Drag diva Velma Celli sings praises of show queens in York Theatre Royal cabaret night

Velma Celli: Returning to York Theatre Royal to celebrate West End and Broadway musical queens. Picture: Sophie Eleanor

YORK drag diva deluxe Velma Celli will be in regal voice at York Theatre Royal in her new cabaret concoction of music, risqué comedy and generally fabulous entertainment on May 23.

After God The Save The Queens’ celebration of British music icons, from Cilla Black, Shirley Bassey and Kate Bush to Adele, Amy Winehouse and Dua Lipa, here comes Velma Celli’s Show Queen.

“It was going to be called just ‘Show Queen’, but then I discovered there’s a famous drag act in Australia who’s done a show with that title, so ‘Velma Celli’s Show Queen’ it is,” says Velma, the flamboyant creation of West End musical actor and cruise ship star turn Ian Stroughair, 41.

“I’ll be touring it next year when it’ll be called ‘Show Queen’ but with a tag line. It’s a title that’s open to any interpretation.”

Offering an invitation to the new show, Velma says: “Grease up your voice boxes, head to the glorious Theatre Royal, York and come Hear the People Sing the Sound Of Music worthy of royalty or Hamilton himself in this greatest of Cabaret shows.”

Velma Celli: Presenting “the greatest of cabaret shows”

What’s in store? “It’s a brand new show going back to my own musical theatre roots, having appeared in iconic mega shows such as Cats, Chicago, Fame and Rent. I’ll be celebrating the very best of London’s West End and Broadway musical theatre hits in a show that takes us to every corner of the fabulous genre, from Kander & Ebb and Lloyd Webber to Stephen Schwartz’s Wicked and Schönberg’s Les Miserables and many more,” says Velma. “Like, more than Six!

“I first did it at Crazy Coqs [the London cabaret club], but only with piano, so not the full version that it will be in York, where the band will be led by Scott Phillips on keyboards. He’s a professional musical director, who I first met when he was training here in York, and now I take him everywhere to do all my gigs. He’s fixing up the rest of the band but Al Morrison will definitely be on guitar.”

Among the highlights of Velma’s 75-minute show will be a ten-minute Kander & Ebb medley of Cabaret and Chicago, including Cell Block Tango. “I’ll be doing all six of the murderesses at Cook County Jail regaling Roxie Hart with the stories behind the murder of the men in their lives,” says Velma. “I’m doing it in a mash-up with Henry VIII’s wives in Six!”

Velma’s special guests will be burlesque superstar Miss Betsy Rose and an acoustic set with soul-powered York singer Jessica Steel, a regular in Velma’s home-city shows accompanied by guitarist Stuart Allan.

“Betsy has been voted the number one burlesque artist three times and is known for being the best in vintage burlesque,” says Velma. “She’s done shows with me at Impossible York, and I look forward to her giving off Cyd Charisse vibes at the Theatre Royal. And Jess? She’s York’s finest!”

Miss Betsy Rose: Guest burlesque act at Velma Celli’s Show Queen cabaret night at York Theatre Royal

Velma Celli’s Show Queen will be Velma’s fourth gig at York Theatre Royal in recent years, after A Brief History Of Drag in May 2021, Me And My Divas in September 2022 and God Save The Queens last September.

“I did my first musical there, in 1997, when I was 14: Kes! The Musical,” Velma recalls. “Lawrence Till directed it, and we were just school kids working with West End professionals. What an experience.”

After 15 years of shows taking her to Australia, New York, the Edinburgh Fringe and London’s Hippodrome, Velma Celli’s diary is as busy and as diverse as ever.

“Last month I was the MC for a concert for the Demelza House children’s charity at the Granville Theatre in Ramsgate, introducing Anna-Jane Casey, Robin Cousins, Amy Lennox, Mike Nolan & Cheryl Baker and Christina Bianco, who I’ll be performing with at Crazy Coqs in a tenth anniversary of our show Divallusion on August 30,” says Velma.

Velma’s travels have taken her back to Australia this year on tour. “I played Sydney, the Brunswick Picturehouse, Byron Bay, in New South Wales, and Perth, where God Save The Queens won the Perth Fringeworld award for best cabaret, after I was  nominated previously for A Brief History Of Drag and won with Me And My Divas,” she says.

The poster artwork for Velma Celli’s God Save The Queens

“I did a cruise too, from Melbourne to Sydney, doing my show on board for four days – and I’ve sung at a private show in the Seychelles. Lovely!”

Coming up in York will be Velma Celli’s Pride Drag Brunch for York Pride on June 1 at Impossible York at 4pm and the Pride Official Afterparty at Ziggy’s Bar & Nightclub, in Micklegate, from 8pm.  

Further afield in Yorkshire, Velma will be performing God Save The Queens at Skipton Town Hall on June 15 (8pm, box office: skiptontownhall.co.uk). In the diary too is a return to a starring role at Yorktoberfest, York’s celebration of beer, bratwurst and all things Bavarian in the Clocktower Enclosure, York Racecourse, on October 18, 19, 25 and 26 (tickets: ticketsource.co.uk/yorktoberfest).

Velma Celli’s Show Queen, York Theatre Royal, May 23, 7.30pm. Age guidance: 14 plus. Content warning: Strong language.

Should you be in the south: Velma Celli’s A Brief History Of Drag, King’s Head Theatre, 116 Upper Street, London, N1 1QN, June 17, 9pm; Velma Celli’s God Save The Queens, Fiery Bird, Goldsworth Road, Woking, July 13, 7.30pm. Box office: kingsheadtheatre.com; fierybirdvenue.org.uk.

Copyright of The Press, York

More Things To Do in York and beyond as arts take to the bike & beach. Hutch’s List No. 8 for 2024, from The Press, York

Pilot Theatre’s cast for A Song For Ella Grey at York Theatre Royal. Picture: Topher McGrillis

BEACH encounters with Orpheus, tandem cyclists divided by Brexit,  a joyful mess in art, an Eighties rom-com revisited, Ukrainian opera and big summer concerts brighten Charles Hutchinson’s days ahead.

York play of the week: Pilot Theatre in A Song For Ella Grey, York Theatre Royal, February 20 to 24, 7pm plus 1pm, Thursday and 2pm, Saturday; Hull Truck Theatre, March 5 to 9, 7.30pm plus 2pm, Wednesday and Saturday

IN Zoe Cooper’s stage adaptation of David Almond’s novel for York company Pilot Theatre and Newcastle’s Northern Stage, Claire and her best friend, Ella Grey, are ordinary kids from ordinary families in an ordinary world as modern teenagers meet ancient forces.

They and their friends fall in and out of love, play music and dance, stare at the stars, yearn for excitement, and have parties on Northumbrian beaches. One day, a stranger, a musician called Orpheus, appears on the beach and entrances them all, especially Ella. Where has Orpheus come from and what path will Ella follow in this contemporary re-telling of the ancient Greek myth. Box office: York, 01904 623568 or yorktheatreroyal.co.uk; Hull, 01482 323638 or hulltruck.co.uk.

Displayful artists Luke Beech, Wendy Galloway, Kate Fox and Liberty Hodes, exhibiting at Scarborough Art Gallery. Picture: Tony Bartholomew

Coastal exhibition of the season: Displayful, Scarborough Art Gallery until May 7

DISPLAYFUL celebrates happy accidents and joyful mess, aiming to brighten the winter months by inviting visitors to enjoy uplifting contemporary artistic responses to objects from the collections of Scarborough Museums and Galleries.

The show combines new work by five regional artists, Luke Beech, Kate Fox, Wendy Galloway, Liberty Hodes and Angela Knipe, alongside historical artefacts and asks audiences to consider new possibilities for the lives of objects.

Amber Davies’s Vivian and Oliver Savile’s Edward, centre, in a scene from Pretty Woman The Musical, on tour at the Grand Opera House, York, next week

Musical of the week: Pretty Woman The Musical, Grand Opera House, York, February 20 to 24, 7.30pm, plus 2.30pm Wednesday and Saturday matinees

BILLED as Hollywood’s ultimate rom-com, live on stage, Pretty Woman: The Musical is set once upon a time in the late 1980s, when Hollywood Boulevard hooker Vivian meets entrepreneur Edward Lewis and her life changes forever.

Amber Davies plays Vivian opposite Oliver Savile’s Edward; 2016 Strictly Come Dancing champion Ore Oduba, last seen at this theatre in fishnets in March 2022 as Brad Majors in The Rocky Horror Show, has two roles as hotel manager Barnard Thompson/Happy Man, and Natalie Paris will be Vivian’s wisecracking roommate Kit De Luca. Box office: atgtickets.com/york.

The poster artwork for Dnipro Opera’s Madama Butterfly at York Barbican

Opera of the week: Dnipro Opera in Madama Butterfly, York Barbican, February 20, 7pm

DNIPRO Opera, the Ukrainian National Opera, returns to British shores after last year’s visit to perform Puccini’s favourite work, Madama Butterfly, sung in Italian with English surtitles (CORRECT).

Set in Japan in 1904, this torrid tale of innocent love crushed between two contrasting cultures charts the affair between an American naval officer and his young Japanese bride, whose self-sacrifice and defiance of her family leads to tragedy. Box office: yorkbarbican.co.uk.

Carly Bednar in rehearsal for her role as Leila Arden in Griffonage Theatre’s Rope at Theatre@41, Monkgate

Thriller of the week: Griffonage Theatre in Rope, Theatre@41, Monkgate, York, February 21 to 24, 7.30pm

HALFWAY through her MA in theatre studies, Katie Leckey directs York company Griffonage Theatre in their Theatre@41 debut in Patrick Hamilton’s thriller Rope, with its invitation to a dinner party like no other.

Set in 1929 against the backdrop of Britain’s flirtation with fascism, this whodunit states exactly who did it, but the mystery is will they be caught? Cue a soiree full of eccentric characters, ticking clocks and hushed arguments. Box office: tickets.41monkgate.co.uk.

An Eiffel and an earful: Don (John Lister) and Carol (Kate Caute) share a cycle but not political views in Paris in 1812 Theatre Company’s Scary Bikers

Ryedale play of the week: 1812 Theatre Company in Scary Bikers, Helmsley Arts Centre, February 21 to 24, 7.30pm

HELMSLEY’S 1812 Theatre Company stage their first John Godber comedy next week, his 2018 two hander Scary Bikers. Outwardly, redundant miner Don (John Lister) and former private school teacher Carol (Kate Caute) have little in common, but beneath the surface their former spouses are buried next to each other. Soon widowed Don and Carol bump into each other.

An innocent coffee leads to a bike ride through the Yorkshire Dales, then a bike tour across Europe to Florence. All looks promising for a budding romance, but their departure date is June 23 2016 and Don and Carol are on the opposite sides of the Brexit fence. Box office: helmsleyarts.co.uk or in person from the arts centre.

S Club: Post-racing party songs at York Racecourse on July 27

Bring it all back: S Club, York Racecourse Music Showcase Weekend, July 27

JULY 27 will be S Club Party time after the Saturday afternoon race card on the Knavesmire track. Once S Club 7, now the five-piece S Club comprises Jo O’Meara, Rachel Stevens, Jon Lee, Tina Barrett and Bradley McIntosh, following last April’s death of Paul Cattermole from heart complications at 46 and Hannah Spearritt not featuring in 2023’s 25th anniversary tour.

This month finds S Club in the USA playing Boston, New York, Chicago and Los Angeles. Roll on summertime to enjoy chart toppers Bring It All Back, Never Had A Dream Come True, Don’t Stop Movin’ and Have You Ever, plus You’re My Number One, Reach, Two In A Million, S Club Party et al in York. Tickets: yorkracecourse.co.uk.

James: Returning to Scarborough Open Air Theatre in July. Picture: Paul Dixon

Yorkshire gig announcement of the week: James, supported by Reverend & The Makers and Girlband!, Scarborough Open Air Theatre, July 26

MANCHESTER band James play Scarborough Open Air Theatre for the fourth time on July 26, the night when Leeds lads Kaiser Chiefs finish off the evening card at York Races.

“If you haven’t been there before, then make sure you come,” says James bassist and founder member Jim Glennie. “It’s a cracking venue and you can even have a paddle in the sea before the show!” New album Yummy arrives on April 12. Box office: James, ticketmaster.co.uk from 9am on Friday; Kaiser Chiefs, yorkracecourse.co.uk.

More Things To Do in York and beyond when you’re not only here for the beer. Hutch’s List No. 43, from The Press

Velma Celli: Vocal drag entertainment with chutzpah and cheek at Yorktoberfest, York Racecourse

BAVARIAN revelry and riotous Russian politics, Frankenstein in wartime and jazz era Joni, comedy and charity nights entice Charles Hutchinson to do battle with Storm Babet.

Festival of the week: Jamboree Entertainment presents Yorktoberfest, Clocktower Enclosure, York Racecourse, Knavesmire Road, York, today, 1pm to 5pm; Friday, 7pm to 11pm; next Saturday, 1pm to 5pm and 7pm to 11pm

YORKTOBEFEST returns for a third autumn season of beer, bratwurst, bumper cars and all things Bavarian in a giant marquee. Look out for the Bavarian Strollers, with their thigh-slapping oompah tunes and disco classics, and York’s international drag diva Velma Celli with her stellar singing and saucy humour.  

Dancing is encouraged, as is the wearing of Lederhosen, Dirndls or any other fancy dress, with nightly competitions and prizes for the best dressed. Box office: ticketsource.co.uk/yorktoberfest.

Steve Cassidy: Playing hits spanning six decades at St Peter’s School tonight

Fundraiser of the week: York Rotary presents A Song For Everyone, Memorial Hall, St Peter’s School, Clifton, York, tonight; doors 7pm, concert 7.30pm to 10.15pm

YORK singer and guitarist Steve Cassidy and his band are joined by guest vocalist Heather Findlay to perform a “huge range of popular hits covering six decades”. Expect rock, ballads and country music. Proceeds from this fundraising concert will go to St Leonard’s Hospice and York Rotary Charity Fund. Box office: yorkrotary.co.uk/a-song-for-everyone or on the door.

Heather Findlay: Guest vocalist at A Song For Everyone. Picture: Adam Kennedy

Spooks at Spark: Halloween Makers’ Market, Spark:York, Piccadilly, York, today, 12 noon to 4pm

THE Halloween edition of Spark:York’s Makers’ Market features “spooktacularly” handcrafted work by independent makers. Taking part will be Wistoragic Designs, Enthralled Yet, Gem Belle, A Forest of Shadows, Kim’s Clay Jewellery and the Mimi Shop by Amelia. Entry is free.

Hejira: Celebrating the jazz days of Joni Mitchell at the NCEM

Jazz gig of the week: Hejira: Celebrating Joni Mitchell, National Centre for Early Music, Walmgate, York, tomorrow, 6.30pm 

JAZZ seven-piece Hejira honour the works of Canadian-American singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and painter Joni Mitchell, mostly from the late 1970s, in particular Mingus from her “jazz period” and the live album Shadows And Light, recorded in 1979 with a Jazz All Stars line-up featuring saxophonist Michael Brecker and guitarist Pat Metheny.

Hejira is fronted by Hattie Whitehead, who – in her own way – has assimilated the poise, power and beauty of Joni’s vocals and plays guitar with Joni’s stylistic mannerisms. Joining her will be Pete Oxley, guitar; Ollie Weston, saxophones; Chris Eldred, piano and keyboards; Dave Jones, electric basses; Rick Finlay, drums, and Marc Cecil, percussion. Box office: 01904 658338 or ncem.co.uk.

Go Your Own Way: The Rumours are true, they are playing Fleetwood Mac songs at the Grand Opera House tomorrow

Tribute show of the week: Go Your Own Way – The Fleetwood Mac Legacy, Grand Opera House, tomorrow, 7.30pm

GO Your Own Way celebrates the Fleetwood Mac era of Rumours and that 1977 line-up of Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham, John McVie, Christine McVie and Mick Fleetwood in this new tribute show. Dreams, Don’t Stop Rhiannon, Gold Dust Woman, Everywhere, Little Lies and Big Love all feature. Box office: atgtickets.com/york.

Jonny Best: Piano accompaniment to Monday’s screenings of The Great Train Robbery and The General. Picture: Chris Payne

Film screening of the week: Northern Silents Film Festival presents The Great Train Robbery (1903) and The General (1926), National Centre for Early Music, York, Monday, 7.30pm

NORTHERN Silents artistic director and pianist Jonny Best brings musical commentary to a pair of silent cinema’s most famous railway chase films.

The 12-minute escapade The Great Train Robbery still packs a punch after 120 years, while Buster Keaton’s greatest achievement, the 80-minute The General, is both a brlliantly staged American Civil War epic and a comedy-thriller packed with visual humour, daring stunts and dramatic tension.

Keaton plays railroad engineer Johnny Gray, whose beloved locomotive, The General, is stolen by Yankees, stirring him to strive to get it back against the odds. Box office: 01904 658338 or ncem.co.uk.

Eleanor McLoughlin as Victoria Frankenstein and Cameron Robertson as The Creature in Tilted Wig’s Frankenstein, on tour at York Theatre Royal

One for the Halloween season: Tilted Wig in Frankenstein, York Theatre Royal, Tuesday to Saturday; 7.30pm October 24 and 26 to 28; 2pm, October 25 and 26; 2.30pm, October 28

TILTED Wig’s Frankenstein is an electrifying reimagining of Mary Shelley’s Gothic 19th century horror story, now set in 1943. While Europe tears itself apart, two women hide from their past at what feels like the very end of the world. One of them has a terrifying story to tell. 

Adapted and directed by Sean Aydon, this new thriller explores the very fabric of what makes us human and the ultimate cost of chasing “perfection” with a cast featuring Eleanor McLoughlin as Doctor Victoria Frankenstein, Basienka Blake as Captain/Richter and Cameron Robertson as The Creature. Box office: 01904 623568 or yorktheatreroyal.co.uk.

Burning Duck Comedy Club welcomes Tom Lawrinson, Erin Tett and Mandy McCarthy to Spark:York

Comedy bill of the week: Burning Duck Comedy Club presents Tom Lawrinson & Friends, Spark:York, Piccadilly, York, Tuesday, 7.30pm

AFTER Tom Lawrinson and Eryn Tett starred in Burning Duck’s inaugural Spark Comedy Fringe, promoter Al Greaves has invited them back to spark more laughs.

Absurdist alternative comedian Tett opens the show; Lawrinson, who made his Edinburgh Fringe debut with Hubba Hubba, is the headline act. In between come two shorter spots (wait and see who those “friends” will be), with guest host MC Mandy McCarthy holding everything together. Box office: burningduckcomedy.com.

Comedian Helen Bauer: Girl’s talk at The Crescent and Hyde Park Book Club

A word or two on women: Burning Duck Comedy Club presents Helen Bauer: Grand Supreme Darling Princess, The Crescent, York, Thursday, 7.30pm; Hyde Park Book Club, Headingley, Leeds, Friday, 8pm

HELEN Bauer, Edinburgh Comedy Award Best Newcomer nominee, Late Night Mash star and Trusty Dogs podcaster, heads to York and Leeds with a show about the women in her life, from her mother to her best friend and that one girl who was mean in 2008. Oh, and Disney princesses, obviously. Box office: York, wegottickets.com/event/581816; Leeds, wegottickets.com/event/581817.

One dalmatian, 100 more are on their way to the Grand Opera House in a new musical in November 2024. Picture: Oliver Rosser, Feast Creative

Spotted in the distance: 101 Dalmatians The Musical, Grand Opera House, York, November 5 to 9 2024, not 2023

A NEW musical tour of Dodie Smith’s canine caper 101 Dalmatians will arrive in York next autumn.  Written by Douglas Hodge (music and lyrics) and Johnny McKnight (book), from a stage adaptation by Zinnie Harris, the show is reimagined from the 2022 production at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, London. The cast and creative team are yet to be announced.

When fashionista Cruella de Vil plots to swipe all the Dalmatian puppies in town to create her fabulous new fur coat, trouble lies ahead for Pongo and Perdi and their litter of tail-wagging young pups. Smith’s story will be brought to stage life with puppetry, choreography, humorous songs and, yes, puppies. Box office: atgtickets.com/york.

In Focus: Political drama of the week: York Settlement Community Players in Government Inspector

Director Alan Park, back row, right, and his Settlement Players cast for Government Inspector at Theatre@41, Monkgate. Picture: John Saunders

IN his first time in the director’s seat for 15 years, Theatre@41 chair and actor Alan Park directs the Settlement Players in David Harrower’s adaptation of Nikolai Gogol’s Russian satirical exposé of hypocrisy and corruption in high places, prompted by a simple case of mistaken identity.

Park’s ensemble cast of eccentrics will undertake a fun, chaotic journey through 1980s’ Soviet Russia. “Communism is collapsing, it’s every man, woman and dog for themselves. What could possibly go wrong?” he asks, as the bureaucrats of a small Russian town are sent into a panic by news of the government inspector’s imminent arrival.

Harrower’s version premiered at the Warwick Arts Centre in May 2011 and transferred to the Young Vic, London, later that year. Now it provides “the perfect platform for Settlement Players’ hugely talented ensemble”, led by Mike Hickman as the town’s Major.

Andrew Roberts plays Khlestakov, accompanied by Paul French as his long-suffering servant, Osip. YSCP regulars combine with newcomers in Park’s company of Alison Taylor as the Major’s wife; Pearl Mollison, the Major’s daughter; Katie Leckey, Dobchinsky; Sonia Di Lorenzo, Bobchinksy; Maggie Smales, the Judge; Matt Pattison, Postmaster; Mark Simmonds, Head of Hospitals; Paul Osborne, School Superintendent; Adam Sowter, Police Superintendent; Florence Poskitt, Mishka, and Alexandra Mather, Dr Gibner.

Jim Paterson will lead a live band, made up of cast members, such as Pattison and Sowter, to help transport next week’s audiences to a 1980s’ provincial Soviet town full of eccentric personalities. Theatre@41, Monkgate, York, Tuesday to Saturday, 7.30pm and 2.30pm Saturday matinee. Box office: tickets.41monkgate.co.uk

Paloma Faith to play York Barbican, Hull and Sheffield on The Glorication Of Sadness tour in 2024. When do tickets go on sale?

Paloma Faith: New single today, new album and tour in 2024

PALOMA Faith will play York Barbican on May 12 on next year’s The Glorification Of Sadness Tour 2024 in support of her sixth album of the same title.

The Stoke Newington-born soul singer, songwriter and actress will take in two more Yorkshire gigs on next spring’s 26-date itinerary: Sheffield City Hall on April 9 and Hull Bonus Arena on May 3.

The Glorification Of Sadness will be released on RCA on February 16, preceded by today’s new single, How You Leave A Man, produced by award-winning producer and composer Martin Wave and co-written with JKash, Andrew Wells, Ellie King and Charlie Puth.

Billed as being more than an album about relationships, The Glorification Of Sadness “celebrates finding your way back after leaving a long-term relationship, being empowered even in your failures and taking responsibility for your own happiness”.

Paloma, 42, draws on her own experiences, having split from her husband, French artist Leyman Lachine, last year. She acts as the anchor to direct a deeply personal narrative on her follow-up to November 2020’s Infinite Things, with Divorce among the new track titles.

Executive producing an album for the first time, she has recorded collaborations with Chase & Status, Kojey Radical, Maverick Sabre, Lapsley, MJ Cole, Fred Cox, Amy Wadge, Liam Bailey and Jaycen Joshua.

Swedish-born, Los Angeles-based Martin Wave first worked with Paloma on one track, and she so enjoyed his cinematic style of production that he became a cornerstone of the recording sessions.

Away from the recording studio, Paloma is building a flourishing acting career with roles as Bet Sykes in the Batman prequel series Pennyworth and Florence De Regnier in Lionsgate’s Dangerous Liaisons, She is an ambassador for Greenpeace and Oxfam and has launched her own interior brand, Paloma Home.

Paloma last played York on a York Racecourse race day in June 2018. Her 2024 tour tickets go on sale at 10am on October 20 via ticketmaster.co.uk and seetickets.com.

More Things To Do in York and beyond when steam rises and a robot falls in love. Hutch’s List No. 36, from The Press, York

Playwright and director Alan Ayckbourn and actress Naomi Petersen in the rehearsal room for the Stephen Joseph Theatre premiere of Constant Companions. Picture: Tony Bartholomew

AYCKBOURN and android love, traction engines and farming photography, comic fantasy and anecdotal Love stories keep Charles Hutchinson busy as summer exits stage left.

Premiere of the week: Alan Ayckbourn’s Constant Companions, Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough, Thursday to October 7

IN Alan Ayckbourn’s 89th play, Lorraine is a fabulously successful lawyer of a certain age. Jan Sixty is the janitor of her building, an android of indeterminate age. In a not-too-distant future, where humans have turned to artificial friends for companionship without compromise, can Lorraine and Jan find true love?

“Reading so much about the inevitable arrival of AI into our society – some would say it’s already here! – I felt a cautious look forward might be in order,” says Alan. Box office: 01723 370541 or sjt.uk.com.

The skill of tractor pulling at the Yorkshire Traction Engine Rally at Scampston Hall. Picture: Outdoor Shows

Full steam ahead: Yorkshire Traction Engine Rally, Scampston Hall, Scampston, near Malton, today and tomorrow, 9am to 5pm

THE Yorkshire Traction Engine Rally, organised by Outdoor Shows, takes over Scampston Hall’s parkland this weekend. Among the steam fair attractions will be tractor pulling, steam engines, classic cars, vintage tractors, classic motorcycles, fairground organs, miniature steam engines, stationary engines and vintage commercials.

In the main arena, Flyin Ryan and his motorcycle stunt team deliver daredevil antics, comedy routines, fire stunts and arena entertainment, while the Scarborough Fair Collection stages two days of music and magic extravaganzas. Box office: scampston.co.uk or outdoorshows.co.uk.

The George Harrison Project: Here come the songs at the Joseph Rowntree Theatre tonight

Recalling the “quiet Beatle”: The George Harrison Project, Joseph Rowntree Theatre, York, tonight, 7.30pm

MARKING the Beatles legend’s 80th anniversary, this tribute show to George Harrison embraces his Fab Four, solo and Traveling Wilburys supergroup years.

Here come Here Comes The Sun, Something, Taxman, While My Guitar Gently Weeps, My Sweet Lord, All Things Must Pass, Got My Mind Set On You, Handle With Care, Give Me Love, What Is Life, If I Needed Someone, Cheer Down and many more. Box office: 01904 501935 or josephrowntreetheatre.co.uk.

The 2023 poster for York Unleashed Comic-Con

Geek of the week: York Unleashed Comic-Con, York Racecourse, Knavesmire, York, tomorrow, 11am to 5pm

YORK actor David Bradley, from the Harry Potter films, Game Of Thrones and Doctor Who, leads the guest appearances at this weekend’s “geekiest, nerdiest” gathering. Lee Boardman, Clive Russell, Richard Gibson and Kit Hardman will be there too, along with comic creators and authors Sasha Ray Art, Carolyn Craggs, Lindsey Greyling, KS Marsden, Kelvin VA Allison Paolo Debernardi, Victoria Bates and Ben Sawyer.

Look out too for Geeky Attractions on three sites, including a Back To The Future time machine, a retro gaming area, Star Wars display, children’s activities, art area, stage talks, cosplay masquerade and geeky market selling merchandise and collectables. Tickets update: available on the door from 11am.

The artwork for Don Pears and Singphonia’s concert The Great American Songbook – From A To Z

Fundraiser of the week: Don Pears and Singphonia presents The Great American Songbook – From A To Z Joseph Rowntree Theatre, York, tomorrow, 4pm

DON Pears and Singphonia explore the vast scope of the Great American Songbook from the 1900s to the present, from Al Jolson to Beyoncé, covering spirituals and jazz through rock’n’roll and Rat Pack standards to modern hits, not forgetting musical theatre too.

Musical director Pears and his group of York singers perform solos, duets, and group numbers, taking in Irving Berlin, George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Richard Rodgers, Judy Garland, Elvis Presley, John Denver and The Carpenters in a fundraiser for the JoRo. Box office: 01904 501395 or josephrowntreetheatre.co.uk.

Don’t Stop Believin’ in Eighties’ hits galore at the Grand Opera House, York

Tribute show of the show: Don’t Stop Believin’, Grand Opera House, York, tomorrow, 7.30pm

JUMP aboard the midnight train, heaven is a place on Earth called York, for this end-of-the-night anthems spectacular, a new feelgood tribute show that promises a crazy, crazy night of non-stop, singalong favourites.

Hits by Blondie, Bryan Adams, Cher, Rainbow, Bon Jovi, Kate Bush, Starship, Europe and Belinda Carlisle feature among the 30 songs in this high-energy theatre production with “a sizzling cast, fantastic costumes and amazing light show”. Box office: atgtickets.com/york.

In the name of Love: Comedian and TV panellist Judi has plenty to say at York Theatre Royal

Anecdotes of the week: The One Like Judi Love, York Theatre Royal,  Thursday, 8pm

EXPECT unrelenting, humorous anecdotes from “the one like Judi Love” on her first official talk tour, full of stories from the Hackney stand-up comedian and presenter’s life.

Regular Loose Women panellist Love, 43, has appeared on Taskmaster, The Jonathan Ross Show, The Graham Norton Show, 8 Out Of 10 Cats Does Countdown and the Royal Variety Performance too. Box office: 01904 623568 or yorktheatreroyal.co.uk.

Alligator Gumbo: foot-stomping rhythms, tap-away tunes and raucous singalongs at Stillington Mill

Getting the swing of things: Alligator Gumbo, At The Mill, Stillington, near York, Friday, 7.30pm

SUMMER At The Mill welcomes Alligator Gumbo for a night of swing/jazz from the New Orleans heyday. In particular, the Leeds seven-piece focuses on the raw music of the roaring 1920s, largely improvised with melodies and solos happening simultaneously.

Performing extensively for more than ten years, Alligator Gumbo have played international jazz festivals and clubs throughout the country with their good-natured mix of foot-stomping rhythms, tap-away tunes and raucous singalongs. Bar At The Mill will be running from 6.30pm, alongside the wood-fired pizzas. Box office: tickettailor.com/events/atthemill/942447.

Ryan Gosling’s Ken and Margot Robbie’s Barbie in the summer’s biggest hit as Barbie heads outdoors into the Museum Gardens for a Movies In The Moonlight screening

Outdoor cinema: City Screen Picturehouse presents Movies In The Moonlight, Museum Gardens, York, Mamma Mia!, September 8,  7.30pm, and Barbie (12A), September 9, 7.30pm

PICTUREHOUSE Outdoor Cinema returns to the York Museum Gardens for open-air screenings of Phyllida Lloyd’s 2008 Abba hit-laden musical rom-com Mamma Mia! (PG) and this summer’s splash-of-pink box-office smash, Greta Gerwig’s Barbie (12A). Free samples of Mochi Balls from ice cream makers Little Moons can be enjoyed on both nights.

Whether on a girls’ night out or a family & friends evening, audience members are encouraged to dress up – and sing along too on the Mamma Mia! Night. Box office: picturehouses.com/outdoor-cinema/venue/york-museum-gardens.

The yearning and the yawning when showing sheep: One of Valerie Mather’s photographs from her Fields, Folds and Farming Life exhibition at Nunnington Hall, opening next Saturday. Picture: Valerie Mather

Exhibition launch of the week: Fields, Folds and Farming Life, Nunnington Hall, Nunnington, near York, September 9 to December 17; 10.30am to 5pm, last entry at 4.15pm, with reduced winter hours from November 24

FIELDS, Folds and Farming Life, an exhibition by Yorkshire documentary, travel and portrait photographer Valerie Mather, captures candid moments from a year in the lives of upland farmers in Bransdale, a valley and surrounding moorland in North Yorkshire.

The combination of Mather’s work and specially produced films and artwork reveals the hard work and determination of the farming community in navigating the ever-changing agricultural world to achieve a better farming future for people, the environment and wildlife. No booking is required; exhibition included in admission price at this National Trust property. More details at nationaltrust.org.uk/visit/yorkshire/nunnington-hall.

More Things To Do in York & beyond. Whether 7 Days or SIX, it all adds up to Hutch’s List No. 31 for ’23, from The Press

Alex Cardall’s Eeyore, left, Robbie Noonan’s Tigger, Benjamin Durham’s Winnie the Pooh and Lottie Gregan’s Tigger in Disney’s musical adventure Winnie The Pooh. Picture: Pamela Raith

GEORGIAN glories, Forties’ swing bombshells, the joy of SIX, storytelling with pizza and Pooh and Tigger adventures bring a bounce to Charles Hutchinson’s step.

Children’s show of the week: Disney’s Winnie The Pooh, Grand Opera House, York, Tuesday, 5pm; Wednesday, 11am and 2pm

DEEP in the Hundred Acre Wood, a new musical adventure unfolds for A A Milne’s beloved characters Winnie the Pooh, Christopher Robin and their best friends Piglet, Eeyore, Kanga, Roo, Rabbit, Owl and Tigger.

Accompanying the modern narrative and life-size puppetry in Jonathan Rockefeller’s show will be Nate Edmondson’s score, featuring Grammy Award-winning songs by the Sherman Brothers, such as The Blustery Day, The Wonderful Thing About Tiggers and Whoop-De-Dooper Bounce, plus Milne’s The More It Snows (with music by Carly Simon) and Sing Ho in a new arrangement. Box office: atgtickets.com/york.

7 Days at the races: Craig David at York Racecourse Music Showcase weekend, today

SOUTHAMPTON soul singer Craig David, of 7 Days romancing fame, performs hits galore after today’s racing on Knavesmire. Fill Me In, Walkaway, Rise & Fall, All The Way and I Know You are likely to feature in his early evening set with a finishing time of 7.30pm.

Gates open at 11.15am for the 2.05pm start to the seven-race card. Best bet for a ticket, as the County Stand and Grandstand & Paddock are full already, will be the more informal Clocktower Enclosure. Buy on the gate.

Alexander Flanagan Wright, left, and Phil Grainger: Premiering Helios at the Stilly Fringe tomorrow night

Stilly Fringe storytelling: James Rowland in Piece Of Work, tomorrow, 7.15pm; Wright & Grainger in Helios, tomorrow, 8.45pm, At The Mill, Stillington, near York

AHEAD of his Edinburgh Fringe run, James Rowland opens the Stilly Fringe 2023 storytelling double bill with Piece Of Work, his follow-up to Learning To Fly. Combining story, comedy and music, Piece Of Work takes the form of a road trip searching for the writer of a letter that exploded Rowland’s life. Will he find a sense of home and maybe save a life too?

Edinburgh-bound Alexander Flanagan Wright and Phil Grainger introduce Helios, their latest instalment of stories and songs rooted in Greek myths, in the wake of Orpheus, Eurydice and The Gods The Gods The Gods. Any Stilly Fringe benefits? 1. Pizzas are on the menu from 6.30pm. 2. One ticket covers both shows at tickettailor.com/events/atthemill/957195.  

The poster for Spark Comedy Fringe

Funday Sunday: Burning Duck Comedy Club presents Spark Comedy Fringe, Events Space @ Spark:York, York, tomorrow, 4pm

FOUR acts in one day are on the Burning Duck bill of Edinburgh Fringe previews, kicking off at 4pm with comedian, animator and computer programmer Neil Harris’s Codebreaker show about the Enigma machine, Alan Turing and Bletchley Park, followed by Stanley Brooks’s I Can Make Me Rich, an inspirational, interactive seminar to change your life and bring you cash at 5.30pm.

In Eryn Tett Finds Her Audience at 7pm, this absurdist stand-up misfit combines surreal storytelling with odd observations and wordplay; Tom Lawrinson concludes the cornucopia of comedy with weird, wonderful and completely unexpected punchlines in Hubba Hubba at 8.30pm. Each show costs £5 in advance for guaranteed entry or you can Pay What You Want post-show. A £15 ticket gives entry to all four performances. Box office: wegottickets.com/spark-comedy-fringe.

SIX of the best: Henry VIII’s Queens hit back in song at Leeds Grand Theatre. Picture: Pamela Raith

Musical of the week: SIX The Musical, Leeds Grand Theatre, Tuesday to Sunday

TOBY Marlow and Lucy Moss’s Spouse Girls musical/pop concert wowed York in late-June. Now Leeds awaits the dancing queens with attitude who tell their story in song to decide who suffered most at Henry VIII’s hands once he put a ring on that wedding finger.

Look out for Knaresborough actress Lou Henry in the role of the apparently not-so-squeaky-clean Catherine Howard, short-lived wife number five. Box office (probably for frustration only): 0113 243 0808 or leedsheritagetheatres.com.

In the swing of things: Alice McKenna, left, and Gleanne Purcell-Brown in Alan Plater’s Blonde Bombshells Of 1943 at the SJT. Picture: Pamela Raith

Forties’ flavour of the week: Blonde Bombshells Of 1943, Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough, Wednesday to August 26

ZOE Waterman directs a cast of eight actor-musicians in the SJT, Bolton Octagon and Keswick Theatre by the Lake’s lavish, lively co-production of Hull playwright Alan Plater’s warm and witty musical play.

Meet The Blonde Bombshells, the most glamorous all-girl swing band in the north, whose membership goes down every time they play a GI camp. Now an important BBC job is in the offing and Betty needs to find new musicians fast. Expect Glenn Miller, George Formby, Fats Waller and Andrews Sisters classics aplenty. Box office: 01723 370541 or sjt.uk.com. 

Castle Howard, egg tempera on gesso on canvas, by Amy Dennis, on show in the Northern Prospects exhibition at Janette Ray Rare Books

Exhibition of the week: Northern Prospects, Janette Ray Rare Books, Bootham, York, Wednesday to Friday, 10am to 5pm, until August 19

LOTTE Inch Gallery’s pop-up show of York and northern paintings, prints and ceramics at Janette Ray’s bookshop is being expanded with ceramics by York artists Ben Arnup, Mark Hearld and Ruth King among the new additions.

As Lotte turns her hand once more to creating artistic showcases in non-traditional exhibition spaces, after her hiatus from curating, she presents works by Tom Wood, Marie Walker Last, David Lloyd Jones, Amy Dennis, Nicky Hirst, Kelly Jayne, Robert H Lee, Isabella Maclure, Geoff Morten and Malcolm Whittaker in “unusual corners” amid the shop’s treasure trove of books on the visual arts.

Who will be in Mad Alice’s Georgian Rogues Gallery? Find out each day at the York Georgian Festival

Festival of the week: York Georgian Festival, Thursday to Sunday

DUST off your petticoat and powder your best wig for a plethora of engagements at York Mansion House, Fairfax House, Bar Convent Living Heritage Centre and elsewhere at the inaugural York Georgian Festival.

Learn to dance the minuet; discover Georgian family life with Horrible Histories writer Terry Deary; revel in Mad Alice’s Georgian Rogues Gallery; solve the mystery of tricky Dick Turpin’s missing corpse in an immersive murder mystery night and take a peep behind-the-scenes with York’s curators. For full festival details and tickets, head to: mansionhouseyork.com/yorkgeorgianfestival.

Katie Melia: From starring in Sweet Charity to hosting the Life Is A Cabaret fundraiser at Theatre@41, Monkgate

Fundraiser of the week: Life Is A Cabaret, Theatre@41, Monkgate, York, Friday, 7.30pm

KATIE Melia returns to Theatre@41 after her February lead role in York Stage’s Sweet Charity to present a concert in aid of Reflect: Pregnancy Loss Support, looking to surpass the £3,000 raised at her first fundraiser for this North Yorkshire charity.

Alexa Chaplin, Jack Hooper and Dale Vaughan sing stage and screen hits from Wicked, Spamalot, Dreamgirls and Grease; West End star and director Damien Poole goes Eurovision with Rise Like A Phoenix; Emily Ramsden and Elf The Musical leading lady Sophie Hammond perform too. Tickets update: sold out. For returns only, tickets.41monkgate.co.uk.

Chesney Hawkes: Meadowfest headliner. Picture: Axel Muench

In Focus: Meadowfest, Malton’s Boutique Midsummer Music Festival, today, 10am to 10pm

MALTON’S boutique music festival takes place within the riverside meadows and gardens of the Talbot Hotel, Yorkersgate.

Anticipate a relaxed, joyful, family festival of uplifting sunshine bands, all-day feasting and dancing like no one’s watching.

Grab a hay bale, street food and something to sip and enjoy a mix of live music over two stages with Yorkshire bands to the fore.

Be Amazing Arts hosts the pop-up venue The Creativitent, a hive of activity with creative arts workshops, performances and storytelling, arts and craft zones and facepainting!

The Creativitent gives the opportunity for children, young people and their families to “discover their inner creativity, take to the stage, get crafty”.

This House We Built: Playing the Hay Bale Stage at 5pm. Picture: Ben Audsley

Music line-up

10am, Malton School Soul Band, Meadow Stage; 10.30am, Graeme Hargreaves, Hay Bale Stage; 11am, Gary Stewart, Hay Bale Stage; 12 noon, The Caleb Murray Band, Meadow Stage; 1pm, Alchemy Live, tribute to Dire Straits, Hay Bale Stage; 2pm, The Alex Hamilton Band, Meadow Stage; 3pm, Arrival, The Hits of Abba, Hay Bale Stage; 4pm, Alistair Griffin & Band, Meadow Stage; 5pm, This House We Built, Hay Bale Stage; 6pm, Huge, York party band, Meadow Stage; 7.15pm, The Y Street Band, Hay Bale Stage; Chesney Hawkes, Meadow Stage headliner, 8.45pm.

Box office: tickettailor.com/events/visitmalton.

The Human League and Craig David are on the card for York Racecourse Music Showcase weekend. Tickets still available

The Human League: Friday night concert at York Racecourse

YORK Racecourse’s two-day Music Showcase weekend features Sheffield’s synth pop band The Human League after Friday’s race card and Southampton soul singer Craig David following Saturday’s track action.

The Human League are still fronted by South Yorkshire trio Philip Oakey, Susan Sulley and Joanne Catherall. Chalking up six top 20 albums and 13 top 20 singles, they are sure to roll out Don’t You Want Me, Love Action, Mirror Man, (Keep Feeling) Fascination, The Lebanon…and hopefully Being Boiled.

Craig David has 23 UK top 40 singles and nine top 40 albums to his name, amassing more than five billion streams worldwide and multi-platinum status in more than 20 countries, en route to multiple BRIT Award and Grammy nominations, four MOBO Awards and three Ivor Novello Awards. Fill Me In, 7 Days, Walkaway, Rise & Fall, All The Way and I Know You are likely to feature in his set.

Friday’s seven-race card on Knavesmire comes under starter’s orders at 5pm in the only evening fixture of the York season, with gates opening at 3.30pm. The Human League’s live set is scheduled to run from 8.45pm to 10.30pm.

Admission to all areas will be available on the gates for Friday. Entry is possible on all gates before the start of the last race at 8.20pm.

On Saturday, gates open at 11.15am for the 2.05pm start to the seven-race card. Craig David’s early evening concert should end by 7.30pm.

Craig David: 7 Days on a Saturday at York Racecourse

At both meetings, nine giant screens will enable racegoers to enjoy the action from both the track and the stage, as well as keeping an eye on Saturday’s card at Ascot. Away from the main stage, there will be live music from Doctor Thirsty and The Monotones.

York Racecourse has reached capacity for the County Stand enclosure on Saturday. Racegoers can still gain access to the Grandstand and Paddock to be close to both the Music Stage and Parade Ring, as well as to have use of the Knavesmire Stand.

“As the remaining tickets for the Grandstand and Paddock are likely to prove popular, the advice is to act quickly and book online at yorkracecourse.co.uk. These WILL be gone before Saturday,” says James Brennan, head of marketing and sponsorship.

The more informal Clocktower Enclosure (known by some as the Picnic Enclosure) is only available for sale on the race day itself, from 11.15am, so this area will be open on Saturday. It is sold on a “first come,first served” basis, although its capacity runs into the thousands. Check York Racecourse’s social media for updates on availability as the race day unfolds.

The Music Stage is visible from this Clocktower area, albeit from the opposite side of the track. Full use of the big screens and a festival-standard sound system will bring the performance to this area. Please note there is limited wet weather cover in the Clocktower Enclosure, so dress accordingly if the forecast indicates rain.

Accompanied under-18s in the Clocktower are admitted free of charge, with a £10 ticket needed to be purchased in advance for the stands side.

For race day bookings, go to yorkracecourse.co.uk.

York Ceramics Fair returns in ‘bigger and better’ space for 60 exhibitors at York Racecourse on March 4 and 5

York ceramicist Emily Stubbs: Taking part in the 2023 York Ceramics Fair, where she will demonstrate her skills in a 3.30pm session on March 5

FOR next weekend’s York Ceramics Fair, the Craft Potters Association has curated artworks from 60 prominent British ceramicists and potters, hailing from Cornwall to Scotland.

Returning after a short break, the 2023 fair – the fourth so far – will be held in a “bigger and better space” indoors at York Racecourse, Knavesmire Road, York, on March 4 and 5 from 10am to 5pm each day.

Among the Yorkshire makers will be Ruth King, Loretta Braganza and Emily Stubbs, from York, Katie Braida, from Scarborough, and Penny Withers, from Sheffield.

Anna Lambert: Exhibitor and York Ceramics Fair chair, at work in her studio. Picture: Ben Boswell, copyright of Craft Potters Association

York Ceramics Fair is selected and run by and for the makers, who aim to provide an affordable platform that nonetheless showcases the finest makers working in clay today, all seeking to attract seasoned collectors, enthusiasts and home ornament seekers alike.

From porcelain to earthenware, vivacious to tranquil, minimal to complex, abstract to realism, traditional pots to contemporary designs, these hand-crafted artefacts come in all forms, media, shapes and sizes. No commission is taken on sales in this chance to buy directly from the maker.

Anna Lambert, Keighley ceramicist and fair chair, says: “We’re very happy to welcome new and returning visitors and collectors to our new larger venue, with more than 60 selected potters and ceramic artists from across the UK.

RAMP creative collaborators Roop Johnstone and Alice Hartford: Demonstration at 1.30pm on March 4

“York Ceramics Fair outgrew its original home in the Hospitium [Museum Gardens], and after spending some time looking for the right space, we’re happy to say it will be hosted at the iconic York Racecourse. This bright and open venue ticks all the boxes, with a broad range of ceramic artwork at all prices, ease of access and plenty of space for exciting demos, activities and trade stands to browse. Plus for the first time we can offer parking to guests.”

The exhibitors will be: Kirsty Adams; Justine Allison; Julie Ayton; Dee Barnes; Natalie Bell; Steve Booton; Fiona Booy; Loretta Braganza; Katie Braida; Ben Brierley; Jane Cairns; Rebecca Callis; Roger Cockram; Johanne Coker; Dianne Cross; Anthony Dix; Dennis Farrell; Lesley Farrell; Doug Fitch; Miche Follano; Laura Gibbs; Sharon Griffin; James Hake; Jaroslav Hrustalenko; Ruth King; Anna Lambert; Tony Laverick; Roger Lewis and Francis Lloyd-Jones.

Taking part too are: Sophie MacArthy; Juliet Macleod; Hannah McAndrew; Colin Milnes; Sara Moorhouse; Jenny Morten; Eric Moss; Sue Mundy; Stephen Murfitt; Jeremy Nichols; Patrick O’Donohue; Simon Olley; Rachel Peters; Adela Powell; RAMP; Elizabeth Renton; Micaela Schoop; Yuta Segawa; Tokes Sharif; Emily Stubbs; Hiro Takahashi; Joanna Terry; Iona Crawford Topp; Carolyn Tripp; Shirley Vauvelle; Josie Walter; Paul Wearing; Andrea Welsh; Douglas White; Richard Wilson; Penny Withers and Rachel Wood.

Katie Braida: Demonstrating hand-building techniques at 11.30am on March 4

Over the weekend, in the centre of the fair space, informal demonstrations will be held by exhibitors, showing techniques important to their work. On Saturday, at 11.30am, Katie Braida will demonstrate the hand-building techniques she uses for creating her sculptural vessels, as well as how she refines and textures the forms.

At 1.30pm, the slip-decorated earthenware and porcelain-making collaboration of RAMP duo Alice Hartford and Roop Johnstone will work on making and decorating their taller forms to become lamp bases.

Alice will demonstrate her slip decorating techniques, painting thin layers of slip, application of paper stencils and scraffito work. Roop will demonstrate making taller forms on the wheel, using a combination of assembling separate forms and throwing large coils to build a form.

Steve Beeton: Demonstrating how to facet a large moon jar on March 5 at 11.30am

At 3.30pm, Lake District ceramicist James Hake will show how to make a square vase on the wheel. His stoneware is embellished with oriental glazes made using natural materials gathered from the Cumbrian landscape. The firing process creates fluid and dynamic surfaces that draw together his experiments with colour and texture.

Steve Booton will open the Sunday sessions in an 11.30am demonstration that will cover texture and faceting small pots and a large moon jar. At 1.30pm, Hannah McAndrew will show how she slip-trails a piece of flatware while discussing her slip trailers and the way she lays out her designs.

The demonstrations will conclude at 3.30pm with York ceramicist Emily Stubbs, who draws inspiration from her 2D paper collages and sketches. She will demonstrate how she translates these into clay, building up layer upon layer of slips and glazes, using various decorating techniques in clay, such as under-glazing, sgraffito, mono-printing and mark making.

York ceramicist Ruth King: Dedicated more than 40 years to the art and process of making ceramic vessels

Her finished vessels have a similar graphic quality to them, with bold colour, strong line and intuitive mark making. Make a note to visit Emily’s studio in Ambrose Street during the 2023 York Open Studios, open on April 15, 16, 22 and 23, from 10am to 5pm.

Throughout the York Ceramics Fair weekend, a free shuttle bus service will run every 40 minutes from the Memorial Gardens coach stand on Leeman Road, close to the railway station, from 9.30am each day.

Tickets cost £5, under 16s free, at eventbrite.co.uk/e/york-ceramics-fair-2023-tickets-474142331477. For a full list of exhibitors and further details, head to: yorkceramicsfair.com.

Loretta Braganza: York hand-built sculptural potter

York Ceramics Fair confirms 2023 return for March 4 and 5 event at York Racecourse

AFTER a short break to find a new venue, York Ceramics Fair will  return on March 4 and 5 indoors at York Racecourse.

The springtime show promises an “impressive line-up of ceramicists for this fourth instalment of the popular fair”, complemented by new public engagement activities, events, talks and more besides.

“This event will offer something for all,” says publicist Lotte Inch, the York curator and arts consultant, who is one of the fair’s planners. “Whether you’re a seasoned collector or just want to explore anew the wonderful world of ceramics and pots, why not drop in and support this fantastic event and all the talented makers involved in the show?”

A free shuttle bus will run between York Racecourse, on Kavesmire Road, and the Memorial Gardens Coach Park, in Station Road, York. Opening hours will be 10am to 5pm, March 4, and 10am to 4pm, March 5.

Tickets are priced from £6.13 on Eventbrite: https://www.yorkceramicsfair.com/ticket-info/