A whopping week’s entertainment!
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It’s a stonkingly good week for going out in Bucks and Oxon, so I’ve added an extra option for you (just because I’m nice!). Have a brilliant time whatever you do , and if you try any of the things below, please remember to write in the ‘Comment’ section of the blog to let others know.
Flawless and the ENB in Against Time at Aylesbury Waterside, 30 June – 1 July
I went to see the show last week when it was in Oxford, and I have to mention it again here to say, GO BUY TICKETS before they sell out. Seriously. I took my 9-year-old son but it’s a hard call who was more excited by the end of the show. The clash of ballet and street dance seems crazy but it really works, each discipline somehow making the other shine. The simple story was daft like many other dance synopses, but well-acted and brilliantly choreographed, and Flawless in particular – their timing, their showmanship, their athleticism – were electrifying. There were times when I realised I was just sitting open mouthed. By the second half, the whole theatre was whooping and cheering, and no-one wanted the show to end. Against Time is stupendous and the best value £35 you’ll ever spend on a dance show. Don’t miss out.
Against Time, Aylesbury Waterside Theatre, 30 June – 1 July
Gluttons unite. Forty of the city’s best restaurants will be dishing up their finest in an unbeatable alfresco gourmet feast, while 200 producers provide a bounty of the best food and drinkies. Jamie Oliver, Michel Roux Jr and Angela Hartnett are among the super-chefs imparting soupcons of wisdom. A Champagne masterclass (taken by moi, haha!) and a Wedgwood tea lounge tops it off perfectly.
Standard adult tickets from £24, children 6-14, £12.
700 years of Boarstall Tower, Boarstall, Buckinghamshire, 21-24 June
One of the earliest surviving gatehouses in England, the stunning Grade I Boarstall, completed in 1312, plays host to four days of music (see full programme here) – from a special concert for autistic children in the Jacobean Banqueting Hall to garden performances of Gilbert & George’s The Mikado and Mozart. You can rock up with a picnic and enjoy the moated grounds two hours before the garden performances too, so if the weather holds it could be a lovely way to while away the early evening.
Oxfordshire seems blessed with more than its fair share of music festivals. This one appears gloriously grass-rootsy with a sense of humour to boot, with Bungle’s Mums Emporium serving coffee, cakes, doughnuts and slush puppies, Gary (I don’t know who he is, but I feel like I should) doing the hog roast, a whole load of musicians playing live (I don’t know them either) and the now ubiquitous crafty kids zone. Coldplay are unlikely to turn up unannounced, but with Kitten and the Hip giving it the full popstar treatment (above) I dare say the day will go off OK without them.
£16 adult weekend pass, Under 16s £8, or free if accompanied by an adult. Camping available. www.rugfest.co.uk/
I haven’t been to check this out myself yet, but I’m just loving the idea of this ongoing schedule of performances for children. Each concert at Didcot’s Cornerstone Arts Centre introduces a different instrument to little ears, using musical games, and famous classical pieces. This month it’s the turn of the oboe, while the harp gets the star treatment on 25 July.
11am and 12 noon under 5; 1.30pm 5-8 year olds. £8, £6 (concs), under 18 months go free.
Salvo Fair 2012, 23-24 June
If you love nothing more than rummaging around architectural salvage, squirreling out decorative antiques, chatting to craftspeople, builders, mid-century modern dealers and vintage lovers, this has your name written all over it. The Salvo Fair is actually a selling trade fair – the first day is actually the 22nd, but it’s for traders only, then it opens to the public on the 23rd. Held at Knebworth over the last few years, for 2012 it’s upped sticks and spread its splendour all over Stubbings Georgian manor in Berkshire.
Saturday or Sunday:- £8 per adult, or £4 per child aged 4 to 16 yrs old
11.00 am – 5.00 pm. Free car parking. Ticket holders will be able to access the private grounds of Stubbings House and Estate