Putting you in the picture for More Things To Do in Ryedale, York and beyond. Here’s Hutch’s List No. 10, from Gazette & Herald

Michael Hasan Reda: Impressionist oil painter of landscapes, cityscapes and gardens, making his York Open Studios debut at his studio in Prices Lane, York

ART out of this world, comedy in the news, a poetic war of words, an orchestra of two, a very colourful musical and a courtroom thriller have Charles Hutchinson reaching for the front door key.

Art event of the fortnight: York Open Studios, April 13 and 14, April 20 and 21, 10am to 5pm; preview, Friday, 6pm to 9pm

156 artists who live or work within a ten-mile radius of York will be welcoming visitors to 106 workspaces to show and sell their art, ranging from ceramics, collage, digital, illustration, jewellery and mixed media to painting, print, photography, sculpture, textiles, glass and wood. Among them will be 31 new participants. Full details and a map can be found at yorkopenstudios.co.uk. Look out for booklets around the city too.

News alert: The Drop The Dead Donkey newsroom team reunites for Andy Hamilton and Guy Jenkin’s new play at Leeds Grand Theatre

Breaking News of the week: Drop The Dead Donkey: The Reawakening!, Leeds Grand Theatre, until April 13

THIRTY years since the launch of the trailblazing television series Drop The Dead Donkey, the Globelink News team is back, live on stage for the first time. Original cast members Stephen Tompkinson, Neil Pearson, Susannah Doyle, Robert Duncan, Ingrid Lacey, Jeff Rawle and Victoria Wicks reunite for a new, constantly updated script by sitcom writing duo Andy Hamilton and Guy Jenkin, under Lindsay Posner’s direction.

“It’s going to be hugely enjoyable to watch those seven funny, flawed characters from Globelink News being plunged into the cutthroat world of modern 24-hour news-gathering and trying to navigate their way through the daily chaos of social media, fake news and interim Prime Ministers,” say the writers. Box office: 0113 243 0808 or leedsheritagetheatres.com.

Reuben Khan: Playing the lead role in York Stage’s Joseph And The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat

Musical of the week: York Stage in Joseph And The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Grand Opera House, York, April 12 to 20, 7.30pm except April 14, 15 and 19; 2.30pm, April 13 and 20; 4pm, April 14; 5pm and 8pm, April 19

BE ready to paint the city in every colour of the rainbow as Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s musical dazzles the Grand Opera House in York Stage’s vibrant production, directed by Nik Briggs, with musical direction by Adam Tomlinson and choreography by Lesley Hill.

Reuben Khan leads the cast as Joseph, joined by Hannah Shaw as the Narrator, Carly Morton as Pharaoh, Martin Rowley as Jacob, Finn East as Simeon, Matthew Clarke as Potiphar, among others. Tickets are selling fast at atgtickets.com/york.

Shareefa Energy!: Guest performance poet at Friday’s Say Owt Slam clash at The Crescent, York

Spoken word clash of the week: Say Owt Slam, featuring Shareefa Energy!, The Crescent, York, Friday, 7.45pm

SAY Owt, “York’s loveable gobby gang of performance poets”, take over The Crescent for a raucous, high-energy night of verse that combine a slam war of words with a guest performer. “In a slam, poets have three minutes to wow the audience,” says host Henry Raby. “It’s fast, frantic and fun: perfect for people who love poetry, and those who think they hate poetry too.”

Special guest Shareefa Energy! is a poet, writer, activist, educator, creative campaigner, workshop facilitator and arts and wellbeing practitioner of Indian and Muslim heritage from working-class Highfields in Leicester. Box office: thecrescentyork.com or on the door.

East Riding Artists: Exhibiting at Nunnington Hall in From The Earth’s celebration of the natural world

Ryedale exhibition of the week: From The Earth, East Riding Artists, at Nunnington Hall, Nunnington, near Helmsley, until May 12, 10.30am to 5pm

THE climate crisis is high on the worldwide agenda; evidence of nature’s fragility can be found everywhere we turn, and few would question that our Earth is changing dramatically, in some cases irrevocably. Nature, however, is a force to be reckoned with, prompting 32 painters, potters and creatives from East Riding Artists to celebrate everything our natural world has to offer.

From the power of the North Sea and the beauty of Yorkshire’s countryside and coastline to the food we grow and the flowers we cultivate, From The Earth cherishes the best of our ever-changing world. Normal admission applies; National Trust members, free.

The Blackheart Orchestra’s Chrissy Mostyn and Rick Pilkington: Thirteen instruments divided between two musicians at Helmsley Arts Centre

Prog rock for the space age: The Blackheart Orchestra, Helmsley Arts Centre, April 19, doors, 7.30pm

CHRISSY Mostyn and Rick Pilkington’s two-piece “orchestra” play 13 instruments between them from their prog-rock space station on stage, from acoustic and electric guitars, bass and bowed guitar to piano, organ, vintage synthesisers, omnichord, melodica and electric percussion.

Drawing on influences as varied as Kate Bush, Portishead, Cocteau Twins, Steve Reich and Philip Glass, they combine folk and rock roots with electronica and classical music. Foxpalmer, alias London singer-songwriter Fern McNulty, supports, from 8pm. Box office: 01439 771700 or helmsleyarts.co.uk.

Patrick Draper, Tony Jameson and Alfie Joey: April 19’s comedy line-up at the Milton Rooms, Malton

Hilarity Bites Comedy Club: Alfie Joey, Patrick Draper and Tony Jameson, Milton Rooms, Malton, April 19, 8pm

ALFIE Joey is a polymath: artist, radio presenter, podcaster, comedian, communication coach, Ted X speaker, impressionist, interviewer, charity auctioneer, motivator, children’s author, master of ceremonies, pantomime player, sitcom actor, Britain’s Got Talent participant and illustrator for York writer Ian Donaghy’s book Never Stop Drawing.

Comedy will be his focus in Malton, where he will be joined by Patrick Draper, purveyor of deadpan jokes, visual gags and songs, and host Tony Jameson. Box office: 01653 696240 or themiltonrooms.com.

Jury service: Christopher Haydon’s cast for the courtroom thriller Twelve Angry Men, on tour at Grand Opera House, York

Show announcement of the week: Twelve Angry Men, Grand Opera House, York, May 13 to 18, 7.30pm plus 2.30pm Wednesday and Saturday matinees

CHRISTOPHER Haydon’s touring production of Reginald Rose’s Twelve Angry Men for Bill Kenwright Ltd returns to York on the American courtroom thriller’s 70th anniversary tour, having last played the Grand Opera House in April 2015.

Tristan Gemmill, Michael Greco, Jason Merrells, Gray O’Brien and Gary Webster feature in the cast for this study of human nature and the art of persuasion set in the jury deliberating room, where 12 men hold the fate of a young delinquent, accused of killing his father, in their hands. What looks an open-and-shut case soon becomes a dilemma as the jurors are forced to examine their own self-image, personalities, experiences and prejudices. Box office: atgtickets.com/york.

Ian Donaghy launches Never Stop Drawing book for ‘just different’ children of all ages

Drawing a crowd: Author Ian Donaghy, centre, and illustrator Alfie Joey with All Saints RC School Year Seven students Molly, left, Sophia, Gabriel, Ava and Florence at Tuesday’s York launch of Never Stop Drawing at the Explore York Hungate Reading Cafe. Already Ian has led the children in a session on the book at All Saints. Picture: David Harrison

YORK author Ian Donaghy will launch his latest book, Never Stop Drawing, in his native North East this evening (27/9/2023) at Seven Stories, the National Centre for Children’s Books, in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, at 6pm.

Illustrated by Alfie Joey, the book champions never letting the flame of creativity die in a story full of colour, hope and inspiration for children aged eight to 108.

Drawn in: A young reader enjoying Never Stop Drawing

Billed as “the children’s book every grown-up needs to read before it’s too late”, Never Stop Drawing encourages readers to “find what you love and never stop”.

Former Maths teacher turned conference speaker, author, dementia charity champion and long-standing frontman of York party band Huge to boot, Ian says: “The world needs to stop asking how clever you are and instead ask how are you clever?”

This sporting life… but Albie, left, is more interested in pens than penalties in this Alfie Joey illustration from Never Stop Drawing

Yesterday evening, over tea and cakes baked by Sue Stewart, he launched two editions of the book – one with Joey’s illustrations, the other with spaces left blank for readers to draw their own pictures – at Explore York’s Hungate Reading Café, where he had spent many an hour crafting the text.

In the tradition of Bob Dylan’s Subterranean Homesick Blues, he held up placards, one saying: Different NOT Worse. Different NOT Less. Just Different. #NeverStopDrawing.

Colourful character meets colourful character: Author Ian Donaghy presents a copy of Never Stop Drawing to Eurovision pop star Sam Ryder at August’s Yorkshire Balloon Fiesta at Castle Howard

From the Tow Law-born author of wellbeing books Dear Dementia, The Missing Peace and A Pocketful Of Kindness, Never Stop Drawing is dedicated to Ian’s daughter, the singer and musical theatre student Annie Donaghy, “who views the world in a beautiful, different way, often seeing things that many of us miss”.

Ian hopes the book will make its way into schools and children’s wards in hospitals and already that is happening. Tomorrow, he will give a talk to the British Library at Malmaison, Rougier Street, York.

Muddled thinking: Why give dyslexia such a difficult label to spell, ponder author Ian Donaghy and lead character Albie in Never Stop Drawing. Illustration: Alfie Joey

“It’s a book about a little lad called Albie, who’s different. Different, not worse. Different, not less. He’s just different – and that’s fine. Socks don’t know they’re odd,” says Ian. “Let’s embrace the differences and make the world fit around people instead of us hammering the same round pegs into the same square holes.

“We’re all different and that’s a good thing, Imagine how dull the world would be if we were all the same.”

Booking up their ideas: Author Ian Donaghy and illustrator Alfie Joey at the York launch of Never Stop Drawing at the Explore York Hungate Reading Cafe. Picture: David Harrison

Published by ID Publications and printed by YPS Printing Services in Elvington, both versions of Never Stop Drawing are available from neverstopdrawing.co.uk and bigian.co.uk.

Did you know?

NEVER Stop Drawing illustrator Alfie Joey is a writer, comic, actor, impressionist, singer, presenter and artist/cartoonist. He hosted the flagship breakfast show on BBC Radio Newcastle from 2009 until his last broadcast on October 28 2022.

The last word: Albie “went to sleep after a life of reams and dreams” in Never Stop Drawing’s closing chapter. Illustration: Alfie Joey