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What's On: Three spirit-lifting events for spring




This month brings the chance to see modern masterpieces, invest in one-of-a-kind jewellery and follow the Yellow Brick Road. . .

Wizard of Oz

Proof that pantomimes aren’t just for Christmas, KD Theatre Productions is bringing the wonderful Wizard of Oz to Ely’s Maltings this Easter holiday. Running on April 7 and 8, it follows Dorothy and Toto over the rainbow to Oz, where, as the famed L. Frank Baum story goes, she, Scarecrow, Tin Man and Lion follow the yellow brick road to find what they’re missing - home, a brain, a heart and courage - in the magical Emerald City. . .

If you know me, you’ll know I love Wizard of Oz and have the bumper sticker to prove it; taking us on a quest through a fantastical land to show us that what we sought was within us all along, it’s a story filled with both sparkle and soul. Judging from the colour-saturated staging and KD’s past performances - the company produces the Maltings’ excellent Christmas shows - this version promises a great, glitter-dusted morning, matinee and night of theatre.

Performance times range from 11am to 6.30pm. Tickets from £14. Book at thelittleboxoffice.com/kdtheatre.

Rural Magpie

If you’ve got a magpie’s eye for jewellery - whether antique, vintage or contemporary; precious, costume or mixed media - Rural Magpie’s spring fairs are not to be missed.

The first, taking place April 9 and 10, will bring more than 25 jewellery stalls to The Chesterfords Community Centre, Great Chesterford (10am to 4pm both days, entry £2). Exhibitors include Gabriella del Valle of Elemental Jewellery Design, Willingham, known for her semi-precious stone-studded sterling silver pieces, pictured, which combine colour and shape to eye-catching effect.

Gabriella will also be showing and selling her work at Rural Magpie’s second jewellery fair of the season: running on May 7 at Foakes Hall, Stortford Road, Great Dunmow (10am to 4pm, entry £2), it will feature some 20 stalls in total, including Great Shelford-based John Franklin Jewellery, which specialises in brushed aluminium pendants and earrings, also pictured, featuring motifs inspired by flora, fauna and modern art.

For full details of these events and more - Rural Magpie hosts regular antiques and vintage fairs locally too - visit ruralmagpie.co.uk.

Hockney's Eye

Showcasing some never-before-seen works by one of the most popular and influential British artists of our time - including a new self-portrait, painted mid-pandemic - Hockney’s Eye: The Art and Technology of Depiction has just opened at The Fitzwilliam Museum and Downing College’s The Heong Gallery in Cambridge.

Billed as “the first exhibition to explore the many ways of seeing and depicting art through his eyes”, it displays a wide range of David Hockney’s work, from his iconic poolside paintings to iPad depictions of British woodland, in new ways.

At The Fitzwilliam, pieces are displayed alongside historic paintings by William Hogarth, Vincent Van Gogh, Claude Monet, John Constable and Andy Warhol, “to enable Hockney and artists of the past to speak directly to each other”, while the display at The Heong Gallery spans both space and time, starting with a small drawing made while at art student in 1959 and culminating in a recent wall-length digital work.

Running across the two galleries from now until August 29, entry is free. See fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk.


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