16 -22 August day planner

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Sculptor Anthony Bryant is known all over the world for his extraordinarily fine, wet-turned wooden vessels, made mostly from green, naturally felled oak (an eco-friendly aesthete, is our Bryant), and turned thin to remove stress from the wood, which could lead to splits in the delicate forms, like this slightly conical pot (right). All works will be on sale at prices ranging from pounds 60 to pounds 350.

9am-11pm Mon-Sat, 12pm-11pm Sun. Craftspace, Barbican Centre Foyer, London EC1 (0171-638 8891), free. To 29 Sept.


Wander in wonder, shoeless and (probably) clueless, around an ethereal castle in the air (below), as the roof of the Queen Elizabeth Hall is transformed into giant, labyrinthine, interconnected spaces, radiating with weird colours and lights. Designed by Architect of Air, Alan Parkinson, this installation is a sensual feast for all the family.

12pm-6pm, QEH Roof, South Bank, London SE1 (0171-960 4242), pounds 2.50/pounds 6 for a family of four. To Mon 26 Aug.


If your hay fever has gone into hibernation for another year already, get your petal-delighted eyes and noses on down to Blackheath, so that you can sniff and stare at fine displays of flowers arrangements within the historic setting of Rangers House, a stately building dating from the early 18th century.

10am-6pm today, Sat, Sun, Rangers House, Chesterfield Walk, Blackheath, London SE10 (0181-289 5189). pounds 3.50/pounds 3; children over 5 pounds 1.25.

Saturday 17


Sinfonia 21, now widely acknowledged as one of Europe's leading chamber orchestras, hosts its second annual festival of music deep in the Sussex countryside. Each day promises old and new music in informal surroundings, plus workshops for new composers and performances of their work. Sunday sees celebrated African jazz ensemble Akima holding a percussion session, and playing in the evening. What's more, musically minded youngsters are encouraged to take part in the Magical Musical Treasure Hunt, a fantastical multimedia roam through the grounds for hidden goodies.

Michelham Priory, Upper Dicker, Hailsham, E Sussex (01323 844224). Evenings pounds 10/pounds 6; afternoon recitals pounds 5.80. To Fri 23 Aug.


Classic car maniacs from around the country will be convening to sample the smell of the oil and the roar of the carburettors as they zoom around the Castle Combe Circuit for the annual Classic and Sportscar Action Day. It's one of the few chances that owners of Alfa Romeos, Scimitars, Sciroccos, TVRs, Jaguars, Corvettes and most other makes have to drive their lovingly polished possessions (legally) extremely fast round lots of nice bends. Track passes can be bought on the day for pounds 15, and those who don't fancy a breakneck pace can drive in speed-controlled parade laps. Memorabilia stalls complete the day.

9am-5pm, Castle Combe, Chippenham, Wilts (01249 782101). Admission pounds 5/pounds 3.

Sunday 18


The ideal counterpart to the QEH's Luminarium for the art-historically minded, Meggopolis (above), aka The Monumental Maze Sculpture, is Architect of Air Alan Parkinson's previous project, and after today it leaves Richmond for ever. In association with Scope, Britain's largest disability charity, Parkinson is exhibiting this maze of liquid colour, which, with four soaring main domes, will create a strong sense of wonder in all who view it.

12pm-7.30pm, Kew Green, Richmond. pounds 2.50/pounds 1.50. All proceeds to Scope. The site is completely wheelchair accessible.


A blazing display of fiesta fireworks tonight in Morecambe Bay Arena marks the opening of four days of pure carnival music and dance. Groups taking part in free street entertainment include the scorching Manchester samba team (no joke), Inner Sense, who boast a 10-piece drummer batteria, sax, singer and cavaquinho player; plus Viramundo, performing a wicked brew of Samba, Merengue, Frevo Soca rhythms with Brazilian dancers to tempt you onto your pins. Passo a Passo will be performing their thrillingly physical show, Capoeira, a fusion of combat and dance (Mon 19, Dukes Playhouse, Lancaster, pounds 6/pounds 5), while Tuesday (Dome, Morecambe, pounds 6/pounds 5) is a Brazilian Party Night with three bands on stage, and Wednesday sees Diana Miranda, a songstress admired of the great Quincy Jones himself, hog the limelight (Dukes Playhouse, pounds 7.50/pounds 6).

Booking: Dukes Playhouse 01524 66645; Dome 01524 582803. Festival to Wed 21.


Get set with your floppy fringe and your suede skateboard trainers for the second day (the first day's sold out already, folks) of this weekend noise-in-Chelmsford-park festival, which not only boasts gigs from Paul Weller, the Charlatans, Mike Flowers Pops, Space, Sleeper, Tricky, and many more, pop pickers, but most groovesome facilities including Inflatable Quasar (Stephen Hawking ought to have something to say about that), Surf Machine, Sumo Wrestling and Bouncy Boxing. Get over to Warrington, meanwhile, and you can catch Pulp's last UK concert for 12 months, plus Gary Numan and Elastica. Marvellous.

Hylands Park, Chelmsford; Victoria Park, Warrington. Tickets for either event: 0115-934 2000. National Coachline, organising return trips to the venues: 0115-934 2007.

Monday 19


Sotheby's will be celebrating 30 years of sales in Scotland with their landmark two-day auction (today and Tue 20) of the finest examples of Scottish painting and art, as well as the traditional auctions of Scottish silver, jewellery, Wemyss ware (like this lovely cat, below, unusually glazed completely in blue and estimated at a heartbreaking pounds 4,000-pounds 6,000), animalier bronzes, and sporting guns. Pick up a Scottish Colourist, maybe, such as Cadell's Interior - The Red Chair (bottom), at a guide price of pounds 30,000-pounds 50,000; or a couple of electroplated figurines depicting Robert the Bruce and Sir William Wallace, made in 1887 and classically posed in chain mail and helmets, for an estimated pounds 5,000-pounds 7,000. Or go for a bargain by rooting around amongst the pebble jewellery, with a brooch set with a large citrine within a border of agate plaques and foiled rock crystals which may go for as little as pounds 350.

The Gleneagles Hotel, Auchterarder, Perthshire. Sotheby's website is at http://www.sothebys.com.


The Oxford Story Exhibiton will be offering younger visitors the opportunity to take part in a fortnight of half-hour practical printing workshops, where children will be able to discover the art of roller and polytile printing, creating their own colourful designs, which will then be reproduced onto a poster. Local artist Phil Woods will be supervising the printing sessions and advising on techniques - and the children will be able to take inspiration from the referemces to printing and writing in the Exhibition itself, before taking away their wild psychedelic creations to grace the walls of your house.

10am-4pm every day, Oxford Story Exhibition, Broad St, Oxford (01865 790055). pounds 4.50/pounds 3.95. Family ticket (2 adults/2 children) pounds 14. To Fri 30 Aug.


A celebration of Folk and Roots, in association with Mrs Casey Music, occurs in the RFH Foyer at various times every day to Fri. Catch the Eel Grinders (bagpipes, fiddle and accordion), Saxophony (British folk on 4 saxes and percussion), and more.

South Bank, London SE1 (0171-960 4242).

Tuesday 20


Exhibiting for the first time in the UK, Japanese photographer Tadao Kimura has a one-man show, "The Legend of Xembala", consisting of his Landscapes of the Soul: spiritual, computerized portraits of the Tibetan people (bottom). Kimura, who has been working as a photographer for 20 years, has been taking pictures in Tibet for eight years, and "wanted to capture the spiritual strength of these people who struggle to keep their identity under the oppression of Communist China". To this end, Kimura turned to computer-imaging techniques. A lot of photography in Japan is digital, he recognised, but this resource was usually used in the service of flashy, impersonal images. By contrast, Kimura wanted to use new technology in order to express the invisible powers of the psyche, the mysterious genius of the country that Kimura calls his "soul place".

9.30am-6pm Mon-Fri, The Association Gallery, 9-10 Domingo St, London EC1 (0171-608 1445), free.


"If dancers could design heaven, it would look a lot like White Oak," raved Newsweek. Founded by Mikhail Baryshnikov and Mark Morris in 1989, the company takes its name from the White Oak Plantation, an idyllic nature reserve, lent by kindly US patron Howard Gilman, on the Florida-Georgia border, where the dancers live in lodges and cavort with 600 animals. White Oak also happens to be an elite, meticulous company which is gracing London for five days from today with an entirely new programme of works by such modern choreographers as Merce Cunningham (Septet), Morris himself (Three Russian Preludes), Kraig Patterson (make like a tree/What A Beauty), Joachim Schlomer (Blue Heron) and Jose Limn (Chaconne). Yes, the 48-year- old Misha is still dancing, having sensibly given up the ballet repertoire to concentrate on modern dance, with a select bunch of hand-picked, brilliant individuals. Don't dither about; go see it.

7.30pm Coliseum, St Martin's Lane, London WC2 (0171-632 8300) pounds 10-pounds 37.50.

Wednesday 21

FALCONRY Watch like a hawk: South Coast Falconry will have a selection of glorious birds of prey or "raptors" (below) on display, including yer actual falcons, in the grounds of Hever Castle today. Plus, weather permitting, there will be two flying displays at 1pm and 3pm. Visitors to the castle will have the fascinating opportunity to see owls, buzzards, eagles, hawks and falcons close-up, and to learn more about our beautiful yet slightly disturbing feathered friends.

11am-5pm, Hever Castle and Gardens, Edenbridge, Kent (01732 865224), pounds 4.40/pounds 2.60, OAPs pounds 3.90, family ticket (2 adults, 2 children) pounds 11.40.


By which it is not to be understood that marijuana is on the menu: this is a strictly caffeine-only infusion event, wherein our lovely, brown national drink is the subject of an exhibition held in association with quality char-merchants, Twinings, in Syon House, the London home of the Duke of Northumberland. The inspiration for the exhibition is the fact that it was in the Great Conservatory at Syon Park that the very first British tea bush successfully flourished in the middle of the 18th century. The exhibition, which will explore the crazy world of British tea-drinking in the 18th and 19th centuries, will include documents from the Duke of Northumberland's archives relating to tea purchases; teapots from the Duke's collection and table-settings depicting just how tea would have been taken in a stately home such as Syon House. Seven historic teapots from a collection of more than 3,000 held at Norwich Castle Museum will be on show, along with Twinings memorabilia celebrating their 290 years in the business.

11am-5pm Wed-Sun, plus Mon 26, Syon House, Brentford, Middx (0181-560 0881), pounds 5.50/pounds 4. To 27 Sept.


Shakespeare's slightly ropey The Two Gentlemen of Verona is the courageous first-production choice for the Prologue Season, taking place on a temporary stage, at the newly-built wooden reproduction of Shakey's own Globe Theatre. The production will star the Globe's artistic director, Mark Rylance, and the concept of open-air theatre will surely never be the same again.

7pm Mon Sat, mats Thur, Sat 2.30pm, 4pm Sun, Shakespeare's Globe, Bear Gardens, Bankside, Southwark, London SE1 (0171-620 0202). pounds 16/pounds 12; "groundlings" pounds 5.

Thursday 22


A fascinating guided walk, eminently suitable for curious children and nascent boffins everywhere, explaining the extraordinary secrets of Lancaster's scientific heritage. Your host will be Peter Wade, who among other things will be explaining the mysterious frieze of famous scientists that is carved around the Queen Victoria Monument in Dalton Square, and leading his guests in the awesome footsteps of mad kite-flyer Michael Faraday, John Dalton and Sir Richard Owen, the man whose chief claim to fame now is that he gave the world the word "dinosaur".

2.30pm, meet at Dalton Square, Lancaster, by the statue. Walk lasts 35 minutes, and there will be a collection.


Most people remember Daniel Defoe, if at all, for Robinson Crusoe, the strange adventures of a man who is shipwrecked on a desert island and actually likes it. Mind you, there was no such thing as C4's Homicide to miss in the 18th century. Defoe, altogether a bit of a front-runner in the novel business, also wrote Moll Flanders, a scabrous and extremely rude account of one woman's getting on top of every one else (literally) in staggeringly straitened circumstances. It is this classic text that has been hijacked for the York Theatre Royal's song-and-dance production, revived for nine days only. It won the 1995 British Regional Theatre Award for Best Musical, and the best temptation is probably the company's own puffery: "She's sexy, sassy and strong... This is her adventure story - from rags to riches, from Colchester to the USA. She looks good - she sounds better, and if you enjoy a good romp, you'll love this!". The leaflet features sultry star Emma Kershaw in bodice and knickerbockers, reclining on a bed of tenners. 'Nuff said.

8pm Mon-Sat, York Theatre Royal, St Leonard's Place, York (01904 623568), pounds 5-pounds 12.50. To 31 Aug.


The only horse-drawn theatre company in Britain, Horse & Bamboo Theatre Company (above) is currently touring their new show, Visions of Hildegard, an adaptation of the life of girl genius Hildegard of Bingen, who wrote books and invented the pint of bitter. Great. The show uses shadow puppets, live music and astonishing 3-D shadow building in their tenderly bucolic work, after which the actors graze their horses.

7.30pm Village Hall, Colwich and Little Haywood, Staffs (01889 882887), pounds 4/pounds 2.50.

pick of the week


Starting on Saturday, Adam and Eve will be staffing a Pubic Bar (above). Regular customers include a sozzled city gent and a psychedelic biker. These are the product of the slightly twisted imagination of Ron Fuller, who creates electronically operated automata, powered by compressed air. Other pieces on show include The Stamping Man and a tiny articulated circus. Watch the levers, cams and cogs, and pore over Ron's working drawings for these ingenious and provocative artworks.

10am-5pm Tue-Sat, 2pm-5pm Sun and Bank Holiday Monday, Gainsborough's House, 46 Gainsborough St, Sudbury, Suffolk CO10 (01787 372958), pounds 2.50/ pounds 1.25, OAPS pounds 2.