17 December • A Child’s Christmas in Wales by Dylan Thomas, and other pieces • Ligeti Quartet

A festive musical treat from one of the UK’s leading contemporary string quartets.

Adam and Charlotte Caird/Dylan Thomas: A Child’s Christmas in Wales

This wonderful adaptation for strings and narrator of A Child’s Christmas in Wales chronicles Dylan Thomas’s own childhood memories and remains one of his most popular and loved works. A festive musical treat.

Fodé Lassana Diabaté: Sunjata’s Time

Sunjata’s Time is dedicated to Sunjata Keita, the warrior prince who founded the great Mali Empire in 1235, which, at its height, stretched across the West African savannah to the Atlantic shores. Fodé Lassana Diabaté originally wrote the piece for the balafon, the 22-key traditional xylophone of which he is a virtuoso player. This brilliant arrangement for string quartet is by Jacob Garchik.

Stef Conner: Singing Strings: A Contemporary Quartet in Conversation

This is a musical and theatrical treatise on the contemporary string quartet, tracing sounds and their histories through the medium of a four-way conversation between voices and instruments. Musical materials take root in the sound world of the contemporary string quartet and evolve into gestures that evoke and extol the musicality of words about music.

Sunday 17 December
CLASSICAL MUSIC / SPOKEN WORD – Corn Exchange
3pm (doors & bar 2.30pm)
£16 / £14 members & concessions / £5 Live for 5 

18 December • Frozen Singalong

As we always have such an enchanting time with Elsa, Anna and the crew, we decided to do it all over again this season.

Disney’s Frozen will be shown on the big screen once more here at the Corn Exchange so all fans, both young and old are invited to come and sing along to one of the most charming animations the world has seen. A perfect Christmas treat for the whole family to enjoy whatever the weather – but hey…the cold never bothered us anyway…

 

 

Monday 18 December
FUNDRAISER – Corn Exchange
2pm (doors & refreshments 1.30pm)
£4

20 December • The Christmassy Christmas Show of Christmassy Christmassness

Ho, Ho, Ho!

Squashbox Theatre’s new family show is a celebration of everything Christmassy, from fir trees, fairy lights, stockings and sleigh bells to cookies, crackers, presents and puddings!

Meet a snowman who lives in the fridge, try and spot some naughty elves, hear the tale of the first Christmas Tree, play hunt the brussel sprout and endure the world’s worst Christmas jumper.

 

 

Wednesday 20 December
FAMILY THEATRE – Corn Exchange
2.00pm & 4.30pm
£6 / £20 family ticket (max 2 adults)

Wed 10 Jan (Gala Premiere) & Fri 12 Jan • Kinetics Film Showings

Kinetics

DT2 Productions, in association with Band Films and Dorchester Arts

 

 

What can a teenage boy who is into free running and a middle-aged woman with Parkinson’s possibly have in common?

The desire to move….

Kinetics is based on the remarkable true story of two people seemingly at polar opposites. As Rose tries to come to terms with her diagnosis, an unlikely friendship springs up when Lukas comes tumbling into her life. But will the bond between them be strong enough when things go wrong?

Kinetics was written by Dorchester-based actor and writer Sue Wylie in reaction to her diagnosis with early-onset Parkinson’s. As a stage play it has toured the South West and London, selling more than 1500 tickets and receiving phenomenal feedback from audiences and medical professionals alike, for its bravery, honesty, humour and passion.

This film version will not only take the play to a wider audience but is also being used as a training and information resource for Parkinson’s nurses, carers, doctors and medical students.

About the stage version:

This is an amazing story that needs to be told. (Dorset Echo)

Watching your play was a very emotional experience for me, as much of what you are saying is how my journey has been…a wonderful vehicle to give the public a real insight to living with Parkinson’s. (Audience feedback)

Extremely brave and well constructed. Should be compulsory viewing for anyone caring for those with Parkinson’s. (Audience feedback)

Kinetics Gala Premiere
Wednesday 10 January
FILM – Plaza Cinema
6pm
£10 to include drinks reception at Corn Exchange after the film

Kinetics 2nd showing
Friday 12 January
FILM – Plaza Cinema
6pm
£7

 

Fri 19 January • The Surfin’ Birds • Fuelled by Cider

The Surfin’ Birds (Fuelled by Cider)

The Surfin’ Birds have earned a reputation for being one of the most exciting live acts in the area, and have been making waves further afield with stand-out appearances at Boomtown, Outcider, Cursus and Sark Roots festivals in 2017.

Their music is simultaneously raw and visceral yet highly crafted, with a desire for constant experimentation that puts them way ahead of their contemporaries. They appeal to fans of rockabilly, surf, psychedelic and good old fashioned rock ‘n’ roll music, without ever being constrained by any one genre.

‘All My Dreams’ is the band’s second full length album and will be released on the Fuelled By Cider label, with copies available to buy at the gig itself. It is the product of a period of intense energy, vision and hard work from the band and looks set to push them on to bigger things in 2018.

Guitarist and frontman Paul Sharod told us: “’Surf, psychedelia, rock ‘n’ roll, blues, jazz, poetry and punk – this album has elements of it all. ‘All My Dreams’ is our most experimental and creative record to date. The whole process was laid back and grooving from the off, a purely organic process between four best mates.”

Support on the night comes from highly acclaimed Bristol rockabilly / soul band The Hawkmen, who are grabbing attention themselves with regular airplay on BBC 6 Music and a track on the latest Craig Charles compilation CD. Local singer-songwriter Amy Brown will open the night in style.

Friday 19 January
Dorchester Corn Exchange
8pm (doors & bar 7.30pm)
£11 / £9 members & concessions

Sat 20 January • A Viennese Whirl • Swansea City Opera

A VIENNESE WHIRL!

 

The acclaimed Swansea City Opera presents a captivating production – A Viennese Whirl, evoking the magic and music of Vienna and transporting audiences to the banks of the dreamy Danube River. Enjoy an enchanting evening of singing and soaring violin melodies from some of the most popular Viennese composers including Kreisler, Lehar, Kalman and Johann Strauss, as well as operettas such as ‘The Merry Widow’, ‘Die Fledermaus’ and ‘The Gypsy Baron’.

Echoing the wonderful voices of the era and including songs by Richard Tauber, a carefully selected cast of tenor, soprano, violin and piano accompanist has been assembled for this amusing and entertaining evening hosted by the charismatic Artistic Director of SCO, Brendan Wheatley, who introduces the music of the Viennese greats in his own inimitable style.

A Viennese Whirl is certain to delight and enthral its audiences.

 

 

 

 

Programme includes such gems as:

Adele’s Laughing Song (Die Fledermaus) – Johann Strauss
Girls Were Made to Love and Kiss (Paganini) – Franz Lehár
Vilja Song (The Merry Widow) – Franz Lehár
Love Unspoken (The Merry Widow) – Franz Lehár
Roses from Tyrol (Der Vogelhändler) – Carl Zeller
Vienna Blood (Wiener Blut) – Johann Strauss
Annen-Polka – Johann Strauss
Song and Czardas (Zigeunerliebe) – Franz Lehár
Vienna, City of my Dreams – Rudolf Sieczynski
Czardas, for Violin – Vittorio Monti
Liebesfreud – Kreisler

A Viennese Whirl (Swansea City Opera)
Saturday 20 January
OPERA – Dorchester Corn Exchange
8pm (doors & bar 7.30pm)
£16 / £14 members & concessions

Sun 21 January • Code Breakers • The Story of Enigma (Dr Mark Baldwin)

Codebreakers is one of the Second World War’s most fascinating stories.  Allied Codebreakers deciphered a vast number of German secret messages and used the intelligence gained to hasten Allied victory. Dr Mark Baldwin provides an entertaining and instructive account of the Enigma machine, the code-breaking work at Bletchley Park and U-boats.

The show is followed by a question and answer session and a hands-on demonstration of one of the very few surviving Enigma machines.

 

 

“Dr Mar Baldwin’s enthusiasm and knowledge had the audience spell-bound as he unravelled the mysteries, workings and dedication that went on at Bletchley Park.” (Susan Bailey, BCS Branch Committee)

 

Code Breakers – The Story of Enigma (Dr Mark Baldwin)
Sunday 21 January
Entertainment – Corn Exchange
2.30pm (doors & bar 2pm)
£14 / £12 members and concessions / £5 Live for 5

Wed 24 January • Sultans of String

Three times JUNO (Canada’s Grammy) nominees Sultans of String are an “energetic and exciting band with talent to burn!” (Maverick Magazine, UK).

Thrilling audiences with their genre-hopping passport of Celtic reels, Flamenco, Gypsy-jazz, Arabic, and Cuban rhythms, fiery violin dances with kinetic guitar, while funky bass lays down unstoppable grooves. Throughout, acoustic strings meet electronic wizardry to create layers and depth of sound. Celebrating a milestone 10 years together, Sultans of String have hit #1 across Canada on world music charts, #6 on Billboard (world), and received multiple awards and accolades, including a SiriusXM Award, 1st place in the ISC (out of 15,000 entries), 3 Canadian Folk Music Awards, plus invitations to perform/record with such luminaries as The Chieftains, Sweet Honey In The Rock, and David Bromberg.

Bandleader/violinist Chris McKhool (Jesse Cook, Pavlo), a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal recipient, was raised in a Lebanese-Egyptian household just bursting with music and diversity. Growing up, he was fed a steady diet of delicious musicality alongside Middle Eastern cuisine and violin lessons. When he first heard founding guitarist Kevin Laliberté’s (Jesse Cook) rumba rhythm, their musical synergy created Sultans of String’s signature sound – the intimate and playful relationship between violin and guitar. From this rich foundation, the dynamic duo grew, featuring such amazing musical friends as in-the-pocket bass master Drew Birston.

Sultans of String have been touring many taste-making forums such as UK’s legendary Celtic Connections, NYC’s Birdland and The Lincoln Center. They recently sold out Koerner Hall (Toronto’s Albert Hall), and performed with Toronto, Vancouver, Edmonton, Stratford, Ontario and Niagara Symphony Orchestras, as well with Kingsfield POPS in Maine and Maryland’s Annapolis Symphony. Sultans of String were recently filmed by MPBN’s Maine Arts! in a feature concert, and performed live on BBC TV, BBC Radio, Irish National Radio, and the internationally syndicated shows WoodSongs, World Cafe, and on SiriusXM in Washington.

“Chris McKhool and the boys are fantastic!”
Bob Ezrin (Producer–Pink Floyd. Kiss)

“Sultans of String are one of Canada’s hottest new musical exports, dynamically embodying their homeland’s values of tolerance and respect for diverse cultures.”
International Celtic Connections Festival, UK

“Impressive, considerable virtuosity and tasteful arrangements… its positive vibes are irresistible”
Songlines UK

“Absolutely brilliant”
BBC Radio

“It seems that Sultans of String can’t get themselves out of bed at the moment without finding themselves nominated for one award or another. In a word: Magnificent”
R2 – Rock ‘n’ Reel – UK – 5 Star review

Sultans of String
Wednesday 24 January
FOLK MUSIC – Corn Exchange
8pm (doors & bar 7.30pm)
Duration: 2x 45 min sets with interval
£13 / £11 members and concessions

 

 

Sat 27 Jan • Bessie Smith • Empress of Blues & Jazz

BESSIE SMITH “EMPRESS OF THE BlUES”

 

Bessie Smith (15th April 1894 – 26th September 1937)
Nicknamed the “
Empress of the Blues”, Bessie Smith was the most popular female blues singer of the 1920s and 1930s. She is often regarded as one of the greatest singers of her era and was a major influence on other jazz singers.

Ma Bessie (Julia Titus) and her blues troupe (internationally acclaimed drummer, Sam Kelly with Musical Director, Paul Jobson on keyboards, Tony Qunta on acoustic guitar, Richard Sadler on upright bass, Chuck Lloyd on saxophone and Kevin Davy on trumpet) perform to a narrated show, featuring music from the era and showcasing many of Bessie’s songs.

 

The show chronicles her life from a one-room shack in Blue Goose Hollow, to becoming the highest-paid black entertainer of that time, to the tragic accident on Route 61 in September 1937 that ended her life aged 43 years.

Saturday 27 January
Dorchester Corn Exchange
8pm (doors & bar 7.30pm)
Duration: 2x 45 min sets with interval
£15 / £13 members & concessions

9 February 2018 • Emily Maguire

A classically-trained multi-instrumentalist with five albums and two books to her name, Emily Maguire is truly “a talent to be reckoned with” (R2 Magazine), her strong, thought-provoking lyrics, supremely expressive vocals and stunning live performances winning her fans across the globe.  After living in a shack in the Australian bush where she made her first two albums, Emily returned to the UK to tour with American legend Don McLean and make her third album ‘Believer’, a ‘masterpiece’ according to Maverick Magazine, with two singles playlisted on Radio 2. Her latest album ‘A Bit Of Blue’ was released in February 2017.

 

 

Friday 9 February
Dorchester Corn Exchange
8pm (doors & bar 7.30pm)
Duration: 2x 45 min sets with interval
£13 / £11 members & concessions / £5 Live for 5