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Sultans of String

Sultans of String

Three time Canadian JUNO Award nominees and Billboard charting band Sultans of String creates “Energetic and exciting music from a band with talent to burn!” according to Maverick Magazine. Thrilling their audiences with their genre-hopping passport of Celtic reels, flamenco, gypsy-jazz, Arabic, Cuban and South Asian rhythms, the group celebrates musical fusion and human creativity with warmth and virtuosity. Acoustic strings meet with electronic wizardry to create layers and depth of sound, while world rhythms excite audiences to their feet with the irresistible need to dance.

Wednesday 24 Jan 20188:00pm Book Now
Bessie Smith

Bessie Smith

Nicknamed the “Empress of the Blues”, Bessie Smith was the most popular female blues singer of the 1920s and 1930s and was a major influence on other jazz singers.


Ma Bessie (Julia Titus) and her blues troupe 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 Jan 20188:00pm Book Now
Kinetics on film

Kinetics on film

Brave, honest and humorous. Kinetics was written for the stage by Dorchester-based actor and writer Sue Wylie and has toured to great acclaim. This brand new film version will not only take the story to a wider audience but will also be used as a training and information resource for Parkinson’s nurses, carers, doctors and medical students.


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 with early-onset Parkinson’s, 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?


Both showings will be followed by a Q&A with the author and a Parkinson’s specialist.


Tuesday 6 Feb 20186:00pm Book Now
Jive Workshop

Jive Workshop

Why not take advantage of our fun jive workshop, to get you into the mood and dance with confidence? A fun and informal evening of dance tuition to make you ready for the gala night!

Wednesday 7 Feb 20187:30pm Book Now
Emily Maguire

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.

Friday 9 Feb 20188:00pm Book Now
Pasadena Roof Orchestra

Pasadena Roof Orchestra

A vintage dance band in every sense of the word! For 45 years the Pasadena Roof Orchestra have been re-creating the sounds of a golden era of music from the 1920’s and 1930’s. Enjoy beautifully arranged songs from Irving Berlin, Ray Noble, Cole Porter and their contemporaries and re-live the electrifying hot jazz from Fletcher Henderson and Duke Ellington. So pack up your troubles, come on get happy, and experience an evening of superlative live music, with more than a dash of wit and humour.

Saturday 10 Feb 20188:00pm Book Now
The Sagas of Noggin the Nog

The Sagas of Noggin the Nog

In the ‘Lands of the North’ where the black rocks stand guard against the cold sea, in the dark night that is very long, the ‘Men of the Northlands’ sit around their great log fires and they tell a tale. These Viking storytellers bring the wonderful tales of Noggin (created by Oliver Postgate & Peter Firmin) to the stage in this new piece of theatre for children, families and fans. Also at Bridport Arts Centre

Sunday 11 Feb 20182:30pm Book Now
Children's Viking Workshop

Children's Viking Workshop

Join Dorchester Arts favourite Abi Thommes in this fantastic workshop where the participants will be able to take on the role of Viking warriors, inspired by Noggin the Nog. Using role-play to build a ship and sail the seas, you will get the opportunity to make props for your play including shields, helmets and masks. The workshop finale will be a performance for parents and carers of all that has been created!


Tickets just £4 if you also buy a ticket for The Sagas of Noggin the Nog!

Monday 12 Feb 201810:00am Book Now
John Hudson

John Hudson

A chance encounter in 1973 with a gramophone and a Mario Lanza LP was a life changing moment for internationally acclaimed Tenor John Hudson. In this loving tribute to one of the world’s greatest voices, John shows us how Mario changed not only his life, but the lives of many more.  Stolen from the opera world by Hollywood, he became the world's first “crossover” artist. With songs such as Be My Love, Serenade, Because and I'll Walk With God, he captured the hearts of a generation.

Wednesday 14 Feb 20188:00pm Book Now
We Are The Lions, Mr Manager!

We Are The Lions, Mr Manager!

We Are The Lions, Mr. Manager!’ is the remarkable story of Jayaben Desai the inspirational leader of the 1976-78 Grunwick Strike. She not only stood up for workers’ rights and against oppression with selfless dedication, but with her steadfast resolve, she turned the dispute into a national movement for human rights and dignity inspiring future generations. Also at Bridport Arts Centre and The Marine Theatre, Lyme Regis.

Friday 16 Feb 20188:00pm Book Now
Black & White Gala

Black & White Gala

Join us for an evening of dinner, dancing, music and magic to banish the February blues!  Your evening includes a welcome glass of pink Prosecco, three courses and wine, auctions of tempting items and experiences, plus some special guests to weave a little magic.  A chance to relax and enjoy yourselves as spring waits just around the corner!

Friday 23 Feb 20187:00pm Book Now
The Wildes

The Wildes

Two of the UK's finest blues artists come together at the Corn Exchange for a special ‘Live and Unplugged’ show. The blues siblings Dani Wilde on vocals and guitar and Will Wilde on harmonica will be sharing songs from each of their respective new albums as well as visiting material from their extensive back catalogues. Will’s soulful blues-rock style combined with Dani’s country and gospel tinged approach to the blues makes for a heartwarming and foot-stomping show.

Saturday 24 Feb 20188:00pm Book Now
Mike Denham Mike Snelling

Mike Denham Mike Snelling

We are delighted to welcome back pianist Mike Denham for the first of his regular Speakeasy nights for 2018 where he will be joined on stage by Clarinetist and Saxophonist Mike Snelling. Mike spent many years combining his love of music with a teaching career before turning to music full-time.  He was a member of the Big Chris Barber Band for three years and has worked with some of the world's finest players. Prepare to hear some mesmerising playing influenced by the likes of Ed Hall, Artie Shaw, Archie Semple, Omer Simeon, Benny Goodman and Coleman Hawkins.

Wednesday 28 Feb 20188:00pm Book Now
Dylan Thomas

Dylan Thomas

Rhodri Miles returns to Dorchester Arts as Dylan Thomas following last year’s critically acclaimed performance as Richard Burton. Clown In The Moon (the title of a poem written when Dylan was 14) is a dramatic portrait of the poet's chaotic, frequently hilarious, and all too brief life. Located in a BBC studio, it sets some of Dylan's famous broadcasts and iconic works alongside vivid reminiscences of his clownish antics in pubs, bars and parties, and his encounters with a host of eccentric and volatile women.

Thursday 1 Mar 20188:00pm Book Now
George Egg - DIY Chef

George Egg - DIY Chef

Comedian George Egg (a.k.a. the ‘Anarchist Cook’) returns with a brand new show demonstrating more live cooking and laugh-out-loud comedy. This show sees George relocate to the garden shed where his imagination and resourcefulness lead him to build an improvised kitchen. It’s funny, inspiring and absurd in equal measure. Expect power tools, gardening equipment and office supplies to be re-purposed and abused. Expect lots of laughs. Expect to learn something new. And you get to taste the food at the end.

Friday 2 Mar 20188:00pm Book Now
Elles Bailey

Elles Bailey

Elles Bailey first stepped onto the stage at Dorchester Arts.  She impressed audiences so much, she now makes a welcome return with her own show. Elles has a talent for crafting and seamlessly weaving rootsy blues, country, and soulful rock, with a contemporary edge. What’s more fate has blessed her with a ‘smoky vocal’ style that perfectly fits her music.  

Saturday 3 Mar 20188:00pm Book Now
DYT: The Domino Effect

DYT: The Domino Effect

A silent girl finds her voice and her mother, when a mysterious East End antiques dealer teaches her how small actions lead to big effects and how to master the law of unintended consequences. This is an amateur production by arrangement with Nick Hern Books.

Thursday 8 Mar 20187:30pm Book Now
Friday 9 Mar 20187:30pm Book Now
Boadicea of Britannia St

Boadicea of Britannia St

In celebration of World Women’s Day, Dorchester Arts Associate Amateur Theatre Group, Somerleigh Players, presents Ade Morris’s funny and very touching play about female friendship.  Local journalist Fran, PE teacher Penny, shy librarian Janet and feisty Annie form a writing group. Over the course of a few weeks, home truths are shared - along with a lot of tea and vodka.  Inspired by Boadicea’s courage, these women face their demons, overcome their enemies and move on as friends to a better future. If only all women had friends like these…


During the evening, there will be an opportunity to make a donation to (North Dorset) Women’s Refuge.

Saturday 10 Mar 20188:00pm Book Now
Martin James Bartlett 2018

Martin James Bartlett 2018

Martin James Bartlett wowed us with this superb talent in 2016 at the Corn Exchange.  He returns by popular demand this spring with a new programme.  Having won BBC Young Musician of the Year in 2014, Bartlett has gone on to perform with orchestras including BBC Symphony Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2017 Bartlett was one of the thirty competitors at the finals of the Van Cliburn Competition, held in Fort Worth, Texas. There will be a pre-show performance by solo Cellist Hanna McFarlane.

Wednesday 14 Mar 20188:00pm Book Now
The Ronnie Scott's Songbook

The Ronnie Scott's Songbook

Direct from London’s world-famous jazz club, The Ronnie Scott’s All Stars return to Dorchester. Their new show features songs made famous by the many vocalists and artists that have appeared at the club – from Nina Simone and Ella Fitzgerald through to Sonny Rollins and many others. The sensational band are joined by vocalist Natalie Williams: “One of the UK’s hottest singers…” Time Out


Projections of archive footage and classic photography tell the story of the club, and this show is a must for any music fan. Last year's show was a sell-out, so book early...


Friday 16 Mar 20188:00pm Book Now
I Believe in Unicorns

I Believe in Unicorns

Olivier Award nominated Wizard Presents brings best-selling children’s author Michael Morpurgo’s treasured story to life. This intimate show is set in a library full of books that hold more than stories within their pages. I Believe in Unicorns sparks imagination in both young and old. We challenge you not to believe in unicorns after joining Tomas’ spellbinding journey. 'I Believe in Unicorns' also includes a 'book swap’, see our website for further details.

Sunday 18 Mar 20182:00pm Book Now
Sunday 18 Mar 20184:30pm Book Now
Dominoes

Dominoes

Mixed race history teacher, Layla McKinnon, is days away from saying ‘I do’ to Andy McKinnon. Already having the same surname as her fiancé used to be just a funny coincidence but now it threatens to drive them apart. Piecing together her family tree, she tries to hold onto her best friend and her husband-to-be and find out who she is and where she fits in.  Written and performed by Phoebe McIntosh, this bold new solo show asks if the difficulties of the past will always pose a threat to the future and if discovering your identity means picking a side.

Wednesday 21 Mar 20188:00pm Book Now
Hardeep Singh Kohli

Hardeep Singh Kohli

HARDEEP SINGH KOHLI: ALTERNATIVE, FACT.


The Radio 4 favourite, BAFTA winner and regular on BBC’s Question Time, This Week and Daily Politics tours a brand new show following its critically acclaimed run performed to packed houses at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.  Join Hardeep as he gives his unique take on the political climate combined with his trademark ‘quick witted patter’ (The Skinny).


Friday 23 Mar 20188:00pm Book Now
Teechers

Teechers

Blackeyed Theatre revives its highly-acclaimed production of John Godber’s classic comedy about life at a struggling ‘sink school’ for Mr Nixon, an unsuspecting new drama teacher. Will Mr Nixon abandon his students for a green and pleasant Grammar school? Who puts the bounce in Miss Prime, the PE teacher? Will Mrs Parry ever find her Koko? And why does everyone smell of spring onions?  Crammed full of unforgettable characters, political left-hooks and razor-sharp comedy, Teechers is more relevant today than ever, a modern classic with something vital to say about education for the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’.

Saturday 24 Mar 20182:30pm Book Now
Saturday 24 Mar 20188:00pm Book Now
Mark Steel: Every Little Thing

Mark Steel: Every Little Thing

This time last year, Donald Trump was a buffoon who surely wasn’t going to beat Hilary Clinton and Mark was living the married suburban ideal, a year later it’s all gone wrong!  But don’t worry, as Mark thinks Every Little Thing’s Gonna Be Alright.

Parental Guidance: 14+ (likely to be swearing and adult content)

(This transaction is subject to a £1 per person future fund levy).

Thursday 29 Mar 20188:00pm Book Now
A Heart at Sea

A Heart at Sea

Be enthralled by this epic folktale told on a miniature scale. Original song-writing tells the story of a Boy who bottles up his heart and throws it into the sea. Stunning visuals centre around a beautifully carved chest holding the secrets to the story. Intricate puppets are swept through this transforming wooden world as the Boy journeys through a heart-warming tale of whales, boats, and beards. Intimate gig-theatre that will resonate with all ages.

Wednesday 4 Apr 20182:30pm Book Now
'Make A Fish' Craft Session

'Make A Fish' Craft Session

Ages 7-12


We will be running a crafty session straight after ‘A Heart at Sea’. Make a decorative sea creature to move around and puppeteer yourself! Dorchester Art’s Participation Officer Megan will be on hand to help out.


Tickets just £2 if you also buy a ticket for A Heart at Sea

Wednesday 4 Apr 20183:45pm Book Now
Geoff Achison

Geoff Achison

Hailing from the deep south of Australia, Geoff Achison has created scores of devoted fans around the world with his exciting blend of raw blues and funky grooves. He was chosen as one of the “Top Ten Hottest New Guitarists” by Guitar Player Magazine and was included in the “Top 100+ Guitarists You Should Know” roster. Geoff is able to deliver the full blues-rock experience with his outstanding combo, The Souldiggers (internationally acclaimed drummer Sam Kelly, keys man Paul Jobson and Andy Hodge on bass).

Friday 6 Apr 20188:00pm Book Now
Crimes Under The Sun

Crimes Under The Sun

Award-winning theatre company New Old Friends present Crimes Under the Sun, a comedy thriller directed by James Farrell (Associate Director - The 39 Steps, West End). The show features four actors playing multiple outrageous characters, and a plot that romps along in the company’s trademark inventive style. Inspired by Agatha Christie, Hitchcock and film noir, you are invited on an hilarious but murderous trip to a classic English Riviera retreat.

Saturday 7 Apr 20188:00pm Book Now
Sunday 8 Apr 20183:00pm Book Now
Show of Hands Duo

Show of Hands Duo

Steve Knightley and Phil Beer: two extraordinary craftsmen with one unique sound. Dovetailing old songs with new, this is an unmissable celebration of the duo’s enduring impact on roots, acoustic and folk music. Show of Hands weave story and melody to create a spellbinding display of consummate musicianship. Multi-award-winning, and with five sell-out Royal Albert Hall shows under their belts, the original duo format makes a rare return to more intimate settings. Steve and Phil’s special guest is compelling musician and fellow Devonian Geoff Lakeman, chieftain of the brilliant Lakeman tribe.

Friday 13 Apr 20188:00pm Book Now
Dad's Army Radio Hour

Dad's Army Radio Hour

Two actors play 25 characters in this brilliant staging of classic radio scripts based on favourite episodes from the original TV series, Dad’s Army. Celebrating 50 years of Perry and Croft's quintessential sitcom, which won the Best One-Liner accolade in a poll of comedians conducted earlier this year by Gold, with the immortal words "Don't tell him, Pike". Double Fringe First Award winner David Benson (star of Think No Evil Of Us: My Life With Kenneth Williams and Boris: World King) and Jack Lane (Wisdom Of A Fool) present a selection of classic radio episodes featuring favourite lines, cherished characters and great feats of vocal impersonation!

Saturday 14 Apr 20188:00pm Book Now
Sunday 15 Apr 20183:00pm Book Now
Skimmity Hitchers 2018

Skimmity Hitchers 2018

In what has become something of a yearly tradition, cider-swillin' reprobates Skimmity Hitchers return to headline a triple bill night of live music.  Hugely popular in the West Country for their humorous and high-energy take on the Scrumpy & Western genre, the 4 boys will be taking over town with their blend of razor sharp parodies and home-pressed original material, no doubt with a few surprises and a dancing badger thrown in for good measure. This year’s quality support line-up sees folk-rock festival favourites Imprints and local punk youngsters Sinful Maggie.

Friday 20 Apr 20188:00pm Book Now
Jay Foreman

Jay Foreman

Jay Foreman is an award winning musical comedian whose songs have been heard on BBC Radio 4, Radio 4 Extra, The One Show, London Live TV and Dave Gorman's UK/Ireland tour. Jay provides a devilishly cheeky hour of songs, poems and comedy for children of all ages in this family friendly show which regularly sells out its entire runs at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Sunday 22 Apr 20182:30pm Book Now
Budapest Café Orchestra

Budapest Café Orchestra

Back by popular demand! Expect more of the traditional folk and gypsy-flavoured music from across the world that we all loved last time. Raucous, toe-tapping Balkan and Russian numbers are combined with jazz and swing inflections, Klezmer, Romanian Doinas and Hungarian Czardas are awarded fresh treatments before they give way to a disarmingly beautiful arsenal of ballads such as the Schindler's List theme or Andy Statman's bitter sweet The Flatbush Waltz.  The involvingly diverse repertoire often even strays over into the technicolour territory of many a well-loved film or television score.

Thursday 26 Apr 20188:00pm Book Now
Bach Before Leipzig

Bach Before Leipzig

Two rising stars on the European early music scene, Italian-based American violinist Elicia Silverstein and British harpsichordist and conductor Christopher Bucknall, team up to present a recital of some of Bach’s most varied, nuanced and fascinating instrumental music. The works on the programme, which range from intimate and conversational to dramatic and toccata-like, from dance music to intense counterpoint, were all composed during Bach’s time in Weimar and Cöthen, prior to his famed stay in Leipzig.

Sunday 29 Apr 20183:00pm Book Now
Maddy Prior

Maddy Prior

Over the years Maddy Prior has worked with some exceptional musicians  – within Steeleye Span and beyond. To that noted list she has added Hannah James and Giles Lewin (Bellowhead / Carnival Band), releasing two albums. The trio will be performing songs from both as well as highlights from Maddy’s career – all presented in a daring acoustic style that enhances one of the finest voices this country has ever produced.

Wednesday 2 May 20188:00pm Book Now