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What’s On this week in Sussex

Thurs 10 - Fri 18 Jan

Abigail’s Party, Theatre Royal, Brighton, Thurs 10 – Sat 19 Jan

If there were a Desert Islands Discs for TV, Abigail’s Party – the Mike Leigh play about the 70s drinks party from hell – would be in mine. Watch passive-aggressive host Beverly ply her guests with booze, ‘little cheesy-pineapple ones’ and Demis Roussos live on stage, with stars of Corrie, Emmerdale and Midsomer Murders in the leads. Tickets are from £20.25. Alright Tone?

Lantern light storytelling, Bodiam, Robertsbridge, weekends 5-6, 12-13, 19-20 and 26-27 Jan

Join Bodiam’s storytellers as they weave their spell with stories throughout the day by lantern light to capture your imagination. Free with admission.

NT Live, Antony & Cleopatra, Horsham, Wed 9 Jan / Tunbridge Wells 19 Jan and later dates at other cinemas

Broadcast live from the National Theatre, Ralph Fiennes and Sophie Okonedo play Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra in his historical tragedy of politics, passion and power. The Capitol, Horsham has an encore screening on Jan 9 and there are later dates at Tonbridge, Tunbridge Wells, East Grinstead, Uckfield, Chichester and more. Put your postcode in the website on the link below to find your nearest participating cinema.

Pre-dinner Seven Sisters Cocktail Tasting, Rathfinny Estate, Alfriston, Fri 11 Jan and Sat 19 Jan

To celebrate the launch of its Seven Sisters vermouth, Rathfinny invites diners to a complimentary introduction and tasting of its new cocktails before they eat in the tasting room restaurant. Enjoy a guided 20 minute tasting and select a pre-dinner cocktail of your choice. A £10 deposit per head secures your reservation and is deducted from your final dinner bill. There are also Sunday lunches coming up at the Flint Barns on Jan 13 and 20.

Twelfth Night, Minerva Theatre, Chichester, Tues 15 – Sat 26 Jan

Photo by Christoph Krey

A unique modern take on Shakespeare’s romantic comedy Twelfth Night in which the cast use nothing but costumes, props and instruments washed up on the beach following Viola’s shipwreck. Check out the trailer on the website. Tickets are £23

Bennett Wilson Poole, The Hawth Studio, Crawley, Wed 16 Jan

Experience a night of Americana at the Hawth as Danny Wilson, Robin Bennett, Tony Poole join forces . The trio will be pulling on influences from the 60s pop of The Byrds, The Beatles and The Beach Boys, through to the harmonies of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, with dashes of Petty and Springsteen. Tickets are £16

The Northern Lights, South Downs Planetarium, Chichester, Jan 13 and 27

Chichester’s Planetarium has a look at the beautiful Northern Lights and an explanation of why they happen on two dates in Jan. Tickets are £7 adults, £5 under-16s.

Sandi Toksvig Live! National Trevor, Chichester Festival Theatre, Fri 18 Jan /Brighton Dome Thurs 31 Jan & Sun 3 Feb

Expect tall stories, funny facts, silly jokes, a quick fire Q&A and a quiz from stand up comedian and QI host Sandi Toksvig as she seeks to become, if not a national treasure then a national Trevor. Tickets from £10. She’s also coming up at Brighton Dome on Thurs 31 Jan & Sun 3 Feb (£21-£27)

The King & I, from the Palladium, various cinemas, (various Jan dates)

Photo by Matthew Murphy

The well-loved musical, loosely based on the true story of a British governess in the royal household of Thailand in the 1900s, is currently playing at London’s Palladium to rave reviews. It was broadcast to cinemas in Nov but a few are still repeating it in Jan including in Chichester, Uckfield, Rye, Hawkhurst and Tunbridge Wells. See the trailer here and find your nearest participating cinema via the link below.

When We Have Sufficiently Tortured Ourselves, National Theatre, London, Wed 16 Jan – Sat 2 Mar

Cate Blanchett makes her debut at The National alongside Stephen Dilane in this new play by Martin Crimp, based on Samuel Richardson’s novel Pamela. It explores desire, sexual violence and the complicated roles men and women play – blimey!. There’s also a series of talks with members of the production and the playwright throughout the play’s run though Cate isn’t on the menu I’m afraid.

Pop-up ice rinks, Brighton, Worthing, Chichester, Bewl Water, Tunbridge Wells and further afield until Jan/Feb

Gliding into action, are Brighton, Worthing’s, Tunbridge and Bewl Water rinks and a new Chichester one and there are other several others for day trips into Surrey, Hants and London. Check out the Muddy round-up.



Nish Kumar: It’s in Your Nature to Destroy Yourselves, De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill, Thurs 31 Jan / Brighton Dome Fri 1 Feb 

Nish Kumar tends to sell out early but hurrah there are still tickets left for this Jan show in Bexhill. The comic is no stranger to TV having been seen on Live at the Apollo, Have I Got News For You, Joel & Nish Vs The World and more. Now you can see him on your doorstep somehow drawing laughs out of the theme of mankind’s propensity for self-destruction (the title is taken from Terminator). Tickets are £22.50. He’s also up at Brighton Dome on Fri 1 Feb (£23.50). Eddie Izzard and Jimmy Carr are among comedians coming up later in the year at the De La Warr. 

The Artisan Bakehouse, Ashurst near Steyning, 1, 5, 27 Feb and other dates

Among courses coming up at The Artisan Bakehouse are Valentine’s Macron Making on 1 Feb (£95) and a Mediterranean Breads Workshop, 5 Feb, covering traditional Greek pittas, a Lebanese Maneesh, Italian pizza and Fougasse Provencale (£125). Then An Introduction to Sourdough with internationally renowned baker & author, Emmanuel Hadjiandreou will take place on 27 Feb (£150) all prices include lunch. Places are limited.

Robert White, the Tank Top tour, The Capitol, Horsham, Tues 19 Feb 

It’s down to the last few tix for the Britain’s Got Talent finalist and only gay, Aspergic, quarter-Welsh comic on the UK comedy circuit, as he brings his fast-paced comedy to town on his Tank Top tour. £20.50, recommended for ages 16+

Lost Voice Guy, Komedia, Brighton, Tues 16 and Wed 17 April

photo by Steve Ullathorne

…and Britain’s Got Talent winner Lost Voice Guy is coming up on two dates in April. I once saw him in a room above a pub in Brighton – now he’s famous and headlining at Komedia – get your tickets now, £16.

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