What’s On – April
MUDDY’S PICK OF THE MONTH
EXHIBITION: Tony Husband: 35 Years of Private Eye, Exeter Library, Castle St, Exeter, until mid-April
Fancy a titter? Pop into Exeter Library for an exclusive peek at thirty-five years’ of the award-winning Private Eye’s cartoonist’s work displayed for free throughout the building.
DANCE: Them/Us, BalletBoyz, Exeter Northcott Theatre, Exeter, Mon 1 – Tues 2 April
The BalletBoyz are back in town with their critically-acclaimed show of two halves, Them and Us, and boy, do I want to see it thanks to the rave reviews from The Times, FT, Guardian and The Stage. Described as an inventive double bill, it asks where we see ourselves in relation to the “other,” and explores the fine balance between them and us.
ART: Celebrating Three Generations: New artworks by Anita Klein, Marine House, Beer, until 12 April
Whenever I see Anita Klein cards on sale, I always buy a job lot for girlfriends, so brilliant are they at capturing those every-day moments of a woman’s life. Hotfoot it down to the gorgeous coastal town of Beer to check out her latest collection of artworks.
THEATRE: The Mermaid’s Magical Purse, 1 – 9 April
Plymouth’s ever-quirky and creative Stiltskin’s Soapbox Children’s Theatre have added a few extra dates in April to their new original show complete with mermaids, pirates and puppets.
ART: Royal Albert Memorial Museum and Art Gallery, Gallery 20, Exeter: Hawksmoor Classical Concert Series 2019, 3 April
Time to top up your classical repertoire with an evening of clarinet music from Emma Johnson, playing Brahms, Rossini, Mozart and more. One to inspire any reluctant tooters amongst your Mudlets; Emma is one of the UK’s biggest selling classical artists, has performed all over the world -from America to Africa – and has sold over half a million albums worldwide.
COMEDY: Lee Nelson, Serious Joker, Northcott Theatre, Exeter 6 April
Lee Nelson, the comedy alter-ego of comedian Simon Brokdin – known for handing Teresa May her P45 and showering Sepp Blatter in cash – brings his 170-date tour to Exeter.
GARDENS: RHS Garden Rosemoor, Easter Fun Family Workshops, 6 – 21 April
There are basketfuls of egg-hunts and trails this month, but you can’t go wrong with RHS Garden Rosemoor near Torrington who’re running five days of creative workshops, plus an Easter trail and secret clues to find among the daffies.
THEATRE: Witch, Torquay Museum, 6 April
Never mind Judge Rinder, enter a real life court room drama by Circle of Spears Productions based on the trial of accused healer Margery Scrope in Lyme Regis back in 1687, exploring the dangers and realities of being a woman with secrets in a patriarchal society. Scary stuff.
OUTDOORS: Quince Honey Farm, Re-opening launch, South Molton, 6 – 21 April
Get your dose of vitamin-bee as Quince Honey Farm are re-locating their beloved bees to a new site just off the A361 North Devon Link Road and it’s all systems go to be ready for opening in Easter 2019. Go find out what all the buzz is about…
Camel Creek Adventure Park, Cornwall, Easter opening, Sat 6 – 21 April
If you fancy a hop over the border to Cornwall, Camel Creek is reopening this weekend after an £3m zhuzh of the water rides and the addition of a new mini log-flume, so don’t forget to pack at least one set of spare clothes for the Muddies (and def one for you).
KIDS: Dartmoor Zoo Annual Spring Fair, Sparkwell near Plymouth, Sat 6 April
Take your little wild things to Dartmoor Zoo at Sparkwell (the basis for the movie We Bought a Zoo with Matt Damon) for their annual spring fair full of fun and games, balloon (and real) animals, food stalls and craft.
FOOD: The Good Food & Craft Market, Royal Plymouth Yard, Sun 7 April
Ahoy up there, The Invisible Circus bring a Barnum feel to this month’s Good Food and Craft Market at Plymouth’s Royal William Yard (free on first Sunday of every month). Ooh at Felicity Footloose, the amazing upside-down daredevil acrobatic queen, aaah at the stilt-walking Stripy Twins performing aerial hoop dance and gasp (and stand well back) at knife throwing from Pete Dobbs Plus comedy juggling from Daryl J Carrington and Rimskis Cycling Piano will be bringing all his tunes to the yard.
POP-UP: Dachshund pup-up cafe, Exeter Phoenix, Gandy Street, Exeter, 10am Sun 7 April
Here’s a banger of an idea! Grab the lead and bring your little sausage along to Exeter’s first ever dachshund gathering to mingle with other furry friends and their owners. And there’s a prize for the best-dressed pup.
KIDS: Noise Art Radio: Easter holiday club, 8 – 10 April
Only three days into the Easter hols and running out of ways to keep the kids entertained? Cue Noise Art Radio with the perfect solution; opportunities to record interviews, present radio shows, make giant puppets and much much more.
ART EXHIBITION: What have I done now? Awesome Art Space, 27 Paris Street, Exeter, 8-13 April
Don’t believe the hype, says politically engaged artist Robin Doyle, who’s clearly not impressed with the onslaught of the media, the Kardashians and coke adverts. Check out his awesome Banksyesque art at the new Awesome Art Space pop-up on Paris Street.
SHOPPING: VIP Chesney launch at The Fire Engine, nr Bideford, Tues 9 April (from midday) – 10 April (10am-4pm)
Sun’s out, time to zhuzh up the garden! Will and Annette at The Fire Engine invite you to their VIP launch of Chesney’s new outdoor living range (including a fab outdoor wood-burner that keeps you warm in unreliable British summers AND you can cook on it) with complementary food, fizz – and fire (obvs) – to keep you interested.
DAYS OUT: Muddy Dog Challenge, Powderham Castle, Kenton nr Exeter, 13 April
There’s a good boy! Show off your clever dog by signing up for Battersea Dog Home’s Muddy Dog Challenge 2019. You go on an obstacle course together (2.5k or 5k), get fit and raise money for Battersea Dogs Home – now I can that a win-win-win, and your good doggy gets a bandana and a rosette to wear with pooch pride.
CHILDREN: Babbacombe Model Village: Enchanting Illuminations, every Thursday 11 April – 18 Oct
One for the little people, Babbacombe’s iconic model village is a trip back in time, fascinatingly kitsch and a great way to keep the Muddies quiet for an hour or two. Every Thursday evening from April to October, as dusk falls, the village will be transformed into a world of intricate and enchanting illuminations. Keep your ticket and you can return for free with 7 days to see it all by day.
MUSIC: Thomas Cameron, Poltimore House, Thurs 11 April
Join the Classic Brit Award-nominated tenor, performing hits from musical theatre, classical and contemporary music, including Coldplay and Paloma Faith, as well as his BBC featured debut album, all in the unusual setting of Grade II listed Poltimore House during its path to restoration.
EAT & DRINK: Spring menu tasting, Orestone Manor at Maidencombe, Fri 12 April
Trot your taste-buds over to Maidencombe near Torquay for Orestone Manor’s spring menu tasting complete with country house-colonial vibes, G&T’s on the terrace and awesome views over the subtropical palms and sparkling waves of Lyme Bay.
THEATRE: Ant Middleton, The Mind Over Muscle Tour, Plymouth Pavilions, Sat 13 April
A must-see for anyone moping on Monday nights (yep, me) now that Channel 4’s SAS: Who Dares Wins is off air: the Chief Instructor is coming off the snowy wastes and heading to Plymouth for a night of muscly motivational self-discovery and mental strength. Yes, staff!
MUSIC: Grinagog presents Minigog 2019, Torre Abbey Spanish Barn, Sat 13 April
Summer’s coming early, Minigog festival is hitting Torbay this April, with story-telling, dancing and ooh, Neville Staples of The Specials (celebrating the two-tone band’s 40th anniversary).
FOOD: River Cottage: A Day with Gill Meller, Sun 14 April
Fancy a forage? Join award winning food writer, Gill Meller, for a day of gathering and seasonal cooking – and you’ll get a signed copy of Gill’s latest book ‘Gather’ so you can trot home and impress the family with your tasty hedgerow fayre.
WALKS: Torbay Coast and Countryside Trust- Wild Flower Wander, Sun 14 April 2:00-3:30pm
Don’t know your daffs from your dandelions? Top up your nature knowledge on a wildflower wander through Cockington. An opportunity to do a bit of botanising, identify springtime flowers, do some instagramming and maybe do a few sketches if you’re feeling arty. Meet at Cockington Visitor Centre.
EAT & DRINK: Springtime Barbecue, Rust & the Wolf, Ashburton, Sun 14 April
Not been to Rust and the Wolf in Ashburton yet? Here’s your excuse to check out their quirky American memorabilia and uber-cool cafe. Meat and veggie options available, booking only by phone (01364 652402), plus live music, neon signs and and an Easy Rider vibe.
THEATRE: The Pantaloons Present The Odyssey, Watermark Ivybridge, Thurs 18 Mar
You’ve heard of Greek tragedy right? The Pantaloons bring you Greek comedy, a new verse adaptation of the most epic journey of all time – one man’s quest to make it home to his wife wearing a bed-sheet while battling his way through grumpy gods, naughty nymphs, monocular monsters and over a hundred sleazy suitors.
MUSIC: The Specials, Plymouth Pavilions, Fri 19 April
Bought The Specials’ new album ‘Encore’ yet? Go get it girl! Straight to number one in the album charts and with mellow disco and reggae guaranteed to get you skanking round the kitchen, even if you’re too young to remember their last hit way back in 1981, ‘Ghost Town’. The ska legends hit Plymouth for their 40th anniversary tour this month, minus the pork-pie hats but as cool and political as ever. Read my Muddy interview with front man Terry Hall here.
FOOD & DRINK: Chocolate and coffee festival, Butchers Hall Tavistock, Fri 19 April
Coffee, chocolate treats and hot chocolate. Need I say more?
MUSIC: Casa presents Annie Mac, Pryzm, Barbican Approach, Plymouth, 9pm – 4am, Sun 21 April
BBC Radio 1 DJ Annie Mac is in da house, or rather Plymouth for the first time so get ready to make some noise at Pryzm, the south-west’s biggest house party and techno organiser.
EASTER: River Dart Country Park, Easter Egg Hunt, Fri 19 April – Mon 22 April 10am-4pm
With Muddies eating their weight in chocolate this weekend take them to the sweet air of River Dart Country Park to run off that sugar-high. Over 25 activities designed not just for your adventurous kids, you can join in on the fun too. Plus an Easter Egg Hunt with a prize to be won, bouncy castles and of course, the Easter Bunny. (pic credit Imogen Foster)
DRINK: The Best of Devon Gin Festival, Double Locks, Exeter, 19 – 20 April
Gin sipping, beautiful waterside views – what’s not to like! The Best of Devon Gin Festival is coming to Double Locks for an afternoon of entertainment and culture, with artisan Devonian and Cornish gin tipples aplenty, free canapes and for would-be gin-slingers, a chance to take part in a Gin masterclass. Roll out the gin ball!
THEATRE: Martin Kemp: Back To The 80s, at the Civic Hall, Totnes, Saturday 20th April 19:30-23:30
Fancy an all 80’s party? You’re in luck, because TV star and DJ, Martin Kemp, is bringing what’s set to be the biggest 80’s night to ever hit Totnes! This tour is proving to be very popular, so get in quick.
COMEDY: Shappi Khorsandi: Skittish Warrior… Confessions of a Club Comic, Plough Arts Centre, Sat 20 April
Fresh out of the jungle Shappi Khorsandi, who appeared on 2017’s ‘I’m a Celebrity Get me out of Here’, is making her return in a brand-new live comedy show. Check in for an evening packed with quick wit and cultural observation, and tips on how to be more YOU. Read the Muddy interview with Shappi here.
EAT AND DRINK: Gidleigh Park: Easter Sunday Lunch, 21st April, 12:00-14:00pm
Avoid the egg hunts and celebrate Easter Sunday in gastromic style at Gidleigh Park’s award-winning restaurant. Served up in the stunning surroundings of Dartmoor, the sample online menu is guaranteed to make your mouth water, with options including lamb, chicken and two fish dishes.
EASTER: Gara Rock, The biggest Easter egg hunt in Devon, Sunday 21 April
Unwind with wine, cocktails and jaw-dropping coastal views while the Muddies find adventure in nature, or chocolate more like, as they race along the shore in what’s being billed in the biggest Easter Egg Hunt to ever hit Devon. As if anyone ever needed an excuse to go to Gara Rock…
OUTDOORS: Living Coasts: World Penguin Day, 25th April
Ppppickuppa penguin! It’s World Penguin day (of course you knew that) and Torquay’s Living Coasts are inviting you to celebrate our flippered friends. Mudlets can feed the Pingu’s or meet ‘Mac’ their penguin mascot and once your penguin adventures come to an end, you can go and amuse yourself with a huge range of penguin-themed treats in the Terrace Café located on site.
DRINK: ‘Around Italy’ Wine Tasting, Royal William Yard, Plymouth, Thurs April 25
Take a tipsy trip around Italy without leaving Plymouth in a wine tasting tour hosted by sophisticated indie wine lounge and merchant Le Vignoble, home to more than 250 wines and very knowledgeable wine aficionados.
MUSIC: The Vamps, Plymouth Pavilions, 27 April
Don’t be deceived! Just because they can’t afford chairs, doesn’t mean The Vamps aren’t one of the biggest boy bands in Britain right now! Bradley, James, Connor and Tristan are kindly kicking off their UK & Ireland tour right on our doorstep in Plymouth.