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Arts & Entertainment

Away with the fairies – woodland trail is coming to Pewsey

Pewsey Fairy TrailPewsey Fairy TrailFairy folk are heading to Pewsey, and visitors will be able to visit their tiny houses during the village’s first Fairy Trail.

Trees along the woodland walk called The Scotchel will be adorned with tiny doors and windows made by local children.

The trail will also feature a wishing well, art by local artists, and magical messages from the fairies.

The trail will be open to visitors between 11am and 3.30pm on Sunday, April 23. Attendance is free.

For more information, log on to www.facebook.com/PewseyFairyTrail

 

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Festival favourites Dreadzone to play Marlborough gig

DreadzoneDreadzone

Perennial festival favourites Dreadzone will be appearing at Sound Knowledge on Wednesday, February 22.

The elecro-dub-rock veterans will be playing a short set at Thirty8 cafe in support of their brand new album Dread Times, before signing copies in-store after the performance.

The performance will give the fans a rare chance to see the band in an intimate setting.

Put together by former members of Big Audio Dynamite, Dreadzone have carved out a twenty-plus year career that's seen them championed by the late John Peel, support Oasis at their legendary Knebworth concert and release a string of inventive, genre-mashing albums including 1995's massive Second Light.

Dread Times is the group's eighth studio album and was recorded at Mick Jones' Bunker Studio, featuring writing from long time collaborator Don Letts.

The performance starts at 6.30pm and attendance is free by registering at www.facebook.com/SoundKnowledgeMarlborough/

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White Horse Bookshop’s Open Art Exhibition to become an annual event

The 2016 exhibition (Photo by Niels van Gijn)The 2016 exhibition (Photo by Niels van Gijn)Following last year’s successful Open Art Exhibition at the White Horse Bookshop, the Exhibition is set to become an annual fixture for the town.  This year’s Exhibition will be in May.

The inaugural Exhibition in 2016 celebrated the opening of the bookshop's art gallery. More than a thousand visitors enjoyed more than eighty entries in a variety of mediums. Exhibitors included tutors who run the White Horse art classes and their students.

The manager of the White Horse Bookshop, Angus MacLennan, told Marlborough.News: “I hope that everything that is submitted will be included in the Exhibition. It is a wonderful opportunity for everyone to see their work of art on the wall.”

[Click on image to enlarge it][Click on image to enlarge it]As a keen amateur artist himself, Angus believes “there is nothing better than thinking and drawing.” His drawing of a Roman sarcophagus [left] is featured on the flyer advertising this year’s Exhibition. “I saw this many years ago and wanted to draw it. It was a technical challenge but it was fun.”

All exhibits will be for sale with the price is to be fixed by the artist. Exhibits must be submitted between April 1 and 17. Only one piece per artist can be submitted and may not exceed 50cm x 50cm once framed.

This year the exhibition will be extended to include sculpture. But with obvious space limitations, artists should check with Angus to confirm size restrictions.

The White Horse Bookshop Gallery is hosting several exhibitions this year. In March a textiles exhibition entitled Delving Deep will feature work from students at New College, Swindon  which has been inspired by either Wiltshire history or nature.

April hosts the semi-abstract/architectural work of Will Wilford, who is completing an MA at Bath. Will has a family connection to the Chandler family who used to own the White Horse building in the early twentieth century.

In addition to the exhibitions, the White Horse continues to offer some twenty art courses each month. There are still places available on several of these popular courses ranging from Watercolours for the ‘positively terrified’ to - for the more assured - Going Wild in Watercolours.

For more detailed terms and conditions artists should check the White Horse Bookshop website.  Or contact 01672 704001 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Rehearsals for the Marlborough Community Passion Play start as cast welcome their professional lead actor

The first rehearsal: Frazer Blaxland (standing - Jesus) with Ben Tanning, Edward Maurice, David Maurice, Alison Shelby & Pauline BerrymanThe first rehearsal: Frazer Blaxland (standing - Jesus) with Ben Tanning, Edward Maurice, David Maurice, Alison Shelby & Pauline BerrymanRehearsals are underway for the Marlborough Community Passion Play which will take place in the town on Easter Saturday, April 15 from 4 to 6 pm.  Spectators will not have to pay to watch the performance.

Frazer Blaxland, the professional actor who will play Jesus, and those members of the community who have been allocated speaking parts, met on Sunday for the first read through of the script written by Helen Stokes.

Helen, who is the play's artistic director, believes that “The retelling of the most famous story in Western culture will bring the community together and it will be a fruitful experience for all those involved.”

Volunteers are still required to assist in a variety of ways. Teams of stewards are needed on the day. 

They will receive basic Health and Safety training, be dressed as Roman soldiers and will be required to attend the rehearsals in the week prior to the performance.

If you would like to be involved, contact the Production manager David Wylie at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or call/text  on 07434802554.

Planning the moves...Planning the moves...  The team behind the production:  Back row - l to r: David Wylie, Liz Woods, Martin Milner, Charles Joseph, James Seddon, Louise Seddon Front row: Hugh de Sarum, Andy Tatum, Nina Woolrych, Noel Woolrych, Helen Stokes, Vincent StokesThe team behind the production: Back row - l to r: David Wylie, Liz Woods, Martin Milner, Charles Joseph, James Seddon, Louise Seddon Front row: Hugh de Sarum, Andy Tatum, Nina Woolrych, Noel Woolrych, Helen Stokes, Vincent Stokes

The costume department are looking for donations of fabrics in neutral shades, fake fur and leather, old tie-backs, tea towels, sheets and anything else that would be appropriate for middle eastern costume of that period.

If you can help please contact Carole Walker at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 07539081449 to arrange a suitable pick up or drop off point. Alternatively suitable materials can be delivered to the Jubilee Centre in the High Street - by the clock - Monday-Friday, between 8am and 2pm.

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Avebury Rocks to return as a two-day festival

Nick Harper on stage at Avebury Rocks in 2012Nick Harper on stage at Avebury Rocks in 2012Avebury Rocks is returning as a two-day music festival with associated sponsored walk at a new venue.

The festival will move from Avebury Cricket Ground to East Farm, Avebury, from Friday July 7 to Sunday, July 9.

It continues to be a fundraiser for Prospect Hospice, the charity it was set up to support in 2011.

The musical entertainment will kick off on Friday evening. Then, after the traditional morning walk across the neolithic landscape, the bands return throughout Saturday.

Local and national acts from the worlds of rock and folk will provide the entertainment.

Already confirmed are Bath-based hip-hop and soul act Benji and Hibbz, singer-songwriter Ed Mann, local troubador George Wilding, dub, reggae and ska-influenced Kioko, Marlborough Rock Choir, Swindon Samba, ukulele band Ukey D’ukes, rock band Ulysses, and festival founder Nick Harper, the renowned singer-songwriter, with more acts to be confirmed.

Ticket prices – which include overnight camping – are yet to be confirmed.

For details, log on to the festival’s new website – http://aveburyrocksfestival.net

 

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80s classic Fame comes to the stage at St John’s

Rosie Amos, who plays Carmen, in a dance scene from FameRosie Amos, who plays Carmen, in a dance scene from FamePull up your leg warmers and pop a tape in your Walkman – 1980s classic Fame is coming to the stage at St John’s in Marlborough.

The musical is set at New York City’s High School of Performing Arts, where sweat and hard work are the key factors to a successful life as a performer.

The plot follows a group of students across the acting, dancing and music faculties from 1980-1984 as they learn to master their craft and grow up alongside each other, rising to the various challenges that face them.

Performers include several Sixth Form students who gave stand-out performances in last year’s musical, We Will Rock You, as well as new talent taking lead roles for the first time.

Director of performance Max More said: “St John’s students from Years 8 to 13 have once again shown their considerable talents.

“The principal actors have been directed by our new experienced and dynamic head of drama, Kelly Matyla.

“Two Year 11 students, Jess Lamb and Rachel Naughton, have played a major role in devising and teaching the choreography, supported by drama teacher Tanya Bourton.

“I have continued to enjoy working with my wonderful chorus and band to provide the musical backdrop for the action on stage.”

The show runs over four nights: Tuesday January 31, and Thursday to Saturday February 2 to 4 from 7pm at Theatre on the Hill.

Tickets – priced £7.50, £5.50 for concessions, and £23.50 for families – are available from www.ticketsource.co.uk/stjohnstheatreonthehill

 

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PVADS Cinderella begins this week

It's behind you! – Steve Clements, Chris Pearse, Hallum Britten, Pete Bromwich, Diane Bromwich, Milo DavisonIt's behind you! – Steve Clements, Chris Pearse, Hallum Britten, Pete Bromwich, Diane Bromwich, Milo Davison

It's that panto time of year. Oh yes it is! 

The Marlborough and Pewsey area are lucky enough to have a panto staged every year by Pewsey Vale Amateur Dramatics Society (PVADS), who've been creating high quality musical shows and plays in Pewsey's Boverie Hall for over 80 years.

This year it's Cinderella. It's a story familiar to everyone, but here's the PVADS take on it:

Will you marry me? Poor Cinders. Her home is about to be repossessed and her two terrible stepsisters have ripped up her invite to Prince Charming's Ball.

Will help come from Buttons the Pageboy or will he rescue Bob the Bunny instead? Is that a funny old lady or the Fairy Godmother? And can anyone save us from Ugly Sisters Griselda and Gertrude's noxious gases?

Steve Clements, director and ugly sister Griselda, says it's an essential part of the annual event calendar. "A panto like Cinderella is a fun English tradition. All ages can enjoy it and it has local humour. We have songs people know and can join in with - and a few jokes like that too!"

Steve, from the Pewsey Vale area whose day job is with BBC Wiltshire, has been a PVADS member for 12 years. This is his fifth panto in the director's chair. “PVADS is like a big family, and we aim for a high standard," he said.

Cinderella runs this weekend 13 to 14 and next weekend 20 to 21 January, 7.30pm with 2.30pm Saturday matinees at Pewsey's Bouverie Hall. Tickets are available from www.pvads.co.uk or 01672 810 436, priced £9 (£6 children/concessions).

Anna Gent, Lucy Brown, Georgia Elson as Cinderella, Prince Charming and the Fairy GodmotherAnna Gent, Lucy Brown, Georgia Elson as Cinderella, Prince Charming and the Fairy Godmother

The chorusThe chorus

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