Celebrate the summer of 2016 with Artsreach!

This summer, Artsreach continues to bring professional performances to rural venues right across Dorset, with the launch of its brand new and exciting programme. There’s a whole variety of things on offer, with ten brilliant productions visiting nineteen venues across the County; everything from classical quintets and comedy duo’s to award-winning folk bands and contemporary Shakespeare:


This summer Artsreach presents a range of high calibre musical performers. One of the fastest rising forces on the international folk circuit, Dallahan are heavily rooted in traditional Irish music, but with hugely diverse backgrounds and influences. Following the release of their acclaimed second album, the group will appear just twice in Dorset. The ever popular Northern Harmony return to England and will give three concerts in Dorset. Their unique performances of thrilling harmony singing from South Africa, Corsica, Georgia, the Balkans and many American traditions has won them a worldwide reputation, so do book early for this one and look out for workshop opportunities too! Each representing one of the string sections of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, five gifted musicians come together as the BSO Resonate Strings. Their engaging ‘String Serenade’ concert will reflect the wonderful diversity of the classical string repertoire and will feature music from Vivaldi to Brahms, Mozart to Puccini, and Handel to Piazzolla. Then, playing authentic Cuban Son, the intoxicating fusion of Spanish and African rhythms that gave rise to salsa, Son Yambu make their Artsreach debut in July. Audiences can expect a truly, sensational, authentic Latin music experience and a night of dancing!


A whole host of Artsreach favourites will be treading the boards with brand new productions over the coming months. Told entirely in rhyme and song, the hilarious duo Living Spit are back with ‘The Bacon Boys’, an entirely unique spin on ‘The Three Little Pigs’. With porcine puns, lupine laughs and more rural rumbunctiousness than you can shake a stick, straw or brick at, this promises to be a grown up fairy tale you’ll never forget! As always, early booking is advised. 2016 is the 300th anniversary of the birth of the famous landscape architect, Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown, and actor John Cobb’s timely new show The Eyecatcher is based on his life and gardens. Affectionate, comic and visually stimulating, meet the man who climbed from Northern anonymity to become one of the most famous men in England. The popular Bristol Old Vic Theatre School West Country tour sees the stars of tomorrow tackle one of Shakespeare’s most popular plays, ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’. Packed with dazzling and dramatic poetry, there’s just one opportunity to see this teasing, glittering and inventive comedy in Dorset this summer. Finally, published twenty years after Shakespeare’s death and regarded as the jewel in the crown of Spain’s golden age of literature, Calderon’s greatest play, ‘La Vida Es Sueño’ provides the inspiration for an epic fable of love, war and destiny, full of passion and humour from award winning Cornish favourites Miracle Theatre. Wrap up warm, grab a blanket, pack a picnic and prepare to be entertained by this outstanding Cornish companies special open-air tour of ‘Life’s A Dream’.

Then, in a unique collaboration with Activate, Burn the Curtain’s new promenade adventure for runners and walkers alike can be seen at Durlston Country Park across three nights in April. Angela Carter’s ‘The Company of Wolves’ has been adapted in to an exciting re-telling of this dark and mysterious modern classic. Performed over 2-4 miles, audiences should come prepared for physical activity, with appropriate clothing and good footwear!

familIESin don’t have long to wait until the release of the Artsreach Children’s Summer Workshop programme but, in the meantime Tess Bide’s ‘The Tap Dancing Mermaid’ can be seen through Artsreach as part of the 1st Swanage Pirate Festival. Performed by Claire Crawford in a marquee in the Prince Albert Gardens, expect stunning story-telling with puppetry and live music and a chance to meet the puppets.

Full programme details including dates, venues and individual box office numbers can be found at www.artsreach.co.uk, where you can also sign up to the Artsreach mailing list. Outlets where you can pick up a copy of the programme include libraries, arts centres and tourist information centres across Dorset. You can also find Artsreach on Facebook and Twitter to keep up to date with the latest news and join in the rural touring conversation.