York Symphony Orchestra’s Winter Concert welcomes guest cellist Cara Berridge

Cello soloist: Cara Berridge

CARA Berridge will be the guest soloist for tonight’s performance of Elgar’s Cello Concerto in E Minor. the centrepiece of York Symphony Orchestra’s Winter Concert in York.

Conducted by Edward Venn, the 7.30pm programme at the Sir Jack Lyons Concert Hall, University of York, also features Tchaikovsky’s March Slave and and Shostakovich’s Symphony No 5 in D Minor.

Tickets cost £15, concessions £13, children and students £5, at yso.org.uk, from orchestra members or on the door.

Frank Turner finds himself in No Man’s Land as York Barbican bow beckons

Frank Turner: bringing history and song-writing together at York Barbican next March

FRANK Turner will turn York Barbican into No Man’s Land on March 8 on the Hampshire folk-punk singer-songwriter’s 2020 tour.

Tickets will go on sale at 10am tomorrow morning on 0203 356 5441, at yorkbarbican.co.uk or in person from the Barbican box office.

Turner, 37, released his latest album, No Man’s Land, in August, touted as his most original to date with its parade of fascinating characters, such as the woman who invented rock’n’roll, a serial killer from the Deep South, who plucked her victims from lonely hearts pages, and a Wild West vaudeville star shot by a small-town outlaw. 

“It’s bringing together my two main interests in life, which have always been separate from each other: history and song writing,” says Turner, who can be found seeking out long-forgotten historical sites on self-guided psycho-geographical strolls when not touring.

No Man’s Land is dedicated to the women “whose incredible lives have all too often been overlooked by dint of their gender”. “These stories should have been told already,” says Turner of the album and its accompanying podcast series. “And I suspect if they were men, they would be better known.” 

A couple of names here will be familiar, in the form of Sister Rosetta Tharpe in Sister Rosetta and the mysterious Mata Hari in Eye Of The Day, but other women who feature have long been ignored by the mainstream.

Turner was inundated with crowdsourcing suggestions when seeking more names. “I know a lot of very smart people who sent me these huge lists of historically interesting women,” he says, after he ended up researching hundreds, seriously expanding the size of his home library in the process. “It felt a bit like going back to school, but it was so much fun.”

The women featured on the album’s 13 tracks come from across wide geographical and historical lines, whether Byzantine princess Kassiani in The Hymn Of Kassiani; Egyptian feminist activist Huda Sha’arawi in The Lioness, or Resusci Anne, an apocryphal drowned virgin whose face was used as the model for the medicinal CPR mannequin across the world. 

“You can’t resist writing a song about a woman who died never having been kissed and then became the most kissed face in history,” reasons Turner. 

No Man’s Land boast perhaps the most revelatory song of Turner’s career. Written in tribute to his mother, Rosemary Jane honours her grit and determination through the harder parts of his childhood. “It’s quite a raw song,” he admits, adding that he felt compelled to ask permission from his mother and sisters to include the track. “But it’s nice about her. It’s not necessarily nice about my dad.”

Turner, by the way, will be making his York Barbican debut at next March’s gig.

Charles Hutchinson

Britten and America unite for The Ebor Singers’ transatlantic Christmas concert

Not exactly dressed for winter! The Ebor Singers nevertheless will be in the mood for Christmas at the NCEM on December 15

LOOK forward to “a whole new world of carols” when The Ebor Singers present the British premiere of American Christmas choral works alongside Benjamin Britten’s A Ceremony of Carols on December 15.

The York choir’s ever-popular candlelit Christmas concert always features Britten’s festive favourite from 1942, this time complemented by modern compositions from the United States at the National Centre for Early Music, York, at 7.30pm.

“Benjamin Britten was particularly drawn to Christmas,” says Paul Gameson, the choir’s director, introducing Britten’s masterpiece, scored for three-part treble chorus, solo voices and harp.

“Britten spent three years in North America at the beginning of the Second World War, and he composed A Ceremony of Carolsduring the long and dangerous transatlantic crossing back to Britain in 1942.”

How apt, then, to present Britten’s work alongside Christmas music from the USA. “We’ve had a lot of enjoyment putting this together”, says Paul. “As well as pieces now considered popular mainstays of the repertoire, by Lauridsen and Whitacre, we’ve been exploring sacred pieces by Jake Runestad, Nico Muhly and Stephen Paulus.

“Runestad’s writing in Sleep Little Baby, Sleephas an American folk-song quality, and Paulus’s exploration of the sonority of choir with accompaniment of oboe and harp is every bit as imaginative as Britten. 

“Muhly is one of today’s most imaginative choral composers, and his Whispered And Revealed,a setting of Longfellow’s poem Snowflakes,is quite breath-taking, within three minutes magically conjuring up images of snow covering a winter landscape.

“So, we’re delighted to be giving some of this music its UK premiere. Then throw in some classic seasonal jingles and some choral ‘mash-ups’ and you have a seasonal concert quite unlike anything else you will have heard, guaranteed to bring you Christmas cheer.”

Tickets for Britten, A Ceremony of Carols, By Candlelight cost £15, concessions £12, students £5, at eborsingers.org/currentevents or on the door.

Charles Hutchinson

The funniest Nativity play in York this Christmas? Head to Flint Street

Florence Poskitt: Making her York Stage Musicals debut as Gabriel, the angel who covets the role of Mary in The Flint Street Nativity. Picture: Kirkpatrick Photography

YORK Stage Musicals will bring an alternative festive offering to York this Christmas for the first time, staging The Flint Street Nativity at the John Cooper Studio @41Monkgate from December 12 to 22.

Tim Firth’s story was first performed as a television drama on ITV in 1999 with a cast featuring York actor Mark Addy, Frank Skinner, Neil Morrissey and Jane Horrocks.

Firth, the Frodsham-born writer of Neville’s Island, All Quiet On The Preston Front, Calendar Girls and the Madness musical Our House, then re-worked it for the Liverpool Playhouse stage premiere in 2006.

Firth’s show follows “Mizzis Horrocks’s” class of seven year olds as they prepare to perform their Nativity play at Flint Street Junior School for the proud mums and dads – and the occasional social worker.

Squabbles arise when Angel Gabriel wants to play Mary; the Star grumbles he isn’t a proper star like they have at NASA; Herod won’t stop waving to his parents and the subversive Innkeeper is determined to liven up the traditional script. Then the class stick insect escapes.

Leading the ensemble company as the ambitious Angel Gabriel will be blossoming York actress and comedienne Florence Poskitt, making her York Stage debut alongside Fiona Baistow in the coveted role of Mary. Look out too for YSM debutant Conor Wilkinson, playing both Herod and Joseph.

The York Stage Musicals’ show poster for The Flint Street Nativity

Here, Charles Hutchinson asks York Stage Musicals artistic director Nik Briggs to come forth on Firth by answering a Christmas sack-load of questions.

What made you choose this Tim Firth piece as your debut Christmas production?

“York is the ultimate Christmas destination, and many people ask us each year what we’re staging at Christmas but it hasn’t been something we’ve ventured into before. But then Jim Welsman [chairman at the time] asked us if we’d be interested in bringing a Christmas offering to 41 Monkgate, so I jumped at the chance and knew what show would be the perfect choice.

“I was looking for one that really would provide the city with an alternative theatrical offering. It needed to be a show that suited York Stage and the 41Monkgate venue. Flint Street was the perfect choice. It’s not saccharine; it’s fun, energetic and a tad off the wall.

“So, come join us as we alter your perspective on not only the art and politics of the humble Nativity, but the John Cooper Studio as a whole!”

What makes The Flint Street Nativity so humorous?

“This festive play really is one of the funniest observations I’ve come across based on the Christmas holidays. Everyone knows the traditions surrounding the institution of the school Nativity, tea towels tied to the head and tinsel-clad Angels everywhere, but Tim Firth has created a brilliant script, set in the build-up to the much-anticipated show filled with laughs and pathos in an oversized classroom where adults play the children in Mrs Horrocks’s class.”

What do you most enjoy about Tim Firth’s writing?

“The detail in the observation of the people he writes about is just brilliant; it really is all on the page. Like in Calendar Girls, you can relate to and recognise the characters. The seven year olds just come to life through the writing.

“I work with children of this age quite regularly and, as I read the script, I could see the children he was talking about and describing. It seems far-fetched to some, but it really isn’t! Then, the twist in the final scenes and his ability to inject just the right amount of pathos into a riotous comedy is what clinches it for me.”

What are the particular challenges of this piece for director and cast?

“The key to the whole show, for me, comes in getting the final part of the show just right, when – spoiler alert! – the actors who’ve been playing the children throughout then turn to play the respective parents and we see what’s made the children the way they are.

“It’s been fairly easy to work on the scenes with the brilliant actors where they’re playing around and having lots of fun playing the seven year olds, but actually getting that to tie in with the adults is where the magic is, so we started the rehearsals with the adult scenes and got to know them before we then worked on creating their children, as it’s the adults who nurture.”

What is Tim Firth’s Christmas message?

“The final line in the play is ‘I’m in a Nativity. Yeah, it’s great…really brings it home’, and I think that sums it up. In the fast-paced world we live in, the simplest, purest things can really make you slow down and take stock.”

Assistant director Jonny Holbek with Florence Poskitt’s despondent Angel Gabriel

What are your recollections of Nativity plays when you were nobbut a lad?

“Absolute terror! Every year, I’d come in from school and tell my mother that I’d been cast as a lead role in the show. Every year, she’d then have to go in and tell that year’s teacher that they should be prepared that come the day of the show, I’d just cry and refuse to go on as I suffered from crippling stage fright!

“They would assure her I’d been fine in class rehearsing and that I was doing brilliantly with it. Then every year she’d turn up and sit in the hall expectantly, to be hauled out by the teacher and informed I was having a meltdown. This happened every year until I was ten!”

Why are Nativity plays still important?

“Purity! It’s plain and simple to see in any Nativity the purity in the children and the performances they give. Sadly, it’s not a quality we always see in society and on stage nowadays. so let’s cling on to it in Nativity plays! 

What have been your highlights of the York Stage Musicals year in 2019?

“2019 really has been a dream. We had the opportunity to produce a classic musical in The Sound Of Music; have worked on new writing with Twilight Robbery; created magic with our acclaimed youth production of Disney’s Aladdin, but I think the cherry on the top has to be Shrek The Musical at the Grand Opera House in September.

“The buzz around the production, from auditions through to the closing night, were just electric. The reviews and comments were just sensational. It really did raise our bar yet again and will really be a cherished production for us for a very long time.”

What’s coming next for York Stage Musicals?

“We have a bit of a bumper year planned already actually. An Eighties’ classic, a York premiere, a birthday celebration and what is set to be possibly the biggest and messiest youth show the city has ever seen!

“We start in February with Robert Haring’s Steel Magnolias at 41 Monkgate. We then head across town to the Grand Opera House with a brand-new production of Bugsy Malone in April.

Chris Knight’s perennially enthusiastic Donkey in York Stage Musicals’ “monster hit”, Shrek The Musical, at the Grand Opera House, York, in September

“Then it’s a return to Monkgate in May to present the York premiere of Sondheim On Sondheim to mark Stephen Sondheim’s 90th birthday [on March 22 2020].

“We’re still firming up plans for our big autumn show, but things are looking exciting, and we’ll again end the year back at 41 Monkgate with another Christmas alternative!” 

And finally, Nik, what would be your Christmas Day message to the nation?

“People of the United Kingdom, it seems that the country truly is in the… No, in all seriousness, we are in a transition, whether we want to be or not.

“In times of transition and change, we have to really look out for each other as not everyone will move at the same pace or be able to keep up. Stay genuine and be kind to those around us and trust that love will always win. 

“Sadly nowadays, there are too many people in the world who like to over-promise and oversell themselves for personal gain. This can only lead to disappointment as we can see everywhere. “Know yourself, know your limits, don’t compare yourself to others and work hard to run your own race. Celebrate successes briefly, remain humble and learn from your mistakes.”

York Stage Musicals present The Flint Street Nativity, John Cooper Studio @41 Monkgate, York, December 12 to 22, 7.30pm except Sundays at 6pm. Box office: 01904 623568, at yorkstagemusicals.com or in person from the York Theatre Royal box office.

Creative Team

Director and designer: Nik Briggs 

Assistant director: Jonny Holbek 

Musical director: Jessica Douglas


Mary: Fiona Baistow 

Wise Gold: Verity Carr

Star: Matthew Clarke

Wise Frankincense: Jack Hooper 

Angel: Louise Leaf 

Innkeeper: Paul Mason 

Angel Gabriel: Florence Poskitt

Narrator: Andrew Roberts 

Shepherd: Chloe Shipley

Herod/Joseph: Conor Wilkinson 

York Musical Society to perform serious and fun Christmas concert

Soprano soloist: Kasia Slawski

YORK Musical Society’s Christmas Concert will be held at St Lawrence Parish  Church, Lawrence Street, York, on December 14.

In a family-friendly programme ranging from the fun to the serious, the YMS chorus of 100-plus singers will perform choruses from Handel’s Messiah, joined by soprano soloist Kasia Slawski, from Leeds.

She has many York connections, having gained a BSc in accounting and an MA in music from the University of York, where she sang in the University Choir and Chamber Choir, performing as a soloist in Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, Handel’s Israel In Egypt and Monteverdi’s 1610 Vespers.

Kasia also sang with the Yorkshire Bach Choir and was a choral scholar at St Wilfrid’s, York, as well as at Leeds Cathedral from 2002 to 2012. She continues to sing in and around York while working as an accountant, proving she is good with notes all round.

The audience can join in with the choir and brass quintet for some carols, along with enjoying the choir’s rendition of several carols, both more and less familiar.  

In a first for YMS, Richard Shephard’s Mass for the Nativitywill be performed by a solo quartet drawn from the choir. The piece has strong York links: until earlier this year, Richard Shephard was YMS’s associate conductor and he is a former headmaster of the Minster School.

YMS will be conducted by John Bradbury, while David Pipe will accompany the choir on the organ and play solo pieces too.

York Brass Quintet will add to the 4pm festivities, playing seasonal favourites with an ensemble of two trumpets, horn, trombone and tuba.

St Lawrence Parish Church, by the way, is York’s largest parish church, a fully heated Victorian building whose spire can be seen for miles around. Any profits from the concert, plus the retiring collection, will be donated to church funds. Tea and cake will be available in the parish room afterwards, again in aid of church funds.

Tickets are on sale on 01904 623568, at yorktheatreroyal.co.uk, in person from the Theatre Royal box office or on the door, priced at £10 for adults; £5, students and children over 12; free, children under 12, when accompanied by a paying adult. All seats are unreserved.

Charles Hutchinson

They sing again, you win again, in Bee Gees’ tribute show at Grand Opera House

The Bee Gees’ hits are Stayin’ Alive in the tribute show You Win Again

YOU Win Again celebrates the music of the Bee Gees in tonight’s tribute concert at the Grand Opera House, York.

Direct from London’s West End, the 7.30pm show takes a journey through Maurice, Barry and Robin Gibb’s music from the Sixties, through the Seventies and Eighties, including hits they wrote for Celine Dion, Dionne Warwick, Diana Ross and Dolly Parton.

This “fabulous authentic production” takes in such Bee Gees’ highs as Night Fever; Stayin’ Alive; More Than A Woman; You Should Be Dancing; How Deep Is Your Love?; Jive Talkin’;Tragedy; Massachusetts; Words; I’ve Got To Get A Message To You; Too Much Heaven; Islands In The Stream; Grease; If I Can’t Have You and many more. Not least the chart-topping 1987 title song, You Win Again.

Tickets are on sale from £25.15 on 0844 871 3024, at atgtickets.com/york or on the door.

York Opera to perform two fund-raising Christmas concerts in York churches

Alasdair Jamieson: conducting York Opera in two performances of their Christmas concert

YORK Opera’s Christmas concert, Joy To The World, will be presented at two York churches this Yuletide season.

A 7.30pm performance on December 13 at the Unitarian Chapel, St Saviourgate, will be followed two days later by a 2.30pm performance at Lidgett Methodist Church, off Beckfield Lane, Acomb.

Proceeds from the first one will be donated to York Against Cancer, in memory of Ros Jackson and Ian Small, two much loved and valued members of York Opera, who died of cancer just over a year ago.

Ros was a member of York Opera from 1980 until her death. Although never appearing on stage, she was vital to the running of the company, serving on the social committee, as head of properties and head of publicity.

Ian was involved for more than 20 years, as stage director, soloist and chorus member and, for a few years, as chairman.

“As they would have wished, the concert will be full of joy and Christmas spirit, taking the form of a musical journey through the Christmas story in the first half, then a general rejoicing and looking towards the New Year in the second,” says Alasdair Jamieson will conduct the choir, with Tim Tozer at the piano. 

“We’ll perform a mixture of well-known carols, such as Rocking, Ding Dong Merrily On High and The Sussex Carol, and newer works like Phillip Moore’s Our Lady And Child and Harold Fraser-Simson’s Joy Shall Be Yours In The Morning, with words from Kenneth Grahame’s The Wind In The Willows. There’ll also be York Opera’s famous rendition of The Holly And The Ivy.

“So, start your festive season off right by joining York Opera for a concert of Christmas music; some you’ll know by heart and some you’ll discover with us.”

Tickets for December 13 are available from the York Against Cancer shop, at 31 North Moor Road, York, and for both concerts on 01904 630658. Proceeds from December 15 will go to Lidgett Methodist Church.

Michael Bolton to bring Love Songs hits tour to Hull and Harrogate

Bolton wanderer: Michael Bolton to play 13 dates on 2020 British tour. Hull and Harrogate await

MICHAEL Bolton will play Hull Bonus Arena on October 3 and Harrogate Convention Centre on October 13 next autumn.

The American singer, songwriter and social activist, from New Haven, Connecticut, will perform 13 shows on his Love Songs Greatest Hits Tour 2020.

Tour tickets will go on sale at 10am on Friday (December 6) at gigsandtours.com and ticketmaster.co.uk; for Hull, on 0844 858 5025 or bonusarenahull.com; Harrogate, 01423 502116 or harrogatetheatre.co.uk.

Bolton has notched up 75 million album and single sales from such hits as How Am I Supposed To Live Without You, How Can We Be Lovers, When A Man Loves A Woman and Time, Love And Tenderness.

He tours every year, along with writing, recording and taping for projects spanning music, film and television and operating his foundation, the Michael Bolton Charities, now in its 27th year.

Bolton has won two Grammys for Best Pop Male Vocal Performance, six American Music Awards and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. 

This year’s album, A Symphony Of Hits, celebrates Bolton’s 50 years in the entertainment industry in a collection of his biggest hits, recorded with a symphony orchestra at All Saints College Performing Arts Centre in Perth, Australia. 

In his autobiography, The Soul Of It All, Bolton states he is ”just teeing off on the back nine of my career”. Now 66, so far that career has taken in writing with Bob Dylan, Kiss’s Paul Stanley, Lady Gaga, Diane Warren, and David Foster, while his songs have been recorded by Kiss, Kanye West, Jay Z, Barbra Streisand and Cher, and over the years he has performed with Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo, Jose Carreras, Renee Fleming and BB King.

Bolton’s past three British tours all sold out, so prompt booking is advised.

Charles Hutchinson

Shanghai Treason play Fulford Arms in Alan McGee fundraiser for homeless charity

Yorkshire folk punks Shanghai Treason: playing December gigs in aid of Crisis homeless charity

YORKSHIRE folk punk five-piece Shanghai Treason will play the Fulford Arms, York, on December 28 on a five-date Christmas tour to raise money for the homeless charity Crisis.

Joining them will be Lyon Estates and Sisters & Brothers for a gig presented in partnership with Musicians Against Homelessness (MAH), whose #MAH2019 campaign has seen former Oasis guru Alan McGee team up with local bands in York, Edinburgh, Liverpool, Sheffield and Bristol.

“I am delightedthat bands of this calibre want to be part of this campaign,” says McGee, who launched that campaign in 2016, since when more than 1,000 bands have played 500 MAH benefit gigs around Britain.

“The homeless situation in the UK is sickening and shocking but there is a growing awareness of the desperation people at the bottom have to endure, thanks to the musicians who back us,” adds the 59-year-old maverick Scottish businessman, music industry executive and co-founder of the Creation Records label, who managed Oasis and continues to oversee The Jesus And Mary Chain, Happy Mondays, Black Grape, Cast and .

Happy Mondays’ Shaun Ryder, Cast, James, Dodgy and many more have supported the cause, while Brian McFadden and Keith Duffy’s Boyzlife, Scouting For Girls, The Hoosiers and the Neville Staple Band are among the acts who will be taking to MAH stages in support.

“The response has been incredible and the campaign has gone from strength to strength,” says McGee. “The support has been inspiring and it’s fantastic that so many quality bands have come forward.”

Shaun Ryder says: “To see so many people in this day and age homeless and hungry is unbelievable. This is not Victorian Britain. As usual, it’s the people who are not in a position to speak for themselves or be heard who get left behind and ignored.

“It’s become so common to see homeless people on the streets that maybe it’s not a shock when you walk past. Or maybe it’s so shocking that you have to look away, and try not to think about it?”

Ryder continues: “The sad thing is, it’s not the public’s problem, but they’re the ones most likely to actually help the homeless than anyone in government.

“I’ve been through some difficult times in my life, but fortunately I’ve always had a roof over my head. If I found myself in a desperate and vulnerable position, where I’d have to trust the decisions being made in Parliament, I’d be seriously worried.”

“The homeless situation in the UK is sickening and shocking but there is a growing awareness of the desperation people at the bottom have to endure, thanks to the musicians who back us,” says Alan McGee

Cast frontman John Power says: “It’s great to be asked to be involved with the Musicians Against Homelessness campaign again. With so many ongoing problems in the world today, it’s sometimes easy to forget the ones in which you come face to face with every day in the towns and cities up and down the UK.

“Homelessness is a massive problem and one we can’t just step over and ignore. Let’s help bring awareness to the ever-increasing problem of homelessness on our streets today.”

Musicians Against Homelessness concerts have been running throughout the year, from local venues to festival main stages. Jon Sparkes,chief executive of Crisis, says: “I’m delighted that Musicians Against Homelessness are supporting Crisis again this year. Homelessness remains an unsolved problem across the UK, so your help and support is much needed and greatly appreciated.”

McGee, meanwhile, believes the MAH campaign gives new bands a platform in the way that Rock Against Racism did in the 1970s. “Music brings us together regardless of politics or social standing,” he says. “It’s a great leveller and a vital tool for change.

“Although our primary concern is to combat the scourge of homelessness, it’s vital that the MAH gigs also give upand-coming combos a chance to play to larger audiences.”

Shanghai Treason are grateful for that platform, playing five MAH gigs this month in breakneck folk-punk style, complete with banjo and accordion.

“It’s fantastic to have the support of the Musicians Against Homelessness team for this tour,” says lead singer Sam Christie. “We’ve been lucky to have so many sensational local bands come forward to be part of the shows in each territory and we’re looking forward to sharing the stage with them, while hosting some fantastic concerts raising money for a good cause this Christmas.”

Shanghai Treason’s music will more than likely appeal to fans of The Roughneck Riot, The Walker Roaders, Flogging Molly, Dropkick Murphys, The Rumjacks, Levellers and The Wildhearts.

The Yorkshire band will be promoting their first single Devil’s Basement, released on November 22 on Kycker Records. “It’s a fierce firecracker of a debut, marking our intent early on,” says Christie. “We’ve been working on this project for the best part of a year, so to finally have it come into the light is a total joy. 

“Lyrically, the song is about those nights out which get a bit out of hand, where it feels like anything is possible. We hope to have a few of those while on tour for Musicians Against Homelessness this December. Join us!”

Tickets are on sale at tickets.partyforthepeople.org or thefulfordarms.com/

Charles Hutchinson

York poet Carole Bromley to perform at Scarborough’s Christmas Rotunda Night

Headliner: York poet Carole Bromley will perform at Scarborough’s Rotunda Muaeum this Christmas. Picture: Tony Bartholomew

YORK poet Carole Bromley is the headline act for the Christmas Rotunda Night at Scarborough’s Rotunda Museum on December 21.

She will be joined at this 6.30pm to 9pm festive celebration by the Scarborough-told Tales storytellers and Whitby a cappella group The Windmill Girls.

Carole’s work has appeared in many journals and compilations and she has three collections to her name: A Guide Tour Of The Ice House,The Stonegate Devil and Blast Off!, a book for children. She has won such prizes as the Bridport Prize for Poetry, Brontë Society Literary Award and 2019 Hamish Canham Award from the Poetry Society.

The Windmill Girls: a cappella carols

Scarborough-told Tales brings together storytellers who have graduated from a Rotunda workshop course, now making a return visit after their performance in July.

The all-female choir The Windmill Girls sing acapella carols, many drawn from the rich tradition of “village” carols, some dating from the18th century and boasting exuberant choruses.

Scarborough-told Tales: stories for Christmas. Picture: Tony Bartholomew

Simon Hedges, head of curation, collections and exhibitions at Scarborough Museums Trust, which runs the Rotunda Museum and Scarborough Art Gallery, says: “This promises to be a brilliant festive treat, with poetry, great stories and seasonal music – just right for getting into the Christmas spirit.”

Tickets for this Rotunda Night cost £7.50 including a glass of wine, beer, Christmas punch or soft drink. Places are limited, so advance booking is recommended on 01723 353665.

Charles Hutchinson