Today in brief…

Welcome back to City Screen, York

CITY Screen, York, and Cineworld, Monks Cross, re-opened today, but you will have to wear a mask from August 8. Mask up at museums and galleries from that date too.

The Government green light for indoor performances from August 1 went back to red, or maybe amber for a fortnight…although Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden’s decree for Stage Five of his road map for the full-scale re-opening of theatres may not be announced until November “at the earliest”. Clear as the Ouse mud.

Daisy Duke’s Drive-In Cinema parked up on Knavesmire on the hottest day of the summer…before thunder and lightning paid a visit tonight. That’s more like it.

British film-maker supreme Sir Alan Parker died at 76. Has there ever been a more diverse director? From Bugsy Malone to Birdy, Midnight Express to Mississippi Burning, Angel Heart to Angela’s Ashes. Yes, he loved a musical, Fame in 1980, The Commitments in 1991 and Evita in 1996, but it was always down to the way he told a story. RIP.

The End.

More Things To Do in and around York, on a bench and at home, courtesy of The Press, York. List No. 11

One man and his bench: Director Matt Aston in place for the Park Bench Theatre summer season at Rowntree Park, York. Picture: Livy Potter

OUTDOOR theatre is taking to a park bench and a mill garden. Museums and galleries, and even car boots sales, are re-opening.

Spanish holidays may be off the Brexiteer Prime Minister’s list of To Do’s in August, but York is stretching its limbs, dusting off the cobwebs, and saying welcome back.

Maybe Andy Burnham, Greater Manchester’s Mayor, should test-drive his eyesight by paying a visit to “a part of the north that looks most like the south,” he says. Really, Andy?

As we all turn into masketeers, CHARLES HUTCHINSON makes these recommendations for days out and days in.

Cassie Vallance: Performing Teddy Bears’ Picnic in Rowntree Park’s Friends Garden

Outdoor theatre number one: Engine House Theatre’s Park Bench Theatre, Friends Garden, Rowntree Park, York, August 12 to September 5

HERE come Samuel Beckett’s rarely performed monologue, First Love, artistic director Matt Aston’s brand new play, Every Time A Bell Rings, and something for all the family inspired by a classic song, Teddy Bears’ Picnic, all staged on and around a park bench in a Covid-secure outdoor theatre season in York.

Each production will be presented in carefully laid out and spacious gardens, allowing audiences to keep socially distanced from each other. Chris Hannon will perform the Beckett piece; Lisa Howard, the play premiere; Aston’s co-creator, Cassie Vallance, the new children’s show.

Headphones or earphones will be required to hear the dialogue, sound effects and music in performances. All audience members will be given a receiver on entry; takeaway headphones cost £1 when booking a ticket online. Bring blankets or chairs.

Alexander Flanagan-Wright, left, and Phil Grainger swap sunnier climes on the other side of the world for Stillington Mill for their At The Mill shows

Outdoor theatre number two: The Flanagan Collective and Gobbledigook Theatre, “Six Days of Work”, Stillington Mill, near York, August 2 to 7, 7pm

“WE’RE doing some Orpheus, some Eurydice, and one night of New Stuff We Haven’t Done Before,” say Alexander Flanagan-Wright and Phil Grainger, introducing their raft of At The Mill two-handers.

Performances will take place in Alex’s back garden at Stillington Mill to a maximum, socially distanced, audience of 30 per show.

The new work, on August 5, will be a reading of Alex’s This Story Is For You and a fresh set of songs by Clive (Phil’s name for his solo music, Clive being his middle name and his father’s name). Orpheus and Eurydice will be all Greek to you, but in a good way.

Train coming: National Railway Museum to re-open next week

York galleries, museums and attractions leaving Lockdown hibernation

THE York Dungeon has re-opened already; York Art Gallery and Castle Museum will do so from Saturday.

Back on track next will be the National Railway Museum, in Leeman Road, going full steam ahead from August 4.

“To manage visitor numbers, we are introducing free, timed and guided routes around the museum to ensure you have a relaxed visit and can maintain social distancing,” says the NRM. To book, go to: railwaymuseum.org.uk/visit.

Senior operations assistant Charlotte Mundey prepares for the re-opening of the Rotunda Museum. Picture:
Tony Bartholomew

Museum re-opening of the week ahead outside York: Rotunda Museum, Scarborough, from August 8

SCARBOROUGH’S Rotunda Museum will re-open with a new booking system that gives small groups exclusive access.

Visiting slots will be every half hour across the day, allowing groups – or social bubbles – of up to six people at a time to explore the museum without having to follow prescriptive routes.

In the Ancient Seas Gallery, visitors will come face to face with prehistoric creatures that once roamed this coastline. In the Rotunda Gallery are displays of fossils, taxidermy, fine art and ceramics. 

Crash, from a new wave of seascape works by Carolyn Coles, at Village Gallery, York

New exhibition of the week: Carolyn Coles, “Oh I Do Like To Be Besides The…”, Village Gallery, York, from August 4 to September 19

YORK seascape artist Carolyn Coles, once of The Press graphics department, should have been exhibiting at York Open Studios in April and the Staithes Festival of Art and Heritage in September. Enter Covid, exit Carolyn’s two big showcases of 2020.

Enter Simon Main at Village Gallery, Colliergate, York, who says: “We saw Carolyn’s work at her first York Open Studios show back in 2019 and were so taken with her seascapes – many inspired by and maybe giving a different perspective of the Yorkshire coastline – that we started talking about a show.

“So, we’re delighted we have finally made it and are really looking forward to hanging Carolyn’s beautiful work. And who doesn’t love Filey?”

Joker: Closing film at Daisy Duke’s Drive-in Cinema at Knavesmire, York, this weekend

Open-air film experience of the week: Daisy Duke’s Drive-In Cinema, Knavesmire, York, Friday to Sunday

LATER than first trailed, Daisy Duke’s Drive-In Cinema will park up on Knavesmire for screenings of Grease, Rocketman, Toy Story, Mamma Mia!, 28 Days Later, Pulp Fiction, Shrek 2 and A Star Is Born.

Sunday’s closing film will be Joker. Tickets are selling fast so, no joke, prompt booking is recommended at dukescinema.epizy.com.

Interaction between staff and customers will be kept to a minimum, with cars parked two metres apart and those attending expected to remain within their vehicles for the duration of the screenings on LED screens with the sound transmitted to car radios.

Colin Moncrieff in Badapple Theatre’s 2014 production of The Daily Bread, a performance he now reprises for a podcast

Home entertainment of the week: Badapple Theatre’s The Daily Bread podcast

THE Daily Bread rises again as the latest free Podbean podcast from Green Hammerton company Badapple Theatre.

Glaswegian actor, clown and raconteur Colin Moncrieff reprises his 2014 stage performance in artistic director Kate Bramley’s comedy about a master baker who is the talk of the tiny village of Bottledale, thanks to his sumptuous sponges and beautiful buns, this time giving a relaxed reading from home, accompanied by Jez Lowe’s songs.

Go to badappletheatreonyourdesktop.podbean.com to discover whether the baker’s cheery façade hides a dark secret.

Fishwife, Emma Stothard’s new scuplture, takes up residence by the harbour swing bridge in Whitby

And what about…

The rockumentary Rockfield: The Studio On The Farm on BBC iPlayer. New albums by Rufus Wainwright, Courtney Marie Andrews, Seasick Steve and The Psychedelic Furs, their first in 29 years. Emma Stothard’s new Whitby sculpture, Fishwife, Selling Cod, Mackerel and Crab, by the harbour swing bridge. A walk at Wheldrake Ings, followed by Sicilian flatbreads and piadini at the re-opened Caffé Valeria in Wheldrake. York Racecourse Saturday car boot sale, re-launching from August 8.

Liberation Day arrives on Saturday, but Lockdown is still a block to theatres and gigs. Nevertheless, here are More Things To Do on days in and days out, courtesy of The Press, York. LIST No. 9

Opening the gateway to venturing outdoors once more….

JULY 4 is “Liberation Day”, apparently, but not for theatres and concert halls. They can re-open, not for live performances, however, leaving them in a state of inertia that only exacerbates their growing crisis.

As for cinemas, tipped to return to life next weekend, the consensus is that July 31 is now looking the more likely re-start date for the summer blockbusters.

This column will steer clear of the pubs and bars and restaurants making their comebacks – you can read of that welcome uptick elsewhere – but focus on the widening opportunities for entertainment, enlightenment and exercise beyond the front door, while still highlighting the joys on the home front too.

CHARLES HUTCHINSON makes these suggestions.

Back on track: Jorvik Viking Centre is “Good To Go” from next Saturday

Jorvik Viking Centre, re-opening on July 11

THE ever-resilient Jorvik Viking Centre is back on track from next Saturday with the Good To Go certification from Visit England, so all the boxes marked Government and industry Covid-19 guidelines have been ticked.

One important change is a switch to pre-booked visits only, with designated time slots every 20 minutes, to help control visitor flow and numbers, as well as extended hours over the summer months.

Within the building, in Coppergate, free-flow areas, such as the galleries will be more structured with presentations delivered by Viking interpreters, rather than video content or handling sessions.

Lutenist Elizabeth Kenny: Joining countertenor Iestyn Davies at a socially distanced National Centre for Early Music for York Early Music Festival online concert

York Early Music Festival, online from July 9 to 11

NEXT week’s “virtual” three-day event will be streamed online from the National Centre for Early Music, replacing the July 3 to 11 festival that would have celebrated Method & Madness. Concerts will be recorded at the NCEM’s home, St Margaret’s Church, in Walmgate, with social-distancing measures in place and no live audience.

York counter-tenor Iestyn Davies and lutenist Elizabeth Kenny present The Art Of Melancholy on July 9 at 7.30pm, when John Dowland’s Elizabethan music will be complemented by Davies’s renditions and readings of poetry by Robert Burton, Michael Drayton, Rose Tremain, Leo Tolstoy and Dowland himself.

On July 10, online concerts feature lute and theorbo player Matthew Wadsworth at 1pm, harpsichordist Steve Devine at 3.30pm and lyra viol player Richard Boothby at 7.30pm. July 11’s programme includes Consone Quartet at 1pm and Stile Antico at 7.30pm.

Tickets are on sale at tickets.ncem.co.uk and boxoffice@ncem.co.uk, with a festival package at £30, individual concert tickets at £10 each and illustrated talks at £3.50 each.

Richard Bainbridge RIP: York Musical Theatre Company will mark the first anniversary of his passing on Sunday

Remembering Richard, York Musical Theatre Company, Sunday, 7.30pm, online

YORK Musical Theatre Company will mark the first anniversary of leading light Richard Bainbridge’s exit stage left on Sunday with a special online memorial concert.

Streamed on YMTC’s YouTube channel, the 7.30pm programme will celebrate Richard’s theatrical life with songs from all the shows he loved and the many he graced with the company.

Taking part will be Eleanor Leaper; Matthew Ainsworth; John Haigh; Florence Taylor; Moira Murphy; Amy Lacy; Rachel Higgs; Peter Wookie; Matthew Clare; Chris Gibson; Helen Singhateh, Jessa & Mick Liversidge. Returning to the ranks will be professional York actor Samuel Edward-Cook, alias Sam Coulson in his YMTC days.

Joker: One of the films at the Daisy Duke’s Drive-In Cinema in York

Daisy Duke’s Drive-In Cinema, Knavesmire, York, tomorrow to Sunday

STATIC cinemas remain in the dark, but drive-in cinemas with social distancing rules in place have been given the Government green light.

North Easterners Daisy Duke’s Drive-In Cinema are revving up for four screenings a day. Take your pick from the very familiar Mamma Mia!, The Jungle Book, The Lion King, Frozen 2, Bohemian Rhapsody, The Greatest Showman, A Star Is Born, 28 Days Later, Pulp Fiction and Joker. Tickets can be booked at dukescinema.epizy.com.

Interaction between staff and customers will be kept to a minimum, with cars parked two metres apart and those attending expected to remain within their vehicles for the duration of the screenings on LED screens with the sound transmitted to car radios.

Ready for a reading challenge? Here comes The Silly Squad

The Silly Squad, Explore York Libraries’ Summer Reading Challenge 2020, July 10 to September 18

GIVEN that Explore York’s libraries “aren’t open fully yet”, The Silly Squad Challenge is going virtual this summer, enabling children to take part online. There will be activities to do too, all on the same theme of fun, laughter and silliness.

The Silly Squad is a team of animal friends that loves to go on adventures and get stuck into all manner of funny books. This year, the Challenge features extra special characters designed by the author and illustrator Laura Ellen Anderson.

The Silly Squad website provides an immersive and safe environment for children to achieve their reading goals. Head to Explore’s website and join through the Summer Reading Challenge button.

Paul Weller: York Barbican in 2021; new album tomorrow

Keep seeking out the good news

NO Margaret Atwood’s The Penelopiad at York Theatre Royal from July 14, and Everybody’s no longer Talking About Jamie at Leeds Grand Theatre that week too. Even the Downing Street daily briefings are off after all the unintended humour of 24 episodes of Hancock’s Half Hour.

However, all’s Weller that’s Paul Weller as the Modfather’s autumn 2020 gig at York Barbican is moved to June 29 2021. In the meantime, his new album, On Sunset, is out tomorrow.

Drag diva Velma Celli, the creation of York actor Ian Stroughair, has announced another online outing, The Velma Celli Show, Kitchen, on July 11 at 8pm.

Kitchen sing drama: York drag diva Velma Celli announces latest online show on the home front

And what about…?

BBC One revisiting Alan Bennett’s Talking Heads monologues, each one even starker in their isolation in these dislocated times of solitary confinement, shielding, loneliness and finding other people irritating. The Leeds playwright, now 86, has added two ones to his 1988 collection. “Quite bleak,” he says.

New albums by Neil Young (“new” but unearthed 1970s’ recordings); Jessie Ware, Nadine Shah and Haim.

Scarborough Art Gallery unlocking its doors from this weekend. A walk on York’s city walls with its new temporary one-way system in place for social distancing from Saturday….and then drop down for a drink at Grays Court Hotel’s new walled garden bar, in the shadow of York Minster.

Or a walk along Pocklington Canal, but watch out for the two swans, guarding their nine cygnets by the water’s edge.

Theatres, cinemas and concert venues are still closed, but Lockdown is easing. Here are More Things To Do on days in and days out, courtesy of The Press, York. LIST No.8

Can’t wait to get out, like these sled dog racers in Dalby Forest from Tony Batholomew’s online exhibition Forest 100: A Year In The Life? If so, read on…

METRE by metre, Downing Street daily briefing by catch-you-by-surprise Downing Street daily briefing, we are moving closer to the beginning of the end of the 10 Things To See Next Week In York shutdown.

However, there is still no theatre, concert venue or cinema re-opening for the foreseeable future, although cinemas are making plans to do so in July. Watch this ever-shifting space.

In the meantime, amid the loosened-lockdown dawn of summer, when football and horse racing are back, albeit with no crowds, and beaches are back, but too crowded, the search continues for entertainment, enlightenment and exercise at home and farther afield.  

From behind his door, increasingly ajar, CHARLES HUTCHINSON makes these suggestions.

Drive-In Cinema parks up in York next month, but unlike in this poster, viewers will have to stay in, not on, their cars throughout each screening

Daisy Duke’s Drive-In Cinema, Knavesmire, York, July 3 to 5

STATIC cinemas, no, but Boris Johnson’s Government has given the green light to drive-in cinemas with social distancing rules in place.

North Easterners Daisy Duke’s Drive-In Cinema have been quick off the mark to announce a Drive-In Saturday (one for David Bowie fans), and a Friday and Sunday too, from July 3 to 5.

Interaction between staff and customers will be kept to a minimum, with cars parked two metres apart and those attending expected to remain within their vehicles for the duration of the screenings on LED screens with the sound transmitted to car radios.

Four screenings a day are in store, with the film line-up taking in The Jungle Book, The Lion King, Mamma Mia!, Frozen 2, Bohemian Rhapsody, The Greatest Showman, A Star Is Born, 28 Days Later, Pulp Fiction and Joker. Tickets can be booked at dukescinema.epizy.com.

Oh, and if theatres are still closed come December, would there be any takers for a drive-in pantomime?

Rosy Rowley: Reprising her role in the 2012 York Mystery Plays as Mrs Noah in the York Radio Mystery Plays

York Radio Mystery Plays, on BBC Radio York, Sunday mornings throughout June

YORK Theatre Royal and BBC Radio York are collaborating to bring the York Mystery Plays to life on the airwaves on the Sunday Breakfast Show with Jonathan Cowap.

Working remotely from home, a cast of 19 community and professional actors has recorded four 15-minute instalments under the direction of Theatre Royal associate director Juliet Forster.

After Adam And Eve and The Flood Part 1, the series continues with The Flood Part 2 this weekend and Moses And Pharaoh on June 28. Hear the earlier ones at bbc.co.uk/sounds.

York In Flood, 2019, taken by Museum Gardens, from Katherine-of-Yorkshire’s exhibition at Village Gallery, York 

Galleries re-opening…

NO, not the big ones yet, such as York Art Gallery, but among those to announce the re-opening of doors in York this week are Simon Main’s Village Gallery, in Colliergate, and Ann Petherick’s Kentmere House Gallery, in Scarcroft Hill.

Village Gallery is presenting a photographic show by Instagrammer Katherine-of-Yorkshire until August 2. “Katherine regularly posts photographs on Instagram, mainly of York, and usually in black and white, using the camera on her phone to take the photos,” Simon says.

“She manages to convey a deep feeling of peace, even when documenting the major floods in York that happen all too regularly, as well as showing a different perspective of well-known places.”

Open by appointment only until further notice, Kentmere House is displaying A Life In Colour, Work from the Studio of Jack Hellewell, 1920-2000, including unframed pieces never seen before, to mark Hellewell’s centenary. 

North York Moors, by Jack Hellewell, at the re-opened Kentmere House Gallery, York

Mother Shipton’s Pixie Village Trail, Knaresborough

HAVE you ever dreamt of stepping into an utterly enchanted realm, deep in the captivating woodland, filled with fairy rings and secret doorways, where pixies are waiting to play?

If so, at Mother Shipton’s you can tread carefully through the land of the woodland people and keep your eyes peeled as you follow the trail to see their tiny houses.

Visitors will be provided with a trail sheet to explore the natural woodland at their own pace. Please note, open to pre-booked car admissions only, this Pixie Village event will not include any confined spaces and the actors will not be interacting with visitors, in order to reduce large gatherings of crowds and physical contact.

Shed Seven: Rearranging two big outdoors concerts in Yorkshire for their 2021 diary

Seek out the good news

NO York Festival with Madness, Westlife and Lionel Richie at York Sports Club from tomorrow until Sunday. No revival of Alan Ayckbourn’s Just Between Ourselves opening at the SJT tonight for a summer run. No Ronan Keating: Twenty Twenty gig at York Barbican tomorrow.

However, one festival is going ahead, albeit in revised online form, namely the York Early Music Festival, from July 9 to 11, with York countertenor Iestyn Davies’s concert with lutenist Elizabeth Kenny as the stand-out.

Keating’s Twenty Twenty show will now be in Twenty Twenty One, on January 13 to be precise. Meanwhile, York’s Britpop alumni Shed Seven have re-arranged two 2020 outdoor concerts for next year, now playing Doncaster Racecourse post-racing on May 15 2021, rather than August 15 this summer, and headlining an all-Yorkshire bill at the Piece Hall, Halifax, on June 26 2021, instead of the same date this year.

The artwork for Bob Dylan’s new album, Rough And Rowdy, out tomorrow

And what about…

79-YEAR-OLD Bob Dylan’s first album of original songs in eight years, Rough And Rowdy Ways, out tomorrow, on Columbia.  Phoebe Bridgers’ Punisher and Maccabees frontman Orlando Weeks’s solo debut A Quickening as further album recommendations. Spike Lee’s new Vietnam War film, Da 5 Bloods, streaming on Netflix. The Salisbury Poisonings, on BBC iPlayer, York actor Mark Addy among the cast. Talking Heads, Alan Bennett’s isolation monologues re-visited in Covid-19 times with two new additions, on BBC One from Tuesday.

Gardens at National Trust properties re-opening, such as Beningbrough Hall; bookings only. Val and Emma Carr’s Stanley & Ramona dinky coffee house, in Bishopthorpe Road, serving up coffee and cake again, hurrah.

Walks through the rhododendrons at Forestry England’s Wheldrake Wood and watching out for the tiny toads and frogs at the RSPB’s Fairburn Ings. Tony Bartholomew’s Forest 100: A Year In The Life online exhibition of Dalby Forest from spring 2019 to spring 2020 at forestryengland.uk

York countertenor Iestyn Davies: Performing at the revised 2020 York Early Music Festival on July 9. Picture: Benjamin Ealovega

Copyright of The Press, York

At last! Screen entertainment returns to York next month as drive-in cinema parks up for three days on Knavesmire

A DRIVE-IN cinema with social distancing rules will take over Knavesmire for three days next month in York.

Meeting Coronavirus regulations to ensure entertainment can return to York, interaction between staff and customers will be kept to a minimum, with cars parked two metres apart and those attending expected to remain within their vehicles for the duration of the screening.

From July 3 to 5, ten family favourites and blockbuster films will be shown on large LED screens with the sound transmitted to the audience’s car radios. Food and drink can be ordered in advance and will be delivered to individual cars. 

No joking: Cinema will return to York next month, Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker and all

The big-screen promoters, Teesside company Daisy Duke’s Drive-In Cinema, have confirmed a line-up of The Jungle Book, The Lion King, Mamma Mia!, Frozen 2, Bohemian Rhapsody, The Greatest Showman, A Star Is Born, 28 Days Later, Pulp Fiction and Joker. 

The organisers, who have been involved in entertainments and event management for 30 years, plan to have four screenings per day, lasting from morning to late-night.

Tickets cost £15, adults, £10, children, and can be booked at dukescinema.epizy.com.

The York open-air screenings will be part of a summer series of stops by the North Eastern mobile cinema, also calling in at venues in Darlington, Sunderland and “Teesside” (sorry not to be more specific!).