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What’s on this week, you ask?

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There’s all sorts going on in Herts and beyond this week, whether you’re after a grown-up night out or some foodie action.

An Evening of Burlesque, Sat 22 Nov


Burlesque?  In Bishops Stortford?  Hang on, let me dig out my sparkly tassels…   Rhodes Theatre will be home, for one night only, to a show that’s being billed as Britain’s best burlesque extravaganza.  The show’s coming direct from the West End and it sounds like an absolute riot.  And these aren’t just any old burlesque dancers – these are Royal-Academy-trained burlesque dancers.  Expect music, dancing, magic, comedy, fire dancing (watch those feathers, ladies!) and, er, knife throwing.  The Stage have called it a ‘real variety experience’ – and it certainly sounds like a fabulous, glamorous, grown-up night out.

Rhodes Theatre, Bishops Stortford.  01279 710200.


Hitchin Wine and Food Festival, Sat 22 Nov


I’m always happy to find an excuse for a glass of wine and a deli platter or two, and what better excuse than the Hitchin Wine and Food Festival? It’s going to be a day of deliciousness – lots to try and lots to buy, and perfect timing if you’re starting to plan party food for the festive season (how organised are you?) or if you just fancy a mooch around on a grey November weekend. Several of the exhibitors are local, too, so you might recognise them — or find a new favourite.  With wine and coffee, international street food and locally-grown organic veg, cupcakes and Turkish delight, there’ll be loads there to love.

Wine? Sun Hotel, 11am to 6pm.

Food? Market Place, 10am to 4pm.


Jon Richardson, Mon 24 Nov


I’ve not been much of a fan of stand-up comedy until recently, but I’m starting to really enjoy seeing folk from the telly when they’re out and about, doing their own thing rather than just sitting on a panel show.  So chuffed, then, that the Watford Colosseum keeps bringing really funny people to the area.  Jon Richardson – the lovably grumpy regular on 8 out of 10 Cats Does Countdown and occasional guest on Have I Got News For You and Never Mind the Buzzcocks, among all kinds of other bits and bobs – will be there on Monday night as part of his new tour, Nidiot.    He’s used to playing venues like the O2 and The Apollo, as well as the telly, so it’s a great chance to see him closer to home.

Watford Colosseum, 01923 474124.  


Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2014, opened 13 Nov

taylor wessing 2014

The annual Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2014 exhibition opened recently at the National Portrait Gallery, and if previous years are anything to go by it’ll definitely be worth a visit if you’re in London – or want an excuse to be. The 60 portraits – selected from more than 4,000 submissions — cover a real range, some traditional portraits, others more experimental, and come from all over the world. I’ve had a quick squizz at the portraits online and they look stunning.  It’s always exciting, too, seeing brand new work like this within a space like the National Portrait Gallery with all its accumulated history and tradition.  And while you’re there, Grayson Perry’s 14 portraits from his ‘Who are you?’ series are still there, and you can see them for free.

National Portrait Gallery.  Open daily 10am to 6pm, Thurs/Fri to 9pm.

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