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Muddy Guide to the Norfolk & Norwich Festival

We love May - two Bank Holidays plus the N&N Festival bringing the county alive with outdoor events, unique theatre, dance, circus, literature, music, visual arts and so much more.

Lots of local talent plus artists from across the world come together as part of the Norfolk & Norwich Festival, sharing their ideas and celebrating the arts. Events will be happening across the county in theatres, galleries, gardens and stately homes plus of course centre stage at The Adnams Spiegeltent in Chapelfield Gardens, Norwich.

It’s an eclectic menu of things to do.  Over the course of 17 days there will be 14 premieres and 100 events including lots for families and a plethora of free stuff. Luckily Muddy has red penned the programme and picked out our top 12 highlights.

Starting with the Festival Launch and ….

 

The Journey, Norwich, Fri 10 May at 9pm

Chris Bullzini’s spectacular high wire traverse of the Norwich city skyline. Worth keeping the kiddies up a little late for this one I reckon!

 

Eliza & Martin Carthy, Norwich Cathedral, Sat 11 May at 8pm 

 

Twice-Mercury nominated Eliza Carthy is joined by her dad, singer and guitarist Martin to perform songs from their first duo record The Elephant. Eliza is touted as one of the most engaging artists of her generation and her dad Martin is a folk music legend – quite a talented family! Why didn’t I insist on the kids keeping up those piano lessons??

Book tickets £10 – £22

 

Dante or Die – USER NOT FOUND, Kemps Restaurant, Norwich Theatre Royal, Mon 13 May 6 & 8.30pm

This one sends a little shiver down my spine and I can’t wait to review it. USER NOT FOUND asks the question – “would you delete your online legacy at the moment of your death?” An experience event – you’re given a smart phone and a pair of headphones and immersed in one man’s story as he’s faced with the choice of keeping or erasing his partner’s online existence. I’ll let you know what I decide …….

Book tickets £15

 

A night at the musicals, Adnams Spiegeltent, Chapelfield Gardens, Norwich, Wed 15 & Thurs 16 May

I saw Jonny Woo recently at the Playhouse and he’s fabulous darling! Plus he is joined by Olivier Award winning Le Gateau Chocolat and they will be bringing high glamour and divine costumes as they drag you through the back catalogue of fabulous musicals. Expect a raucous night of slaughtered show tunes!

Book tickets £15

 

The Turbans, Adnams Spiegeltent, Chapelfield Gardens, Norwich, Fri 17 May 

We love something a bit different and these guys look very quirky and cool. The Turbans bind together music from “anywhere” with foot stomping Balkan influenced music inspired by ancient melodies for the 21st Century. I can imagine this is something to behold within the confines of the old fashioned big top.

Book tickets £15

 

Bells & Spells, Norwich Theatre Royal, Fri 17 May

UK Premiere – Bells & Spells follows Aurelia Thierrée’s peculiar journey as an incurable kleptomaniac at the mercy of the objects that she steals. Using imagery and dance she blends the wonderful with the strange in a surreal world of humour and illusion. Sounds like menopause to me!

Book tickets £10 -£26

 

Garden Party, Chapelfield Gardens, Sat 18 & Sun 19 May 

If the sun is shining this is one of my favourite family weekends of the year. So many weird and wonderful things to see and do plus a cheeky little drink outside the Spiegeltent – heaven! From metal jungles and baguette barricades to a time machine disco and circus acrobats, this looks like the usual menu of weird and wonderful activities that we know and love.

Free 

 

Beverley Knight (+ Jalen N’Gonda), Norwich Theatre Royal, Sat 18 May

We’re getting a flavour of old school and will be moving on up with the Queen of British soul and R&B – the beautiful Beverley Knight. This promises to be a good night Sista!

Book tickets £10 – £46

 

Ragroof Tea Dances – Cuba Libre, Adnams Spiegeltent, Chapelfield Gardens, Norwich, Sun 19 May

Fancy a hot afternoon in Havana? I’m not sure about the tight skirts but I’ll be swigging a bottle of Desperados and swinging along to those Cuban rhythms.

Tickets £12

 

Mothers Ruin, A Cabaret about Gin, Adnams Spiegeltent, Chapelfield Gardens, Norwich,  Wed 22 & Thurs 23 May

Now this sounds right up my street! Hysterical history – a raucous musical journey through 18th century London, a few New York speakeasies, the Australian bush and the jungles of Peru to discover a little more about our favourite drop.

Book tickets £15

 

Hannah Williams & The Affirmations, Adnams Spiegeltent, Chapelfield Gardens, Norwich, Sat 25 May

Anyone compared to the legendary Amy Winehouse is a must see for me. It could be one of those moments where you saw her first before she became the next big thing. The darlings of the worldwide soul scene – this promises to be a whirlwind of love, longing, anger and everything in between.

Book tickets £15

 

Henry Moore Exhibition, Houghton Hall, Wed 1 May – Sun 29 Sept

Last year Damien Hirst and this year Henry Moore, we’re loving Houghton Hall’s exhibition programme. On until the end of September, this will be the first significant show of Sir Henry Moore’s work in the region for many years. Curated by Sebastiano Barassi, the exhibition will include several of Moore’s most identifiable sculptures; large-scale bronzes and fibreglass pieces will be displayed in the park and grounds, while a selection of smaller works including models and drawings will be displayed inside the Hall.

Book tickets £10 – £18

 

More Spiegeltent fun

The Spiegeltent is also hosting a programme of free daytime events for all ages – from kid’s salsa classes and a toddler disco to singing workshops to Japanese embroidery or an Afternoon Social. A great way to spend an afternoon doing something just a little bit different.

I’ll see you at the bar!

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