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What’s On in Sussex 24 Nov – 2 Dec

24 Nov - 2 Dec

Pull yourself out of that Black Friday scrum and go perk up your social life instead with this week’s Muddy guide to what’s on in Sussex including a major new restaurant opening, Hockney on screen, family events, extraordinary real-life tales and some fun to book ahead. Also see my Xmas shows round up here.

Source restaurant launch, Proud Country House, Brighton, from 24 Nov

Grade 1 listed Georgian mansion Stanmer House was built back in 1722 and having been recently restored is officially re-launching as Proud Country House with – here’s the exciting bit – a new seasonal British restaurant called Source. It opens on Nov 24 serving up locally sourced meats, fish and produce from within a twenty-mile radius – ambitious and no doubt delicious. Loving the colour scheme already.

Exhibition on Screen: David Hockney at the Royal Academy, various Sussex cinemas, 27 Nov and later 

Miss the recent Hockney exhibition in London? See it from a cinema seat thanks to the latest Exhibition on Screen film shot in ‘Ultra HD’, including an interview with the artist. It actually covers both  A Bigger Picture, 2012 & 82 Portraits And One Still Life, 2016. Screening venues include New Park, Chichester (25 Nov); Dukes at Komedia, Brighton (27 and 29 Nov); Ropetackle, Shoreham (Nov 27);  Capitol, Horsham (10 Dec). Also this weekend is Canaletto and the Art of Venice at the Odeon Tunbridge Wells, (26 and 27 Nov). Then, on Mon 23 Jan  is a preview of Cezanne, Portraits of a Life – an exhibition starting in Paris and coming to London. Find your nearest participating cinemas via the link.

Devonshire Digital Weekender, DC 1 Cafe & gallery and the Hippodrome, Eastbourne, Fri 24 – Sun 26 Nov

Image by Camilla Greenwell

No, it’s nothing about using apps to order cream teas, Devonshire is the Devonshire Collective creative hub in Eastbourne and the Digital Weekender, curated by AΦE, is packed with cutting edge art performances involving technology. It kicks off Fri 24 Nov with a launch party with a drinks, a DJ and experimental films. On Saturday and Sunday there’s then free experimental cinema plus workshops and performances under a tenner covering dance and 360 degree filmmaking and virtual reality, some are aimed specfically at children. Get logged on.

Arundel by Candlelight, Arundel town centre, Dec 2

On Dec 2 in historical Arundel, shops, restaurants, pubs and homes will be decorated with Christmas trees with simple white lights and there’ll be a lantern parade and a Christmas Market with gifts and seasonal treats. Don’t get too trollied on mulled wine or you’ll miss out on the vintage fair rides. A rock choir, panto, face painting and the like add to the family fun.

Tenors Unlimited: Venice to Vegas tour, Assembly Hall, Worthing, Thurs 30 Nov

They sing opera but they’ve worked with Beyonce, Sting and Lionel Richie. Intrigued? See the so-called ‘Rat Pack of Opera’ here in Sussex belting out faves such as Nessun Dorma, Freddie Mercury’s Barcelona and even Ed Sheeran’s Thinking Out Loud, backed by Worthing Chamber Choir. Tickets are £19.50.

Victorian Country House Christmas Party, Uppark 2 – 31 Dec (except 24 & 25 Dec)

NT photo by Nadia Mackenzie

Go back in time at Uppark this December by dropping in on the aftermath of a Victorian Country House Christmas Party hosted by Lady Featherstonhaugh. Peek at the excesses in the dining room then below stairs discover how servants celebrated in the Victorian era. In the week see intricately detailed paper mannequin servants created by artist Denise Watson of Delicarta. At weekends there’ll be real servants to greet you. Meanwhile a new outdoor family trail (£2 per child) helps kids make fun discoveries about Victorian festive foods and traditions.

Mata Hari: Female Spy / The Mitford Sisters, The Hawth Crawley / Sat 25 Nov/ Tues 28 Nov

There are a couple of interesting-sounding one-woman shows coming up at The Hawth, delving into the chequered lives of some real women from history. On Sat 25 Nov it’s Mata Hari: Female Spy (£16). Exotic dancer, lover and confidante, executed by firing squad in 1917. She was the most notorious female spy in history… or was she? Then, on Tues 28 Nov it’s The Mitford Sisters (£13.50). The five controversial women embraced an extraordinary range of experiences and opinions.  Two were fascists (one married to Oswald Mosley, one close friends with Hitler), one was a Communist, the others became Duchess of Devonshire and a well-loved novelist. This show charts their lives.

Olaf’s Frozen Adventure and Frozen double bill, The Capitol, Horsham, Sat 25 – Sun 26 Nov 

Cashing in on the phenomenal success of Frozen, Olaf’s Frozen Adventure is out soon and at Horsham on 25 and 26 Nov this special 21 minute Christmas mini-movie will be followed by a screening of the original Frozen, with fancy dress encouraged.

Cool Winter Bunny workshop, Wee Store, Hove,  Sun 26 Nov

This Sunday morning Mycraftparty will be at the Wee Store on Church Road, Hove between 10.00 – 11.00 am to help youngsters make a simple to stitch, cool Bunny with a secret pouch at the back to hide little treasures or a note to Santa. The workshop is suitable for ages 4 to 10 and costs £8 including a kit on the day and extra craft kit to take home.  Places are limited, so book ahead


Talk from Rosie Swale Pope MBE, Cameron Contemporary Art, Hove, Tues 5 Dec

Now here’s an event to leave your fitness regime feeling pretty inadequate. Rosie Swale Pope MBE is the only person in history to have made an epic solo, unsupported run around the world, facing Siberian winters, wolves, desperate loneliness and axe men while raising £250,000 for charity. Oh and she’s also run 27 marathons in 27 days. Her book, Just a Little Run Around the World is an international best-seller. Now she’s in Hove to talk about it all. Someone give the poor woman a seat! Admission’s free but there’s a suggested £10 donation to local homelessness charities Off the Fence and The Clocktower and you’ll get a   glass of wine and a mince pie. Pre-booking is recommended.

Jon Richardson: The Old Man, White Rock Theatre, Hastings, Wed 6 Dec  

The cardigan-wearing comedian who’s appeared on Live At The Apollo and 8 Out Of 10 Cats is embarking on a nationwide tour to ‘complain about the state of the world and offer no solutions’.  It’s down to the last few clusters of tickets so bag some quick if you’re a fan.

Aladdin, Assembly Hall Theatre, Tunbridge Wells, Fri 8 Dec – Wed 3 Jan

One of the first pantos out of the blocks this year. Former EastEnders heartthrob Michael Greco was twice voted sexiest man in soap and you can oggle him the flesh while your kids get on with the serious business of booing and cheering at Aladdin at the Assembly Hall Theatre. Greco plays Abanazar alongside Britain’s Got Talent‘s woman of many voices Jess Robinson as the slave of the ring while Aladdin himself is CBBC presenter Mark Rhodes. We’re promised a traditional show packed with slapstick, singing, dancing, beautiful costumes and plenty of audience participation (come on, you know you secretly love it!).

Star Wars: The Last Jedi, midnight screenings, various cinemas, Thurs 14 Dec 

Light sabres at the ready; the much anticipated next Star Wars installment is here. I get confused with all the prequels and sequels but this is the one that follows the brilliant one that brought back Harrison Ford, Chewy and (sob) Carrie Fisher. Naturally you can catch it everywhere but you’re going to want to book ahead to get in on the first day. Depot in Lewes, The Picture House in Uckfield and the Duke of Yorks in Brighton are among cinemas doing midnight screenings on the day of release. The Picture House is showing it as part of a double bill with The Force Awakens screening a few hours before at 9.00pm.

Paul Young and Los Pacimonos, Ropetackle, Shoreham-by-Sea, Fri 19 Jan 

What’s Paul Young been up to all these years? Laying his hat about the place and calling it home? Actually he’s been working with Tex Mex band Los Pacimonos who were featured on BBC 6 Music recently so they can’t be bad. You can see them and Paul at the Ropetackle in Jan (handy Xmas pressie for a fan perhaps?) tickets are £20.

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