A Virtual Tour of Victorian Warrington.

This fascinating talk, to be held at Friars Green Independent Methodist Church on Cairo Street on Tuesday 20 June at 7pm, is free and open to all.

Janice Hayes, heritage manager for Culture Warrington, will be taking visitors on a virtual tour around Victorian Warrington as part of celebrations to mark the 170th anniversary of Queen Victoria granting Warrington’s Borough Charter.

The rarely seen original document is now on display at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery as part of a wider programme of events organised by Culture Warrington to celebrate a historic year in the charity’s calendar, which also includes the 140th anniversary of the opening of the art gallery and the 160th anniversary of the opening of the museum and central library building.

Janice Hayes, heritage manager for Culture Warrington, with the town’s rarely seen Borough Charter

Janice said: “I’ll be drawing links between the vision of our Victorian founders for the borough and the museum with the 21st Century vision of Warrington as a city where culture and heritage will play a major role.

“The rare opportunity to see Warrington’s Borough Charter on display at the museum is the starting point of my talk, which will take people on a tour of Victorian Warrington through a wealth of images from our collections, with a focus on the town’s surviving Victorian heritage.”

A Virtual Tour of Victorian Warrington will also touch on the history of a number of important buildings around the town which feature in Janice’s recently published book Warrington in 50 Buildings.

For more information visit Warrington Civic Society’s Facebook page or email warrington.civsoc@gmail.com

‘Ridiculous’ comedian Jimeoin to bring hilarious stand up back to Warrington

Notorious for being ridiculous, Jimeoin is internationally acclaimed as one of live comedy’s masters – and he’s returning to Warrington next year.

The Irishman’s brilliantly observed, ever-evolving and hilarious stand-up has made him the undisputed award-winning star of TV shows including Live at the Apollo, Sunday Night at the Palladium, The John Bishop Show, Channel 4’s O2 Comedy Gala and Royal Variety Performance.

The new show, Ridiculous, will be coming to Parr Hall on Saturday 10 February 2018 and tickets are on sale now.

Don’t miss what promises to be a knock-out performance; grab a ring-side seat for an unforgettably hilarious evening of world-class stand-up with Ireland’s champion ‘unbelievably funny comedian’.

The Age, in Australia, where Jimeoin rose to prominence, described him as “a superb physical comic” with “a quirky, whimsical and sometimes mischievous view of the world” and Edinburgh Evening News described the comedian as “hilarious” and “ridiculous”, and said “don’t you miss it”.

Saturday 10 February 2018, 7.30pm, tickets £18

Pyramid, Palmyra Square South, Warrington, WA1 1BL

Buy tickets online

Hilarious new Crissy Rock play will have Parr Hall audience dying with laughter

A hilarious new play called Seriously Dead is bringing comedian Crissy Rock back to Parr Hall next month, and it promises to have the audience dying with laughter.

After the success of Dirty Dusting, a hit comedy show starring Crissy which entertained the Warrington audience last June, the Benidorm actress and star of I’m a Celebrity… Get Me out of Here is returning to the town.

Coming with her will be producer and actress Leah Bell, who also starred in Dirty Dusting, Frazer Hines of Emmerdale and Doctor Who, Billy Pearce and Paul Dunn.

One ordinary day in the quiet little town of Olwinskirk a chain of extraordinary events begins to take place, bringing the lives of Betty, Albert, Billy and the local undertaker Tristan de Winter to an uncomfortable crossroads.

Albert Blunderstone has been hiding abroad for ten years after having committed a bank robbery with a small time crook called Nodger Wilson.

On the day he flies home to attend a funeral he runs into Betty, who used to be married to Nodger, and in an attempt to find out what happened to his share of the dosh, he befriends Betty and her current husband Billy Blenkinsopp.

The lives of Betty, Albert, Billy and the undertaker become inextricably linked on a path that is leading to The Pearly Gates and a disgruntled Guardian Angel named Thelma.

This is a brand new comedy play which promises to have audiences chuckling the night away.

Thursday 22 June 2017, 7.30pm, tickets £21

Parr Hall, Palmyra Square South, Warrington, WA1 1BL

Buy tickets online

Perfect Christmas ballet The Nutcracker coming to Warrington this December

The classic Christmas ballet of The Nutcracker will be enchanting the Warrington audience this December.

The Vienna Festival Ballet production promises to sweep us away on a magical adventure in one of the most famous classical ballets of all time.

With its combination of stunning choreography and unforgettable music, this fabulous ballet is a Christmas treat like no other.

Set to Tchaikovsky’s sumptuous score, the traditional tale of The Nutcracker tells the story of Clara and her enchanted nutcracker doll.

Their adventures see Clara and the Nutcracker combat the Mouse King and join the Sugar Plum Fairy and her Cavalier on a wonderful journey through the glistening Land of Snow to a kingdom made entirely of sweets.

Returning by popular demand, Vienna Festival Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker promises to delight audiences of all ages with its festive setting and captivating story.

Tickets for the performance, on Sunday 10 December at 2.30pm, are on sale now.

Sunday 10 December 2017, 2.30pm, tickets £19.50/£17.50/£12.50, Parr Hall

Buy tickets online

Classic Hollywood movie genre ‘film noir’ begins touring Warrington’s libraries

 

The classic Hollywood movie genre ‘film noir’ has begun touring Warrington’s libraries with a stunning photographic exhibition, special film screenings and a display on the history of cinema in the town.

Paint it Black, a joint project between Warrington photographer Paul Jackson and partners Culture Warrington, LiveWire and Warrington Borough Council, explores the dark and mysterious world of film noir, a genre of American crime thrillers such as The Maltese Falcon, Double Indemnity and The Killers.

An exhibition of photographs inspired by these highly stylised black and white films, which are so evocative of mystery and intrigue with their dimly-lit nightscapes and smoky silhouettes, recently enjoyed a hugely successful launch night to coincide with an official celebration of Warrington’s City of Culture bid.

Speaking after the event, Paul said: “It went excellently.  The feedback was all brilliant, from the volunteers who took part and the dignitaries who came along.

“The volunteer models hadn’t seen their own photos yet so it was lovely to see the looks on their faces when they saw them for the first time.”

The Paint it Black collection, all captured by talented photographer Paul Jackson, is now on tour, spending a week at five of the town’s libraries – Warrington Central, Penketh, Culcheth, Stockton Heath and Padgate.

The retro images are accompanied by special screenings of classic film noir movies and promotion of the “hardboiled” American crime fiction novels which inspired them.

Warrington Noir, an exhibition exploring the history of cinema in Warrington during the 1940s and 1950s, is also now running at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery to coincide with the film noir celebration, featuring images and memorabilia from the period.

Paul, of Unit 8 Photography, said he was excited about the opportunity to promote the town’s library offer.

“I love our libraries and want to help promote what a great range of services and activities they have on offer,” he explained.  “The whole point of this project is to show people how special our libraries are and to encourage them to come and have a look.

“This is a really exciting project and a fantastic advert for the town and its people.”

The models, make-up artists, hair stylists, set and costume designers, and production assistants who took part in the project were all volunteers from the Warrington area who were keen to help recreate the mood of this truly unique period in filmmaking.

Paul added: “There’s a wealth of talent in our town which deserves to be recognised.

“Community cohesion was key and I can’t thank those who took part enough for their time and support.”

Some of Warrington’s best known and most iconic buildings, including Central Library, Pyramid arts centre, Parr Hall, and Warrington Museum & Art Gallery, provided stunning backdrops to some of the images, with portrait shots being taken in Paul’s studio at Pyramid.

Derek Dick, outreach and engagement manager at Culture Warrington, hoped the project would help raise the profile of the town’s libraries.

He said: “Paint it Black is a brilliant project in its own right, but the fact that it’s designed to encourage people into Warrington’s libraries, to showcase their unique offer and highlight their importance as community hubs, makes it all the more worthwhile.

“This is a really unique multi-media project which explores an important and influential period in film history; it was all made possible thanks to the people of Warrington kindly donating their time and enthusiasm, making this a truly original community project.

“We hope as many Warrington residents as possible come along to see the touring exhibition and enjoy the film screenings, while reminding themselves how important our libraries are.”

The project was also made possible thanks to generous donations from Warrington businesses such as Watsons Solicitors, and St Rocco’s Hospice which loaned Paul some of the stunning costumes featured in the images.

Tickets for the film screenings can be bought at any of Warrington’s libraries or at www.pyramidparrhall.com

Listings information

Exhibition title: Paint it Black touring photographic exhibition

Dates & locations:

29 April-4 May – Central Library

5-11 May – Penketh Library

12-18 May – Culcheth Library

19-25 May – Stockton Heath Library

26 May-2 June – Padgate Library

Times: see library’s opening times

Admission: Free

 

Exhibition title: Paint it Black film screenings

Dates & locations:

4 May – Central Library – The Maltese Falcon (1941)

11 May – Penketh Library – Double Indemnity (1944)

18 May – Culcheth Library – The Killers (1946)

25 May – Stockton Heath Library – The Big Heat (1953)

1 June – Padgate Library – Touch of Evil (1958)

Times: films start at 7.30pm

Admission: £3

 

Exhibition title: Warrington Noir

Dates: 29 April – 1 July

Times: All day

Admission: Free

Location: Warrington Museum & Art Gallery, Museum Street, Warrington, WA1 1JB

www.warringtonmuseum.co.uk

Chris & Pui and friends are bringing their family show back to Warrington

Everyone’s favourite CBeebies double act, Chris & Pui, are bringing back their much-loved family show to Parr Hall this autumn.

The two shows, on Sunday 22 October, promise songs, comedy sketches, a dash of magic and heaps of joining in for all the family.

Familiar Chris & Pui TV characters including, Incy Wincy, Twinkle, Old MacDonald, Humpty, and Granny Humpty will be dropping by, along with the toys, Tom, Momo, Teddington, Stuffy, and Miss Mouse.

Catch the Gingerbread Man, marvel at the Ugly Duckling becoming a beautiful swan and oooh and aaah as Miss Mouse attempts to zoom zoom zoom to the cheesy moon in her rocket.

Chris & Pui have been a double act for over a decade working everyday on CBeebies – the BBC’s pre-school brand.

They currently star in their own programme Show Me Show Me, which airs twice a day and fulfils the old ‘Play School’ remit with its promise of early discovery through songs, rhymes, and imaginative play. Last summer they filmed series 6.

Most recently Chris starred in CBeebies Stargazing featuring astronaut Tim Peake in the International Space Station along with Miss Mouse who has been floating around in zero gravity much to the amusement of Twitter followers.

The show is perfect for ages 2 to 102, and tickets are on sale now.

Buy tickets online

Cult performance poet Dr John Cooper Clarke to share musings with Warrington

Poet, movie star, rock star, TV and radio presenter, comedian, and social and cultural comedian; not many people can claim to be all of the above but Dr John Cooper Clarke can.

He shot to prominence in the 1970s as the original people’s poet and since then his career has spanned cultures, audiences, art forms and continents.

Today, JCC is as relevant and vibrant as ever, and his influence just as visible in today’s pop culture.

Aside from his trademark look which continues to resonate with fashionistas young and old, and his poetry being included on the national curriculum syllabus, his effect on modern music is huge; his influence can be heard within the keen social observations of the Arctic Monkeys and Plan B to name a couple.

His latest show, which comes to Warrington’s Parr Hall on 28 October, is a mix of classic verse, extraordinary new material, hilarious ponderings on modern life, good honest gags, riffs and chat; it’s a chance to witness a living legend at the top of this game.

Tickets are on sale now.

Saturday 28 October 2017, 7pm, Tickets £24.50/£19.50/£15
Parr Hall, Buy Tickets Online

Grammy Award-nominated DJ and producer Todd Terry treats Warrington to special visit

Grammy Award-nominated DJ and producer Todd Terry is making a special visit to Warrington’s Parr Hall next month.

Todd is one of the world’s most celebrated figures in dance music and with almost two decades of dance floor domination under his belt the quality of his productions goes from strength to strength.

The American DJ has been engulfed in dance music since he first started listening to European dance music records while growing up in Brooklyn.

Already devoted to turntables, he heard something different in those tracks and later said: “I never got a break in New York but England happened right away so I catered to them.”

By 1988, Todd hit big in England and Europe and his notoriety was making its way back to the US.

In addition to DJ appearances, Todd was cutting his classic underground tracks A Day in the Life, Weekend and Can You Party, released under monikers such as The Todd Terry Project, House of Gypsies and Royal House, all considered essential and ground-breaking.

In the mid-90s, the Ministry of Sound’s eponymous UK label released A Day in the Life, a collection of Todd Terry tracks that had been causing dance floor panic; this led to a deal with Mercury Records and the first release, Keep On Jumpin’, featured a vocal workout from super-divas Martha Wash and Jocelyn Brown, together for the first time ever.

The song became a top 10 UK crossover pop hit and worldwide smash which Todd followed with the anthem Somethin’ Going On, a top 5 UK crossover pop hit.

Meanwhile, Todd continued to break new ground as a producer and remixer; from SNAP to Annie Lennox, George Michael to Bjork, Todd’s mixes bridge the ground between club cool and commercial accessibility.

In 1995, his remix for Everything but the Girl’s Missing became a worldwide smash, giving the British duo their first ever hit.

He then rode the charts with mixes for Garbage (Stupid Girl), The Cardigans (Lovefool and Been It), 10,000 Maniacs (More Than This), Jamiroquai (Alright) and The Lightning Seeds (You Showed Me), among others.

He also produced a Robin S track (Givin’ U All That I’ve Got) for the multi-platinum Space Jam soundtrack.

Saturday 15 April 2017, 4pm
Parr Hall, Tickets £15
Buy tickets online

Comedian Paul Foot with surreal sense of humour makes first trip to Warrington

Surreal comedian Paul Foot is making his first trip to Warrington and he is bringing his alter ego and sidekick pig with him.

In Paul’s first new show in two years, Professor Ketchup and his camembert piglet join forces to tackle the big issues like terrorism, Ant and Dec, immigration, The X-Factor and breakfast.

The multi-award winner has appeared on numerous TV and radio programmes including Never Mind the Buzzcocks, Would I Lie to You, 8 Out of 10 Cats, 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown, If Katie Hopkins Ruled The World, Russell Howard’s Good News and The Infinite Monkey Cage on BBC Radio 4.

Time Out said: “Utterly outlandish, but beneath layers of absurdity is Foot’s sharp eye for satire.”
And Three Weeks said: “He’s a comedy whirlwind from the school of Spike Milligan. It’s risky to call someone unique but Foot is certainly pretty close.”

Buy tickets online

World-class jazz saxophonist Chris Potter heads for Warrington

World-class soloist, accomplished composer and formidable bandleader, saxophonist Chris Potter has emerged as a leading light of his generation.

And the people of Warrington will have an opportunity next month to experience his talent, accompanied by The Inner City Ensemble, live at Pyramid arts centre.

Online jazz, blues and roots music magazine Down Beat called him “one of the most studied (and copied) saxophonists on the planet” while Jazz Times identified him as “a figure of international renown”.

Jazz sax elder statesman Dave Liebman described Chris as “one of the best musicians around”, a sentiment shared by the readers of Down Beat in voting him second only to tenor sax great Sonny Rollins in the magazine’s 2008 readers’ poll.

A potent improviser and the youngest musician ever to win Denmark’s Jazzpar Prize, Potter’s impressive discography includes 15 albums as a leader, and sideman appearances on over 100 albums.

He was nominated for a Grammy Award for his solo work on In Vogue, a track from Joanne Brackeen’s 1999 album Pink Elephant Magic, and was prominently featured on Steely Dan’s Grammy-winning album from 2000, Two Against Nature.

He has performed or recorded with many of the leading names in jazz including Herbie Hancock, Dave Holland, John Scofield, the Mingus Big Band, Jim Hall, Paul Motian, Dave Douglas, Ray Brown and many others.

For this second edition in the Jazz Directors Series, presented by Band on the Wall and partners, Potter is performing with the Inner City Ensemble, an evolving group of the UK’s most promising emerging professional musicians, selected through an open call application process.

The Jazz Directors Series is a two-year residency and touring project which brings together emerging UK professional jazz musicians with an internationally revered jazz director.

Tickets for the show on Friday 14 April are available online.

Hilarious new Crissy Rock play will have Parr Hall audience dying with laughter

Hilarious new play Seriously Dead is bringing comedian Crissy Rock back to Parr Hall this summer, and it promises to have the audience dying with laughter.

After the success of Dirty Dusting, a hit comedy show starring Crissy which entertained the Warrington audience last June, the Benidorm actress and star of I’m a Celebrity… Get Me out of Here is returning to the town.

Coming with her will be Leah Bell, who also starred in Dirty Dusting, Frazer Hines of Emmerdale and Doctor Who, Billy Pearce and Paul Dunn.

One ordinary day in the quiet little town of Olwinskirk a chain of extraordinary events begins to take place, bringing the lives of Betty, Albert, Billy and the local undertaker Tristan de Winter to an uncomfortable crossroads.

Albert Blunderstone has been hiding abroad for ten years after having committed a bank robbery with a small time crook called Nodger Wilson.

On the day he flies home to attend a funeral he runs into Betty, who used to be married to Nodger, and in an attempt to find out what happened to his share of the dosh, he befriends Betty and her current husband Billy Blenkinsopp.

The lives of Betty, Albert, Billy and the undertaker become inextricably linked on a path that is leading to The Pearly Gates and a disgruntled Guardian Angel named Thelma.

This is a brand new comedy play which promises to have audiences dying with laughter!

Tickets for the Thursday 22 June Parr Hall date are on sale now.

Thursday 22 June, 7.30pm, £21
Parr Hall, Palmyra Square South, Warrington, WA1 1BL
Buy tickets online

For Those About to Rock returns to Parr Hall after success of last year’s event

Popular music night For Those About to Rock is returning to Parr Hall this December after the 2016 event drew in hundreds of music fans.

With two top tribute acts, Livewire AC/DC and Limehouse Lizzy, co-headlining the 2017 Christmas Jailbreak, Friday 15 December promises to be a night to remember.

Livewire AC/DC is a unique six-man tribute to rock music’s greatest band, AC/DC, and their live shows – two hours of high voltage rock ‘n’ roll – are complete with cannons and a wall of Marshall amps.

Both “Bon” and “Brian” are present on the rock ‘n’ roll train for a night to remember and with the rhythm section locked in the freedom of the stage and the music is given to “Angus Young”, who gives an uncanny performance with meticulous detail in appearance, energy and his note for note heartfelt renditions.

The band aim to put the audience slap bang in the middle of the show with hit after hit, including Back in Black, Rosie and Highway to Hell; there will also be one or two gems thrown in for the aficionados.

Sharing the stage will be Limehouse Lizzy – who have performed for Virgin Atlantic in Barbados, enjoyed TV appearances and been recruited to record and tour by members of the original Thin Lizzy – are entering their 21st year with their most explosive show yet.

The critically-acclaimed line-up have managed to shoehorn For Those About to Rock into a busy schedule of international tours, corporate clients and book appearances in what will be their third co-headline tour with Livewire.

The boys are back in town! And tickets are on sale now.

Friday 15 December, 7.30pm, £20 advance
Parr Hall, Palmyra Square South, Warrington, WA1 1BL
Buy tickets online

Nation’s favourite Psychic Sally celebrates ninth year on road with visit to Parr Hall

The nation’s favourite psychic Sally Morgan is back and better than ever with her brand new and most jaw-dropping show yet, and she’s sharing it with Warrington next month.

Call Me Psychic is a funny, entertaining, sometimes heart-breaking, often controversial show which celebrates Sally’s ninth year on the road.

She brings the dead to life with her trademark sense of fun and intrigue in an interactive stage show that will leave the Parr Hall audience gobsmacked.

Sally said: “I can’t wait to come to Warrington. The psychic energy there will be fizzing before and during the show and there will be laughter and tears and hopefully an unforgettable night for all.
“Every night when I’m on stage amazing things happen and it’s a privilege to be able to pass on messages of love and comfort to the people I share my gift with.”

Sally’s emotional sell-out theatre shows were the subject of Sky Living’s hugely popular television series Psychic Sally: On the Road which followed her gruelling tour schedule showcasing her phenomenal ability to speak with people beyond the grave.

She was also the star of ITV’s Star Psychic and has written several best-selling books, including the latest instalment of her amazing life story Call Me Psychic.

Her straight-talking, down-to-earth style and bubbly personality demystifies the world of spirits and she is credited with bringing mediumship into the 21st century.

Sally had her first psychic experience at the age of four when she saw her first ghost, and has grown up with the ability to receive messages from the spirit world.

It is well-known that she read for Princess Diana for over four years and she has given readings for countless celebrities and public figures, being linked with stars such as George Michael, Katie Price and Helen Flanagan.

She has appeared on television shows such as Loose Women, Big Brother’s Bit on the Side, Celebrity Come Dine with Me and Celebrity Juice.

“There is psychic energy around all of us,” she said.

“Everyone has the ability to plug into it and at the show in Parr Hall I will be able to use that energy to draw messages through from the other side.

“I never know what will come through which means I’m often just as surprised as the audience.

“Sometimes messages are shocking, sometimes they are heart-breaking and sometimes they are just plain bizarre, but they are always entertaining and, ultimately, hopefully the audience will be uplifted and leave full of hope.

“Simply sit back, be open-minded and make sure you come forward if you think there is a message for you. Seeing is believing!”

The show is investigational and for the purpose of entertainment.

Buy tickets online

Radio and TV presenter, musician and writer Mark Radcliffe tells tales of colourful life

Lancashire lad Mark Radcliffe will be sharing his tales of life as a radio DJ and TV presenter, musician and writer on his upcoming visit to Pyramid next month.

Mark has many strings to his bow and as a result has met a variety of fascinating and famous faces along the way.

Plus he’s an “all round cheese fetishist” who’s been making a little go a long way for several decades.

This show is no exception: expect stories and songs of middle-aged angst and ennui along with tales of ineptitude and encounters with some of music’s most famous names who Mark has on speed dial, even if his calls are blocked at the other end.

Radcliffe was one half of BBC Radio 1 duo Mark and Lard who worked on the station for 14 years, including a brief spell on the flagship Breakfast Show and a subsequent afternoon slot which garnered three prestigious Sony Radio Academy Awards.

He later joined BBC Radio 2 and has presented various TV shows for the BBC including its coverage of Glastonbury Festival.

He currently presents The Folk Show on BBC Radio 2 and co-hosts a weekday afternoon show on BBC Radio 6 Music with Stuart Maconie.

Buy tickets online

Musical weekend brings classic sounds to Parr Hall

70s Disco on Friday 17 March, 8pm,
Tickets £7 – Buy online
Northern Soul on Saturday 18 March, 8pm,
Tickets £7 – Buy online

Warrington will boogie the night away this March as two fantastic music events come to Parr Hall.

Music lovers are being invited to don their dance shoes in March for the memorable melodies of 70s Disco and the distinctive rhythms of Northern Soul.

Returning to Parr Hall on Friday 17 March, 70s Disco has proven itself to be an unforgettable night which fans flock to as they step back in time to the disco era, complete with all that glitters, and all that hair!

National DJs will be playing original vinyl and bringing back the sounds of Billy Ocean, Barry White, Edwin Starr, Chairmen of the Board, Bay City Rollers, Detroit Spinners, Donna Summer, Three Degrees, Chic, Kool and The Gang, T. Rex, Sister Sledge, and many more.

For those who prefer rhythm and blues to glitter balls there’s Northern Soul on Saturday 18 March featuring some of the country’s greatest legends of the genre.

A hybrid of American soul music and distinctive dance styles, the genre is still popular almost half a century later and this event will be sure to have Warrington dancing the night away.

These two fantastic nights out are not to be missed!

Much-loved folk group The Dublin Legends to visit Warrington next month

Thursday 23 March 2017, 7.30pm
Parr Hall, Tickets £22.50
Buy tickets online

Much-loved folk group The Dublin Legends, formerly The Dubliners, have toured the world to huge critical acclaim and now they have their sights set on Warrington.

In 2012 The Dubliners celebrated 50 glorious years in the music business by receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards and rapidly followed it up with a sell-out UK concert tour, the highlight of which was a magical night at The Royal Albert Hall.

Sadly however, they subsequently suffered a body blow with the sudden death of founding member “Banjo” Barney McKenna. This tragic occurrence prompted the remaining members to sit down and discuss the band’s future.

The outcome was that Sean Cannon, Eamonn Campbell and Patsy Watchorn decided, like the name of their live greatest hits album, it was “Too Late to Stop Now” and enlisted the services of Gerry O’Connor, to become The Dublin Legends.

Since then they have toured the world to huge critical acclaim, playing all the old classics including Whisky in the Jar, Dirty Old Town and The Wild Rover.

TV star and explorer Levison Wood shares adventures in Warrington show

Thursday 16 March 2017, 7.30pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £22.50/£17.50
Buy tickets online

Best-selling author, photographer and TV presenter Levison Wood will be sharing stories about his terrifying and challenging adventures when his tour calls in to Parr Hall.

An Evening with Levison Wood will give a rare insight into his exploits as a modern day explorer which will no doubt fascinate the Warrington audience.

His shows have been receiving rave reviews across the UK and internationally, the documentary series Walking The Americas has been airing on Channel 4 over the last month and his book of the same name is being published by Hodder & Stoughton this month.

With his keen desire to immerse himself fully in local cultures and customs, Levison Wood has delighted audiences around the globe with stories of his epic adventures, ranging from being chased by crocodiles and hippos in Africa, shot at by gunmen, falling off a mountain, being arrested more times than he can remember and meeting such illustrious characters as the Dalai Lama and George Clooney along the way.

In this adventure-filled one-man show, Levison recounts his amusing and sometimes poignant tales of life as a soldier in the Parachute Regiment and his subsequent transition into an explorer of international standing.

The tour will include further tales and behind the scenes moments from his journeys walking the length of the Nile and climbing the Himalayas, both of which were documented by Channel 4, alongside his most recent travels walking 1,700 miles along the length of Central America, taking in eight countries from Mexico to Colombia and his bid to cross the treacherous Darien Gap.

With his honest accounts of life on the road, Levison hopes to challenge preconceptions and inspire a new generation of adventurers with tales of hope and hospitality, firmly believing the more people go out and see the world, the better a place it will be.

Folk singer/songwriter Seth Lakeman heading to Warrington next month

Saturday 11 March 2017, 7pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £23.50/£18.50
Buy tickets online

West Country folk singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Seth Lakeman is returning to Parr Hall next month as part of a new album tour.

Ballads of the Broken Few, Seth’s eighth studio album was released in September with the single Meet Me in the Twilight playlisted soon after on BBC Radio 2.

The album, which was produced by Ethan Johns, is a stunning combination of the singer’s dynamic songwriting and playing, and the sublime harmony vocals of emerging young female trio Wildwood Kin.

Seth’s soaring vocals are perfectly complemented by the seamless harmonies of Wildwood Kin who are also from Devon.

The BBC Radio 2 Folk Award-winner’s previous albums include Mercury Prize-nominated Kitty Jay, the gold-selling Freedom Fields which featured the hit singles Lady of the Sea and The White Hare, Poor Man’s Heaven, Hearts and Minds, Tales from the Barrel House, and Word of Mouth.

With Ballads of the Broken Few, Seth demonstrates yet again that, far from being complacent, he is constantly exploring new and bold musical paths.

The new tour, which calls in at Warrington on 11 March, will feature tracks from the new album and live favourites from his back catalogue.

More tickets up for grabs for nearly sold-out Al Murray show at Parr Hall

Friday 17 February 2017, 7pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £27.50
Buy tickets online

Extra tickets have been made available for Al Murray The Pub Landlord’s new show at Parr Hall after popular demand.

The popular comedian with his unique brand of humour is calling in at Warrington next Friday, 17 February, and more tickets are now up for grabs after the show nearly sold out.

He calls himself a publican, politician and philosopher and on this tour, Let’s Go Backwards Together, Al will embark on a common sense campaign to “re-Great Britain”.

The critically-acclaimed comedian’s on-stage persona will address Europe, the NHS, “whatever the hell is going on in the Middle East”, the gathering storm of fortnightly bin collections and plenty of other issues which are regular pub chat fodder, all in his typical brash style.

Parr Hall’s audience will be watching The Pub Landlord answer the call of destiny, even though it’s an unlisted number, call time on tyranny, even though he isn’t quite sure what it means, and even say no to women ordering anything other than a glass of white wine or fruit-based drink.

In the 20 years since The Pub Landlord first roared into existence, Al Murray has become “a supremely polished performer” according to Mail on Sunday, and The Daily Telegraph said “Murray’s affectionate, double-edged satire feels as fresh as ever”.

Tickets are on sale now but hurry, they’ll sell-out fast!

Irish folk group The High Kings go on tour with Warrington date

Thursday 8 June 2017, 7pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £20
Buy tickets online

The High Kings, the true heirs of Ireland’s folk heritage, are the most exciting Irish folk group to come along in years, and they’re heading to Warrington on 8 June.

Members Brian Dunphy, Finbarr Clancy, Martin Furey and Darren Holden are all internationally-acclaimed singers of Irish folk songs; a quartet of accomplished musical pedigrees.

The band first exploded onto the Irish folk music scene in 2008 and since then have sold out hundreds of shows in Ireland, the UK, Germany and the US as well as making numerous TV appearances and achieving multi-platinum status.

At the Parr Hall show, The High Kings will showcase their incredible versatility and skills as multi-instrumentalists, playing 13 instruments between the four of them, bringing a rousing acoustic flavour to brand new songs as well as some old favourites including The Rocky Road to Dublin, The Town I Loved So Well and The Parting Glass.

Family favourite Milkshake! Live returns to Warrington with two fun shows

Milkshake-SquareSaturday 29 July 2017, 11.30am & 3pm,
Parr Hall, £14.50/under 16s £13/family ticket £51
Buy Tickets Online

Family favourite Milkshake! Live is returning to Parr Hall with more fun and old friends.

The Magic Story Book will star kids’ TV favourites like Bob the Builder, Little Princess, Noddy, Fireman Sam, Shimmer and Shine, Pip from Pip Ahoy!, Winnie and Wilbur, and Wissper.

This all-singing, all-dancing, musical masterpiece is led by Milkshake’s very own Milkshake! Monkey and two Milkshake! presenters who promise to take the Warrington audiences on an amazing journey through the world’s favourite fairytales.

Set inside Milkshake’s magical bookcase, this is a brand new live show sure to amaze and delight as the cast sing songs and share stories that young and old will know and love.

Kings of “popera” G4 showcase new album with show at Parr Hall

G4webThursday 2 March 2017, 7.30pm
Parr Hall, £75 VIP package/£32.50/£28.50
Buy tickets online

The so-called “kings of popera” G4 will be performing exciting new tracks from their brand new album Love Songs when they visit Parr Hall next month.

G4 – Live in Concert will call into Warrington on Thursday 2 March, hot on the heels of the release of their new album ‘G4 Love Songs’.

Due to overwhelming demand for the vocal harmony group, who shot to fame on ITV’s The X Factor, multi-platinum selling G4 are back on the road with special guests and their trademark harmonies which wow audiences wherever they go.

Having reformed in 2014 they have continued to transport their loyal following right back to the moment they first fell in love with G4’s sound.

The group are excited to take their classic releases of Bohemian Rhapsody, My Way and Nessun Dorma on the road and are also thrilled to showcase some of the greatest love songs of all time as they tour their hotly-anticipated album G4 Love Songs for the very first time.

The new album features songs including Your Song, Amigos Para Siempre and I’d Do Anything for Love and the show promises to be an evening of classic and romantic music that will transport the Warrington audience away with these consummate entertainers.

VIP tickets include a pre-show meet and greet with G4 at 6pm, with a glass of wine and a chance to take photos and autographs.

Nation’s favourite bear Sooty is bringing his friends to Warrington

sooty-webTuesday 21 February, Shows at 11am and 2.30pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £12/£10
Buy tickets online

Izzy, wizzy, let’s get busy, because the nation’s favourite TV bear Sooty is bringing his friends to Warrington’s Parr Hall this month for a fun-packed show.

The hugely popular children’s character and his friends Sweep and Soo are back for two shows on Tuesday 21 February with guaranteed giggles for all the family.

There will also be a chance to meet Sooty and Richard!

This brand new show, inspired by the hit CITV programme, will see Sooty, Sweep and Soo spreading mischief while their friend Richard Cadell tries to keep things running smoothly.

Sooty’s magic tricks turn very messy and Sweep’s escapology act has him all tied up. Maybe Soo and her tap dancing will save the day? Special guest stars include Butch and Ramsbottom who will also join the fun.

Expect magic, music and mayhem with a bucketful of audience participation: this is a spectacular treat for Sooty fans old and new.

The Guardian said the show “works like a dream – your children will love it”, Netmums described it as “absolutely brilliant” and former Sooty star Matthew Corbett said: “Richard Cadell is as close to a Corbett as you will ever get – Sooty is on the right hands”.

Warrington Museum is hosting a brilliantly scary and immersive live theatre event, Reckless Rulers

Reckless rulers new webWarrington Museum is hosting a brilliantly scary and immersive live theatre event providing visitors with a fascinating foray into the past.

Following on from the success of the sell-out events Rotten Luck and Smoke & Mirrors, Blackwood Events are giving the public another chance to become part of the history books with Reckless Rulers.

A talented cast of actors will take three groups on a unique tour of the museum’s haunted rooms while sharing the darkest details and performing an array of animated scenes from local history.

Rowan Arnold, writer for Blackwood Events, said: “Visitors can join the Roman Empire and see if they’ve got what it takes to defend the town, fight against the Yorkshire puddings by helping Henry Tudor defeat the vicious Richard III in the War of the Roses, and discover the truth behind “The Great Fire of Warrington”.

“Ruthless Romans and vicious Vikings will be some of the gruesome characters visitors will meet during their journey through Warrington’s horrible history.

“Reckless Rulers is a great event, a unique mix of stories, scares and comedy designed to entertain and educate through live action, lighting, audio and effects; there really is nothing else like it and I look forward to welcoming as many visitors as possible.”

Derek Dick, outreach and engagement manager, added: “We’re really pleased to support Blackwood Events, a young and exciting company, and to showcase this live experience event at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery.

“The group’s enthusiasm for storytelling is a great way to bring history to life and they make the most of the brilliant space and exhibitions we have here.

“The last two events have been huge successes and it’s wonderful to see visitors engaging in their local history so actively, especially the younger ones who thoroughly enjoy immersing themselves in the stories they hear.”

This family-friendly event has three 45-minute performances to choose from at 6.30pm, 7.30pm and 8.30pm; tickets cost £7.50 or £25 for a group of 4, and are free to Culture Warrington members. Buy tickets online

Interview with ROB BECKETT – ‘MOUTH OF THE SOUTH’ UK TOUR

Rob Beckett Banner

Interview 2016/2017
By James Rampton

Rob Beckett is one of the most popular comedians in the country. His stand-up shows sell out at the drop of a hat, as audiences are attracted to his brilliant sense of humour, his superb material, his livewire stage presence and his dazzling, mega-watt likability.
He is the sort of bloke you’d love to go for a drink with down the local pub – if that bloke also happened ‎to be the most hilarious man you’d ever met! Audiences up and down the country are just dying to spend time in his company.

The critics agree. The Mail on Sunday raves that Rob, “Lights up the stage with his magnetic personality (not to mention the dazzle from his teeth)”. Meanwhile, ‎the Guardian praises him as,‎ “A relentlessly smiley, perpetually grinning Londoner with an unshowy, unpretentious, but thoroughly funny shtick.” So it’s extremely good news for all of us that Rob is about to embark on a major nationwide tour with a show entitled “Mouth of the South”.

But what makes the 30-year-old even more appealing is the fact that he does not take his huge success for granted.‎ “I just try and be a normal bloke,” observes Rob, who is a very popular host of the Absolute Radio show, Rock’n’Roll Football.

“You don’t need to be diva-ish in this business. At the end of the day, we’re just chatting on stage. I’m genuinely grateful that people come to see me. If it wasn’t for the audience, I wouldn’t have a jet-wash – I’d just have an ordinary hose!”

Rob, who gave a blistering performance at Channel 4’s Comedy Gala at the 02 recently, ‎goes on to explain the depth of his gratitude. “I’ve done hundreds of low-paid jobs in my time. I used to work in a flower market carrying around bags of compost. So the fact that I can now put my face on a poster and people will turn up for the show makes me so pleased!

‎”When I started out as a comedian, I thought, ‘If I can just about make a living doing comedy‎, I’ll be the happiest man in the world!’ So, as you can imagine, I’m pretty happy now!”

Mention of his audience brings us to the fact that one of Rob’s trademarks is his wonderful relationship with the people who flock to his shows.

The comedian, who between 2012 and 2014 co-presented the ITV2 spin-off show I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! NOW!, says that this stems from his natural ‎curiosity. “I’m just nosey! I love talking to the audience and getting them involved. I really like hearing their stories. People do the strangest jobs.

“Last night, for instance, someone in the audience‎ told me he was a change manager at a company producing floret salads. So basically he’s in charge of what leaves go in the salad! I like asking questions – it keeps the show fresh.”

Another element that keeps “Mouth of the South” fresh is the fact that Rob never rests on his laurels; he makes sure his material is constantly evolving. The stand-up, who won the Amused Moose Laugh-Off in 2009, reflects that, “I don’t want to feel desperate and that I have to hold on to certain bits. I don’t want to be living in fear of altering a routine.

“For my own sense of self-worth, I’d rather change it and let it progress. I enjoy that much more. That’s how I can do 200 shows on a tour because it’s always growing and changing. If I didn’t do that, I’d have gone mad by now!”

Rob, who also enjoys a thriving TV career and has appeared on such shows as Mock the Week, 8 Out of 10 Cats, Live at the Apollo and Never Mind the Buzzcocks, reveals that on the “Mouth of the South” tour he will be covering such down-to-earth, relatable subjects as holidays, Christmas, cold calls and nights out. His routines work so well because they are taken from his own ‎life.

Rob, who hails from South London says that, “I adored the American stand-up Bill Hicks. He used to do fantastic routines about drugs and guns. After hearing that, I thought, ‘No one will want to hear me talk about my life”.

“But then I saw Alan Davies and Peter Kay and realised you can be just as funny talking about nothing very much. If you walk into a pub and say to your mates, ‘What about the new Kit Kats?’, and you can be funny about that, I think that’s quite an achievement.”

Rob adds that he never scripts a show with an o‎ver-arching theme. According to the comedian, “I never write a show with a big narrative because I’d end up trying too hard and getting bored.

Rob proceeds to underscore just how delighted he is by the way in which his comedy career has panned out. “I enjoy making people laugh so much. I’m as funny as I can be for 90 minutes. I try and take people’s minds off things for an hour and a half. If you ever stop enjoying that, that’s the moment to give up.”

He concludes that, “Before I did stand-up, I’d always been rubbish at everything. I was doing all sorts of terrible jobs on the minimum wage and living in a grotty flat in Lewisham.

“Then I started doing comedy, and all of a sudden I finally found something I was good at. People were coming up to me after shows and saying, ‘I was feeling down beforehand, but you’ve really cheered me up tonight’. What a lovely thing to hear!

“At last I’ve discovered something I can do well, and I‎’m not letting it go!”

I’m sure I’m not the only one who is very glad to hear that!

Buy tickets for Rob Beckett online

Grammy Award-nominated DJ and producer Todd Terry announces Warrington visit

TT WebSaturday 15 April 2017, 4pm, £15
Parr Hall, Tickets £15
Buy tickets online

Grammy Award-nominated DJ and producer Todd Terry has announced a special visit to Warrington’s Parr Hall in April.

Todd is one of the world’s most celebrated figures in dance music and with almost two decades of dance floor domination under his belt the quality of his productions goes from strength to strength.

The American DJ has been engulfed in dance music since he first started listening to European dance music records while growing up in Brooklyn.

Already devoted to turntables, he heard something different in those tracks and later said: “I never got a break in New York but England happened right away so I catered to them.”

By 1988, Todd hit big in England and Europe and his notoriety was making its way back to the US.

In addition to DJ appearances, Todd was cutting his classic underground tracks A Day in the Life, Weekend and Can You Party, released under monikers such as The Todd Terry Project, House of Gypsies and Royal House, all considered essential and ground-breaking.

In the mid-90s, the Ministry of Sound’s eponymous UK label released A Day in the Life, a collection of Todd Terry tracks that had been causing dance floor panic; this led to a deal with Mercury Records and the first release, Keep On Jumpin’, featured a vocal workout from super-divas Martha Wash and Jocelyn Brown, together for the first time ever.

The song became a top 10 UK crossover pop hit and worldwide smash which Todd followed with the anthem Somethin’ Going On, a top 5 UK crossover pop hit.

Meanwhile, Todd continued to break new ground as a producer and remixer; from SNAP to Annie Lennox, George Michael to Bjork, Todd’s mixes bridge the ground between club cool and commercial accessibility.

In 1995, his remix for Everything but the Girl’s Missing became a worldwide smash, giving the British duo their first ever hit.

He then rode the charts with mixes for Garbage (Stupid Girl), The Cardigans (Love Fool), Everything but the Girl (Wrong), 10,000 Maniacs (More Than This), Jamiroquai (Alright), The Cardigans (Been It), and The Lightning Seeds (You Showed Me), among others.

He also produced a Robin S track (Givin’ You All That I’ve Got) for the multi-platinum Space Jam soundtrack.

Much-loved band The Undertones return with date at Parr Hall

The Undertones WebSaturday 11 November 2017, 7.30pm
Parr Hall, Tickets £20 advance
Buy tickets online

Much-loved band The Undertones are building on the success of their comeback tour last year with a raft of new dates, including a trip to Warrington.

Legendary Radio 1 DJ John Peel, who the band listened to religiously as aspiring musicians, was famously so smitten with their hit single Teenage Kicks that he played it twice back to back and declared it was his favourite song of all time.

2016 marked the band’s 40th anniversary and the Derry boys celebrated with a variety of scorching live performances at festivals and venues throughout the UK and Europe.

The reviews have been glowing and many critics and fans say the band are playing as well as, or better than, ever before.

This success has spurred the band on to announce a string of further dates in the UK, including Parr Hall on 11 November, as well as a European tour and their first ever forays into Australia and New Zealand.

The shows were an exhilarating live experience for the band and the fans evidently felt the same way.

Bassist Mickey Bradley said: “To be honest, we had such a great time on the last tour that we thought we’d try our luck again. And I promise to use new bass strings to celebrate.”

2016 also saw vinyl remasters of the band’s first two LPs, The Undertones and Hypnotised, and a 7 inch vinyl remix of the 1979 single Get Over You.

Michael Bradley also published his book Teenage Kicks: My Life as an Undertone.

Radio and TV presenter, musician and writer Mark Radcliffe tells tales of colourful life

mrad-webThursday 13 April 2017, 7.30pm
Pyramid, Tickets £14.50
Buy tickets online

Lancashire lad Mark Radcliffe will be sharing his tales of life as a radio DJ and TV presenter, musician and writer on his upcoming visit to Pyramid.

Mark has many strings to his bow and as a result has met a variety of fascinating and famous faces along the way.

Plus he’s an “all round cheese fetishist” who’s been making a little go a long way for several decades.

This show is no exception: expect stories and songs of middle-aged angst and ennui along with tales of ineptitude and encounters with some of music’s most famous names who Mark has on speed dial, even if his calls are blocked at the other end.

Radcliffe was one half of BBC Radio 1 duo Mark and Lard who worked on the station for 14 years, including a brief spell on the flagship Breakfast Show and a subsequent afternoon slot which garnered three prestigious Sony Radio Academy Awards.

He later joined BBC Radio 2 and has presented various TV shows for the BBC including its coverage of Glastonbury Festival.

He currently presents The Folk Show on BBC Radio 2 and co-hosts a weekday afternoon show on BBC Radio 6 Music with Stuart Maconie.

Enjoy the time of your life with ultimate tribute to Dirty Dancing at Parr Hall

DD WebSunday 17 September, 7.30pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £24/£22
Buy tickets online

No film has captured the hearts of a generation like Dirty Dancing and now there’s a chance to relive the excitement as this top quality tribute show travels to Warrington.

A Night of Dirty Dancing is the ultimate tribute to the original film which saw an entire generation fall in love with Patrick Swayze and long to be Jennifer Grey.

The Parr Hall performance on Sunday 17 September is a chance to relive the passion, indulge in the romance and celebrate the greatest movie soundtrack of all time.

Recast and re-scripted for 2017, it’s all down to Kellerman’s end of season show: revel in the cherished moments, the memories made and the music that resonated throughout the years in this timeless theatrical treat.

Expect to hear She’s Like the Wind, Big Girls Don’t Cry, Hey Baby, Wipeout, Do You Love Me, Be My Baby, Hungry Eyes and of course, the Academy Award-winning (I’ve Had) The Time of My Life in the ultimate coming of age romance.

The Warrington audience is invited to immerse itself in this ultimate coming of age romance.

Extra performance added to Jimmy Carr’s trip to Warrington

PrintSaturday 23 September 2017, 7pm and just announced 10pm show
Parr Hall, Tickets £27.50
Buy tickets online

Due to huge demand for tickets top comedian Jimmy Carr has announced a second performance for his September visit to Parr Hall.

The stand-up comic, TV star and all-round entertainer is bringing his ‘Best Of, Ultimate, Gold, Greatest Hits Tour’ to the Warrington venue for two shows featuring a selection of his very best jokes and brand new material.

A man who has devoted his life to crafting perfect jokes and has left a trail of laughter in his wake, Jimmy Carr’s new tour will distil everything we love to laugh at and be shocked by into one incredible, unparalleled night of entertainment.

In short, it promises to be the ultimate comedy show.

Jimmy Carr has been on the stand-up scene for a decade and a half, and in that time he’s performed nine sell-out tours, playing nearly 2,000 shows to over 2 million people across 4 continents.

He’s won the British Comedy Award for ‘Best Live Stand-Up Tour’ and been nominated for the Perrier Award.

Now, all that experience is being put to good use and you can see all the greatest material from his extraordinary career in one show.

This is the very best of Jimmy Carr.

Tickets for the new 10pm performance are on sale now

Warrington’s Parr Hall to welcome pub landlord Al Murray next month

Al Murray WebFriday 17 February 2017, 7pm
Parr Hall, Tickets £27.50
Buy tickets online

Pub landlord Al Murray is set to bring his distinctive brand of humour back to Parr Hall next month.

He calls himself a publican, politician and philosopher and on this tour, Let’s Go Backwards Together, he will embark on a common sense campaign to “re-Great Britain”.

The critically-acclaimed comedian’s on-stage persona will address Europe, the NHS, “whatever the hell is going on in the Middle East”, the gathering storm of fortnightly bin collections and plenty of other issues which are regular pub chat fodder, all in his typical brash style.

Parr Hall’s audience will be watching The Pub Landlord answer the call of destiny, even though it’s an unlisted number, call time on tyranny, even though he isn’t quite sure what it means, and even say no to women ordering anything other than a glass of white wine or fruit-based drink.

In the 20 years since The Pub Landlord first roared into existence, Al Murray has become “a supremely polished performer” according to Mail on Sunday, and The Daily Telegraph said “Murray’s affectionate, double-edged satire feels as fresh as ever”.

Award-winning comedian and actor Omid Djalili to visit Warrington next month

Omid WebSaturday 4 February 2017, £24,
Parr Hall, Tickets £24
Buy tickets online

The award-winning comedian and actor Omid Djalili known for his legendary stand-up performances is now on tour and is calling in at Parr Hall next month.

The British-Iranian comedian is intelligent, sometimes provocative and always entertaining and his Schmuck for a Night tour promises to be a hugely energetic and captivating comedy masterclass.

Omid’s credits range from Hollywood to television and live performances on the West End stage, earning him praise across the world for his performances.

He recently starred in BBC One’s Dickensian and Sky 1’s Lucky Man.

According to The Telegraph he is “one of the most joyfully smart, stimulating and entertaining comedians this country has”, Sunday Times described his show as full of “belly laughs with a subtle blend of mainstream gags and subversive twinkle”, and Metro called it a “confident, engaging and thoughtful show… did someone say National Treasure?”

Rock icon Steve Harley announces Warrington tour date

steve-harley-webSaturday 22 July 2017, 7pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £27.50
Buy tickets online

Classic rock icon and original Cockney Rebel Steve Harley will be playing at Parr Hall in July as part of a UK tour.

Steve Harley, who has written and recorded 11 albums in a prolific career spanning four decades, recently returned to the public eye for re-releasing former No. 1 Make Me Smile (Come Up and See Me) following the tragic murder of MP Jo Cox.

Together with Kaiser Chiefs’ Ricky Wilson, KT Tunstall and David Gray, he formed The Friends of Jo Cox and re-released the song in tribute on 16 December, with proceeds going towards charities the MP had supported.

Originally formed in 1973, Cockney Rebel enjoyed top 20 hits with Judy Teen, Mr Soft, Mr Raffles, Here Comes the Sun and, of course, their No.1 Make Me Smile (Come Up and See Me).

The latter is regularly voted among the top singles in the history of the charts, which covers six decades of releases, and The Performing Rights Society has confirmed Make Me Smile as one of the most played records in British broadcasting.

The song has been covered more than 100 times in seven languages, has been featured in several movies including The Full Monty and been used on more than twenty TV and radio advertising campaigns around the world.

Steve has written lyrics for artists including Rod Stewart, who called him “one of the finest lyricists the UK has ever produced”, and continues to play live concerts most years.

He said: “I love it, more now than ever. I cannot imagine stopping it, it’s what I do, play and sing.”

Tickets to Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel’s Warrington show are on sale now on Steve’s website and See Tickets, and via Pyramid and Parr Hall from 9am on Monday 16 January.

Culture Warrington is delighted to announce the winners of its panto poster competition

Aladdin banner 2

Culture Warrington is delighted to announce the winners of its panto poster competition.
Youngsters were invited to design a poster to celebrate Aladdin, which is currently enjoying a run of performances at Parr Hall, and the entries received were of an excellent standard.
Judges had a hard time choosing the winners but are delighted to announce that first place in the seven and under category went to seven-year-old Maisy Berry and in the eight and above category the winner was Zak Hillyard, aged 10.
The winning entries have now taken pride of place outside Parr Hall for all to see, in time for the upcoming performances on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Maisy and Zak also won family tickets to see The Sooty Show at the Culture Warrington venue on 21 February, a family swimming pass to any of LiveWire’s pools and a goody bag.
Tickets for this weekend’s performances are still available by popping in to Box Office, by calling 01925 442345 or buy online

Maisy Berry, age 7

Maisy Berry, age 7

Zak Hillyard, age 10

Zak Hillyard, age 10

Living legend Ken Dodd sharing a little happiness with Warrington

KenDoddWEBSunday 29 January, 5pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £21
Buy tickets online

The nation’s favourite comedian Ken Dodd, recently made Sir Ken Dodd, is bringing his Happiness Show to Warrington later this month.

The 88-year-old’s incredible and hugely-successful career as a professional entertainer now spans more than 60 fun-filled years and he’s decided it’s high time he revisited Parr Hall.

Ken is a comedian of unrivalled and legendary status who has been entertaining audiences for a lifetime of happiness and laughter.

And that dedication was rewarded with a knighthood in this year’s Queen’s New Year Honours.

Anyone who comes along to enjoy his famous Happiness Show will be absolutely discumknockerated (that’s Knotty Ash for over the moon) by a truly tattifelarius (fun-filled) evening of laughter and songs.

With a supporting company, non-stop gags and a selection of songs presented in his uniquely versatile style, there’ll be everything from ballads to grand opera.

The comedian is a multi-award winning entertainer who loves nothing more than performing for theatre audiences, so don’t miss his fun-filled Happiness Show, a great night out for all the family.

Much-loved folk group The Dublin Legends set sights on Warrington

tdl-webThursday 23 March 2017, 7.30pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £22.50
Buy tickets online

Much-loved folk group The Dublin Legends, formerly The Dubliners, have toured the world to huge critical acclaim and now they have their sights set on Warrington.

In 2012 The Dubliners celebrated 50 glorious years in the music business by receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards and rapidly followed it up with a sell-out UK concert tour, the highlight of which was a magical night at The Royal Albert Hall.

Sadly however, they subsequently suffered a body blow with the sudden death of founding member “Banjo” Barney McKenna: this tragic occurrence prompted the remaining members to sit down and discuss the band’s future.

The outcome was that Sean Cannon, Eamonn Campbell and Patsy Watchorn decided, like the name of their live greatest hits album, it was “Too Late to Stop Now” and enlisted the services of Gerry O’Connor, to become The Dublin Legends.

Since then they have toured the world to huge critical acclaim.

Tickets to see The Dublin Legends at Parr Hall on Thursday 23 March are on sale now.

The amazing story of the Bee Gees comes to Parr Hall

ywa-webThursday 30 March 2017, 7.30pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £24/£22/10th ticket free
Buy tickets online

Following its West End debut at the Leicester Square Theatre, You Win Again – The Story of the Bee Gees will be embarking on its first ever nationwide tour.

The Parr Hall audience will have a chance to immerse itself in the Gibb brother’s hits through the sixties, seventies and eighties, not to mention the glittering array of classics they wrote for other stars.

This spectacular production tells the incredible story of the Bee Gees in an all-new musical experience.

Follow the band and their lives, through the early charting triumphs, their fall from grace and their meteoric climb back to the top to become the multi-million selling super group known and loved by millions across the globe.

This breathtaking concert spectacular will take the Warrington audience on a musical journey through all the best songs including Night Fever, Stayin’ Alive, More Than a Woman, You Should Be Dancing, How Deep is Your Love?, Tragedy and Words.

Tickets for the show at Parr Hall on Thursday 30 March are on sale now.

Box Office Christmas Opening Times 2016

Opening Times banner

Box Office Christmas Opening Times 2016

We have special opening hours over the Christmas period. The Box Office will be open during the following times:

Thursday 22 December 9am – 5pm
Friday 23 December 9am – 5pm
Saturday 24 December 10am – 2pm
Sunday 25 December Closed
Monday 26 December Closed
Tuesday 27 December Closed
Wednesday 28 December 10am – 2pm
Thursday 29 December 10am – 2pm
Friday 30 December 10am – 2pm
Saturday 31 December 10am – 2pm
Sunday 1 December Closed
Monday 2 December Closed

Normal Box Office opening hours will resume from Tuesday 3 January.

Check out the Visiting Us page for further information about visiting Pyramid & Parr Hall.

Discover a whole new world with panto poster competition

Aladdin banner 2

DESIGN a poster to celebrate the launch of Aladdin at Parr Hall to be in with the chance of winning a collection of prizes.
We have joined forces with the Warrington Guardian to offer you the opportunity to create an Aladdin-themed panto poster with the winning entries to take pride of place outside Parr Hall for the final weekend of the show’s run.
Judges will pick their favourites from two categories – seven and under and eight and above.
Both winners will also be awarded a family ticket to The Sooty Show at Parr Hall on Tuesday, February 21, a family swimming pass for use at any of LiveWire’s pools and a goody bag.

The deadline for entries is Monday, January 9.

Designs should be sent to Panto Poster Competition, Pyramid Arts Centre, Cultural Quarter, Palmyra Square South, Warrington, WA1 1BL.

The winners will be announced on Thursday, January 12.

Terms and conditions apply.

Stars of Parr Hall panto spread festive cheer on children’s ward

panto-smallFriday 6 January 2017 – Sunday 15 January 2017, 1.30pm & 17.30pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £12.50/£10.50/£40 family ticket/10th ticket free
Buy tickets online

Young patients at Warrington Hospital had huge smiles on their faces this week thanks to a surprise visit by the cast of Parr Hall’s panto Aladdin.

The hero Aladdin with Ping and Pong, from the talented troop of actors who will be entertaining audiences in January, made a special visit to the hospital’s A&E and children’s ward to spread some festive cheer.

They caused quite a stir in their extravagant costumes and met with friendly smiles and calls of “Happy Christmas” wherever they went.

Tony Peers, theatrical producer at Tony Peers Ltd which is running the show, said he was excited about bringing the panto to Warrington.

Himself an actor and comedian before becoming a producer, Tony said: “I always look forward to bringing the panto to Warrington because I performed in Jack and the Beanstalk at Parr Hall many years ago.

“I thoroughly enjoyed it; Warrington’s a great place.

“We do summer shows and lots of one-off performances throughout the year but pantomimes are always special.

“They’re such a great Christmas tradition, and really are entertainment for the whole family, from grandmas and grandpas right down to the little ones.”

The stars of the show also enjoyed a warm welcome when they visited Warrington for the Christmas lights switch-on at Golden Square last month and are looking forward to returning to the town in January.

Nichola Lagan, who plays Aladdin, added: “This panto tells the classic tale of Arabian nights, a genie in a lamp and a beautiful princess, and we’re all determined the Warrington audience will thoroughly enjoy the show.

“It’s a magical story which really captures the imagination of the children and we as a cast couldn’t be more excited about taking it to the Parr Hall stage.”

Tickets for the panto, which runs from Friday 6 January to Sunday 15 January, are on sale now, with special offers available.

hospital-visit-4-low-res

Spoiler Alert! Ed Byrne’s new tour comes to Warrington

ed-byrne-webFriday 8 December 2017, 8pm,
Tickets £24
Buy tickets online

Top comedian Ed Byrne, the unrivalled master of observational comedy, is bringing his brand new stand up show to Parr Hall.

Spoiler Alert! is the latest show by the star of Dara and Ed’s Big Adventure and regular panellist on Mock the Week, both on the BBC, and during his twenty years in comedy, Ed has enjoyed huge critical and popular success in the UK and Ireland.

He has performed hit tours, sold out many runs at the Edinburgh Fringe, had a successful two-week run in the West End and appeared on the stage and big screen as well as radio and television.

The Sunday Telegraph described Ed as “at the top of his game” and The Scotsman said: “It is rare for a comic to merit the word ‘masterful’ but in this case it is no overstatement.”

An Edinburgh Festivals Magazine review read: “Hilarious anecdotes… I assure you Ed Byrne is one comedian you should definitely see.”

Classic ballet Cinderella tells rags to riches tale at Parr Hall

vfbwebSunday 14 May 2017, time,
Tickets £19.50/£17.50/£12.50
Buy tickets online

This beautiful adaptation of the classic rags to riches story of Cinderella promises to wow the Warrington audience on its May visit.

Vienna Festival Ballet is proud to present the age-old fairytale on a Spring tour with music by G A Rossini and choreography by Sheila Styles.

A mistreated young girl, a glass slipper, two comical ugly step-sisters and a handsome prince combine to make a perfect piece of story-telling.

Vienna Festival Ballet’s production of Cinderella is based on the traditional story which will no doubt touch the heart of the audience through this performance – a combination of pure classical dancing and a hint of pantomime.

The musical score contains a collection of Rossini’s most famous operatic achievements and has been specially arranged for Vienna Festival Ballet.

Tickets to this magical show, on Sunday 14 May 2017, are on sale now.

New tour to feature The Jam classics and Bruce Foxton solo hits

ftj-webFriday 28 April 2017, 7.30pm,
Tickets £20 advance/£23 on the door
Buy tickets online

From The Jam are bringing The Jam classics and Bruce Foxton solo hits to Parr Hall in Warrington as part of their latest tour.

From The Jam have gained a reputation for the kind of incendiary live performances that sealed the reputation of The Jam all those years ago.

The Parr Hall audience can expect to hear classic The Jam hits such as Down in the Tube Station at Midnight, Going Underground, Town Called Malice and The Modern World as well as some live favourites and songs from Bruce’s solo career.

The Jam exploded onto the punk scene in 1977 delivering their ferocious mission statement in the form of debut single In the City.

With a catalogue that includes 18 UK Top 40 singles, The Jam became the sound of the British youth and one of the greatest and biggest-selling bands in British history.

In 2000, Q magazine placed The Jam’s third album All Mod Cons at Number 50 in its list of the 100 Greatest British Albums Ever.

Marc Almond selects Parr Hall as one of just five venues for tour

almond-webTuesday 28 March 2017, 7.30pm,
Tickets £55/£37.50/£27.50/£22.50
Buy tickets online

Warrington’s Parr Hall has been selected as one of just five venues to host an eagerly-anticipated tour by Marc Almond.

One of Britain’s most gifted and unique vocal talents, Marc Almond, who is best known for being one half of Soft Cell and his hugely successful solo career, has announced a UK tour in March 2017.

He will be performing songs from both eras ahead of a new album Hits and Pieces to be released the same month.

With shows in London, Perth, York, Buxton and Warrington, the tour is a celebration of Marc Almond’s 60th birthday year and will feature a full band performing No. 1 singles Tainted Love, which spent a record 43 consecutive weeks in the US singles charts, Something’s Gotten Hold Of My Heart, recorded with Gene Pitney, plus many more of his biggest and best-loved hits.

The songs performed on the tour will also feature on the new album Hits and Pieces which will be available in one and two-CD formats on Universal.

Described by The Observer as “a musician who has never stood still”, Marc Almond found fame in the early 1980s as one half of the pioneering synth-pop duo Soft Cell, and has had a hugely successful, prolific and diverse solo career that has seen him sell more than 30 million records worldwide.

His back catalogue includes much-revered interpretations of Belgian singer-songwriter Jacques Brel songs as well as his own self-penned pieces.

Q Magazine recently referred to Marc Almond as “one of pop’s greatest voices” and he has also collaborated with many other legendary figures in music including Tony Visconti, Jools Holland and Nico.

Most recently, Marc performed as part of the BBC Proms celebration of David Bowie’s music.

Now, as he approaches his 60th birthday, these shows are an opportunity to celebrate the “hits and pieces” that have made up one of the most iconic careers in British popular music.

Brit Award-winning KT Tunstall returns to Parr Hall to showcase new album

kt-tunstall_webFriday 26 May 2017, 7pm,
Tickets £35/£25/£17.50
Buy tickets online

Brit Award-winning singer KT Tunstall is returning to Parr Hall as part of a 2017 tour to showcase her new album KIN.

The Warrington show, on 26 May, is one of eight new dates announced today alongside news that her new single It Took Me So Long to Get Here, But Here I Am will be released on 6 January.

Brit Award and Ivor Novello Award-winning KT was recently honoured further with the Inspirational Artist gong at the Women in Music Awards.

It Took Me So Long to Get Here, But Here I Am is the third single taken from the full-bodied and full-blooded album KIN which was released earlier this year to rave reviews.

It debuted at No. 7 on the official UK Album Chart and follows previous critically-acclaimed albums Eye To The Telescope, Drastic Fantastic, Tiger Suit and Invisible Empire // Crescent Moon.

KT has a busy few months ahead as she will be a special guest in the Jamie Cullum & Friends Jazz Café show, which raises money for Help Refugees, in London on 4 December, and lending her vocal talents to a charity single in memory of MP Jo Cox.

Early 2017 will see KT supporting Simple Minds across Europe before heading out on her own headline tour which includes a show at Warrington’s Parr Hall on 26 May.

Folk singer/songwriter Seth Lakeman announces Warrington show

seth-lakeman-webSaturday 11 March 2017, 7pm,
Tickets £23.50/£18.50
Buy tickets online

West Country folk singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Seth Lakeman is returning to Parr Hall as part of a new album tour.

Ballads of the Broken Few, Seth’s eighth studio album was released in September with the single Meet Me in the Twilight playlisted soon after on BBC Radio 2.

The album, which was produced by Ethan Johns, is a stunning combination of the singer’s dynamic songwriting and playing, and the sublime harmony vocals of emerging young female trio Wildwood Kin.

Seth’s soaring vocals are perfectly complemented by the seamless harmonies of Wildwood Kin who are also from Devon.

The BBC Radio 2 Folk Award-winner’s previous albums include Mercury Prize-nominated Kitty Jay, the gold-selling Freedom Fields which featured the hit singles Lady of the Sea and The White Hare, Poor Man’s Heaven, Hearts and Minds, Tales from the Barrel House, and Word of Mouth.

With Ballads of the Broken Few, Seth demonstrates yet again that, far from being complacent, he is constantly exploring new and bold musical paths.

The new tour, which calls in at Warrington on 11 March 2017, will feature tracks from the new album and live favourites from his back catalogue.

Funny man Rob Beckett tackles big issues in Warrington show

robbeckkett-webTuesday 21 February 2017, 7.15pm,
Tickets £16
Buy tickets online

Comedian Rob Beckett is back with a brand new show of funnies and this time he is taking on the big issues like Kit Kats and flatbread.

The so-called “Mouth of the South”, which also happens to be the name of the tour, has appeared on every top comedy show going, including BBC1’s Live At The Apollo and Would I Lie To You?, Channel 4’s 8 Out Of 10 Cats and 8 Out of Cats Does Countdown, BBC2’s Mock the Week, ITV’s Play to the Whistle, and ITV2’s Celebrity Juice.

Rob is also a host on TV channel Dave’s podcast The Magic Sponge alongside Jimmy Bullard and Ian Smith, as well as hosting Absolute Radio’s hit show Rock n Roll Football.

The Metro said “there are hints that his eyes are set firmly on arenas that are as big as his mouth” and The Guardian described him as a “relentlessly smiley, perpetually grinning Londoner whose unshowy, unpretentious but thoroughly funny shtick has every chance of winning him a big audience”.

Mail on Sunday said he “lights up the stage with his magnetic personality (not to mention the dazzle from his teeth)”.

Comedian Rich Hall’s grouchiness set to make Warrington smile

Rich WebFriday 9 December, 8pm,
Tickets £16
But Tickets online

TV star and comedian Rich Hall is returning to Parr Hall to share his grouchy, deadpan style with the Warrington public on his latest tour.

As the star of the critically-acclaimed BBC4 documentaries Rich Hall’s California Stars, Rich Hall’s You Can Go to Hell, I’m Going to Texas, and Rich Hall’s Inventing the Indian, his unique sense of humour has established him as a master of absurdist irony and the king of rapid-fire wit.

The American will be visiting Warrington fresh off the back of success with Rich Hall’s (US Election) Breakdown which guided listeners through the chaos that was the US presidential election on BBC Radio 4, a station he now knows well after having his documentary In Search Of Southern Hospitality aired on it in April.

The award-winning comedian, renowned for his expertly-crafted tirades and banter with audiences, has saddled up and hitched his wagon to tour the British Isles once again.

And this tour promises to leave the Parr Hall audience hanging on every word.

Rich has also become well-known for his television and radio work with notable UK appearances including regular slots on Channel 4’s Very British Problems and Stand Up For the Week, and the BBC’s QI, Live at the Apollo and Have I Got News for You.

Other strings to his bow include writing for The David Letterman Show, for which he won two Emmy awards, and inspiring Matt Groening’s character Moe Szyslak from The Simpsons.

Rich is also an accomplished author with three releases to his name – Magnificent Bastards, I Blame Society and Things Snowball – and he has two very successful stand-up DVDs to his credit.

According to The Scotsman, his humour “creeps up on you and ambushes your funny bone like no one else” while The Guardian warns “now is the time to grab this chance to see the great man at work”.

Comedy folk band The Lancashire Hotpots’ unique style to entertain Warrington

lhp-webSaturday 13 May 2017, 7pm,
Tickets £15/£13
Buy tickets online

The Lancashire Hotpots are hugely popular for their down to earth sense of humour and impressive musicianship in equal measure.

And the St Helens band will no doubt be delighting audiences with their unique talents on the new tour, Food Glorious Food, which calls at Pyramid arts centre on Saturday 13 May 2017.

The Lancashire Hotpots love a good feed and their new tour showcases all their favourite songs about grub.

As well as favourites such as Shopmobility Scooter and I Fear Ikea, the lads will be piling on the comedy calories with songs about late night kebabs, fussy eaters and everyone’s favourite, a chippy tea!

So forget Weightwatchers and join the Hotpots for a night of madcap music and laughs.

Tickets are on sale now.

Beautiful ballet brings magical fairytale of Snow White to life

Snow White WEBSunday 11 December, 2.30pm,
Tickets £19.50/£17.50/£12.50
Buy tickets online

Vienna Festival Ballet presents this delightful telling of the classic story Snow White in a magical show which is not to be missed.

World premiere choreography by Barry McGrath propels this timeless fairytale into the 21st Century and answers the age-old question “who is the fairest one of all?”

Based on the traditional Grimm brothers’ story, this ballet incorporates all the classic elements – a beautiful girl, an enchanted mirror, a poisoned apple – as well as some added extras like hip-hopping dwarves who help Snow White find her Prince Charming.

This spellbinding ballet promises to entertain and dazzle the whole family when it comes to Warrington’s Parr Hall in December: it’s a perfect Christmas treat!

Beautiful vocalist Kate Rusby captures magic of Christmas for Warrington show

Kate WebFriday 16 December, 7.30pm, Tickets £25/£15
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Kate Rusby’s beautiful, expressive vocals never fail to connect the emotional heart of a song to that of her audience and her special Christmas shows will be no exception.

Famously down to earth, for over twenty years Kate’s engaging personality and sharp Yorkshire wit have further endeared her to concert goers everywhere so the audience at her Parr Hall show on 16 December are in for a treat.

It is in her special Christmas concerts that all these elements combine to exquisite effect.

Warm and inviting, spicy and sparkly, she and her marvellous band – joined as ever by a sublime brass quintet – embody the sounds and joyous spirit of the Christmas season.

In her performances Kate is embracing and sharing a South Yorkshire tradition of which she has been a part ever since she was a child.

For over 200 years, from late November to New Year’s Day, Sunday lunchtimes see the good folk of South Yorkshire and North Derbyshire flock to their local public houses to sing their own unique variations of familiar carols which, as Kate says, “were kicked out of churches during the Victorian era for being too happy”.

The Houghton Weavers keep folk smiling with Pyramid show

Weavers WebFriday 16 December, 7.30pm, Tickets £14
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THE HOUGHTON WEAVERS have been entertaining for over 40 years with their unique blend of popular folk music, humour and audience participation.

During their time together as a group – comprising Tony Berry, David Littler and Steve Millington – they have performed thousands of concerts, recorded more than 30 albums, starred in several of their own highly successful BBC radio and TV series, and made countless appearances on other programmes.

Their next outing is a tour which aims to “keep folk smiling”, taking in a date at Warrington’s Pyramid arts centre on Friday 16 December.

The Houghton Weavers guarantee a top quality show suitable for all the family honed to perfection over four decades in the business, which combined with their individual style and professionalism adds up to a wonderful night of entertainment.

Dave Spikey returns to Parr Hall to celebrate 30 years in comedy

dave-spikey-webFriday 31 March 2017, 7.30pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £17.50
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Funny man Dave Spikey is coming back to Warrington to celebrate 30 years in comedy.

Dave Spikey: Juggling on a Motorbike will look back on his remarkable life and his incredible journey from working class kid to chief biomedical scientist to much-loved comedy performer and writer via Phoenix Nights, 8 Out of 10 Cats, Bullseye, The Royal Variety Show, Parkinson and many more.

The Dead Man Weds and Magnolia star reflects that maybe none of this would have happened and that he would still be looking down his microscope today if it wasn’t for the juggler on the motorbike.

Dave had been working in the NHS for 19 years as a biomedical scientist when in 1987 someone uttered the immortal words: “You’re really funny, you should be a comedian.” And for some reason he took them seriously!
Only a few months later he won the national talent show Stairway to the Stars, clinching the award with a routine about a juggler on a motorbike.

13 years later on Friday 13 October 2000 he switched off his microscope for good and the following Monday found himself sitting on a rain-swept car park dressed as a giant berry wondering if he should have taken more notice of the omens to avoid what may have turned out to be a bit of a mistake.

As it turns out, it wasn’t, and now in 2017 he celebrates the 30th anniversary of his comedy career.

Gabrielle – Important Information For Ticket Holders

 

 

The Gabrielle show which was planned for Thursday 3 November but sadly postponed due to ill health has been rescheduled to Sunday 18 December at 7pm in Parr Hall.

 

Original tickets are still valid for the rescheduled show, so please keep hold of your ticket, but refunds are available from Box Office for those who cannot make the new date. If you require a refund, please return your ticket either in person or by registered post before 25.11.16.

 

Ticketholders who purchased tickets through Ticketmaster, SEE, Gigs & Tours or Ticketline will be contacted by their relevant ticket agent.

 

A statement from Gabrielle said: “For those of you who came to last night’s show in Warrington I will be back to sing for you on December 18th. The love you all showed me last night was incredible and I’m so grateful to all of you, I hope to see you all again. Love you lots and see you soon! Gabs xxxx”

 

We do apologise for any upset this has caused to you as Gabrielle fans but I’m sure you join us in wishing her a speedy recovery.

 

And hopefully we’ll see as many of you as possible on December 18!

 

Very best wishes,

The Culture Warrington team

Explorer Levison Wood talks about adventures in Warrington show

levisonwebThursday 16 March 2017, 7.30pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £22.50/£17.50
But tickets online

Best-selling author, photographer and TV presenter Levison Wood will be sharing stories about his sometimes terrifying and challenging adventures when his tour calls in to Parr Hall.

An Evening with Levison Wood will give a rare insight into his exploits as a modern day explorer which will no doubt fascinate the Warrington audience.

With his keen desire to immerse himself fully in local cultures and customs, Levison Wood has delighted audiences around the globe with stories of his epic adventures, ranging from being chased by crocodiles and hippos in Africa, shot at by gunmen, falling off a mountain, being arrested more times than he can remember and meeting such illustrious characters as the Dalai Lama and George Clooney along the way.

In this adventure-filled one-man show, Levison recounts his amusing and sometimes poignant tales of life as a soldier in the Parachute Regiment and his subsequent transition into an explorer of international standing.

His latest tour will include further tales and behind the scenes moments from his journeys walking the length of the Nile and climbing the Himalayas, both of which were documented by Channel 4, alongside his most recent travels walking 1,700 miles along the length of Central America, taking in eight countries from Mexico to Colombia and his bid to cross the treacherous Darien Gap.

With his honest accounts of life on the road, Levison hopes to challenge preconceptions and inspire a new generation of adventurers with tales of hope and hospitality, firmly believing the more people go out and see the world, the better a place it will be.

His shows have received rave reviews across the UK and internationally, and the forthcoming documentary series Walking The Americas will air on Channel 4 in early spring 2017, while his book of the same name will be published by Hodder & Stoughton in February.

Nation’s favourite bear Sooty is bringing his friends to Warrington

sooty-webTuesday 21 February, 11am and 2.30pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £12/£10
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Izzy, wizzy, let’s get busy, because the nation’s favourite TV bear Sooty is bringing his friends to Warrington’s Parr Hall for a fun-packed show.

Culture Warrington is delighted to announce the popular children’s character and his friends Sweep and Soo are back for two shows on Tuesday 21 February with guaranteed giggles for all the family.

There will also be a chance to meet Sooty and Richard after the show.

This brand new show, inspired by the hit CITV programme, will see Sooty, Sweep and Soo spreading mischief while their friend Richard Cadell tries to keep things running smoothly.

Sooty’s magic tricks turn very messy and Sweep’s escapology act has him all tied up. Maybe Soo and her tap dancing will save the day? Special guest stars include Butch and Ramsbottom who will also join the fun.

Expect magic, music and mayhem with a bucket-full of audience participation: this is a spectacular treat for Sooty fans old and new.

The Guardian said the show “works like a dream – your children will love it”, Netmums described it as “absolutely brilliant” and former Sooty star Matthew Corbett said: “Richard Cadell is as close to a Corbett as you will ever get – Sooty is on the right hands”.

Hilarious raconteur Gervase Phinn brings his rib-tickling tales to Warrington

Gervase WebWednesday 2 November, 7.30pm,
Pyramid, Tickets £17.50
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Gervase Phinn has been touring theatres across the country for 10 years now as a hilarious raconteur and he’s bringing his rib-tickling tales to Warrington.

The former schools inspector is a best-selling and award-winning author, and radio and TV personality, but he really is at his best and most exciting in front of a live audience.

An Evening with Gervase Phinn will have the Pyramid audience on the edge of its seat, as the storyteller shares his hilarious and sometimes poignant tales of life as a schools inspector in the Yorkshire Dales.

Dubbed “the James Herriot of schools”, with his keen ear for the absurd and sharp eye for the ludicrous, Gervase Phinn has delighted audiences all over the UK with stories of his experiences, and his shows have received rave reviews all across the country.

An Evening with Gervase Phinn comes to Warrington on Wednesday 2 November.

New stage play of Twopence to Cross the Mersey heading for Warrington

twopence-full-cast-credit-david-munn-smallFriday 28 October – Saturday 29 October, 7.30pm (and 2.30pm Saturday matinee)
Parr Hall, Tickets £18-£24
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A new stage play about the life of acclaimed author Helen Forrester is heading to Warrington this month.

Twopence to Cross the Mersey comes to Parr Hall on Friday 28 October and Saturday 29 October for three performances including a matinee. Tickets are on sale now.

Twopence tells the true story of a young girl and her formerly-wealthy family as they are suddenly thrown into poverty during the Great Depression of the 1930s and forced to survive in the slums among the streetwise working class.

Leaving behind the nannies, servants and comfortable middle-class life in the South West of England, they uproot their shattered lives and choose Liverpool as the place to start again to rebuild their dreams and fortune.

Unbeknown to them however, a terrible shock awaits them.

The new version of this dramatic, moving and heart-warming tale is staged by Pulse Records Ltd in collaboration with producer and stage writer Rob Fennah and producer Bill Elms, joined by director Bob Eaton.

Rob worked closely with Helen on the original stage production which she lived long enough to see for herself.

He said: “I got to know Helen very well during the last 20 years of her life and during the writing of the original script she would often send faxes and letters of encouragement together with all sorts of additional information that didn’t appear in her books.

“Helen and I often talked about a touring production of Twopence to Cross the Mersey so I am really pleased to finally see it happen.

“I had always visualised Twopence as a straight play and was thrilled when audiences and reviewers alike gave the new adaptation a big thumbs up.

“We’re excited and delighted to take the play on the road so greater numbers of Helen’s readers can see her most famous book come to life as a stage play and we cannot wait to bring the show to Warrington’s Parr Hall with a very strong cast who will do justice to Helen’s story.”

The new stage adaptation is fully endorsed by the Helen Forrester estate and has the blessing of her son Robert Bhatia.

He added: “The play is great. I saw it last year and Maria Lovelady was utterly convincing as my mother.”

The play features an eight-strong ensemble cast including Emma Dears (Judy & Liza, Les Miserables) as Mother, Christopher Jordan (Moving On, Coronation Street) as Father, Maria Lovelady as Helen, and Tom Cawte (Witless, The Lone Pine Club) as Alan.

Eithne Browne (Brookside, Brick Up The Mersey Tunnel), Jake Abraham (Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Game of Thrones), Roy Carruthers (Night Collar, Tales from Haunted Liverpool), and Phil Hearne (Good Golly Miss Molly, Blood Brothers) all take on lead roles, as well as supplementary characters throughout.

‘Beautifully-crafted tribute’ to Whitney Houston due to raise roof at Parr Hall

photo-whitney-belinda-singing-pointing-up-img_2068-hiresThursday 27 October, 7.30pm, £25
Parr Hall, Tickets £25
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Whitney Houston fans are in for a treat as the next best thing, Belinda Davids, is coming to Warrington’s Parr Hall on Thursday 27 October.

The Greatest Love of All – The Whitney Houston Show is a breathtaking production featuring the impeccable vocal talents of the South African singer described by many as “jaw-droppingly similar” to the beloved pop diva’s.

The show is a beautifully-crafted tribute to one of the world’s most revered singers, complete with a full band and dancers who bring to life more than two hours-worth of Whitney Houston’s best-loved pop hits.

In addition to her pitch perfect sound, Davids openly acknowledges that Houston was her personal idol and the original inspiration for her own career when she began singing professionally at the age of 14.

She said: “I want people to come and remember Whitney when she was at the top of her game and when she was fabulous.”

People all over the world have done exactly that with the USA, Canada, New Zealand, Singapore and South Africa already hosting sell-out performances in the show’s first two years of touring.

The Greatest Love of All features 20 of Houston’s most popular tracks taken from the full span of her career, including I Will Always Love You, I Wanna Dance With Somebody, I’m Every Woman, Didn’t We Almost Have It All, Exhale (Shoop Shoop) and Million Dollar Bill to name a few.

Davids is directed by Showtime Management creative director John Van Grinsven Senior and joined on tour by the production team responsible for the worldwide hit tribute show Michael Jackson HIStory.

Much-loved pop star Gabrielle coming to Parr Hall in just three weeks

gab-web3 November 2016, 7pm,
Parr Hall, tickets from £25/35 (VIP package £99)
Limited Tickets remaining

Veteran pop star Gabrielle will be making “Dreams” come true with a visit to Parr Hall on November 3.

A unique artist with one of the most distinctive voices in the business, Gabrielle has achieved a great deal without becoming an in-your-face, look at me “celebrity”.

Her career got off to an incredible start in 1993 when she broke the record for the highest chart debut by a female with the single, Dreams.

As a 23-year-old club singer from Brockley, South London, she was the archetypal outsider; she didn’t possess the sort of belting voice you’d expect of an R&B vocalist and wearing an eyepatch made her visually striking.

She quickly became one of Britain’s most successful soul singers despite saying there were “so many other girls with better voices” who were a “hell of a lot skinnier”.

In an industry where longevity is becoming increasingly rare, the hits have been unstoppable; Give Me A Little More Time, If You Ever, When a Woman, Sunshine and Out Of Reach, which she wrote for the soundtrack of Bridget Jones’s Diary, to name a few.

Then there are the multi-platinum albums, Gabrielle, Rise and Dreams Can Come True, and she recently featured on Naughty Boy’s album Hotel Cabana alongside the likes of Ed Sheeran, Sam Smith and Emeli Sande.

Gabrielle said: “It was an incredible project to be part of and funny for me that the other guests were artists like Tinie Tempah and Ed Sheeran. I’m the veteran, the surprise in there and I loved that.”
In 2013 Gabrielle released a seventh album with the iconic Island records – a double album of all her greatest hits, some of her favourite album tracks and seven brand new songs.

With the new songs came a new sound, the album titled Now and Always: 20 Years of Dreaming also includes a new version of the classic Dreams re-produced and re-recorded by Naughty Boy.

2014 saw Gabrielle go on her first UK tour since 2008. With a new band, new team and new energy she loved being back on stage and it reignited her passion for performing live.

The Now and Always tour was a huge success and Gabrielle felt reconnected with her fans, at every show she could be seen taking selfies from the stage with audience members.

Gabrielle hit the road again earlier this year as special guest opener for Michael Bolton on his UK tour and after an amazing response from audiences decided it was time for her own headline tour.

“I love performing live,” she added. “When I’m at home being mum it’s so easy to forget there are people who come along to see me and sing along to songs I’ve written.

“It’s an amazing feeling and I’m so grateful that after 23 years I still have the chance to perform and record.

“It’s what I know and what I love – when I said dreams can come true, I wasn’t wrong!”

Legendary rockers UFO now less than two weeks from Warrington show

ufo webWednesday 26 October, 7.30pm, £22.50
Parr Hall, Tickets £22.50
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The tour, which calls at Warrington on 26 October, will showcase A Conspiracy of Stars, the band’s 22nd studio album, as well as some old favourites.

This is the first time in more than 20 years the British band have recorded an album in their native country and it exudes that typically British easy-going confidence for which the band has been known for more than 45 years.

A Conspiracy of Stars is described as a “strong release” consisting of 11 songs which combine everything the group stands for: meaty riffs, distinctive hooks, diverse song-writing and intelligent lyrics.

The fact that the album was produced and mixed by Chris Tsangarides, of Judas Priest, Thin Lizzy and Gary Moore fame, adds to the success of the recording and sees UFO prove that past and present can be blended.

UFO’s success story began in London way back in 1969, when vocalist Phil Mogg, drummer Andy Parker, guitarist Mick Bolton and bassist Pete Way formed the group.

Even in the seventies, the band distinguished themselves with their own, unmistakable style, touching a nerve among their following with rock numbers like Prince Kajuku, Follow You Home and C’mon Everybody from their albums UFO 1, Flying and UFO Live.

The global breakthrough came when German guitarist Michael Schenker joined the fold in 1973, having left his band Scorpions to follow an offer by Phil Mogg and Pete Way.

UFO released three consecutive rock classics with Schenker – Phenomenon (1974), Force It (1975) and No Heavy Pettin’ (1976) – featuring classics like Doctor Doctor, Shoot Shoot, and Rock Bottom.

And following the arrival of keyboarder/rhythm guitarist Paul Raymond, UFO released Lights Out (1977) and Obsession (1978), which included the hit singles Too Hot to Handle, Lights Out and Only You Can Rock Me.

Their live cut Strangers In The Night came out in 1979 and is described by the press to this day as one of the best live releases of all time, while also signalling the end of the Mogg, Way, Schenker, Parker and Raymond line-up.

The band now consists of original members Phil Mogg, vocals, and Paul Raymond on keyboards and guitar, classic-era drummer Andy Parker, lead guitarist Vinnie Moore, a permanent member since 2003, and American bassist Rob De Luca who joined in 2012.

Space race seen through eyes of child in touching family play

AWSE_WebMonday 24 October, 2pm,
Pyramid, Tickets £10/£8/£30 (family)
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It’s 1967 and the space race is on. Alfie White is crazy about space and his dad is training to be the first man on the moon.

At least that’s what Alfie tells his schoolmates. In fact, his dad has disappeared without trace, as if swallowed up by a black hole.

Together with his best friend Meg, Alfie sets out on a daring mission to find his dad. But where on earth, or in space, is he?

Alfie White: Space Explorer, which comes to Pyramid on Monday 24 October, is a cosmic tale of adventure and discovery for everyone aged five and up.

It’s Tall Stories’ latest production and had a brilliant run at the 2015 Edinburgh Fringe with great feedback from audiences and reviewers alike.

Broadway Baby described the show as “a thrilling everyday adventure that is engaging for all ages” while The Stage said it was “an accomplished piece of children’s storytelling theatre” which “holds the children in rapt and often amused attention”.

Battle of wills, and jokes, is heading for Warrington

CS WEBSaturday 22 October, 2.30pm
Pyramid, Tickets £8/£6
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Now in its 15th year Comedy Sportz is an all-ages, all-improvised show where two teams battle it out for laughs which is sure to entertain the Warrington audience.

Players create quick-witted sketches, scenes and songs from whatever suggestions are thrown at them by the audience, creating a show that’s fast, feel good and always unpredictably funny.

There’s a referee on hand to steer the entertainment, call any fouls and help the audience decide the winner and, most importantly, it’s great entertainment for the whole family, including children aged eight and up.

Lancashire Evening Post described Comedy Sportz as “a non-stop stream of gags, sketches and general hilarity,“ Netmums said “kids enjoyed the interactive nature of the show and were in fits of giggles all the way through” and Yorkshire Times said the show was “quick, witty, sometimes ingenious, and more often than not, just down-right silly”.

To see what Comedy Sportz is all about visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xdE06PIjd9k

Warrington author’s film debut The Violators to air in home town

VioWebSaturday 15 October, 7.30pm
Pyramid, Tickets £7
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Critically-acclaimed writer Helen Walsh is bringing her first film back to her home town as part of Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival.

The author of The Lemon Grove, Brass and Once Upon a Time in England will also be taking part in a question and answer session following the end of the film.

Described by The Times as “a powerful debut” and “impressive, credible and fascinating” by The Film Review on BBC News, The Violators is a powerful and engaging British drama.

The cast is led by rising stars Lauren McQueen (The Mill, Ordinary Lies) and Brogan Ellis (Waterloo Road) alongside Stephen Lord (Penny Dreadful, Shameless, Route Irish), Liam Ainsworth (Kajaki), Derek Barr (Pride) and newcomer Callum King Chadwick.

After testifying against her abusive father, Shelly (McQueen) finds herself rehoused on a sink estate she can barely call home. A petty thief, Shelly spends her days roaming the estate and docklands in search of opportunities.

When she attracts the attention of estate loan shark and groomer Mikey Finnegan (Lord), Shelly finds herself thrust under the watchful gaze of a mysterious stranger, Rachel (Ellis).

As Shelly’s relationship with Mikey develops, so does Rachel’s fixation with Shelly. The shock revelation that Shelly’s father is to be given early parole forces Shelly to make a decision that will alter the fates of all three of them forever.

Set amid the desolate beauty of a post-industrial wasteland, The Violators is a meditation on the meaning of home, and the potency and fragility of young girls’ sexuality.

Helen Walsh, who wrote and directed The Violators, was born in Warrington in 1976 and her first novel Brass, about a female sex addict, was the recipient of a Betty Trask Award and was published to great acclaim around the world.

Her second novel, Once Upon a Time in England, won the Somerset Maugham Prize.

Helen has written four novels to date, all of which have been published internationally. The Lemon Grove, her most recent, was a critically-acclaimed best-seller. All of her work touches upon the complexities and ambiguities of female sexuality.

The Violators marks her debut feature film as writer/director and is produced by Red Union Films, with the support of the BFI Film Fund.

The Arts Desk described the film as “ballsy, bruising, brilliant” and The Upcoming said it was “absorbing, hard-hitting and quietly powerful”.

New show 21,000 Miles of Rail explores how we interact on trains

21000-mile-of-rail-wcaf-thumbFriday 14 October, 7.30pm, £10
Pyramid, Tickets £10
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A new theatre show called 21,000 Miles of Rail is inviting rail users to think about how they interact with others on the daily commute.

In an age where ticket fares are rising and stations are busier than ever, Hannah Butterfield has made a show for the commuters of the country that unpacks the rules of talking on trains and tests the possibilities of chance encounters with strangers.

21,000 Miles of Rail brings live music, heart-warming true train stories and even a little bit of laughter to its audiences.

You can’t find your ticket, someone’s sat in your seat and the train guard has just announced a 45-minute delay – sound familiar?

Like thousands of others Hannah has been on a lot of these train journeys, but this isn’t a show about one person, one story or one, one-way ticket.

It’s a season pass taking you on a number of routes, through a variety of stations, following a number of people making their way… somewhere.

Somewhere between a musical, a theatre show and A Brief Encounter, 21,000 Miles of Rail is about telling true stories and confronting the realities of the morning commute with the magic which surrounds travel by rail.

Hannah said: “This show was born out of a slightly unusual experiment: I spent a ‘working day’ observing people passing through Leeds city railway station. I was witness to all sorts of behaviours, coincidences, challenges and acts of kindness.

“21,000 Miles of Rail is about the possibility of making connections with the people you haven’t met yet. It’s about communication, or lack of in some cases, and finding hope in the most unexpected places.”

Hannah Butterfield is rapidly becoming a celebrated young artist and her work has been championed by Sheffield Theatres and West Yorkshire Playhouse, and shown at international festivals around the world.

This show was developed through her time last year as a BBC Performing Arts Fund Fellow when she spent one year with the critically-acclaimed theatre company Third Angel.

Warrington residents prescribed dose of laughter with comedy about NHS

this-might-hurt-1Friday 7 October, 7.30pm, £16
Pyramid, Tickets £16
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Popular playwright John Godber has put a comedic spin on dealing with the NHS and the prognosis is This Might Hurt.

This latest play by the BAFTA Award-winning writer of Teechers, Bouncers and The Debt Collectors visits Warrington’s Pyramid on Friday 7 October as part of a UK tour, following its premiere at Theatre Royal Wakefield.

Produced by The John Godber Company and Theatre Royal Wakefield, and directed by Godber, This Might Hurt is a hilarious and heartbreaking look at the NHS, investigating what we deserve and what we actually receive.

When tough actor Jack Skipton, played by Robert Angell, returns from filming to care for his ageing aunt he has no idea what he’s letting himself in for.

This might be his most taxing role to date as he begins an incredible odyssey through the NHS, from cancelled GP appointments to wrongly-booked scans, frustrated consultants to abusive home carers who smoke on the doorstep.

With bleak humour and shades of Breaking Bad, This Might Hurt is an emotional, bittersweet and shocking true story of one family’s experiences with an embattled health service.

From over-stressed consultants to over-weight home carers, Godber’s eye for observation has never been sharper and it’s told in a bold physical theatre style with breathtaking grit and honesty.

Rachael Abbey and Jodie Morley also star as 27 different characters.

In this cutting vision of the state of our health one thing’s for sure: this might hurt!

Wilko Johnson brings new zest for life to Warrington

Wilko_lr_nomicThursday 6 October 2016, 7.30pm
Parr Hall, Tickets £25
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Wilko Johnson is feeling more alive than ever, despite a terminal cancer diagnosis, and he’s bringing his new zest for life to Warrington.

The singer and guitarist’s unique playing style, his black-suited, scowling look, and the yards he covered across the stage in Feelgood, the Solid Senders and Ian Dury’s The Blockheads will be resurrected at Parr Hall on 6 October with special quest Aaron Keylock.

In a recent interview Wilko said: “I’m supposed to be dead.”

But despite the doctor’s worst predictions he continues to perform with vigour claiming “there’s nothing like being told you’re dying to make you feel alive”.

He could have been a retired teacher by now but was lured into music by his first Telecaster soon after becoming the strutting, grimacing, six-string rhythmic powerhouse behind Lee Brilleaux in Dr Feelgood.

Wilko and his bandmates were in the vanguard of the pub rock movement, performing gutsy down-to-earth rock and roll many viewed as a welcome antidote to the faltering prog-rock era.

Heavily influenced by legendary guitarist Mick Green from 60s rockers Johnny Kidd & The Pirates, Wilko employs a finger-style, chop-chord strumming action (the ‘stab’, as he describes it). This allows for chords and lead guitar to be played at the same time, giving fluency and a distinctive sound very unlike the cleaner swat of a pick.

With this economic sound, coupled with that black-suited, scowling look, and the yards he covered across the stage pausing only to twist the guitar lead out from under his feet, Wilko became one of the guitar heroes of the era.

His influence was felt in bands up and down the country, and later in the emergent punk revolution (Joe Strummer of the Clash bought a Telecaster after seeing Wilko play).

Feelgood had four successful albums in Wilko’s time, and then followed a busy creative period playing in an early incarnation of the Wilko Johnson Band, the Solid Senders, before he joined Ian Dury’s band The Blockheads, in 1980.

All through the 80s, 90s and into the new millennium he continued to gig in the UK, Europe and Japan. But it was when Julien Temple’s award-winning Oil City Confidential came out in 2009, with Wilko emerging as the film’s star, that the world once again sat up and paid attention to his extraordinary talent.

His career took another twist in 2010, when he was offered an acting part in the hit series Game of Thrones, playing the role of mute executioner Ilyn Payne.

He appeared in 4 episodes shown in 2011 and 2012, and later explained: “They said they wanted somebody really sinister who went around looking daggers at people before killing them. That made it easy. Looking daggers at people is what I do all the time.”

Russell Kane is the right man at the wrong time in Warrington

Russ WebWednesday 5 October 2016, 8pm
Parr Hall, tickets £17
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Russell Kane is unleashing yet another blisteringly funny stand-up performance about growing up, growing down, and why farts will always be funny.

If you’re 16 but feel 21, 40 years old but tragically faking 25, or in your 80s with the heart of three oxen, then this is the show for you.

In Right Man, Wrong Time Russell explores the theory that no-one is ever the right age, claiming it’s the beauty and curse of being a “real person”.

Described by Evening Standard as “extremely funny”, “at the top of his game” by The Guardian and “one of the quickest, most stimulating stand-ups in the land” by The Times, Russell is a multi-award winning comedian, presenter, actor, author and scriptwriter.

He is famed for his critically-acclaimed tours and has been performing sell-outs across the globe: now he’s back with this brand new show.

TV appearances include three series of BBC3‘s Live At The Electric, regular stints on Live at the Apollo, BBC3’s Unzipped, and ITV2’s Celebrity Juice and I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here! Now!

Most recently Russell travelled the world with YouTube stars filming the new survival programme Stupid Man, Smart Phone and he has released two best-selling DVDs: the award-winning Smokescreens & Castles, recorded in front of his home crowd at the Palace Theatre in Westcliff-on-Sea in 2011, and his newest DVD Russell Kane Live, a special one-off show recorded in London’s West End in October 2015.

He’s also got the silverware to prove his credentials with four nominations for the prestigious Edinburgh Comedy Awards in which he won best show in 2010 before going on to make history as the first comedian to win both the Edinburgh Award and Melbourne Comedy Festival’s Barry Award in one year.

Icons of the 80s and Starsailor bring 4000 music fans to Warrington

go-west-peter-coxMore than 4000 music fans descended on Warrington Town Centre this weekend to attend two incredible concerts which marked the opening weekend of this year’s Warrington Festival.

On Friday (16 September) Go West, Nik Kershaw and special guests, T’Pau came together as the Icons of the 80s for one special concert experience on Warrington’s Bank Park.

T’Pau opened the show playing some new material and their biggest hits; Heart and Soul and China in Your Hand, which spent five weeks at number one back in 1987.

Go West and Nik Kershaw came together to play an amalgamated set of their own hits including We Close Our Eyes and I Won’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me and also a number of rock and indie covers.

The crowd went wild for the 80s legends with many gig goers wearing leg warmers and tutus and waving neon glow sticks.

On Saturday (17 September), Warrington paid an official tribute to local band, Viola Beach who tragically lost their lives while on tour in Sweden earlier this year.

Starsailor, along with 13 regional artists, came together for an all-day music event on Bank Park.

carol-decker-from-tpauStarsailor, who were performing their first outdoor headline set in Warrington, paid their own tribute to the band by performing one of their tracks, Swings and Waterslides.

The gig also included sets from Manchester indie four-piece, The Rainband who appeared at Glastonbury in June, PSYBLINGS, who played the Viola Beach celebration event at Parr Hall with The Coral and Courteeners earlier this year, and Ellie Dibben who was a support act at last year’s Warrington Festival alongside Viola Beach.

An exclusive video tribute to Viola Beach was also shown as part of the event with unseen footage of the band performing some of the tracks from their posthumous album, Viola Beach, which went to number one last month.

These two events launched a two week celebration of culture, sport and entertainment across the town which lasts until 2 October.

Official hometown tribute to Viola Beach takes place this weekend

viola-beach-playing-at-warrington-festival-2015-smallerBank Park, Warrington, Saturday 17 September 2016
Tickets and information: Tickets are priced at £10 each
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Viola Beach’s hometown will officially pay tribute to the band and their manager this weekend by putting on an all-day music event to celebrate their legacy.

Starsailor, along with 13 regional artists, will come together at Warrington’s Bank Park on Saturday (17 September) to pay tribute to the five local lads who tragically lost their lives while on tour in Sweden earlier this year.

The event, which is part of this year’s Warrington Festival, will also feature an exclusive video tribute to the band that has only been shown once before at the celebration gig at Parr Hall back in April.

The video features unseen footage of the band performing some of the tracks from their posthumous album, Viola Beach, which went to number one last month.

The families of Kris, River, Jack, Tom and Craig are supporting the event and say it will help provide a platform for other emerging talents.

Ben Dunne, dad of River Reeves, said: “River and the band played at Warrington Festival last year and would be so proud to see how they’ve inspired many other local bands to perform on the same stage.”

Ian Piers Dakin, the father of Jack Dakin, added: “Jack, River, Tom, Kris and Craig were all very proud and honoured to play at last year’s festival, supporting Pixie Lott, in their hometown.

“It is an honour for all our family that this legacy has been put into place and they will be remembered by their music.”

Craig’s parents and sister, Sarah, concluded: “Craig was not only their manager but a dear friend to Viola Beach and he believed in their talent and enthusiasm.

“He was excited to put Warrington on the music map and he knew Viola Beach would do exactly that.

“Craig lived life the way that we all should, passionately and wholeheartedly and we are extremely proud of Craig and Viola Beach.”

The gig, which kicks off at 12pm, will include sets from Manchester indie four-piece, The Rainband who appeared at Glastonbury in June, PSYBLINGS, who played the Viola Beach celebration event with The Coral and Courteeners earlier this year, and Ellie Dibben who was a support act at last year’s Warrington Festival alongside Viola Beach.

Emma Hutchinson, chair of the Warrington Festival steering group, said: “This event is about giving local acts the chance to celebrate the legacy of Viola Beach by performing in their hometown.

“Having worked with the band at last year’s festival and at local venues in the town, we believe they were destined for big things and we’re really pleased to be able to provide a platform to celebrate their music.”

Full line-up
Starsailor
The Rainband
Delphina Kings
The Tamalas
Pacific
Joe Hatton
Weekend Wars
PSYBLINGS
The Tapestry
Five Days North
Conquer Rio
The Ambersons
Priestley
Ellie Dibben

Film extravaganza to celebrate greatest stories told on the train tracks

Silver Streak WebAs part of Warrington Festival, Culture Warrington, in partnership with Virgin Trains, will be screening four films that have all been inspired to use train journeys to portray compelling stories about love, murder and journeys on the rails.

Some of the greatest stories ever to be shown on the big screen will be screened at a unique and intimate venue in Bank Quay train station in a small dis-used outhouse at the end of Platform 2 from Thursday 22 September-Sunday 25 September.

Each film selected brilliantly uses train travel as the backdrop to deliver some of the greatest stories ever to be told on train tracks.

The first film to be screened as part of the event is Silver Streak (1976) which features the late great Richard Pryor and sadly more recently enigmatic Gene Wilder. It tells the story of George Caldwell (played by Wilder) who is taking a slow restful trip to Chicago on the Silver Streak. Or so he thinks. He’s involved in a love affair, a murder, is thrown from the train, wanted by the police, and joins forces with a car thief to re-board the train to save his love.

Next, a classic whodunit from Agatha Christie featuring some of the greatest ensemble ever to grace the big screen, Murder on the Orient Express (1974) begins with Hercule Poirot who is travelling from Istanbul to France on the Orient Express. On the first night the man in the next compartment is murdered. Once he starts investigating, Poirot faces a barrage of conflicting clues and potential motives.

Buster Keaton’s The General (1926) will also be part of the film fest. It’s 90 years old this year and is still one of the most awe-inspiring films you will ever see. Keaton stars as Johnnie Gray who loves his train (“The General”) and Annabelle Lee. When the Civil War begins he is turned down for service because he’s more valuable as an engineer. Annabelle thinks it’s because he’s a coward. When Union spies capture The General with Annabelle on board, Johnnie must rescue both his true loves.

Lastly and by no means least, finishing the remarkable quartet of films is David Lean’s sumptuous adaptation of Noel Coward’s Brief Encounter (1945). A love story to end all love stories, this tale of unrequited love takes in 1945 during WWII in and around the fictional Milford railway station. At a café on the station, housewife, Laura Jesson meets Doctor, Alec Harvey. Although they are both already married, they gradually fall in love with each other. Although they continue to meet every Thursday in the small café, they know that their love is impossible.

Individual film dates/times
Thursday 22 September, 7pm – Silver Streak (1976) Certificate PG
Friday 23 September, 7pm – Murder on the Orient Express (1974) Certificate PG
Saturday 24 September, 7pm – The General (1926) Certificate U
Sunday 25 September, 7pm –Brief Encounter (1945)
Tickets are priced at £5 each. Due to the very small and intimate space, tickets are restricted to 15 per screening. Audience members can park at Pyramid arts centre and will be escorted to the train station. The room is at the far end of Platform 2.

Warrington Festival banner

New stage play of Twopence to Cross the Mersey heading for Warrington

TwopenceFriday 28 October – Saturday 29 October, 2.30pm and 7.30pm, £18-£24
Parr Hall, Tickets £18-£24
Buy tickets online

A new stage play about the life of acclaimed author Helen Forrester is heading to Warrington this autumn.

Twopence to Cross the Mersey comes to Parr Hall on Friday 28 October and Saturday 29 October for three performances including a matinee. Tickets are on sale now.

The seven-venue tour across the North West and North Wales follows the hugely successful premiere of the new stage play – an adaptation of the book by the same name – which wowed audiences at four Merseyside theatres last spring.

Now, due to popular demand, the play is returning with a new and extended tour for autumn 2016.

Twopence tells the true story of a young girl and her formerly-wealthy family as they are suddenly thrown into poverty during the Great Depression of the 1930s and forced to survive in the slums among the streetwise working class.

Leaving behind the nannies, servants and comfortable middle-class life in the South West of England, they uproot their shattered lives and choose Liverpool as the place to start again to rebuild their dreams and fortune.

Unbeknown to them however, a terrible shock awaits them.

The new version of this dramatic, moving and heart-warming tale is staged by Pulse Records Ltd in collaboration with producer and stage writer Rob Fennah and producer Bill Elms, joined by director Bob Eaton.

Rob worked closely with Helen on the original stage production which she lived long enough to see for herself.

He said: “I got to know Helen very well during the last 20 years of her life and during the writing of the original script she would often send faxes and letters of encouragement together with all sorts of additional information that didn’t appear in her books.

“Helen and I often talked about a touring production of Twopence to Cross the Mersey so I am really pleased to finally see it happen.

“I had always visualised Twopence as a straight play and was thrilled when audiences and reviewers alike gave the new adaptation a big thumbs up.

“We’re excited and delighted to take the play on the road so greater numbers of Helen’s readers can see her most famous book come to life as a stage play and we cannot wait to bring the show to Warrington’s Parr Hall with a very strong cast who will do justice to Helen’s story.”

The new stage adaptation is fully endorsed by the Helen Forrester estate and has the blessing of her son Robert Bhatia who saw the play for himself last spring.

He added: “The play is great. I saw it last year and Maria Lovelady was utterly convincing as my mother.”

The play features an eight-strong ensemble cast including Emma Dears (Judy & Liza, Les Miserables) as Mother, Christopher Jordan (Moving On, Coronation Street) as Father, Maria Lovelady as Helen, and Tom Cawte (Witless, The Lone Pine Club) as Alan.

Eithne Browne (Brookside, Brick Up The Mersey Tunnel), Jake Abraham (Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Game of Thrones), Roy Carruthers (Night Collar, Tales from Haunted Liverpool), and Phil Hearne (Good Golly Miss Molly, Blood Brothers) all take on lead roles, as well as supplementary characters throughout.

Frank Turner and the Sleeping Souls heading for Warrington

Frank Turner WebTuesday 6 December, 7pm
Parr Hall, Tickets £26
Buy Tickets online

Relentless gigger Frank Turner is bringing his Sleeping Souls to Parr Hall in December as part of a 20-date tour.

This latest outing will cap off another busy year for the folk singer-songwriter who has spent most of 2016 performing at festivals and touring Europe, playing to more than a quarter of a million people since January.

For the upcoming Get Better Tour, which goes on sale on Friday, Turner has teamed up with Plus 1 so that £1 from every ticket sale goes to War Child, a charity which supports children and families affected by conflict.

Turner said: “I’m very happy to be working with Plus 1 on this tour. It feels right to use part of what I do to support such a good cause.”

2016 marks the record-breaking tenth consecutive year Frank Turner has performed at Reading and Leeds Festival, where he opened as special guest on the Main Stage.

Frank Turner & The Sleeping Souls will head to the US in September and October for their fourth run of dates there this year before returning home for the Get Better Tour, named after a track from his 2015 album Positive Songs for Negative People.

Tickets go on sale on Friday 2 September with pre-sale available to those who can’t wait, from 9am on Wednesday 31 August via Gigs and Tours, and See Tickets.

Trumpeter and composer Terence Blanchard announces UK Tour with new Inner City Ensemble

Band on Wall Hire16th Sep 2016 – Parr Hall, Warrington
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Since top-tier jazz and multiple Grammy-winning trumpeter and composer Terence Blanchard embarked on his solo recording career with his eponymous Columbia Records album in 1991, the New Orleans-born and -based artist has traveled many paths musically, including delivering adventurous and provocative acoustic jazz outings of original material.

With this new project, Terence is teaming up with some of the UK’s most remarkable emerging musicians, recruited via an open call for participation. Working outside of the conventional jazz or big-band line up, the Inner City Ensemble will include instrumentation such as French Horn, Oboe and Tuba.

The Jazz Directors Series
The Jazz Directors Series is a new two-year residency and touring project which brings together emerging UK professional jazz musicians with an internationally revered Jazz Director.

Each edition comprises of a four-day residency produced by Brighter Sound and a corresponding tour of live concerts produced by Band on the Wall.

Each tour is a collaboration between Band on the Wall and 4 other independent jazz promoters based across the North of England who will be mentored by the established regional promoter and producer ‘Root Music’.

The residency musicians form the Inner City Ensemble, a changing group of emerging professionals who will apply for the positions identified by each Jazz Director with the support of Brighter Sound and Jazz North.

Terence-Blanchard-Online (3)

Full line-up for Warrington Festival revealed

StarwebBank Park, Warrington, Saturday 17 September 2016
Tickets and information: Tickets are priced at £10 each
Buy tickets online

Warrington Festival is pleased to reveal the full line-up of local artists who will support Starsailor on Saturday 17 September as part of a tribute to Viola Beach and their manager, who tragically lost their lives earlier this year.

The full-day event will include sets from Manchester indie four-piece, The Rainband who appeared at Glastonbury in June, PSYBLINGS, who played the Viola Beach celebration event at Parr Hall with The Coral and Courteeners earlier this year, and Ellie Dibben who was a support act at last year’s Warrington Festival alongside Viola Beach.

The line-up also includes local Warrington artists The Tamalas, Joe Hatton, Conquer Rio, The Ambersons and Priestley, as well as North West based bands, Five Days North, The Tapestry, Weekend Wars, Pacific and Delphina Kings with the full line-up below.

The event, which will celebrate the legacy of the five lads from Warrington, will also feature a special video set with footage of Viola Beach that was previously shown at the celebration gig at Parr Hall in April.

The families of Kris, River, Jack, Tom and Craig say the event will help provide a platform for other emerging talents.

Ben Dunne, dad of River Reeves, said: “River and the band played at Warrington Festival last year and would be so proud to see how they’ve inspired many other local bands to perform on the same stage.”

Beverly and Ian Piers Dakin, the father of Jack Dakin, added: “Jack, River, Tom, Kris and Craig were all very proud and honoured to play at last year’s festival, supporting Pixie Lott, in their hometown.

“It is an honour for all our family that this legacy has been put into place and they will be remembered by their music.”

Craig’s parents and sister, Sarah, concluded: “Craig was not only their manager but a dear friend to Viola Beach and he believed in their talent and enthusiasm.

“He was excited to put Warrington on the music map and he knew Viola Beach would do exactly that.

“Craig lived life the way that we all should, passionately and wholeheartedly and we are extremely proud of Craig and Viola Beach.”

The Saturday event is part of a wider weekend of music and two weeks of events across the town which celebrate sport, culture and entertainment.

Full line-up
Starsailor
The Rainband
Delphina Kings
The Tamalas
Pacific
Joe Hatton
Weekend Wars
PSYBLINGS
The Tapestry
Five Days North
Conquer Rio
The Ambersons
Priestley
Ellie Dibben

Warrington Festival banner

David Bowie celebration comes to Warrington

STARMANWeb2 September 2016, 7.30pm, Parr Hall
Tickets £20, Buy tickets online

David Bowie fans will be given the chance to bid a fond farewell to their idol in Warrington next month.

Starman – The David Bowie Story will be come to Parr Hall for one night only on Friday 2 September.

The show is the ultimate tribute to the much-loved legend who died in January this year.

Ziggy Stardust, Aladdin Sane, Thin White Duke and Major Tom will all make appearances as the many personas of David Bowie deliver the most memorable, inspiring and lasting songs of a generation.

From Rebel Rebel to China Girl, Let’s Dance to Young Americans via Ashes to Ashes, Life on Mars, Changes, Heroes, and Sound and Vision, the list goes on.

Songs from all eras of David Bowie’s celebrated career are performed to perfection in this highly charged show featuring the finest musicians and singers with an amazing performance from theatre stage star Michael King.

Add to that mix big screen audio visual footage and a variety of costume changes and you get an amazing show taking the audience on a ‘fantastic voyage’ of Bowie hits.

The show will provide a highly entertaining, emotional and through-provoking musical celebration of Bowie’s work.

Tickets selling fast for Warrington Festival headline acts

Warrington Festival bannerBank Park, Warrington, Friday 16 and Saturday 17 September 2016
Tickets are £10 for Starsailor / £15 for Icons of the 80s

Tickets for the eagerly-anticipated Warrington Festival are selling fast as audiences snap up the chance to see Starsailor and some of the biggest acts of the 80s.

On Friday 16 September the audience at Bank Park will be treated to a trip back to the decade of shoulder pads and the perm as Go West, T’Pau and Nik Kershaw give us the Icons of the 80s.

And on Saturday 17 September popular Indie band Starsailor will be taking to the stage after a day of bands performing in tribute to Viola Beach and their manager.

The recent announcement of the headline acts has generated huge interest already so anyone planning to come along should buy tickets quick before they sell out!

Buy tickets for Icons of the 80s on Friday 16 September at Bank Park
Buy tickets for Starsailor on Saturday 17 September at Bank Park

Be Part of An Event in Tribute to Viola Beach Headlined by Starsailor

Be Part of An Event in Tribute to Viola Beach Headlined by Starsailor
Bands from the region can now submit to play at the event which takes place at Bank Park, Warrington on Saturday 17th September 2016

Warrington Festival is giving bands from the region a chance to play in tribute to Viola Beach and their manager. This is your chance to come together to honour the boys, and what better way than by playing at the very same festival that Viola Beach played last year.

So if you want to be part of this event, then please apply.
Please send a SoundCloud link and a brief biog to lglazier@culturewarrington.org

Submissions are open until Monday 1st August at 9am and you will be then notified if you have been successful during the following weeks.

Starsailor to headline Warrington Festival

Starsailor WebBank Park, Warrington, Saturday 17 September 2016
Tickets are priced at £10 each


Warrington Festival is pleased to announce Starsailor as the latest band to be confirmed for this year’s line-up.

The gig is part of a series of events to celebrate sport, culture and entertainment across Warrington.

It will be the band’s first outdoor headline event in Warrington and their first appearance in the town since they released their greatest hits album last year.

The band was formed at Wigan and Leigh Music College by music students James Walsh (vocals/guitar), James Stelfox (bass), and Ben Byrne (drums). Later saw the arrival of keyboardist Barry Westhead, who cemented their sound.

Starsailor’s initial run of success saw both their ‘Love is Here’ debut album and the 2003 follow-up ‘Silence is Easy’ hit number two in the charts and netted them a total of three million album sales before a hiatus in 2009.

Frontman, James Walsh, said: “It’s been over 15 years since the band first formed and the songs still mean something to people. They still sing the words passionately back at us at gig and we hear stories of how songs have sound tracked key moments in their lives.”

Since their reformation, the band has played on the main stage at the Isle of Wight festival, supported Manchester indie band, James and toured North America with Embrace.

Starsailor will headline the festival following a full day of performances from local artists in tribute to Warrington’s Viola Beach and their manager, who died in a car crash earlier this year.

Be Part of An Event in Tribute to Viola Beach Headlined by Starsailor

Bands from the region can now submit to play at the event which takes place at Bank Park, Warrington on Saturday 17th September 2016

Warrington Festival is giving bands from the region a chance to play in tribute to Viola Beach and their manager. This is your chance to come together to honour the boys, and what better way than by playing at the very same festival that Viola Beach played last year.
So if you want to be part of this event, then please apply.
Please send a SoundCloud link and a brief biog to lglazier@culturewarrington.org
Submissions are open until Monday 1st August at 9am and you will be then notified if you have been successful during the following weeks.

Visit the official Warrington Festival website for all your festival information.

Warrington Festival banner

Icons of the 80s join Warrington Festival line up

Icons of the 80s WebBank Park, Warrington, Friday 16 September 2016
Tickets and information: Tickets are priced at £15 each

Go West, Nik Kershaw and special guests, T’Pau will come together for one concert on the opening night of Warrington Festival 2016.

The three legendary 80s stars are set to join forces for a truly incredible concert experience on Warrington’s Bank Park on Friday 16 September.

Their appearance will kick off a two week celebration of culture, sport and entertainment across the town.

With millions of albums sales and iconic hits such as We Close Our Eyes, Call Me, Wouldn’t It Be Good, The Riddle, I Won’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me, Heart and Soul and the classic China in Your Hand, this authentic eighties triple header is not to be missed.

This year marks the 30th anniversary of Go West’s first hit single We Close Our Eyes. Other hits followed including Call Me, Goodbye Girl and Don’t Look Down, Faithful, and the smash hit theme song from the film Pretty Woman, King of Wishful Thinking.

Nik Kershaw first achieved chart success in 1984 with Wouldn’t It Be Good?, followed by other classics such as Won’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me, and The Riddle. A prolific writer for other artists, Nik also penned the number one single The One and Only for Chesney Hawkes.

T’Pau’s first single Heart and Soul was released in 1987 and initially found success in the US after being featured in a Pepe Jeans commercial, before charting in the UK. Their biggest hit China in Your Hand hit the top spot in the UK later that year, and stayed at number one for five weeks.

Tickets go on sale on Monday 18 July at 9am

Visit the official Warrington Festival website for more festival information and updates.

landscape-iconsof80s

Warrington Festival banner

‘Beautifully-crafted tribute’ to Whitney Houston comes to Warrington

Whitney WebThursday 27 October, 7.30pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £25

Buy tickets online

Whitney Houston fans are in for a treat as the next best thing, Belinda Davids, comes to Warrington’s Parr Hall.

The Greatest Love of All – The Whitney Houston Show is a breathtaking production featuring the impeccable vocal talents of the South African singer described by many as “jaw-droppingly similar” to the beloved pop diva’s.

The show is a beautifully-crafted tribute to one of the world’s most revered singers, complete with a full band and dancers who bring to life more than two hours-worth of Whitney Houston’s best-loved pop hits.

In addition to her pitch perfect sound, Davids openly acknowledges that Houston was her personal idol and the original inspiration for her own career when she began singing professionally at the age of 14.

She said: “I want people to come and remember Whitney when she was at the top of her game and when she was fabulous.”

People all over the world have done exactly that with the USA, Canada, New Zealand, Singapore and South Africa already hosting sell-out performances in the show’s first two years of touring.
PHOTO Whitney Dancers Black White Fists Up IMG_9723
The Greatest Love of All features 20 of Houston’s most popular tracks taken from the full span of her career including I Will Always Love You, I Wanna Dance With Somebody, I’m Every Woman, Didn’t We Almost Have It All, Exhale (Shoop Shoop) and Million Dollar Bill to name a few.

Davids is directed by Showtime Management creative director John Van Grinsven Senior and joined on tour by the production team responsible for the worldwide hit tribute show Michael Jackson HIStory.

Jason Donovan announces very special Warrington show

Jason Donovan 2
Wednesday 21 December
Parr Hall, 7.30pm,
Tickets £35

80s heart-throb and star of the stage Jason Donovan has added a date at Parr Hall to his already packed 2016 tour.

The pop star and former Neighbours actor has been enjoying such phenomenal demand for tickets that another show was desperately needed: and he chose Warrington to host!

The 33-date greatest hits tour, which kicked off in the spring, has seen Jason return to his pop roots to celebrate his 1989 five-times-platinum debut album Ten Good Reasons which he is performing in full for the first time.

The Warrington audience is in for a special treat as Jason has chosen Parr Hall as the venue for the last night of the tour on December 21.

10 Good Reasons became the biggest-selling album of 1989 and remains a massive fan favourite, featuring the number one hits Too Many Broken Hearts, Sealed with a Kiss and the unforgettable duet with Kylie Minogue, Especially for You.

Jason Donovan said: “The response to the spring Ten Good Reasons tour was so overwhelming.

“The audiences seemed to enjoy reliving that particular time in their lives for a short while as much as I did.

“Music has a wonderful opportunity to put you in a time and place, and trigger an emotional connection that no other creative medium can.

“Ten Good Reasons was a defining moment for me and my fans and I am delighted we have the opportunity to play the songs all over again in Warrington, and then play a few Christmas favourites at the same time.”

Jason, who has starred in a host of stage plays from The Rocky Horror Show to Joseph, will of course be performing his other greatest hits including Any Dream Will Do, When You Come Back to Me, Nothing Can Divide Us and Happy Together.

He added: “Whether it’s theatre or touring I’ve always placed a high importance on giving my fans a great live show.

“I’m looking forward to bringing all the pieces together and delivering a show in Warrington that gives personality, some great memories and, most importantly, gives the audience exactly what they want to hear.”

Tickets for this not-to-be-missed show go on sale on Friday 1 July.

Mik Artistik’s Ego Trip promises wild night in Warrington

MAET WebSaturday 9 July, 8pm
Pyramid, Tickets £10
Buy tickets online

Mik Artistik’s Ego Trip, who wowed last year’s Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival audience, are returning to the town for a memorable show at Pyramid arts centre.

The trio are an edgy, funny, poetic unit who play rock and roll stand up: they are Glastonbury regulars having performed multiple shows at each of the last seven Worthy Farm festivals and are due to perform again this year when the legendary event starts on Thursday 22 June.

Chaos ensues whenever the trio take to the stage, as they will at Pyramid on Saturday 9 July – the only non-festival date in their summer schedule – with Mik tumbling around, spluttering lyrics, tripping over leads and throwing straws around.

He also likes to spout random observations and share his unusual train of thought with the audience.

Guitarist Jonny Flockton and Benson Walker on bass dutifully hold fort, trying to rein Mik in while creating a backdrop which is equal parts joyous, funky, elegant and rocky: every show is different.

Mik Artistik’s Ego Trip have also appeared on Channel 4’s Random Acts, had slots at Bath Comedy Fest, and Edinburgh and Brighton Fringe Festivals, as well as supporting the legendary Chas & Dave at their O2 Academy show in Leeds.

Their performances have prompted glowing reviews and flattering descriptions including “sensational”, “genius” and “brilliant” from the likes of performance poet John Cooper Clarke: comedian Johnny Vegas once called Mik “the mad professor of comedy”.

And the trio went down a storm at last year’s Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival gaining commendation from Culture Warrington as a “strange and wonderful beast of a band”.

Award-winning comedian and actor Omid Djalili to visit Warrington

Omid WebSaturday 4 February 2017
Parr Hall, 8pm, tickets £24
Buy tickets online

The award-winning comedian and actor Omid Djalili known for his legendary stand-up performances is back on a nationwide tour and will be calling in at Parr Hall.

The British-Iranian comedian is intelligent, sometimes provocative and always entertaining and his Schmuck for a Night tour promises to be a hugely energetic and captivating comedy masterclass.

Omid’s credits range from Hollywood to television and live performances on the West End stage, earning him praise across the world for his performances.

He recently starred in BBC One’s Dickensian and Sky 1’s Lucky Man.

According to The Telegraph he is “one of the most joyfully smart, stimulating and entertaining comedians this country has”, Sunday Times described his show as full of “belly laughs with a subtle blend of mainstream gags and subversive twinkle”, and Metro called it a “confident, engaging and thoughtful show… did someone say National Treasure?”

Cleaning ladies try some Dirty Dusting at Parr Hall

DD WebFriday 10 June, Time 7.30pm,
Parr Hall, tickets £20
Buy tickets online

Dirty Dusting is returning to the stage after a sell-out tour in 2014 and Warrington is high on the “to-do” list.

This hilarious show, featuring Crissy Rock from the hit TV series Benidorm, follows the antics of three cleaners who are a little past their sell by date as they start up an adult chat line.

Gladys, Elsie and Olive are about to be put out to pasture by their overzealous office manager Dave and, feeling they have little chance of gaining employment elsewhere, the ladies need a way to boost their falling income.

A chance wrong number requiring an adult chat line rings into the office and gives them a great idea… after all, their age and appearance won’t matter on the telephone and, providing they can keep it a secret from their boss, they could be onto a winner.

The trio hope to really clean up as the “Telephone Belles” but needless to say things don’t go entirely according to plan.

Dirty Dusting is a heart-warming feel-good comedy that will have the Warrington audience rolling in the aisles and smiling every time the phone rings.

UFO is heading for Warrington

ufo webWednesday 26 October, 7.30pm
Parr Hall, tickets £22.50
Buy tickets online

Parr Hall is delighted to announce legendary rockers UFO will be landing at the venue in October.

The tour, which calls at Warrington on October 26, will showcase A Conspiracy of Stars, the band’s 22nd studio album, as well as some old favourites.

This is the first time in more than 20 years the British band have recorded an album in their native country and it exudes that typically British easy-going confidence for which the band has been known for more than 45 years.

A Conspiracy of Stars is described as a “strong release” consisting of 11 songs which combine everything the group stands for: meaty riffs, distinctive hooks, diverse song-writing and intelligent lyrics.

And the fact that the album was produced and mixed by Chris Tsangarides, of Judas Priest, Thin Lizzy and Gary Moore fame, adds to the success of the recording and sees UFO prove that past and present can be blended.

UFO’s success story began in London way back in 1969, when vocalist Phil Mogg, drummer Andy Parker, guitarist Mick Bolton and bassist Pete Way formed the group.

Even in the seventies, the band distinguished themselves with their own, unmistakable style, touching a nerve among their following with rock numbers like Prince Kajuku, Follow You Home and C’mon Everybody from their albums UFO 1, Flying and UFO Live.

The global breakthrough arrived when German guitarist Michael Schenker joined the fold in 1973, having left his band Scorpions to follow an offer by Phil Mogg and Pete Way.

UFO released three consecutive rock classics with Schenker – Phenomenon (1974), Force It (1975) and No Heavy Pettin’ (1976) – featuring classics like Doctor Doctor, Shoot, Shoot, and Rock Bottom.

And following the arrival of keyboarder/rhythm guitarist Paul Raymond, UFO released Lights Out (1977) and Obsession (1978), which included the hit singles Too Hot to Handle, Lights Out and Only You Can Rock Me.

Their live cut Strangers In The Night came out in 1979 and is described by the press to this day as one of the best live releases of all time, while also signalling the end of the Mogg, Way, Schenker, Parker and Raymond line-up.

The band now consists of original members Phil Mogg, vocals, and Paul Raymond on keyboards and guitar, classic-era drummer Andy Parker, lead guitarist Vinnie Moore, a permanent member since 2003, and American bassist Rob De Luca who joined in 2012.

Culture Warrington and LiveWire launch volunteer drive

PyramidWebCulture Warrington and LiveWire are holding an event next month to recruit new volunteers to be part of some of the town’s biggest events and health and wellbeing activities.

The two companies have recently revamped their existing volunteer schemes, and have identified lots of new opportunities for people to get involved with leisure, library, health and cultural activities in the town.

The event, which is being held on Saturday 4 June between 10am-2pm at Pyramid arts centre, will give budding volunteers the chance to find out more about the specific volunteer roles on offer.

Culture Warrington is giving those interested in arts, entertainment or heritage the opportunity to work across a variety of departments including; sales and marketing, events, heritage, outreach, research or cataloguing.

Meanwhile, LiveWire is offering volunteers the chance to get involved with sports engagement, community wellbeing and library activities.

Sharon Sinnott, HR officer at LiveWire and Culture Warrington, said: “Volunteering at LiveWire or Culture Warrington will not only give local people the chance to get involved with some of the biggest events in Warrington, it will also provide the opportunity to gain new skills which will be a welcome boost to CVs.”

Over the last year, both LiveWire and Culture Warrington have supported more than 170 volunteers to take part in many different events including Warrington Festival, Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival, the LiveWire Mile and the Summer Reading Challenge.

Some of the volunteers who have worked with Culture Warrington and LiveWire in the past have even gone on to secure permanent employment with the companies.

Carenza Foxall from Longford started volunteering with the LiveWire leisure team four years ago and due to the commitment, initiative and ability she showed during her time as a volunteer, she has now been employed by LiveWire as a lifeguard.

Hannah White began volunteering at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery after university. Her volunteering role, which gave her experience working with a huge range of collections, has supported her to secure positions at museums across the North West and she’s now back at Warrington Museum undertaking the permanent role of Collections Assistant.

Hannah, said: “Upon leaving university, I had decided to pursue a career working in museums, but due to the competitive nature of this industry I knew that I needed to acquire the transferable skills required to gain my first job, and volunteering with Culture Warrington enabled me to do this.”

The new volunteer offer is being launched during Volunteers’ Week – a national celebration of the contribution that millions of volunteers across the country make every year.

Parr Hall to welcome pub landlord Al Murray

Al Murray WebFriday 17 February 2017, 7pm,
Parr Hall, Tickets £27.50
Buy tickets online

Pub landlord Al Murray is set to bring his distinctive brand of humour back to Parr Hall, with tickets going on sale this Friday for his new tour which hits Warrington in February 2017.

He calls himself a publican, politician and philosopher, and on his next tour Let’s Go Backwards Together, he will embark on a common sense campaign to “re-Great Britain”.

The critically-acclaimed comedian’s on-stage persona will address Europe, the NHS, “whatever the hell is going on in the Middle East”, the gathering storm of fortnightly bin collections and plenty of other issues which are regular pub chat fodder, all in his typical brash style.

Parr Hall’s audience will be watching The Pub Landlord answer the call of destiny, even though it’s an unlisted number, call time on tyranny, even though he isn’t quite sure what it means, and even say no to women ordering anything other than a glass of white wine or fruit-based drink.

In the 20 years since The Pub Landlord first roared into existence, Al Murray has become “a supremely polished performer” according to Mail on Sunday, and The Daily Telegraph said “Murray’s affectionate, double-edged satire feels as fresh as ever”.

Gabrielle will be making “Dreams” come true at Parr Hall

Gabweb3 November 2016, 7pm, Parr Hall
Tickets from £25/35 (VIP package £99)
Tickets go on general sale on Friday 13 May

Culture Warrington is delighted to announce that veteran pop star Gabrielle will be making “Dreams” come true with a visit to Parr Hall this winter

A unique artist with one of the most distinctive voices in the business, Gabrielle has achieved a great deal without becoming an in-your-face, look at me “celebrity”.

Her career got off to an incredible start in 1993 when she broke the record for the highest chart debut by a female with the single, Dreams.

As a 23-year-old club singer from Brockley, South London, she was the archetypal outsider; she didn’t possess the sort of belting voice you’d expect of an R&B vocalist and wearing an eyepatch made her visually striking.

She quickly became one of Britain’s most successful soul singers despite saying there were “so many other girls with better voices” who were a “hell of a lot skinnier”.

In an industry where longevity is becoming increasingly rare, the hits have been unstoppable; Give Me A Little More Time, If You Ever, When a Woman, Sunshine and Out Of Reach, which she wrote for the soundtrack of Bridget Jones’s Diary, to name a few.

Then there are the multi-platinum albums, Gabrielle, Rise and Dreams Can Come True, and she recently featured on Naughty Boy’s album Hotel Cabana alongside the likes of Ed Sheeran, Sam Smith and Emeli Sande.

Gabrielle said: “It was an incredible project to be part of and funny for me that the other guests were artists like Tinie Tempah and Ed Sheeran. I’m the veteran, the surprise in there and I loved that.”

In 2013 Gabrielle released a seventh album with the iconic Island records – a double album of all her greatest hits, some of her favourite album tracks and seven brand new songs.

With the new songs came a new sound, the album titled Now and Always: 20 Years of Dreaming also includes a new version of the classic Dreams re-produced and re-recorded by Naughty Boy.

2014 saw Gabrielle go on her first UK tour since 2008. With a new band, new team and new energy she loved being back on stage and it reignited her passion for performing live.

The Now and Always tour was a huge success and Gabrielle felt reconnected with her fans, at every show she could be seen taking selfies from the stage with audience members.

Last month Gabrielle hit the road again as special guest opener for Michael Bolton on his UK tour and after an amazing response from audiences decided it was time for her own headline tour.

“I love performing live,” she added. “When I’m at home being mum it’s so easy to forget there are people who come along to see me and sing along to songs I’ve written.

“It’s an amazing feeling and I’m so grateful that after 23 years I still have the chance to perform and record.

“It’s what I know and what I love – when I said dreams can come true, I wasn’t wrong!”

A fascinating collection of 1966 World Cup memorabilia is going on display at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery

1966 World Cup memorabilia in Warrington to mark 50th anniversary

Old Trafford posterKeen collector Neil Perkins has kindly given the venue permission to showcase dozens of items he has gathered over the years to mark the 50th anniversary of the historic match in the display, They Think it’s All Over, which goes on show in May.

The Warrington 53-year-old, who watched England beat Germany with his dad when he was four, has a varied hoard including autographs, rare tickets to World Cup Willie souvenirs, original posters and a Wembley tournament flag.

Neil began collecting these rare and unusual items in about 2001 when he discovered eBay, having previously picked up a few items in collectors’ fairs and vintage shops.

Visitors to Warrington Museum & Art Gallery will also be able to view an evocative photo album containing images of the 1966 Brazilian team’s stay at Lymm Hotel, largely taken by Roger Allen the very proud hotel manager at the time.

Earlier this year Lymm Heritage Centre group hosted a four-day display, which attracted national media interest, about the South American players’ visit and have kindly shared their resources and information for the display.

Ice bucketNeil, a Leeds United fan, admitted he could not quite remember the match itself but watched it with his dad while on holiday in Torquay – the TV in the hotel lounge broke just as Germany equalised.

He said: “Although we had some luck, a home advantage and a couple of decisions in our favour, the team was a very well-organised and strong unit with several world class players and a determined manager.

“I’m really happy to see my collection on display at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery.”

Michelle Hill, collections and archives manager at Culture Warrington, said: “This is a really fascinating collection which we’re delighted to be showcasing at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery.

“2016 is a big year in the world of football, with the 50th anniversary of that wonderful 1966 World Cup victory and the Euro 2016 tournament coming up, and it’s great we can celebrate a connection to that here in Warrington.”

Listings information:
Exhibition title: They Think it’s all Over
Dates: 14 May – 1 October 2016
Admission: Free
Warrington Museum & Art Gallery, Museum Street, Warrington, WA1 1JB

Warrington’s bravest invited to spend spooky night in museum

Rotten Luck web banner v2 mus
Things go bump in the night – especially at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery.

Culture Warrington and Blackwood Events acting group are giving the public a rare chance to test their bravery at the upcoming free event Rotten Luck, organised as part of Culture24’s Museums at Night biannual UK-wide festival.

On the spookiest night in May, Friday 13, visitors to the museum will be able to see the venue come to life as a cast of actors take them on a journey of corruption, torture and torment during a dark and mysterious period in the town’s past.

This eerie event, set among display cases featuring a mummy, a cursed head, and plenty of scary dolls, has three performances to choose from at 5.45pm, 6.30pm and 7.15pm and a haunting short film accompanied live by experimental electronica musicians.

Museums at Night gives museums and art galleries the chance to come together around a single, simple campaign to attract the attentions of venues, audiences and the media.

MuseumsAtNight1It’s a social experience where visitors can get involved and delve deeper into fascinating subjects.

Only a limited number of tickets are available for this special event, so a quick call now to Pyramid & Parr Hall box office is essential.

The recommended age for the event at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery is 12 plus and under 16s must be accompanied by an adult.

Derek Dick, outreach and engagement manager at Culture Warrington, said: “Museums at Night is a great event which we’re really pleased to be involved with here at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery.

“Anyone who comes along will see the building and its displays in a new light and will be given a rare insight into the spookier side of the town’s history.

“October’s event went really well and we’re excited to build on this success in 2016.”
Book your free place online

Vienna Festival Ballet brings magical tale of Swan Lake to Warrington

Snow Web29 May 2016, 2.30pm, £19.50/£16.50/£12.50
Parr Hall, Buy Tickets Online

One of the best known love stories ever told is being performed at Parr Hall through breathtaking ballet.

Vienna Festival Ballet is presenting Swan Lake on May 29 complete with the glorious and unmistakable music of Tchaikovsky.

This production of the magical tale about the Swan Queen and the evil magician Von Rothbart features lavish costumes, stunning scenery and international stars, capturing the audience’s imagination and drawing them in to this enchanting world.

Swan Lake, the most popular ballet in the world, encompasses like no other the full range of human emotions from hope to despair, terror to tenderness and melancholy to ecstasy.

This rousing and inspiring show is one not to miss and promises to be a hit with newcomers to ballet and those already in love with the art form.

The Oxford Times said: “Vienna Festival Ballet, with its talented array of young artistes, ensures you won’t see dancers going through the motions.”

The Worthing Herald said: “This production looks and feels absolutely right.”

Arts and craft hero Mister Maker brings his shapes to Warrington

MM-393x2772 June 2016, 1.30pm, £13.50/£10/£42 family
Parr Hall, Buy Tickets Online

Family favourites Mister Maker and The Shapes will be inspiring the audience to get crafty on his visit to Parr Hall on 2 June.

The CBeebies star is embarking on his first ever live theatre tour which will give little ones who love his TV show the chance to join him on arty adventures.

Known for his skills in making cardboard cottages, hairy blow paintings and paper dot birds to name a few, the craft man will be bringing plenty of fresh ideas to inspire youngsters to have a go with paints, felt-tips and colourful card.

There will be a big ‘make’ to take part in, super songs to sing along to, and of course Mister Maker’s fabulous supporting cast The Shapes.

His colourful friends known as Circle, Square, Rectangle and Triangle will be backed by a talented group of all-singing, all-dancing friends which make this interactive arty adventure fun for all the family.

Phil Gallagher, aka Mister Maker, said: “This is our first ever Mister Maker theatre tour in the UK and I am so excited. We’ll be singing, dancing and making some amazing arty creations.

“I can’t wait to share the fun with all my Mini Makers so join me, Circle, Triangle, Square and Rectangle for a real arty adventure, and get ready to make some noise.”

Pyramid closed Thursday 14 April for essential maintenance

Please be aware that Pyramid will be closed on Thursday 14 April for essential maintenance work. Box Office will be temporarily relocated to Parr Hall for the day and tickets can be purchased from the counter or by telephone or online. Sorry for the inconvenience. Everything will be back to normal on Friday.

David Bowie fans given chance to say farewell at Parr Hall

STARMANWeb2 September 2016, 7.30pm, £20 (£21 inc. online booking fee)
Parr Hall, Palmyra Square South, Warrington, WA1 1BL
Buy tickets online

Starman – The David Bowie Story is the ultimate tribute to the much-loved legend.

But the show is also a highly entertaining, emotional and thought-provoking musical celebration fans will want to see again and again, particularly since the star’s death in January.

Ziggy Stardust, Aladdin Sane, Thin White Duke and Major Tom will all make appearances at the Warrington show on September 2 as the many personas of David Bowie deliver the most memorable, inspiring and lasting songs of a generation.

From Rebel Rebel to China Girl, Let’s Dance to Young Americans via Ashes to Ashes, Life on Mars, Changes, Heroes, and Sound and Vision, the list goes on.

Songs from all eras of David Bowie’s celebrated career are performed to perfection in this highly charged show featuring the finest musicians and singers with an amazing performance from theatre stage star
Michael King.

Add to that mix big screen audio visual footage and a variety of costume changes and you get an amazing show taking the audience on a ‘Fantastic Voyage’ of Bowie hits.

Tickets are on sale now.

Musical fans have plenty to go mad about in Parr Hall

May 5 2016, 7.30pm (doors 6.15pm), £22/£20 concessions (£23/£21 inc online booking fee)
Buy tickets online

MATM Web
Fans of big screen songs will have plenty to celebrate as the Mad About the Musicals tour calls at Warrington.

Pop star Gareth Gates is joining director and producer Michael Courtney for the 10th anniversary of the show which promises to be one to remember.

Taking audiences on a whistle stop tour from the heart of London’s theatre land to the glitz of Broadway, Mad About the Musicals is back on tour to celebrate the very best songs from the shows loved by thousands.

Classics penned by the likes of Rodgers and Hammerstein, Kander and Ebb, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Boublil and Schonberg, and many more will be performed by the talented cast of Mad About the Musicals as they evoke the true spirit of the stage.

The sounds of brilliant vocals and West End musicians will echo around Parr Hall at the show on May 5 bringing the sparkling world of song and dance to the Warrington audience.

From Phantom of the Opera’s poignant All I Ask of You to Les Miserables’ dramatic One Day More, audiences can sit back and enjoy two hours of unforgettable favourites brought to life by a cast fresh from the West End including Gareth Gates and Michael Courtney.

The show, which has been hailed as “outstanding” by The Stage, “the best show of its kind” by Encore Magazine and was nominated for UK ‘producer of the year’, is definitely one not to miss.

Tickets are on sale now.

Wilko Johnson brings new zest for life to Warrington

Thursday 6 October 2016, 7.30pm (doors 7pm)
Tickets £25, Tickets on sale Friday 15 April

Wilko_lr_nomicWilko Johnson is feeling more alive than ever, despite a terminal cancer diagnosis, and he’s bringing his new zest for life to Warrington.

In a recent interview he said: “I’m supposed to be dead.”

But despite the doctor’s worst predictions he continues to perform with vigour claiming “there’s nothing like being told you’re dying to make you feel alive”.

He could have been a retired teacher by now but was lured into music by his first Telecaster soon after becoming the strutting, grimacing, six-string rhythmic powerhouse behind Lee Brilleaux in Dr Feelgood.

Wilko and his bandmates were in the vanguard of the pub rock movement, performing gutsy down-to-earth rock and roll many viewed as a welcome antidote to the faltering prog-rock era.

Wilko’s unique playing style, his black-suited, scowling look, and the yards he covered across the stage in Feelgood, the Solid Senders and Ian Dury’s The Blockheads will be resurrected at Parr Hall on 6 October with special quest Aaron Keylock.

Justin Moorhouse brings his People and Feelings tour to Warrington

21 October 2016, 8pm, £16 (£17 including online booking fee)Justin Moorhouse Web
Buy tickets online

Everyone’s favourite northern charmer Justin Moorhouse is back on the road and he’s just announced that he’ll be bringing his brand new tour to Warrington’s Pyramid this October.

Known for his slots on Live at the Apollo, The News Quiz and Fighting Talk, he’s a little slimmer but still as “belly laugh funny”, according to Manchester Evening News.

And his People and Feelings tour promises to be better than ever.

After taking last year’s show for a run, of which The Guardian said “the amount of first-rate comic craft that goes into his deceptively simple routines is worthy of admiration”, he’s had a think about people.

He also discusses feelings, how he feels about people, and how people feel about him – this is shaping up to be one very funny show.

“He charms the pants off the crowd,” The Sunday Times.

“Comedic tour de force… brought a tear to a critical glass eye,” The Herald.

“Simultaneously down to earth and out of this world,” The List.

A Night of Dirty Dancing comes to Warrington

Saturday 23 April 2016, 8pm, £22/£20/10th ticket free
Parr Hall, Buy tickets online
DD Web

Celebrating the greatest soundtrack of all time, Parr Hall is set to host the ultimate tribute show to the classic film Dirty Dancing. On Saturday 23 April, audiences will have the night of their lives as Warrington is transported to the 80s.

Featuring all of the favourite songs, Parr Hall will relive the iconic summer romance between Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey. Dance along to this unforgettable theatrical treat, and revisit the famous Catskills mountains where they fell in love.

The original film followed Baby, who finds herself stuck at the resort one summer with her parents. She is soon enlisted by the charismatic dance instructor Johnny as his new partner, except her father doesn’t approve. Baby is determined to help him perform the last big dance of the summer, leading to the one of the most memorable movie sequences in history.

Don’t miss out on this incredible night out, filled with dancing, singing and great costumes. As the warm weather of the summer beckons, a night of Dirty Dancing will be exactly what Warrington will need to have the time of their life.

Sally Morgan brings the spirit world to Warrington

Tuesday 19 April 2016, 7.30pm, £24.50
Parr Hall, Buy tickets onlinesally2016

The nation’s favourite psychic, Sally Morgan is returning to Warrington’s Parr Hall on Tuesday 19 April, and she’s better than ever with a brand new which is her most jaw-dropping yet.

Often referred to as ‘psychic to the stars’, her clients have included Katie Price, George Michael, and the late Princess Diana. Funny, entertaining, sometimes heart breaking, and often controversial, this will be a night to remember as Sally delves into the spiritual world.

This is Morgan’s seventh year of touring around the country, delivering accurate messages from beyond the grave to bring hope and comfort to her audiences. Taking them on a journey into the spirit world, she always leaves her audience with a sense of wonder and understanding of what may lie beyond.

Famous for her down to earth nature and infectious personality, her audiences are guaranteed to have a fantastic and enlightening night out. As they say… seeing is believing.

How the Koala Learnt to Hug comes to Pyramid

Koala WebSunday 10 April 2016, 11.30am & 2.30pm
Pyramid, tickets £8.50/£7.50/£28 family

Buy tickets online

Warrington will feel the heat of the Australian sun as the beloved tale of How the Koala Learnt to Hug comes to Pyramid for a charming production next month.

Created especially for parents to enjoy with their children, this fun-filled musical arrives at the venue on Sunday 10 April. Follow Karen the Koala as she tells the story of how her cute and cuddly kind finally learnt to hug.

Based on the book by Steven Lee, the production is in its fifth year and has won the hearts of many audiences across the country. There’s no better way to learn about the magic of family and the importance of a good cuddle than from a grumpy little koala from Down Under.

Suitable for everyone from the age of three right up to 103, there will be plenty of fun to be had for everyone.

Featuring beautiful puppet characters, great stories, sing along songs and superb games. The only thing that the audience will need to bring is some first class hugging.

VIOLA BEACH – A CELEBRATION – FULL LINE UP ANNOUNCED

VIOLA BEACH
A CELEBRATION
WARRINGTON PARR HALL – SATURDAY 2ND APRIL

viola

To celebrate the lives of Viola Beach and their dedicated manager Craig Tarry, there will be special night in memory of the five remarkable young men at Warrington Parr Hall on Saturday 2 April.

The sold out show will feature a line-up of friends, bands they’ve played with, influences and peers from across the country which will be compered by BBC Radio 1’s Phil Taggart.

The Coral and Liam Fray are set to perform alongside an acoustic set from The Kooks. Special guests Blossoms, Eliza and the Bear, Hidden Charms, The Vryll Society, The Strawberries and Psyblings will also join together to celebrate the lives and music of the band.

All proceeds from the show will go to all their families.

LINE UP
THE CORAL, LIAM FRAY, THE KOOKS ACOUSTIC, BLOSSOMS, ELIZA AND THE BEAR, HIDDEN CHARMS, THE VRYLL SOCIETY, THE STRAWBERRIES, PSYBLINGS.

Squeeze to play Warrington’s Parr Hall

Tuesday 6 September 2016
Parr Hall
Tickets priced from £32.50

Squeeze-Promo-1-Credit-Rob-O-Connor-jpg
Culture Warrington is pleased to announce that the legendary Squeeze will grace Parr Hall’s stage in September in their only North West show this year.

Following a run of festival dates over the summer, the band will head indoors for three headline shows this autumn in Warrington, North Hampton and Hull.

Squeeze have long been a captivating live act. As well as a vast catalogue including hits such as Cool For Cats, Up The Junction and Tempted, the shows will also include songs from their latest album Cradle To The Grave, their first collection of new tracks since 1998.

Cradle To The Grave marked the complete and, frankly, triumphant reintegration of the masterful songwriting axis of Chris Difford and Glenn Tilbrook, in a beautifully-observed series of fond vignettes about childhood, growing up and the absurdities of the ride through life we’re all on.

The group first formed in 1973, shortly after Chris Difford and Glenn Tilbrook had begun their song writing partnership, brought together by an ad in a sweetshop window. By 1977 they had made their recording debut and enjoyed a string of hits which lasted until 1982, the maturity of their songs outliving their initial burst of chart activity on the back of New Wave.

Over the years there have been solo careers and occasional separations, but the Ivor Novello Award-winning song writing duo, Chris and Glenn reunited nine years ago to relaunch Squeeze and have been touring, writing and recording together since.

Squeeze recently hit the headlines around the world when appearing on the BBC’s current affairs show ‘The Andrew Marr Show’ alongside fellow guest Prime Minister David Cameron. On the spur of the moment Glenn Tilbrook decided to protest about government policy and deliberately changed the final couplet of the band’s song ‘Cradle To The Grave

Tickets go on sale at 9am on Friday 4 March.

Folk star Cara Dillon set to play at Parr Hall

Saturday 19 March 2016, 8pm, £20
Parr Hall, Tickets available online
Cara Web
Something special is in store for Warrington, as Cara Dillon arrives at Parr Hall on Saturday 19 March to play the extraordinary music which has gained her legions of fans around the world.

Dillon has appeared at prestigious concert halls and festivals all over the world, and she will be adding Parr Hall to that esteemed list as she performs songs from her latest critically-acclaimed album, ‘A Thousand Hearts’, along with a few favourites.

Hailing from County Derry, Dillon has become one of the best known singers of traditional Irish folk around the world, using her unique and beautiful voice to bring a contemporary twist to her thoroughly-Irish musical roots. This has led to some impressive achievements, including winning ‘Album of the Year’ at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards and ‘Best Irish Female’ at the Meteor Music Awards.

Always looking to bring new audiences to her work, Cara Dillon has topped the charts with dance remixes, lent her voice to the title song of Disney’s ‘Tinker Bell and the Great Fairy Rescue’, and sang with full orchestral backing. It’s no wonder that she can count Ed Sheeran, Alison Krauss, Ellie Goulding, and Robert Plant as fans.

This is a performer who is at the very top of her field, and this show will prove that she will be up there for many years to come.

Nathan Carter’s UK tour comes to Warrington

Nathan WebFriday 18 March 2016, 7.30pm, £24
Parr Hall – Tickets available online

He is the hottest property on the Irish music scene right now, and on Friday 18 March, Nathan Carter is heading to Warrington’s Parr Hall along with his band to fill the legendary venue with the sounds of his unmistakable voice.

Widely regarded as one of the best acts in the genre known as Country and Irish – which he revived with his acclaimed debut album in 2007 – he has since further strengthened his reputation for his ability to put on a fantastic live show by touring all over the world.

Recently announcing his mini tour of the UK, he chose Warrington as one of only ten dates, so this is an event not to be missed.

Nathan has so far recorded six albums, two DVDs and a raft of hit singles, and on the back of last years’ massive summer hit, ‘Good Time Girls’, he signed with the famous DECCA record company, bringing in a whole new chapter to the remarkable Nathan Carter story.

Everyone is welcome at a Nathan Carter concert. Fans of all ages consistently flock to see Carter and his six-piece band at shows all across the UK and Ireland, and this event will be no different.

Experience the superb live sounds, stage sets and extra effort which have built his reputation as an unmissable singing sensation.

BBC Big Band brings the sound of the big divas to Warrington

Sunday 13 March 2016, 7.30pm, £24
Parr Hall, Palmyra Square South, Warrington, WA1 1BL
But tickets online

Warrington’s Parr Hall will be filled with the sounds of the greatest leading ladies in big band history as the acclaimed BBC Big Band arrives on Sunday 13 March.BBC - main group Web

Joined by multi-award winning jazz vocalist, Claire Martin OBE, this renowned band will perform the classic hits of Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, Peggy Lee and many others. This evening of feel-good music and glamour will see audiences dance the night away to grandiose renditions of That Old Black Magic, Fever, Too Darn Hot, and many more.

BBC Big Band is widely regarded as one of the best jazz orchestras in the country, having been a regular feature on BBC radio for nearly half-a-decade. In that time they have performed with some of the greatest jazz artists in history, such as Tony Bennett, Michael Bublé, Ray Charles, and Amy Winehouse.

Claire Martin  1Joining them on the stage of Parr Hall is the legendary singer Claire Martin OBE, who is considered one of the finest jazz vocalists on the planet. Having won awards at the British Jazz Awards seven times, audiences will be guaranteed a night of unforgettable music. In 2011, she was rewarded for services to jazz when she was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire.

Don’t miss out on this fantastic night out with some of the greatest jazz artists in the country.

Buy tickets online for BBC Big Band feat. Claire Martin OBE

The Proclaimers announce Warrington show

The Proclaimers – Friday 29 July 2016, Parr Hall. Tickets onsale Friday 19 February, £28.50

Warrington’s Parr Hall have announced that legendary Scottish duo The Proclaimers are set to grace the stage this summer and bring a whole host of their unforgettable hits to Warrington.Proclaimers Web

Friday 29 July will be the date to save, as The Proclaimers unleash their undeniably catchy anthems on the equally legendary venue, Parr Hall.

After the release of last year’s acclaimed album ‘Let’s Hear It For The Dogs’, they embarked on a nationwide tour of the biggest venues and festivals around the world.

With appearances at Glastonbury and T in the Park, they are continuing to cement their place as one of the best live acts in the country.

Craig and Charlie Reid’s music is renowned for its emotional honesty, political fire and sing-along raucousness, and it has given them multiple Gold and Platinum records across the world.

This summer, Parr Hall will hear all the classics, from Sunshine on Leith, (I’m Gonna Be) 500 Miles, Letter From America, I’m On My Way, Life With You, and Let’s Get Married, to name just a few.

The popularity of these Scottish twins is as high as ever, as 2013 saw them cross over into the world of theatre and the silver screen when the stage musical based on their music, Sunshine on Leith, was transformed into a hugely popular film. It spent a month in the top ten of the UK box office, generating more than £4.8 million in ticket sales.

With tickets due to go on sale Friday 19 February at 9am, there’ll be no need to walk 500 miles to experience this fantastic duo. Just call the box office on 01925 442345 or book online.

Viola Beach

Warrington band Viola Beach – Jack Dakin, Kris Leonard, Tomas Lowe, River Reeves and their manager Craig Tarry – tragically passed away on SaturdayVB Web 13th of February following a road accident in Stockholm, Sweden.

They were a truly great team of young men and about to the take on the world together. The four piece recently put out their second single ‘Boys That Sing’ on the 22nd of January on Communion Records.

All proceeds made from the single will be donated from Communion Records to the band and Craig’s families.

Here is some footage recorded of the band at a recent concert at London venue Koko. An amazing group: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/ftfubbn84mfh46s/AADpi4Ad13MhoyFvIBsxzAq1a?dl=0

A statement on behalf of Culture Warrington in response to the tragic news about Viola Beach:

“We are deeply saddened and shocked to hear the news about the passing of Warrington’s Viola Beach and their manager in a tragic road accident in Sweden.

“Our thoughts and condolences go out to the families and friends of the members of the band at this very sad time.”

Communion Records: Viola Beach had only recently come into the Communion family, and had everything going for them – great songs, passion, talent, drive… everything that a band should have. To sit down with the band was to sit down with a group of guys whose band you wanted to be in, and to be in the presence of a band who knew just what it would take to make it. This is why the band had been in Sweden, rather than sit back and wait for it to happen to them, Kris, River, Jack and Tom were determined to go out into the world and play every show they could until the world was singing along with them, and now that dream has been sadly taken away from all of us. Equally, Craig, their manager was possessed by a passion to help the band achieve everything they wanted to, and to speak with Craig about Viola Beach, and music in general was an absolute pleasure – you knew he was doing it all for the right reasons. Everyone here at Communion is in a state of total shock and sorrow, and our thoughts go out to the families and friends of Craig and the band.viola beach web

Mark Bennett, United Talent agency: ‘From your first gig to your last and many in between I was so lucky to be there and I will be forever grateful for you lightning up my life with your infectious, beautiful and joyful behaviour. Craig Tarry could be seen at every gig, head bobbing and just simply and purely loving the music. I must of called him more than anyone in the last 6 months, even Thursday we must of spoke 8/9 times. You started as a colleague and you ended as a good mate. I will miss you dearly’.

Ian Grimble, Producer: ‘I first became aware of Viola Beach through their single “Swings & Waterslides” and was very taken by the energy and vibrancy that jumped out of the speakers.

Upon meeting them for the first time, along with Craig their manager, I could soon see why, their exuberance and determination to scream out to the world was overwhelming. This combined with undoubted talent and an incredible work ethic for ones so young made every long hour in the studio from then on very rewarding indeed.

It is with great sadness that we will not be able to see them grow from the spark that they are now, into the raging fire that they so desperately desired to become.

They were a young band who wrote about what they knew, a legacy for new young bands I hope.

“And she told me that she loves a boy who knows how to sing, so I learned how to sing”

And how they sang.

My thoughts are with their friends and family right now’.

Rich Perry, Radio Plugger: ‘This is the saddest news. Purely from a people perspective, we’ve lost 5 great humans.

From a professional perspective, rarely have I’m been as sure of a band & manager who felt destined for the big time.

Craig, Kris, Riv, Jack & Tom you were my friends. It’s an honour to have spent time with you doing what we all love. RIP’

Conrad Murray – SJM: ‘We are devastated by the tragic loss of the lives of Craig, Jack, Kris, Tom & River. They were a truly talented bunch of young men on the cusp of something very special and it was always a pleasure and a genuine thrill to be in their presence’.

Jack – SJM: ‘We have lost an incredible group of talented young men. Individually brilliant, together even better. Humbled to have shared time with them and I know how proud the town of Warrington has been to produce such shining stars’.

Rock ‘n’ Roll back the years with Elvis at Parr Hall

Saturday 27 February 2016, 7:30pm, £21.50/£19

The king of rock ‘n’ roll is coming to Warrington, and on Saturday 27 February, Parr Hall will be filled with the unmistakable sounds of Elvis elvisPresley for this glittering two hour production which has been wowing audiences across the country.

Straight from the West End, Mario Kombou portrays the king perfectly – it’s no wonder that he is officially endorsed by the Elvis Presley Enterprises and Elvis’ first cousin Donna Presley. He’ll be bringing all the classics back to life, including Always on my Mind, That’s Alright Mama, All Shook Up, Blue Suede Shoes, Suspicious Minds, and Viva Las Vegas to name just a few.

Audiences will be swept up in the story of his rise to music royalty, from when he was driving trucks in Mississippi, to being drafted into the army, right through to the legendary Las Vegas concerts which cemented his legacy.

Directed by top record producer David Mackay, this show contains incredible actors, multiple costume changes and nostalgic film footage which perfectly captures the magic of Elvis’ reign. This feel good show is not to be missed.

Buy tickets online

Warrington welcomes the hilarious Tom Stade

Tom Stade – You’re Welcome
Saturday 27 February 2016, 7pm, Pyramid
Edinburgh 2015 Press Shot 1MB

The UK’s favourite Canadian, Tom Stade, is taking his brand new show ‘You’re Welcome’ to Warrington’s Pyramid arts centre and he’s bringing his candid and alluring stand-up with him.

Taking to the stage on Saturday 27 February, expect the usual uncompromising humour, mischievous mayhem, and impressive improvisation which has earned him the reputation of being one of the best comedians around.

It’s no wonder that he has become a TV comedy staple, with appearances on BBC1’s The John Bishop Show, Live at the Apollo, Stand Up for the Week and Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Roadshow, as well as appearances at Edinburgh Festival.

Audiences will be roaring with laughter as Stade ruminates on life’s oddities and revels in his own perpetual shortcomings. It’s no wonder that he has been storming the global stand-up circuit for years, and now Warrington is next in line to host his latest show…you’re welcome.

Tom Stade – You’re Welcome has sold out. If you missed out on tickets for the show, follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page to keep up to date with the latest announcements. You can also sign up for our monthly newsletter.

Warrington to hold its first ever comedy extravaganza

Warrington to hold its first ever comedy extravaganza

Culture Warrington are set to hold their first ever celebration of comedy this March, filled with unforgettable one-liners and guaranteed giggles Ed Byrne 2016from some of the most popular comedians in the country.

Ed Byrne will headline the comedy extravaganza with a range of other performances and workshops to be held at Pyramid & Parr Hall as part of the month-long celebration.

To kick off the festival some of the funniest up-and-coming talents will be trying out their best jokes as Comedy Store returns to Pyramid on Saturday 5 March. This show has built a reputation for hilarious and unforgettable nights out, so it makes the perfect beginning to the comedy season.

Audiences will fall under the spell of Ed Byrne’s Irish charm and undeniable wit, as he graces the stage of the legendary Parr Hall on Friday 11 March. His ‘Outside, Looking In’ show has toured the entire country – collecting rave reviews along the way – and now it is Warrington’s turn.

Children also have the chance to get in on the comedy action as Comedy Club 4 Kids brings some of the funniest stand-up comedians from around the globe to the town to do what they do best in front of an audience of children and their families. Everyone from six to 400 years old is welcome to the event on Saturday 19 March, as they tell all the best jokes, just without the rude bits.

As part of the season, Pyramid will also be hosting a screening of the best-loved comedy film Some Like It Hot, in the relaxing environment of the Studio Theatre. The all-time outrageous, satirical comedy is one of the most hilarious films ever made.

To round off the season with a bang, Parr Hall will be welcoming a whole host of the funniest comedians around on Thursday 24 March for Who Dares Grins Comedy Night Live, which promises to be a fantastic night. From Craig Murray, Gary Delaney, Kerry Godlima and Terry Alderton, some of the brightest names in the stand-up circuit will bring non-stop laughter to Warrington.

Chris Persoglio, Venue and Events Manager at Culture Warrington, said:
“We’re really excited about holding our first ever celebration of comedy this March. The extravaganza brings some of the biggest names in comedy to the town along with the best upcoming talents in the business. Our recent customer survey results revealed that comedy performances are a real hit with our audiences so we hope that we can grow the celebration each year.”

Beat the winter blues with Dr Feelgood and Eddie & The Hot Rods

Friday 26 February, 7:30pm, Parr Hall

Beat the winter blues with Dr Feelgood and Eddie & The Hot Rods

It’s the season of sniffles and scratchy throats but Parr Hall has just the right medicine. Dr Feelgood and Eddie & The Hot Rods will be DFG Webbringing their distinctive and raw music to Warrington on Friday 26 February.

Dr Feelgood are known around the world as one of the most exciting rhythm and blues acts, and it was their unique sound that led to their album Stupidity shooting straight to the top of the UK charts. They have a string of hit singles, including Roxette, Back in the Night, Milk and Alcohol, Down at the Doctors, and See You Later Alligator – the group’s first gold record.

Formed in the very same town of Canvey Island in Essex, Eddie & The Hot Rods have also gained a reputation for incredible and energetic live performances. Known particularly for their hit single, Do Anything You Wanna Do, the five-piece band will blow those winter cobwebs away with the sounds of their guitars, bringing punk rock to every corner of the legendary venue Parr Hall.

This is your chance to witness two of the greatest bands of the seventies at one unmissable event.

Buy tickets online

Enjoy the undisputed classic film Casablanca at Pyramid

Friday 19 February, 7:30pm,
Pyramid, Tickets £5

Pyramid is showing a range of classic films this season and on Friday 19 February, they will be screening arguably one of the greatest films of all Casablancatime, Casablanca.

With its iconic characters, lines, and theme song, Casablanca has become the quintessential representation of Old Hollywood, featuring masterful performances by the legends that are Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman.

Be transported to the city of Casablanca, as an American expatriate faces the choice between the woman he loves and his allegiance to her husband, who needs his help in order to continue the fight against the Nazis.

Screened on Pyramid’s very own 10ft screen in the intimate surroundings of the Studio Theatre, audiences will be gripped by this unforgettable tale of war and romance.

A perfect post-Valentine’s Day treat.

Book tickets online

Circus of Horrors heads to Warrington

Circus of Horrors heads to Warrington

Friday 19 February, 7:30pm, £16-26

 

The infamous Circus of Horrors comes to Parr Hall on Friday 19 February and they are inviting the people of Warrington to witness the most bizarre circus acts in the country.COH16

Though they have been shocking audiences across the country for 21 years, this mind-blowing act rose to even greater fame when they made it to the finals of Britain’s Got Talent, the first ever circus to do so. They will be gracing the stage at Parr Hall with their most outrageous acts to date, celebrating their anniversary in their own gruesome style.

The act has been in high demand for the past few years, and they have seen their TV credits grow to include The X Factor, The Slammer, Daybreak, Fairground Attractions, Who wants to be a Millionaire, Body Shockers, Fake Reaction, This Morning, Ant & Dec, The One Show & A Royal Command Performance.

The Circus of Horrors had their gruesome beginning at Glastonbury at 1995 and became an instant hit, bringing their act to audiences all over the globe, including appearances at numerous festivals alongside Alice Cooper, Eminem, Iron Maiden and many more.

The latest incarnation of the Circus of Horrors sees them going back in time to Victorian London. Following the story of a young girl who runs away to join the circus, the audience will watch in horror as she falls into the nightmarish world of a gruesome Freakshow. They will gasp in horror as she meets killer clowns and sword swallowers, demon dwarfs and the Guinness World Record-holding Hairculean Diva swinging solely from her hair.

Welcome to the Carnevil!

Buy tickets online

The sounds of the 70s come to Parr Hall

70s Disco – Friday 12 February, 8pm, £7 Buy tickets
Northern Soul – Saturday 13 February, 8pm, £7 Buy tickets

WarrWarrington will boogie the night away this February as two fantastic music events come to Parr Hall, giving everyone the chance to put on their dancing shoes at 70s Disco and feel the rhythm at Northern Soul.

Returning to the fabulous venue of Parr Hall for the third time, 70s Disco has proven itself to be an unforgettable night. On Friday 12 February, this will be an unmissable occasion for fans of the disco era who are still obsessed with glitter and big hair.

National DJs will be playing original vinyl, bringing back the sounds of Billy Ocean, Barry White, Edwin Starr, Chairmen of the Board, Bay City Rollers, Detroit Spinners, Donna Summer, Three Degrees, Chic, Kool & The Gang, T. Rex, Sister Sledge, and many more.

Fath Logo B-WFor those who shunned the disco balls for the rhythm and blues, Northern Soul will up right up their alley. Some of the country’s greatest legends of the northern soul genre will grace the stage at Parr Hall on Saturday 13 February.

A hybrid of American soul music and distinctive dance styles, the genre is still popular almost half a century later and this event will surely get Warrington dancing in the aisles.

Join the company of Ian Gee, John Vincent, Des Jones, Moz Arnold and Pete Eccles as they spin vinyl all night long. Relive the glory days and be transported right back to legendary venues such as the Twisted Wheel in Manchester.

It might be cold outside but as the Bee Gees said, you should be dancing – so don’t miss these fantastic nights out.

Stars From The Commitments back in Warrington

Stars of the Commitments banner

Stars From The Commitments back in Warrington

This year The Stars From The Commitments hit the road for their 25th Anniversary year tour and they are coming to Parr Hall next month to give you a chance to enjoy the best of soul.

The band first performed at the venue in 2015 and due to popular demand they’re coming back for another fantastic night, so be prepared for high energy soul music with that unique Commitments twist.

The nine piece soul band from Dublin, which features actual cast members and musicians from the original Commitments film and sound track, have performed world-wide to hundreds of thousands of people at festivals, clubs, theatres, high profile corporate events and VIP parties.

With Dublin’s finest mix of gritty soul and irresistible Irish charm, the fantastic Stars From The Commitments have continued to spread the word of Irish soul whilst receiving rave reviews.

This dynamic band drives audiences to dance in the aisles and scream for more as they perform all the hits from their multi-million selling soundtrack albums and the Oscar nominated, Golden Globe & BAFTA award winning films: Mustang Sally, Chain of Fools, Take Me To The River, Try A Little Tenderness, Nowhere to Run, In The Midnight Hour and many more.

On many occasions the band has been invited to perform with soul legends BB King, Sam Moore (Sam and Dave), Steve Cropper (The Blues Brothers), Denis Edwards (The Temptations), Ben E King, the late James Brown and also contemporary artists such as The Black Eyed Peas.

The Stars From The Commitments also recorded a well-received live album titled Committed To Soul introducing such soul classics as Hold On I’m Coming, Get Ready and You Make Me Feel Like A Natural Woman to the bands repertoire. The album also features several of the above highly acclaimed and respected soul artists.

The Commitments were also invited to perform at the Speaker’s St. Patrick’s Day luncheon in Capitol Hill, Washington. DC. In attendance were former US President George W. Bush, Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern and many distinguished American Senators and Congressmen.

This show is a must-see and is a thrilling live experience that will stir your soul.

Tickets available online

New Year – New What’s On Guide

Whats on this new year banner

Happy New Season – What’s on Guide (January – April)

5246FD_Pyramid & Parr Hall_Jan-Apr 2016_WebThe Festive Season is over and we are already looking forward to an exciting year ahead. We have an amazing line-up of events, activities and big nights out planned for you in 2016.

Check out your new What’s on guide packed with events and activities that are sure to keep those post Christmas blues away and help you enjoy coming months.

Visit your What’s On Guide for a complete list of upcoming events at Pyramid & Parr Hall

Panto Selfie Competition #ParrHallPanto

panto

 

Win tickets to see the biggest names at Pyramid & Parr Hall in 2016 with our Dick Whittington #ParrHallPanto competition

 

We have a very special competition for everyone coming to see Dick Whittington at Parr Hall in January.  All you need to do is send us your panto Dick Whittington A5 Flyer (Front)selfie at the panto.  It can be a single selfie or fit as many of your family and friends in as possible, and make it as fun as you can!

You can post on Facebook (don’t forget to tag pyramid & Pall Hall and use #ParrHallPanto

You can tweet your selfie to @PyramidParrHall (don’t forget to use #ParrHallPanto)

We have loads of tickets we want to give away for our big events at Pyramid & Parr Hall in 2016, so send us your panto selfie and you could be enjoying a night out on us!

Happy Snapping and enjoy the panto!

If you haven’t got your tickets for Panto yet, buy tickets online

OH YES THEY DID! DINERS SHOCKED AS PANTO POPS UP AT PESTO!

widnesflashpantoMusic and dancing were on the menu at a busy Widnes restaurant this week after a pantomime flashmob left diners shocked and surprised.

Cast members from Parr Hall’s upcoming production of Dick Whittington burst into Pesto restaurant on Birchfield Road on Tuesday evening taking the restaurant by surprise by spontaneously breaking into song and entertaining unsuspecting customers.

Dressed in full costume, characters including Dick Whittington, played by Rebecca Draper who has just finished filming ITV’s Stand by Your Man, Liverpool born Ellie Carroll who stars as Alice in this version of the classic tale and this year’s villain, King Rat, played by David Kustard performed a number of routines entertaining the families present including the Frozen classic ‘Let It Go’.

Manager of Pesto Gizela Kalkucka commented: “The flashmob was incredibly entertaining for both our staff and diners – especially for the little ones that were in the restaurant – and was a great way to add even more festive fun into our restaurant on Tuesday evening.”

alicewidnes2Producer of this year’s pantomime Tony Peers said: “Pantomime is all about entertaining the whole family so we’re thrilled that the Pesto team gave us the opportunity to bring one of Warrington’s biggest pantomimes out into the community and have some fun together.
“The atmosphere was fantastic and not only did we have a great time but Pesto’s customers also really seemed to enjoy our little pop-up panto performance!”

The family show is set to open at Parr Hall in Warrington on Saturday 2nd January.

You can purchase tickets for Dick Whittington online or contact Pyramid & Parr Hall Box Office.

Parr Hall’s pantomime cast bring festive cheer to children at Warrington Hospital

PantoHospVisitweb3The cast of Parr Hall’s pantomime, Dick Whittington, brought Christmas cheer to patients and staff at Warrington Hospital’s Children’s Ward yesterday (Tuesday 15 December).

The cast, who are taking to Warrington’s most famous stage in January, included Rebecca Draper who takes the lead role as Dick Whittington, Liverpool born Ellie Carroll, who is playing Alice, and David Kustard, who will be returning to his home town to play King Rat.

Dressed in their glittering costumes they brought magic and laughter to youngsters who are spending time in hospital over Christmas. The cast also presented the ward with a Christmas gift for their play room.

Tony Peers Productions returns to Parr Hall this festive season with Dick Whittington, running from Saturday 2 until Sunday 10 January 2016. The rags-to-riches story tells the tale of one man and his cat as they embark on a quest to become Mayor of London, whilst featuring all the traditional pantomime ingredients including; sensational songs, dazzling dance routines, magnificent slapstick comedy and bags of audience participation.
PantoHospVisitweb2PantoHospVisitweb1

Magical lantern parade lights up Warrington

Warrington was aglow with hundreds of lights for the town’s annual Lantern Parade yesterday (Thursday 10 December).Lantern1WEB

People of all ages, from right across the town, snaked through the streets each carrying a lovingly-crafted lantern. The theme of this year’s parade was Dick Whittington to coincide with Parr Hall’s festive pantomime.

As part of this year’s event The Liverpool Lantern Company wowed participants and spectators with magnificent larger-than-life animal lanterns.

The parade set off from Queens Gardens at 6:45pm and embarked on a magical softly-lit winter tour of the town centre concluding at Golden Square’s Christmas Village where there was a selection of Christmas stalls.

The stalls were brimming with festive activities for the whole family including, Christmas Carol singers, food and warm drinks.

The event, which was funded by Warrington Borough Council and provided by Culture Warrington, is part of a multitude of Christmas events across Warrington this year.

lantern2WEBWarrington Golden Square shopping centre director, Ian Cox, said: “It was a really special occasion with all those lanterns weaving through the town centre into Golden Square and finishing in the Christmas Village, where we had performers to entertain the crowds with some seasonal cheer.

A lot of people took the opportunity to do a bit of Christmas shopping which all made for a really lovely festive atmosphere.”

Cllr Kate Hannon, executive board member for leisure, community and culture, said: “Investing in our Christmas events programme gives us opportunities to support the council’s wider objectives and compliment other events that are taking place.

Not only do we want to provide events for all to enjoy, but we want to attract more residents and visitors into the town to boost the local economy and see what else we have to offer.”

Ken Dodd returns to Warrington with a fun-filled evening of laughter

KenDoddWEBSaturday 30 January, 7pm
Ticket price: £21 (£22 including online booking fee)

Ken Dodd returns to Parr Hall with his famous Happiness Show where audience members will be absolutely discumknockerated (that’s Knotty Ash for ‘over the moon’) by a truly tattifelarius (fun-filled) evening of laughter and songs.

Averaging seven jokes a minute this inventor of words will have audiences bellowing with laughter. Ken Dodd is extraordinarily energetic and never fails to entertain audiences with his Dicky Mint puppet routine and troop of dumpy midgets – the Diddymen.

The Knotty Ash funnyman is a comedian of unrivalled and legendary status with an incredible and hugely successful career as a professional entertainer that spans over 60 fun-filled years.

A multi-award winning entertainer Ken Dodd loves nothing more than entertaining theatre audiences. This fun-filled Happiness Show is for all the family, filled with non-stop gags and a selection of songs presented in his uniquely versatile style.

Buy tickets online

Get into the Festive Mood with our #FestiveFridayGiveaway on Facebook

FacebookChristmas is coming and to help you get into the festive mood, visit our Facebook & Twitter every Friday for our #FestiveFridayGiveaway
Starting on Friday 4 December, we are giving you the chance to win tickets for various events at Pyramid & Parr Hall as we spread a little Christmas cheer.

Look out for our competition posts on Facebook and our tweets on Twitter for your chance to enter.
Season’s Greetings to all our customers and have a Happy New Year!


Box Office Christmas Opening Times 2015

We have special opening hours over the Christmas period. The Box Office will be open during the following times:

Monday 21 December 9am – 5pm
Tuesday 22 December 9am – 5pm
Wednesday 23 December 9am – 5pm
Thursday 24 December (Christmas Eve) 9am – 1pm
Friday 25 December(Christmas Day) Closed
Saturday 26 December (Boxing Day) Closed
Sunday 27 December Closed
Monday 28 December Closed
Tuesday 29 December 10am – 2pm
Wednesday 30 December 10am – 2pm
Thursday 31 December 10am – 2pm
Friday 1 January Closed
Saturday 2 January 10am – 2pm

Normal Box Office opening hours will resume from Monday 3 January.

Crowds flock to Warrington town centre to witness laser light show

Laser Show 2015 2WEBThe relentless wind and rain over the weekend didn’t deter thousands of people making their way to Warrington town centre to witness this year’s intergalactic themed laser show.

The Lights in the Sky Laser performance attracted more than 3,000 spectators spanning generations.

Laser light patterns illuminated the skyline above Warrington’s Guardians, reflecting within the water fountain below, and were set to a soundtrack of battling intergalactic spaceships and the eerie unexplainable sounds of space.

This year’s stunning light display was funded by Warrington Borough Council, delivered by Culture Warrington and was part of Warrington Market’s sci-fi Christmas- a traditional Christmas Market with an intergalactic twist.

There are a multitude of Christmas events across Warrington being provided by the council and Culture Warrington this festive season. Stand-out events include the Lantern Parade, Warrington Christmas Markets and Parr Hall’s pantomime Dick Whittington.

Laser Show 2015 1 WEBCllr Kate Hannon, executive board member for leisure, community and culture, said: “Events for the Christmas programme have been carefully selected to provide opportunities to support the council’s wider objectives and compliment other events that are taking place. Our aim is to provide exciting and enjoyable events that attract more residents and visitors to the town which will boost the local economy. The challenge is to have the maximum impact with limited resources and we hope we are achieving this with our festive events.”

Take part in the decoration of Pyramid’s Christmas tree

BaubleWEBArt enthusiasts of all ages are invited to a bauble decorating workshop at Pyramid this December to help dress the art centre’s eight foot Christmas tree.

This workshop, which is run by Blooming Art in partnership with Culture Warrington, will take place on Saturday 5 December from 10:30am until 1:30pm and is part of the BBC’s Get Creative – a year-long celebration of British arts, culture and creativity.

Gail Stubbings, founder of Blooming Art Classes Warrington, will lead the workshop in which local residents are welcome to drop in to Pyramid where they will be given the tools and opportunity to express themselves through the decoration of Christmas baubles.

Get Creative aims to boost creativity in the UK, as well as celebrating the millions of people already doing something artistic and creative every day. Culture Warrington is joining hundreds of organisations nationwide to become a Get Creative Champion.

Derek Dick, Exhibitions and Services Manager at Culture Warrington, said: ‘It’s fantastic that we are able champion a national campaign that celebrates arts, culture and creativity. With the range of activities on offer at Culture Warrington venues I can confidently say there is something to take part in creatively for all the family.”

Gail Stubbings, owner of Blooming Art Classes Warrington, said: “I am extremely excited to be working in partnership with Culture Warrington to offer a drop-in art workshop for the community. I would encourage everyone to drop in and get creative this summer by putting their artistic skills to the test.”

80s legends turn out for Mr Smiths exhibition launch

Stars of 1980s popular dance TV show The Hit Man and Her, which was filmed at Mr Smiths in Warrington, turned out for the official launch of an peter Waterman Mr Smiths Webexhibition celebrating the iconic club on Friday (20 November).

Music mogul and the Hitman himself Pete Waterman, along with well-loved Hit Man and Her dancers Fitz, Bov, Wiggy and Spike, now a member of boyband 911, attended the 80s themed event to celebrate the opening of the Goodbye Mr Smiths exhibition at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery.

The exhibition is a response to the community reaction following the fire and demolition of the infamous building that housed the iconic nightclub. It follows the building’s story from the Art Deco Ritz and ABC cinemas to its heyday as Mr Smiths nightclub and its sudden dramatic destruction in April 2015.

The launch was attended by more than 150 people who shared their memories of the club, which attracted people from all over the North West in the 80s and 90s. They were treated to a special performance from DJ Steven Davidson who played old skool tunes and Mr Smiths favourites to entertain the visitors.

A collection of photographs, objects and memories, including oral history interviews with well-known local characters such as Stan the Man and Hitman and Her dancer, Wiggy, pay a nostalgic tribute to the well-loved local landmark.

Pete Waterman, from The Hit Man and Her, said:
“You forget everything that happened at Mr Smiths until you see it on the wall in the exhibition, I’ve seen pictures of me here that I’ve never seen before. It’s amazing to hear people still talk about Mr Smiths with such affection.”

Michelle Hill, curator of the exhibition, said:
“Thanks to everyone who attended the Goodbye Mr Smiths launch event at the museum. It was a fantastic night with people really getting into the party spirit and feeling nostalgic, judging by the amount of photographs and memories that were added to our memory boards.”

The Mr Smiths Exhibition is on at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery until Saturday 20 February

Be swept away on Vienna Festival Ballet’s magical adventure – The Nutcracker

Be swept away on Vienna Festival Ballet’s magical adventure –
The Nutcracker

Sunday 13 December, 2.30pm ballet
Ticket Price: £19.50 / £16.50 / £12.50

Christmas 2015 will see Vienna Festival Ballet perform The Nutcracker at Parr Hall Warrington, for one night only on Sunday 13 December.

Parr Hall will play host to Tchaikovsky’s wonderful, captivating and possibly most famous melodies, setting the scene for everybody’s favourite ballet. Adults and children alike will be captivated by the flurry of the dazzling Snowflakes and delight in the famous waltz of the Flowers.

The traditional tale of The Nutcracker tells the story of Clara and her enchanted nutcracker doll. Their adventures see Clara and the Nutcracker combat the Mouse King, and join the Sugar Plum Fairy and her Cavalier on a wonderful journey through the glistening Land of Snow to a kingdom made entirely of sweets.

With its combination of enchanting choreography and unforgettable music, this fabulous ballet is a festive family treat like no other.

Buy tickets online for The Nutcracker

All That Glitters is Gold for the Dick Whittington Pantomime Launch!

Dick Whittington

Dick Whittington Panto Cast 2016 (Photo Credit Michelle Smith)

Dick Whittington Panto Cast 2016 (Photo Credit Michelle Smith)


Saturday 2 January 2016 – Sunday 10 January 2016
Ticket prices £12.50/ £10.50/ Family Ticket £40

Warrington welcomed the cast of Parr Hall’s pantomime Dick Whittington last week as they followed Dick’s dream and went in search of streets paved with gold- striking lucky at Warrington’s iconic Golden Gates and the town centre light switch on.

Tony Peers Productions returns to Parr Hall this festive season with Dick Whittington, running from Saturday 2 until Sunday 10 January 2016. The rags-to-riches story tells the tale of one man and his cat as they embark on a quest to become Mayor of London, whilst featuring all the traditional pantomime ingredients including; sensational songs, dazzling dance routines, magnificent slapstick comedy and bags of audience participation.

The 2016 pantomime cast includes comedy act Double Trouble Damian Patton & Tom Rolfe, who will take on the roles of Captain and Mate. This comic duo has comedy mentors of the highest calibre in the form of Damian’s uncles, The Chuckle brothers.

Rebecca Draper takes on the title role of Dick Whittington fresh from filming her part in ITV’s Stand By Your Man and Liverpool born Ellie Carroll will star as Alice in this version of the classic tale.

Parr Hall pantomime veteran Phil Beck returns as the Dame and David Kustard brings to life the character of King Rat in his Mother’s home town.

Finally, after appearing in last year’s pantomime, local dancers from the Felicia Burns School of Dance will once again add festive sparkle to the show.

Tickets on sale now – Book online

Check out the photos from the visit. Thank you to Michelle Smith for the photography www.michellesmithphotography.co.uk

Reignite a passion for film at this autumn’s movie screenings in Warrington

Reignite a passion for film at this autumn’s movie screenings in Warrington

Friday 13 November, The Shining, 7:30pmFilms
Thursday 17 December, It’s A Wonderful Life, 7:30pm
Friday 18 December, Die Hard, 7:30pm
Saturday 19 December, Home Alone, 3:00pm

Ticket price, £5

This Autumn Warrington’s Pyramid will rekindle the town’s excitement for film with a pick of the most challenging, the most iconic and most legendary films of all time.

Screened in the intimate surroundings of Pyramid’s studio theatre, nothing can beat experiencing an all-time favourite movie projected on to a 10ft screen.

To begin the season Stanley Kubrick’s masterpiece of modern horror, The Shining, will be screened at Pyramid on Friday 13 November. Audiences are invited to experience this tale of a family man and would-be writer unravel into a homicidal maniac on what is known by many as the unluckiest day of the year.

With Christmas fast approaching treat loved ones with the magic of film. There are a trio of festive films to delight audiences of all ages and preferences. Choose from the tears and joy of It’s A Wonderful Life, the furious, adrenaline fuelled action of Die Hard or the laugh out loud hilarity of Home Alone. There is certainly something for everyone to stir up that festive feeling.

All movie screenings are shown in the Studio Theatre at Pyramid, Warrington. Refreshments can be purchased on site including alcoholic and soft drinks.

Warrington’s Laser Show returns to the town centre

Warrington’s Laser Show returns to the town centre

Intergalactic inspired Laser ShowLaser Show
Saturday 28 November
4.30pm, 5pm and 5.30pm, Free
Guardians, Warrington Town Centre, WA1 1UZ

Warrington’s laser show returns to the town centre with a brand new intergalactic theme for 2015.

Three separate performances will take place on Saturday 28 November at 4:30pm, 5pm and 5:30pm, where laser light patterns will illuminate the skyline above Warrington’s Guardians, reflecting within the water fountain below.

This year’s stunning light display, which is funded by Warrington Borough Council and is delivered by Culture Warrington, will be set to a soundtrack of battling intergalactic spaceships and the eerie unexplainable sounds of space.

The event is part of Warrington Market’s sci-fi Christmas- a traditional Christmas market with an intergalactic twist.

Last year’s The Lights in the Sky Laser performance attracted more than 3,000 spectators spanning generations. This year it is expected to achieve an even greater engagement with local families.

The event is part of a multitude of Christmas events across Warrington being provided by the council and Culture Warrington. Other stand-out events include the Lantern Parade, Warrington Christmas Markets and Parr Hall’s pantomime Dick Whittington.

Warrington Market

Father Christmas Needs a Wee will bring some festive giggles to the families of Warrington

Father Christmas Needs a Wee will bring some festive giggles to the families of Warrington

A3-template-09Saturday 21 November, 2.30pm
Ticket Price: £12/£10/ £40 Family Ticket

Following last year’s sold-out hit shows, Father Christmas is back on his rounds… and he still needs a wee. This super show for children is at Warrington’s Parr Hall on Saturday 21 November.

When it comes to theatre for children, you are off to a good start when the title of the show is enough on its own to inspire laughter from your little ones. Father Christmas Needs a Wee is a delightful stage adaptation of Nicholas Allan’s book about the Christmas Eve that saw Santa get caught short.

Father Christmas has a chronic weakness for mince pies, and has been guzzling them down with all the tea and milk and hot chocolate drinks left by the little children to whom he is delivering presents.

But there is nowhere for Santa to have a wee, and he becomes so preoccupied with his plight that he forgets to deliver some of his presents.

Thankfully he can enlist the help of his elf Elfie and with some singing and dancing along the way, he is able to wiggle through the discomfort and get the job done.

TaleGate Theatre have hit the perfect combination of witty humour, fantastic music and the extra sparkle for which they have become known in this fabulously funny and brilliantly bouncy musical adaptation.

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Houghton Weavers bring their 40th Anniversary Tour to Warrington

Houghton Weavers bring their 40th Anniversary Tour to Warrington

Weavers WebSunday 6 December, 7.30pm
Ticket Price: £14/£12

On the eve of their 40th anniversary, the UK’s leading comedy / folk group – The Houghton Weavers – return to Warrington’s Parr Hall on Sunday 6 December.

Comprising of Tony Berry, David Littler and Steve Millington, the band have recorded over 30 albums, have seven of their own BBC television series and six BBC Radio 2 series to their name.

Formed in 1975 and cutting their teeth in the folk clubs of their native Lancashire, The Houghton Weavers have never wavered from their motto of ‘Keep Folk Smiling’.

The group, who have a thriving fan club with members worldwide, entertain their audiences with humorous jokes and antidotes and sing “popular” folk songs from raucous traditional songs to beautiful ballads done in their own inimitable style.

This year they will once again be joined on stage by Tony’s brother James who proved to be a hit with the group’s festive audiences last year.

Buy tickets online

Pixie Lott (featuring Jay James, Viola Beach & Ellie Dibben) – Warrington Festival – Buy tickets now!

Pixie Lott – Warrington Festival

Pixie plays her only north west show of the year at Warrington Festival this September, featuring Jay James, Viola Beach and Ellie Dibben.
Line-up is subject to change.
Pixie Lott WebBuy Now »

Four-time BRIT Award nominee Pixie Lott will headline Warrington Festival at Bank Park on Saturday 19th September. Pixie will perform her number one hits Mamma Do (Uh oh, Uh oh), Boys and Girls and All About Tonight live in Warrington. The event will also feature X Factor 2014 finalist Jay James and upcoming local artist Ellie Dibben.

Pixie Lott recently rocked the stage at the Brentwood Festival in Essex and oozed Hollywood glamour in Puttin’ On The Ritz, now she will head north for her premiere performance in Warrington, her only north west concert date this year!

Jay James captured the imagination of the country with his unique voice and stunning live performances as one of the standout contestants on The X Factor 2014. His performance at Warrington Festival is the perfect opportunity for you to experience this gifted performer live.

As well as performing at the festival Jay will also be doing a meet and greet with fans on the day.

Warrington four-piece Viola Beach have already secured impressive national radio airplay and their performance at Warrington Festival follows an eagerly anticipated slot on the BBC Introducing stage at Reading & Leeds Festival.

Local teenage songstress Ellie Dibben has recently supported well-known artists including Luke Friend, Elyar Fox and Union J. The 17-year-old country singer will perform a mixture of original songs during her set including Black Cats Summer, What About Us and Shout.

A superb line-up not to be missed!

Jay James: www.officialjayjames.com
twitter.com/jayjames
www.facebook.com/jayjamesofficial

Ellie Dibben: twitter.com/elliejdibben
www.facebook.com/EllieDibbenMusic

Viola Beach: twitter.com/Viola_Beach
www.facebook.com/violabeachwarrington

For further information including the latest event confirmation, volunteering and sponsorship opportunities visit www.warringtonfestival.co.uk

Warrington Festival

Our new booking system is here!

Thanks for your patience – we are now back up and running! We have a shiny new box office system which will enable us to improve our customer service and make booking simpler (and cheaper) for you.

We’ve included below a link to some frequently asked questions – you may want to check these out before booking your tickets for the first time.
https://www.pyramidparrhall.com/booking-faqs/

Billy Ocean at the Parr Hall on Friday 29 May

Billy’s back in town with his reggae infused soulful music.  Are you ready for hit songs like Love Really Hurts Without You and Red Light Spells Danger, When The Going Gets Tough and Caribbean Queen?

Here’s the show times:

7pm Doors

7.30pm Support from soulful RnB singer, Alice Gasson

8pm Interval

8.30pm Billy Ocean

See you on Friday night!

Looking forward to May through to autumn

Ben Fogle at Pyramid and Parr Hall on Thursday 22 October

Ben Fogle appears in Warrington on Thursday 22 October

Some highlights from Pyramid and Parr Hall for May through to July and looking further afield into autumn with some extra special highlights.

Thanks to BFI, Pyramid presents a range of cinema for all tastes including The Man With A Movie Camera (1929) on Friday 15 May; The Big Lebowski (1998) on Friday 19 June; The Sound of Music (1965) on Friday 17 July and Dark Days (2001) on Friday 17 July.  All tickets are £5.

May ends on Sunday 31 May with Vienna Festival Ballet – 25th Anniversary Gala at Parr Hall, presenting the very best of ballet in one unforgettable afternoon where audiences can expect highlights from Swan Lake, The Nutcracker and Sleeping Beauty.  But there’s still time to book for Al Murray on Thursday 14 May, Sing-A-Long A Frozen on Saturday 23 May and Billy Ocean on Friday 29 May – tickets are selling fast. 

Into June, there’s a range of contrasting music for all music fans – 70s Disco at Parr Hall on Friday 5 June sees live DJs and original vinyl getting you in the mood to boogie the night away to 70s disco sounds of Barry White, Tavares, Billy Ocean, Edwin Starr, Chairman of the Board, Detroit Spinners, Donna Summer, Three Degrees, Chic, Kool & The Gang, Shalimar, Sister Sledge and many more.

On Saturday 6 June, Pyramid plays host to From the Saw Doctors – Leo & Anto in an intimate two-hour acoustic show, featuring stripped back unplugged versions of The Saw Doctor’s hits such as Red Cortina, Clare Islan’ and Same Oul’ Town.

Stiff Little Fingers appear at Parr Hall on Thursday 11 June 2015.  Formed in 1977 in Belfast, Stiff Little Fingers were at the forefront of the punk movement with the likes of The Clash, Sex Pistols and The Jam.  Hits include Alternative Ulster and Suspect Device. Their most recent album No Going Back reached #1 in the UK Rock Album Chart.

More music follows on Sunday 12 July with Black Grape – It’s Great When You’re Straight…Yeah! at Parr Hall reuniting Sean Ryder (Happy Mondays) and Kermit (Ruthless Rap Assassins) and playing a gig at Parr Hall in the 21st anniversary of the seminal album It’s Great When You’re Straight…Yeah!

Comedy Store returns to Pyramid on Saturday 18 July, with summer special sell-out comedy featuring the best in live stand-up from our friends at the legendary Comedy Store.  See Facebook / Twitter nearer the time for line up.

Looking forward to the autumn, September sees Simon Weston – My Life, My Story at Pyramid on Sunday 6 September in an event which tells the story of one man’s journey from the front line in the Falkland Islands, to being on the edge of death, to becoming a contented father, grandfather and national figure.  Thoroughly Modern Musicals at Parr Hall on Sunday 27 September features some of the biggest musicals from the West End and Broadway with sons from Les Misérables, Miss Saigon, Mamma Mia and Grease to name a few.

Into October and there’s Nina Conti – In Your Face at Parr Hall on Friday 2 October.   She’s won a British Comedy Award, stormed Live at the Palladium, and made a BAFTA nominated film – all without moving her lips.  Timesis Theatre – That’s Amoré will be at Pyramid on Thursday 8 October presenting a fast-paced, funny, highly visual physical theatre show about the thrills and dangers of surrendering ourselves to romance.  Don’t miss the curtain raiser at 7.30pm.

More music from Leo Sayer – Restless Years Tour at Parr Hall on Sunday 11 October.  Known the world over for his army of hits including Thunder in My Heart, Moonlighting, One Man Band, I Can’t Stop Loving You and the transatlantic hits When I Need You and You Make Me Feel Like Dancing.

Ben Fogle – Call Of The Wild will be at Parr Hall on Thursday 22 October.  BBC 1’s Castaway 2000’s Ben Fogle has gone on to carve a broadcasting career championing wildlife, the world’s wildernesses and the British countryside. Hear about some of his adventures.   Colin Cloud – Forensic Mind Reader appears atPyramid on Friday 23 October and he promises to mix mind, magic and brain science.

ANNOUNCEMENT: BLACK GRAPE bring their comeback tour to Parr Hall!

After 20 years, Shaun Ryder and Kermit have teamed up again to bring you Black Grape’s 2015 comeback tour, and it’s coming to Parr Hall on Sunday 12 July!

The Happy Mondays fell apart in 1992, leaving most observers to assume that it was the end for Shaun Ryder, as he struggled to recover from his numerous drug addictions. No one could have ever predicted that three years later, a relatively fit and healthy Shaun would return to the top of the charts, with a new band.

Black Grape’s debut album, It’s Great When You’re Straight…Yeah, is a surreal, funky, profane, and perversely joyous album, overflowing with casual eclecticism and giddy humor. Ryder’s sound was reinvigorated, creating bizarre rhymes that tie together junk culture, drug lingo, literary references, and utter nonsense. One of Britain’s best wordsmiths Shaun Ryder’s lyrics have always been delightfully freewheeling, and full of multicolored imagery.

Teaming up with Kermit (ex Ruthless Rap Assassins) he now had a rapper on board with equal skills to bounce off.  Even better, the music has deep grooves and catchy pop hooks that come straight out of left field. From the blaring harmonica of the triumphant Reverend Black Grape and the trippy sitars of In the Name of the Father to the seedy, rolling Shake Your Money and the stinging guitars of Tramazi Parti.

Black Grape has always been the simmering stalking horse, waiting in the wings, for a time to come back to life, and remind people of the huge commercial and musical celebration that it was.

It’s time for the party to start again.

2015 sees the 20th anniversary of the release of It’s Great When Your Straight……Yeah

Shaun Ryder is again back in the rehearsal studios with Kermit, about to unleash the mad carnival that disregards boundaries between rap, house, rock, soul, and pop and is Black Grape.

Tickets are priced at £22 and are on sale from 9am on Friday 24 April via Box Office: 01925 442345 / www.pyramidparrhall.com

The Basil Brush Show – Sunday 26 April: CANCELLED

Due to unforeseen circumstances, it is with regret that The Basil Brush Show which was scheduled to take place at Parr Hall at 2.30pm on Sunday 26 April has now been cancelled.

Ticket holders will be contacted in due course to issue refunds.

We apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused.

World Book Night 2015 – free books on Thursday 23 April.

World Book Night 2015 comes to Warrington on Thursday 23 April.  From 5pm, why not pop along to Pyramid and pick up a free book or two?  From beach reads to thrillers to true life stories, there’s books galore up for grabs.  Books for the bus ride to work or college, books for your suitcase for holiday time, books for bedtime….there’s lots on offer.   Warrington’s Pyramid is just one of thousands of venues giving away books and if you go to http://www.worldbooknight.org/news/win-all-titles-competition there’s a fab competition to win even more books.  Happy reading!

World Book Night logo

Nina Conti

Nina Conti

Nina Conti on 2 October.

With the announcement that we’ve got Sarah Millican here on Tuesday 8 December (tickets are selling fast), we’re delighted to tell you that Nina Conti, another brilliant female comedian, is here on Friday 2 October with her new show In Your Face.

Not only a comedian, Nina’s a ventriloquist who’s bagged a British Comedy Award, stormed Live at the Apollo, Russell Howard’s Good News, Sunday Night at the Palladium and made a BAFTA nominated film – all without moving her lips.

 This year, Nina will create a new show each night by plucking inspiration from the audience. Strap into the mask as Nina gets in your face. With the help of her puppet Monkey and a bag of tricks, anything can happen in this unmissable improvised adventure of hilarious witchery.

 

Nina began her career as an actress with the Royal Shakespeare Company before anarchic theatre director inspired her to become a ventriloquist. In 2008, she won the prestigious Barry Award at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival with her solo show Complete and Utter Conti.  In 2010, Talk to The Hand sold out in Edinburgh, London, Melbourne, Sydney Opera House and New York.

ANNOUNCEMENT: Sarah Millican

 

We’re delighted to announce SARAH MILLICAN will bring her brand new ‘Outsider’ tour to Parr Hall on Tuesday 8 December 2015!

Tickets are priced at £25 and are on sale from 9am this Friday (27 March) via Box Office in person, over the phone: 01925 442345 and online: www.pyramidparrhall.com.

Sarah Millican: Outsider

In the past when you put Sarah Millican outside, she asked things like: ‘Why? Where is the taxi? Do I need a cardie?’ and said things like: ‘There’ll be wasps. I’ve nothing to sit on. Is that poo? Can we go home?’

But things have changed. Now she has outside slippers. She can tell a chaffinch from a tit (hey). But she still can’t tell if it’s an owl or her husband’s asthma.

Sarah Millican is venturing outside. Bring a cardie.

“To watch Sarah Millican is to watch a box of comedy fireworks going off” The Independent

 

Vacancy: Digital Marketing Coordinator

Digital Marketing Coordinator

Permanent – Full Time (37 Hours)
Salary: £24,892-£28,127

Location: Pyramid and Parr Hall

If you’re a driven, ambitious and experienced digital marketer who is ready to take ownership for digital marketing results at a unique and exciting organisation – this might just be the job for you.

Culture Warrington is seeking a motivated Digital Marketing Coordinator to grow its marketing team. This is a unique opportunity for you to join a team which, not only, is at the heart of culture in the North West, but is actively investing in updating and upgrading our online marketing presence, brand identity and marketing reach. We have a strong and fun team, and ambitious plans for the next five years, and our Digital Marketing Coordinator will play a key role in the development of our business.

You will have a proactive approach to radically improving the digital marketing for our company, which includes Pyramid Arts Centre, Parr Hall concert venue and Warrington Museum and Art Gallery. You’ll be able to find gaps, spot opportunities and make real improvements to our digital marketing. You’ll be able to think strategically, make long term improvements and balance this with the day-to-day execution of marketing in a fast paced events environment. You’ll be a results driven self-starter with a strong understanding of all things digital including SEO/SEM, social media, targeted email marketing, CRM, website optimisation and online advertising and online reputation management.

In return we’ll give you guidance and support while trusting you to make the decisions to enhance our marketing offer. We’ll help you develop your marketing and career skills and give you the opportunity to work in a vibrant, ever-changing arts and entertainment environment promoting a wealth of varied and exciting products.

If you’re the kind of person who loves to take on a challenge and make a real impact – you’ll love this role.

If you’ve got the skills to help us take our digital marketing to the next level, send your CV and a cover letter explaining why you think you’re the person for this role to cleahy@culturewarrington.org.

 

Downloads:

Job description here.

Person specification here.