What’s On: Muddy Herts Guide 17-23 Mar 2016

So many good reasons to get out and about this week, not least the lighter evenings.  Have fun, and let me know what you’re up to, why doncha?

A Delicious Evening with Pudding Stop’s Johnny Shepherd, Waterstones St Albans, 22 Mar, 7:15-9pm


I’m still busy working my way through the recipes in the new book Puddings from the Pudding Stop’s Johnny Shepherd.  He’s going to be at Waterstones in St Albans this week, talking about the book and The Pudding Stop, as well as offering samples – hoorah! – of his delicious puds.  Tickets are £3, which you can get back off a book if you buy it, and include a drink and a mini-pud.


Antarctica, Natural History Museum at Tring, 23 Mar-10 Jul


There are always interesting exhibitions at the Natural History Museum at Tring, and this one has been organised in collaboration with the British Antarctic Survey to let you get a feel for what it’s like at the very bottom of the world.  See an emperor penguin chick, get up close to an Antarctic sea spider, and marvel at a sea urchin retrieved from Captain Scott’s ship.


De Havilland Philharmonic Orchestra : Elgar Violin Concerto, Weston Auditorium, Hatfield, 20 Mar, 7.30pm

Bartosz Woroch 19 credit Kaupo Kikkas [4890193]

Charismatic Polish violinist Bartosz Woroch will be joining the De Havilland Philarmonic Orchestra for Elgar’s Violin Concerto.  The evening will also include Beethoven’s Symphony No 4 and Mendelssohn’s Overture Ruy Blass.


Wildlife Explorers Club: Spring things, Rye Meads Nature Reserve, 19 Mar, 11am-1 pm

rye mead wildlife explorers

The Wildlife Explorers Club meets once a month, and this time it’s all about the signs of Spring that are popping up all over the place.  Lots of lovely outdoor goings-on, followed by some crafts and games.  It’s always very popular, so you will need to book in advance.


Music on Tap: Open Mic, Haresfoot Brewery, Berkhamsted, 17 Mar, 7-10pm


It’s the first ever open mic night at Haresfoot Brewery, and it should be fun – and the beer’s going to be good, even if the acts aren’t!  There are 6 spare slots for performers if you’ve got a talent to share – email [email protected] to claim one of them – or just go along, prop up the bar, and enjoy the entertainment.  It’s free to get in, but you can claim a BOGOF drinks voucher if you go to their website.


Mark Beaumont: Africa Solo, Radlett Centre, 23 Mar, 8pm

mark beaumont africa solo

Mark Beaumont is one of those very active types who whizzes off to face incredible challenges all over the world – circumnavigating the world on a bike, cycling the length of the Americas, that sort of thing.  He’s broken all sorts of world records, too.  Africa Solo is the story of his adventures in Africa, crossing deserts, mountains, savannah, and cities.


Spring Fair, Frogmore Paper Mill, Apsley, 20 Mar, 11am-4pm


Pop into the Frogmore Paper Mill – a great place to visit in itself – for their Spring Fair.  You can have a tour of the Mill (I’ve done a couple, and they’re fascinating), have a go at making paper by hand or printing by letterpress, take a trip on a canal boat, or browse the stalls and visit the cafe.  Rumour has it they’ll be firing up the BBQ, too.  Definitely worth a visit.


Under Milk Wood – Semi Skimmed!, Old Town Hall, Hemel Hempstead, 18 Mar, 8pm


I’ve got a bit of a soft spot for Dylan Thomas – and this production, starring Guy Masterson, sounds brilliant.  It’s been described as astonishing and enchanting, bawdy and beautiful, sad and sensual.  (Sounds like a night in with Mr C…)  Worth a go, I reckon.


Seussical The Musical, Sandpit Theatre, St Albans, 19 Mar, 2.30 & 6.30pm

seussical the musical

It’s fun to have fun, but you have to know how!  If you’re a fan of Dr Seuss – oh, we are in our house! we love to ‘hop on pop’! – this sounds like a great way to wile away a couple of hours.  Weaving together his most famous tales and characters, follow Horton (hoo?) as he discovers and universe in a speck of dust.  Love it.


Interlopers: New Work by Permindar Kaur, Art and Design Gallery, College Lane Campus, University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield, 18 Mar-7 May

Branch, 2015, Permindar Kaur [4890194]

Perminder Kaur has participated in a residency at the University of Herts, and this exhibition includes a new site-specific installation spanning the vast glass front of the Art and Design Gallery.  Black, faceless teddies are everywhere – climbing, travelling, exploring and infesting, perhaps considering escape.  And it’s going to be changing all the time over the run of the exhibition – with the teds moving around, new ones arriving and some escaping. Sounds intriguing…


A Study in Sherlock, University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield


UHerts is going a bit ‘Conan Doyle’ this month, with a screening of Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows  (17 Mar, 7.30pm) – the Guy Ritchie blockbuster with Robert Downey Jr’s Holmes facing up to Moriarty, while dealing with the prospect of losing Watson to *gasp* a woman.  Or, you can get your Holmes fix with Mr Holmes (24 Mar, 7.30pm) — with Sir Ian McKellen as Holmes, retired  and struggling to remember the details of his last case.  No Cumberbatch, though, I’m sorry to report…

Tringe Aperitif, The Kings Arms, Tring, various dates


As an appetiser for the veritable feast of comedic delight that is the Tringe Festival, the Tringe Aperitif  continues to get audiences yukking it up, night after night, at the Kings Arms (which is almost certainly my favourite pub in Tring).  Check out their website for the full menu…


Dylan Moran, Cambridge Corn Exchange, 18 Mar, 8pm

dylan moran

Not many tickets left for Dylan Moran’s night at the Cambridge Corn Exchange, so get a wiggle on if you fancy it.  This show, ‘Off the Hook,’ is his first stand-up show for 3 years, and it’s had fab reviews.  I think he’s hilarious.


Your Bard!, Maltings Arts Theatre, 18th Mar, 8pm

your bard!

This is part of the St Albans Shakespeare Festival  — and it sounds like a laugh.  Come and meet Will himself, in the pub and ready to talk about himself in glorious detail.  Was he a literary genius?  Was he a lucky waster from the Midlands with a penchant for poaching?  Bit of theatre, bit of stand-up, bit of dance (really?), and a bit of music.  Sounds fun.


Henry V, Maltings Arts Theatre, 19 March, 8pm

henry V

Yes, you might have seen Henry V before – but this Merely Theatre production shakes up the whole story of the victory of Agincourt in a really interesting way.  Both male and female actors play every part, and they switch around throughout.  The two sides – English and French – are sporting football shirts so you can tell them apart.  Sounds intriguing.  And the early reviews are very enthusiastic – Merely Theatre has been called ‘the best Shakespeare company in London.”


The Intern, Old Town Hall, Hemel Hempstead, 17 Mar, 1pm

the intern

It’s the latest Baby Blockbuster (don’t go if you haven’t got one, I’d say – but great if you have, and plenty of space to park that buggy) at the Old Town Hall in Hemel.  Robert de Niro plays a 70-year-old widower who leaves retirement behind to become a senior intern at an on-line fashion site run by Anne Hathaway.  What could possibly go wrong with that?


Frankenstein, Watford Palace Theatre, 18-19 Mar, 7.30 & 2.30pm (with Sat matinee)


Forget green monsters with bolts through the neck – or even Kenneth Branagh wrestling half-naked in a pool of gloop (ewww).  This is a new adaptation, setting the story itself against Mary Shelley’s own turbulent life.


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