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This Week

MON 18 - SUN 24 SEP 2017

Entre Amigos: Ran Kan Kan, Tap Social Club, Oxford, Sun 24 Sept

Indian street food, music and craft ales at this family-friendly free afternoon with music courtesy of Ran Kan Kan – Oxford’s fabulous 20 piece Cuban big band.

Tap Social, 27 Curtis Industrial Estate, North Hinksey Lane, Oxford.


Simon Amstell: What is This? Oxford Playhouse, Sun 24 Sept

I’ve loved this guy ever since he destroyed celebrities on a weekly basis on PopWorld. Catch brilliant stand-up in Oxford this Sunday as he starts a brand new UK tour, supported by Mawaan Rizwan who is worth checking out in his own right – apparently his You Tube videos are a riot and have been downloaded over 18 million times!).

Oxford Playhouse, Beaumont St,


Flashdance, New Theatre, Mon 18 – Sat 23 Sept 

joanne clifton in black underwear dancing on stage

Pass me my legwarmers, high leg leotard, and heavy dute welding visor – I’m ready for my Flashdancecloseup. Eh, what do you mean Joanne Clifton already has the lead role? (*sigh*) Yes tis true, the current Strictly champion continues her successful foray into musicals taking on the role of Alex, tomboy building site worker by day, gyrating sweaty permahaired foxtress by night. She stars with A1’s Ben Adams in this touring production that has me more excited than I dare express.

Age guidance: 11+. Book tickets


Gilded Feasts: Native Feasts Pop Up,  Lassco Three Pigeons, Milton Common, Fri 22 – Sat 23 Sept

Forget the grocery shop this weekend, the Native Feast Boys are back (hooray!) at Lassco, where they’re cooking up a heap of mouthwatering treats in a set menu from heaven. Fabulous cooking from a Michelin star chef, über cool surroundings and no washing up…what’s not to love?

Lassco Three Pigeons, London Road, Milton Common, Oxon,


London Design Festival, various locations, 16 – 24 Sept

This festival, now in its 15th year, is just incredible – hundreds of events taking place across the city at venues including the V&A where you can see this stunning Reflection Room, by designer Flynn Talbot,  an immersive coloured light experience that will be the first London Design Festival installation to be housed in the Prince Consort Gallery.


Murder Mystery with Science Oxford, Cogges Manor Farm, Fri 22 Sept

cogges farmhouse brick courtyard stone floor white chalk silhouette drawing

I’m loving the sound of this super-quirky event. Very different from your ‘normal’ Murder Mystery party this one. That clever lot at Science Oxford have teamed up with Cogges, taking the fictitious (whew!) 18th century murder of a farmhand as a spring board for your own hands-on investigation. There’s an hour or so for you to investigate, using modern day forensics to solve the crime. Oh, and the bar’ll be open. Just saying!

Cogges Manor Farm, Church Lane, Witney,


Kanye the First, North Wall, Oxford, Weds 20 – Fri 22 Sep

pixelated picture of Kayne west

No, Kanye West isn’t coming to Oxford – although I have heard that his lovely wife Kim Kardashian is a big fan of Inspector Morse. This is actually a new play inspired by the giant-egoed rapper and social media ranter and it looks pretty darn good. It’s written by award-winning, hotshot young playwright Sam Steiner and explores notions of identity in modern culture. Our heroine Annie feels her life is a bit rubbish and dull, unlike the celebrities she slavishly follows on social media. What if she could reinvent herself as someone else, someone glitzier and glossier? If you’ve got a teenager who’s constantly glued to Instagram, this should make a thought-provoking outing, and it’s suitable for children aged 14 and over.


Peter Rabbit: Mischief and Mayhem, River & Rowing Museum Henley, until 24 Sept

Peter rabbit eating radish in garden furry friends

Hop over to Henley for the last week of River and Rowing Museum’s  Peter Rabbit: Mischief and Mayhem. This exhibition includes original artworks, first editions and early Peter Rabbit merchandise. You can can even help Mrs Tiggywinkle hang up the laundry or visit Mrs Rabbit’s burrow! Dress up (probably best to save your bunny girl outfit for another day), help in Mr MacGregor’s Garden and listen to stories.

Pay-what-you- want Supper Club, Smoke and Thyme, Marston, Oxford, Sat 23 Sept

Run by experimental chef, Jack Greenall, in his Oxford home, this is one cool-sounding supper club, run on a pay-what-you-want basis. We hear he’s likely to tweak and change dishes right up to the last minute so don’t expect to see the menu in advance. Muddy are yet to try one of Jack’s supper clubs but it sounds like you can expect some brilliant combinations and some serious tantalising of the taste buds.

Sherlock Holmes and the Crimson Cobbles, Chipping Norton Theatre, Tues 19 – Sun 24 Sep

Sherlock Holmes ilustration moustache magnifying glass

Sherlock Holmes is one of those fictional characters with enduring appeal, and Benedict Cumberbatch’s TV turn as the tricksy detective has brought in a whole new generation of mini brainiac sleuths. This new play is family-friendly – suitable for children aged 12 and over – and especially commissioned for Chipping Norton Theatre. Holmes and Watson are called upon to investigate the Whitechapel murders but when the evidence points to only one possible conclusion about the identity of Jack the Ripper, is Holmes prepared to believe the unbelievable?


Summer Celebrations with Champagne & Raymond Blanc, Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons, Weds 20 Sep

yellow building with chimney surrounded by purple and yellow flowers and bushes

An evening at Le Manoir, you say? Well, if you insist. Everybody loves Raymond, after all (geddit?). The super-chef is joined by David Hesketh, from Laurent-Perrier – who sounds like someone we urgently need to network with – as the devilish duo host an evening of gastronomic delights paired with the finest fizz. The proceedings commence with canapés – well, of course – ahead of a five-course summer dinner, including coffee and petits fours, in the most beautiful, 5 star surroundings you could imagine. Of course such luxury comes at a price, with this clocking in at £235 per head. Early Christmas present perhaps?

Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons, Great Milton, Oxon,


Giffords Circus, Fennels Farm, Stroud, Thu 21 to Sun 24 Sept

Last chance to see this candle-lit international gymnastic show with dancing horses, a live band, everyone’s favourite clown Tweedy and a side helping of psychedelic madness, as Giffords returns home to complete its 2017 tour that takes them to a 17th-century Spanish court.


RSC Jumble Sale, RSC Rehearsal Rooms, Stratford,  Sat Sept 23

David Tennant in the RSC’s Hamlet, 2008. Photo: Ellie- Kurttz, RSC

Fancy a rummage through boxes of theatrical costumes worn at the RSC over the past 20 years?  Alistair McArthurRSC Head of Costume, said: “At one of our previous sales someone found a pair of slippers worn by David Tennant when he played Hamlet here. Most pieces are labelled with the name of the actor who originally wore them, so who knows what little gems people might pick up?” More than 10,000 items including period costumes, uniforms, doublets, shoes, hats and accessories, plus uniform coats worn in 2008’s Hamlet starring David Tennant, will be available to buy from £1.

The RSC has the largest in-house costume-making department of any British theatre, employing 30 award-winning craftspeople. Funds will go towards restoring the Costume Workshop on Waterside£3 per person (cash only). No booking required, just turn up and queue, 9am – 5pm


Seurat to Riley: The Art of Perception, Compton Verney until Sun Oct 1

Don’t miss this excellent critically-acclaimed summer exhibition including the leading figures of 1960’s Op Art – Bridget RileyJesus Rafael Soto, and Victor Vasarely  -installations, and a stunning site-specific wall painting by German abstract artist Lothar Götz. “This show fizzes with the zinging colours and eye-popping patterns of Op Art, from the Impressionists to the mind-bending Sixties experiments of Bridget Riley … a trippy, wild ride” – The Daily Telegraph. Daily tours at 12noon & 2.30pm.

Tue – Sun & bank holidays until Sun Oct 1 2017, 11am –


Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power, Tate Modern, until Oct 22

 ‘An exhibition that uncovers an entire lost history of American art’ is how Guardian critic Jonathan Jones describes this visual journey through the civil rights movement. Some engage with legendary figures from the period, with paintings in homage to political leaders Martin Luther King, Malcolm X and Angela Davis, musician John Coltrane and sporting hero Jack Johnson. Muhammad Ali appears in Andy Warhol’s famous painting.  Unmissable era-defining artworks.

London Fashion Week, various venues, Friday 15 – Tuesday 19 Sep

LFW is a lot more democratic than it used to be – these days you don’t have to stow away in Anna Wintour’s handbag to get a taste of the action. LFW highlights that are open to the public include the Design Frontiers exhibition at Somerset House featuring work from 30 of our most pioneering creatives and giant outdoor screens showing live catwalks shows in various public spaces in London (such as Soho Square) and Birmingham. What’s more, London Fashion Week Festival comes hot on the heels of the shows – from 21-24 Sep at Store Studios on The Strand, you’ll be able to watch catwalk shows, attend talks by industry experts and, but of course, shop until your credit card catches fire.



Legally Blonde, Wycombe Swan, Mon 25 – Sat 30 Sept

pink stilettos with a pug dog and a small dog on a lead

I took my mum to a production of Legally Blonde last year and we both hooted our way through it, it was much more entertaining than I thought it would be. This new show has a celeb cast  – Rita Simons (Roxy Mitchell in BBC’s EastEnders)  Lucie Jones (Eurovision UK representative 2017) and the delicious Bill Ward (James Barton in Emmerdale, Charlie Stubbs in Coronation Street) as Professor Callahan. Grab a group of girlies and go have a giggle.

Book tickets


The Tiger Who Came to Tea, Aylesbury Waterside Theatre, Mon 25 – Tues 26 Sep

girl in purple dress standing on yellow table holding arms out to tiger sitting on chair holding a plate lady in green dress looking shocked
If a massive wild cat really did come round and vandalise your kitchen, realistically you’d scarper long before it started loutishly drinking PG Tips out of the teapot spout, right? I must take this up with legendary children’s author Judith Kerr next time I see her. Anyway, the classic kids’ bedtime story arrives at Aylesbury Waterside theatre this month in musical form, fresh from a hit West End run. Director David Wood has also adapted BFG, The Witches and Meg & Mog for the stage, so you’re in very safe hands. Just don’t open the door without your tranquilliser gun.
Million Dollar Quartet, Wycombe Swan, Mon 9 – Weds 14 Oct
This West End and Broadway musical focuses on the famous recording session that brought together rock ‘n’ roll icons Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins for the first and only time. Martin Kemp, formerly partial to the headband and polyester shiny shirtlings of Spandau Ballet, now silver fox, TV regular and guilty Muddy secret hearthrob, plays legendary record producer Sam Phillips who does a svengali and magics up the sweet music. Your mum will love it. Book tickets

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