Ten things to see in Sussex, Friday to Thursday, December 15-21

Jools Holland. Picture by Mary McCartney
Jools Holland. Picture by Mary McCartney

Wondering what do over the next seven days? Here are ten of the best events.

1. Jools Holland.

Saturday, December 16, £44.60, 7.30pm, Brighton Centre, 0844 8471515. Musical virtuoso Jools Holland will be accompanied by his Rhythm and Blues Orchestra. Also joining Jools on stage will be Grammy Award winner José Feliciano, one of the most prominent stars in Latin America and one of the most revered musicians in the world.

2. The Big Christmas Singalong.

Friday, December 15, 7.30pm, £12 (£8 concessions), Brighton Dome, 01273 709709. The Choir with No Name, an organisation that runs choirs for homeless and marginalised people, bring their London, Liverpool and Birmingham choirs to Brighton for the musical highlight of the season. Expect all the Christmas classics as well as a chance to join in and be part of this unique, feel-good event.

3. Christmas Festival Concert.

The Lewes Concert Orchestra are giving a concert on Friday, December 15, in Lewes Town Hall (Lewes High Street). The show will include three works by the noted astronomer and xylophonist Sir Patrick Moore, together with carols, choral items and music by Bach, Delius, Humperdinck and Arthur Sullivan. The orchestra will be joined by the xylophonist Chris Beaumont. Chris’s journey into music began at a very young age. He decided to go for music as a career half-way through Sixth Form, switching from his original choice of Science and Astronomy. Chris studied for two years at Havant Sixth Form College, Hampshire; and then for a year at South Downs College, Waterlooville. He also spent some time with West Sussex County Music as an auxiliary and tuned percussionist. Chris regularly performs with The Hastings Sinfonia as well. Tickets are £10 in advance (email info@lewesconcertorchestra.org) or £12 on the door. Under 18s can see the concert for just £5). Find out more about the event at www.lewesconcertorchestra.org.

4. Jason Manford.

Sunday, December 17, £15, 8pm, De la Warr Pavilion, Bexhill, 01424 229111. Jason Manford returns to the De La Warr Pavilion with a work-in-progress show ahead of his national tour in 2018. The show promises a wealth of comedy anecdotes, misunderstandings and audience banter delivered with Jason’s likeable charm and teasingly intelligent wit.

5. Beauty and the Beast.

December 16-31. £14.50-£16, various times, Chequer Mead, East Grinstead, 01342 302000. An LP Creative presentation. The tale of Beauty and the Beast has all the features of a traditional pantomime. The exciting adventure transports audiences to the French village of ‘Marsh de Mello’, where a love story is waiting to be told. CBeebies TV star Rebecca Keatley makes a magical appearance in a pre-recorded performance as the Marvellous Magical Mirror. The show also stars Tim Ames as Dame Do’nut, Callum Donnelly as Idle Jacque and Maurice Thorogood as Baron Biscuit. Hannah Bond stars as Beauty while Dan Stark stars as Beast. These characters lead the way with laughter, with Beauty and the Beast providing a story of true love and a tale of good triumphing over evil.

6. Gallery North.

Hailsham’s Gallery North is known to many Sussex residents as an art gallery but it has another angle involving community development. Having recently been awarded a grant from the Chalk Cliff Trust, the gallery has been promoting an outreach programme offering art classes at the gallery and art workshops in Sussex care homes. The next project for 2018 is inter-generational and involves artists, students and care home residents commissioning specific works, which will culminate in a major show. The current show at the gallery, which runs until December 21, includes a selection of works by the resident artists, contemporary and traditional paintings, prints and photography. There is also a wall of work, mainly landscapes of the Charente region in France, painted by course members of Atelier Lerignac, an annual French art holiday run by Jenny and David West from Gallery North. The gallery also promotes the work of wood turner John Turner, who was born in Hailsham. They are also looking for volunteers. Contact Jenny West at Gallery North, 70 High Street, Hailsham (10am-4pm, Tues-Sat), on 01323 846938. The top circular picture shows resident contemporary artist and tutor Una Curthoys

7. Scummy Mummies.

Monday, December 18, £15, 8pm, Komedia, 44-47 Gardner Street, Brighton, 0845 293 8480. Back by popular demand, comedians Helen Thorn and Ellie Gibson are bringing a special Christmas themed comedy show to Komedia. Expect scummy carols, yuletide sketches, festive stand-up and very scummy Santa stories.

8. O’Hooley & Tidow.

Sunday, December 17, 7.30pm, Lewes Con Club, 139 High Street, Lewes, 01273 473076. A Union Music Store presentation. Tickets from www.wegottickets.com. Bottom circular picture. An alternative celebration of Christmas with winterfolk, wintersong and carols.

9. Richard Durrant.

Wednesday, December 20, £17-£18, 8pm, Trinity Theatre, Tunbridge Wells, 01892 678678. Candlelit Christmas Concert. Maverick barefoot musician, composer and world-class guitar virtuoso Richard Durrant is on another magical Christmas tour of UK venues with guest singer Amy Kakoura and folk fiddler Nick Pynn. The music comes from folk, pagan and Christian traditions. From the oldest song in the Oxford Book of Carols to Fairytale of New York on ukulele, this is a show packed full of surprises and midwinter charm. Visit www.trinitytheatre.net.

10. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

Pavilion Theatre, Worthing, until Jan 1. Tickets on 01903 206206. Headlining the show is Chesney Hawkes who steps into pantoland as Snow White’s handsome prince. West End and X Factor star Cassie Compton also joins the cast. Cbeebies Swashbuckle pirate duo Richard David-Caine and Joseph Elliott feature, as does a video appearance from comedian Jo Brand. West End and X Factor finalist Niki Evans is among the cast and Simon Howe is back as the Dame.

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