More Things To Do in and around York as mountainous films and gigs galore mount up. List No. 52, courtesy of The Press, York

The Russian is Homecoming: Comedy turn Olga Koch tries to figure out “who the heck she is” at Theatre@41, Monkgate, York, tomorrow

GODBER’S comedy, protest art, Russian and American comedy, an adventurous Scott, a DH Lawrence spoof, one of the Wainwrights, operatic Handel, Turkish songs, mountainous films and Velma’s witches find Charles Hutchinson spoilt for choice.

Yorkshire play of the week: John Godber Company in John Godber’s Sunny Side Up!, Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough, 1.30pm, 7.30pm today; 7.30pm, tomorrow; 2.30pm, 7.30pm Saturday

Coastal comedy: John Godber and Jane Thornton in Sunny Side Up! at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough. Picture: Martha Godber

THE John Godber Company returns to the SJT with Sunny Side Up!, the coastal comedy premiered by the Godbers in a family bubble in the Round last autumn.

In Godber’s moving account of a struggling Yorkshire coast B&B and the people who run it, down-to-earth proprietors Barney, Cath and Tina share stories of awkward clients, snooty relatives and eggs over easy.

Writer-director Godber plays Barney and Graham alongside his wife, fellow writer Jane Thornton, and daughter, Martha Godber. Box office: 01723 370541 or at sjt.uk.com.

Activist-artist Richard Lees’ campaigning prints are on show at York College

Exhibition of the week: Richard Lees, Justice, York College gallery, until October 21, open 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday

A STALWART activist Hull artist once at the heart of the Rock Against Racism movement is exhibiting four decades of prints in his first York show, with his latest justice campaign project to the fore.

The exhibition title, Justice, is derived from printmaker Richard Lees’s linocuts inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement.

“I feel that all art has some element of politics in it, even if it’s to distract you,” he says. Entry is free but booking is essential via yorkcollege.ac.uk.

Barron’s night: Sara Barron will keep her Enemies Closer in York on Saturday

Comedy at the double at Theatre@41, Monkgate, York: Olga Koch, Homecoming, tomorrow (8/10/2021); Sara Barron, Enemies Closer, Saturday, both 8pm

BORN in Russia, educated at an American school in Staines, and now starring over here on Mock The Week and in her own BBC Radio 4 show, Olga Koch is touring her third show.

New passport in hand, tomorrow Olga will try to figure out who the heck she is as an immigrant and certified teen drama queen.

Saturday’s headline act, no-holds-barred Sara Barron, from Chicago, Illinois, is on her first British tour, examining kindness, meanness, ex-boyfriends, current husbands, all four of her remaining friends and two of her 12 enemies in Enemies Closer. Box office: tickets.41monkgate.co.uk.

Mike Scott: Back at York Barbican with Memphis keyboard player Brother” Paul Brown, Irish electric fiddler Steve Wickham, drummer Ralph Salmins and bassist Aongus Ralston on Saturday

Return of the week: An Evening With The Waterboys, York Barbican, Saturday, 8pm

FROM the “Big Music” of the mid-1980s, to the Celtic swell of Fisherman’s Blues, to all manner of soul, rock, blues and folk since then, Mike Scott has been ever the adventurer with The Waterboys.

Last year came their 14th studio album, August 2020’s Good Luck, Seeker, and seekers of those songs in a live format should venture to the band’s regular York haunt this weekend. Box office: yorkbarbican.co.uk.

Turning Lady Chatterley’s Lover upside down: Subversive writer-actor Lawrence Russell in a shocking moment for Lord Chatterley in Happy Idiot’s Not: Lady Chatterley’s Lover

Send-up show of the week: Happy Idiot in Not: Lady Chatterley’s Lover, Helmsley Arts Centre, Saturday, 7.30pm

HAPPY Idiot team up with Worthing Theatres to rip through Lawrence Russell’s subversive, witty and, yes, rude parody of D H Lawrence’s once-banned bodice-ripper.

Russell’s Lord Chatterley will be joined in Ben Simpson’s cast by Christina Baston’s Lady Chatterley, Wesley Griffith’s Mellors and Rebecca McClay’s Mrs Bolton, with Chris Jamieson as the narrator and a score by Savage & Spies, for an evening of high drama, high comedy and highly raised eyebrows. Box office: 01439 772112 or at helmsleyarts.co.uk

Turkish delight in song: Olcay Bahir in her National Centre for Early Music debut on Sunday

World music concert of the week: Olcay Bayir, Dream For Anatolia, National Centre for Early Music, York, Sunday, 6.30pm

TURKISH singer Olcay Bayour makes her NCEM debut with her four-piece band, performing songs from her albums Neva and Rüya (Dream).

Born in the historical city of Gaziantep, she moved to Britain as a teenager and trained in opera. Now she showcases ancient poems and original songs in Turkish, Kurdish, and Armenian, reflecting her Anatolian heritage, wrapped in music of deep roots yet applied with contemporary, sophisticated arrangements, suffused with irresistible rhythms. Box office: 01904 658338 or at ncem.co.uk.

On fire: English Touring Opera in Handel’s Amadigi at York Theatre Royal

Two nights at the opera: English Touring Opera in Handel’s Amadigi, York Theatre Royal, Monday and Tuesday, 7.30pm

ENGLISH Touring Opera returns with James Conway’s new production of Handel’s “magic opera” Amadigi on a tour where William Towers and Tim Morgan share the title role.

Francesca Chiejina and Jenny Stafford play sorceress Melissa, whose infatuation with Amadigi drives her to imprison his love Oriana (Harriet Eyley) and torment him and his companion turned rival, Dardano (Rebecca Afonwy-Jones), with shape-shifting spells and devilish devices. Box office: 01904 623568 or at yorktheatreroyal.co.uk.

Taking to the mountains: Spectacle galore at Tuesday’s BANFF Mountain Film Festival night at York Barbican

Film scenery of the week: BANFF Mountain Film Festival World Tour, York Barbican, Tuesday, 7.30pm

THE BANFF Mountain Film Festival joins the world’s best adventure filmmakers and explorers as they push themselves to the limits in the most remote, breath-taking corners of the globe.

Witness epic human-powered feats, life-affirming challenges and mind-blowing cinematography on the big screen in a new collection of short films. Box office: yorkbarbican.co.uk.

Rufus Wainwright: Follow him to York Barbican on Wednesday to discover how to Unfollow The Rules

Rule-breaker of the week ahead: Rufus Wainwright: Unfollow The Rules Tour, York Barbican, Wednesday, doors 7pm

CANADIAN singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright will be accompanied by a new band, under guitarist Brian Green’s musical direction, for his set of arch classics and new cuts from his latest album.

“I consider Unfollow the Rules my first fully mature album; it is like a bookend to the beginning of my career,” he says. Box office: yorkbarbican.co.uk.

Under discussion: David Suchet’s Poirot years and much more besides from a 52-year career on stage and screen

Chat show of the week ahead: David Suchet, Poirot And More, A Retrospective, York Theatre Royal, Wednesday, 3pm and 8pm

DAVID Suchet is retracing his steps as a young actor on a tour of 20 theatres in conversation with Geoffrey Wansell, journalist, broadcaster, biographer and co-author of Poirot And Me.

Suchet, 75, will be looking back fondly on his illustrious five-decade career, shedding new, intimate light on his most beloved performances as they discuss the actor behind the Belgian detective and the many characters he has portrayed on stage and screen. Box office: 01904 623568 or at yorktheatreroyal.co.uk.

“Out come the witches, creeps and freaks,” promises York vocal drag queen Velma Celli for a Halloweenish Equinox show at Impossible York

The glam night with the Halloweenish swish: The Velma Celli Show: Equinox, Impossible York Wonderbar, York, October 15, 7.30pm

YORK drag diva deluxe Velma Celli’s October residency night at Impossible York will be a Halloweenish twist on Velma’s Equinox show, the one with “witches, creeps and freaks”.

“I’ll be doing Hocus Pocus, I Put A Spell On You, Radiohead’s Creep, A Thousand Years from Twilight and much more gorgeous musical gore besides,” says Velma, the spectacular creation of musical theatre actor, cruise-ship headline act and Nola jazz singer Ian Stroughair. Box office: impossibleyork.com/wonderbar.

Richard Lees’ journey from Rock Against Racism to Black Lives Matter in protest prints on display at York College gallery

Hull artist and activist Richard Lees at the launch of his Justice exhibition of past and present protest prints

A CAMPAIGNING Hull artist at the heart of the Rock Against Racism movement is exhibiting at York College until October 21.

The Justice show spans four decades of prints by Richard Lees in surprisingly his first show in York, with his latest campaign project to the fore.

“The exhibition is called Justice because my most recent linocut work has been inspired by – and is in solidarity with – the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement and other justice campaigns,” said the East Yorkshire printmaker and stalwart activist at the launch.

A spread of Richard Lees’ prints at his Justice exhibition

“The show covers what’s happening now but also goes right back to the 1970s when I was a student in Hull producing prints for Rock Against Racism.”

Founded in 1976, the protest movement hosted several large-scale tours, concerts and smaller club events with big-name artists from diverse musical genres.

“I feel that all art has some element of politics in it, even if it’s to distract you,” said Richard, whose exhibition takes in his past print work – both silk screen and lino – created in response to equality, environmental and human rights issues in Great Britain and internationally. 

Activist Richard Lees’ prints, “created in response to equality, environmental and human rights issues in Great Britain and internationally”

“I just want to show young people what can be achieved by being part of a movement for equality. I’m absolutely thrilled to have been invited to exhibit at York College and I’m looking forward to speaking to the students.

“This is the first time my work’s been to York but it’s previously been on display in London at Warner Bros Records, in Manchester, Edinburgh and Hull.”

Hull Rock Against Racism: Look at those 1970s’ prices for The Undesirable Aliens and The Abstracts’ gig

Richard, a former English teacher, was invited to bring his work to York College by art & design tutor Danielle Stubbs, who said: “It’s a pleasure to have the work by Richard Lees on show in our gallery as the first show for this academic year. 

“We believe the themes within Richard’s prints will encourage greater awareness, and the printing methods used will be an inspiration for all students within the college.”

Please note: the Justice exhibition is open to the public, Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, but booking is essential, with further details at yorkcollege.ac.uk or on 01904 770200. Admission is free.

A Richard Lees poster print for the This Is Hull Rock Against Racism UK Poster Tour 2016

York College links with York Theatre Royal for fast-track stage and screen degree

Burgeoning talents: Nigar Yeva, left, Aimee Powell, Olisa Odele, Kate Donnachie and Corey Campbell in Pilot Theatre’s Crongton Knights at York Theatre Royal. Picture: Robert Day

YORK College and York Theatre Royal are teaming up to launch a fast-track course for aspiring stage and screen talents from September.

The BA (Hons) Acting for Stage and Screen degree has been created by York College, in conjunction with the Academy of Live and Recorded Arts (ALRA), to offer students conservatoire-style professional acting training, plus month-long placements within the industry, including at the Theatre Royal.

Programme leader James Harvey, who developed the two-year course, bills the degree as being “different from anything offered before at York College”.

“There’s nothing like this anywhere in North Yorkshire or the North East,” he says. “It’s a collaboration with ALRA, one of the top drama schools in the country. It’s very much an industry-facing course and we want our students to work with professionals.  

“That’s why we’ve worked a month-long placement into the course. For some students, this will mean valuable experience at York Theatre Royal, a hugely respected producing theatre.”

James hopes the course will attract students from a wide range of social backgrounds and believes the two-year duration presents “maximum value for money”.

Theatre Royal producer Thom Freeth says: “This new partnership is such a brilliant opportunity for York Theatre Royal to help support and shape training for people embarking on careers in the theatre industry.

“At a time when arts education is under threat and the industry is changing rapidly, it’s really important that creative organisations connect with training providers and that people can access high-quality training regionally, rather than having to move to London.

“We’re so excited to be working with York College, not least because this partnership will enable York Theatre Royal to make established strands of our work, such as youth theatre and new creative projects, more accessible to communities across the York.”

To complement York College’s in-house tutors, students will benefit from regular visits from industry professionals and ALRA staff.  The course also offers specialist classes in improvisation, rehearsal and performance skills, voice, movement and professional development and will involve live performances at the Theatre Royal.

Kieran Sheehan, acting principal at ALRA, says: “We’re delighted with the partnership and will use our pioneering approach to actor training and offer advice on integrating traditional and cutting-edge techniques for screen and live theatre.”  

For more information on the course, including enrolment and auditions, go to: yorkcollege.ac.uk/study/ba-hons-acting-for-stage-screen-alra-endorsed