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THEATRE

Travelling players have a hard time of it. Take Right Size (left), a compact company of two which has, in the last three years, played 350 shows in 15 different countries. Their new show, Do You Come Here Often?, stems from an experience the pair had touring last year, when they were imprisoned in a bathroom, near an airport, following a misunderstanding over a jar of Marmite. The differences between them were cruelly exposed when they later found an egg in the soapdish - one wanted to rear a carrier pigeon, teach it to fly and send a message to freedom, the other wanted an omelette.

Luckily, such tiffs are grist to the mill with these creative types, and the pair have since fashioned Do You Come Here Often? a typically inspired slice of comedy threatre which blends slapstick, acrobatics, songs, magic and clowning. Economically costumed in corrugated cardboard, it's a tribute to the modern actors' motto: improvisation in adversity. Colchester Arts Centre (01206 577301) tomorrow; Weymouth College (01305 208702) Wed; Blackpool Grand Theatre Studio (01253 28309) from Fri

EVENTS

Sick of playing with your Black and Decker Christmas tool kit? Why not try your hand at large-scale renovation? Better still, some large-scale renovation which involves absolutely no DIY whatsoever? Renovate, at London's Shoreditch Town Hall, is the first of several multi-media events conceived by the Borough of Hackney to redesign this Victorian pile into "a civic centre for the 21st century". Exhibiting artists include the likes of Gary Hume, Hackneyed Productions, Gavin Turk, Heir of Insanity and Dave Leisters Kino Club (screening Bela Lugosi classic The Dark Eyes of London on Sun, 7.30pm). Visitor reactions to the site-specific videos, "cheeky sculptures", paintings and performance will be recorded by floating cameras, as will any ideas for the building's future. Shoreditch Town Hall, Hoxton Sq, London EC1 Sat 11-5pm, Sun 2-9pm

CLASSICAL

This week elusive pianist John Bingham (above) gives his first London recital for a decade. He hasn't been kicking his heels, however, recording for Radio 3, giving recitals in Sydney and trawling through his vast repertoire.

Wigmore Hall, London (0171-935 2141) Tue 7.30pm

LITERATURE

Two writers, from very different disciplines, come under scrutiny at the Royal National Theatre this week. First up is the late Bruce Chatwin, remembered by friend and editor Susannah Clapp. When Chatwin died in 1989, he was 48 and had completed six books. The first, In Patagonia, made him celebrated, the fourth, The Songlines, turned him into a bestselling author. Clapp paints a picture of an extraordinary man: a storyteller, art collector, and inveterate traveller. Two days later, it's the turn of playwright Christopher Hampton, whose travelling seems mainly confined to flying to LA, picking up weighty pieces of literature and taking them home to fillet for screenplays such as Dangerous Liaisons and his new work, Conrad's The Secret Agent. NT, South Bank, London (0171-928 2252) Mon, Wed 6pm, pounds 3.50

ART

New Yorker Randy Klein exhibits a new collection at The European Academy and Accademia Italiana this week. Clearly influenced by recent travels, Fables of Everyday Life includes il benzinaio, the story of a petrol station flood, il supermercato, which concerns itself with the contemporary search for spirituality - in the supermarket and Ferragosto (above right) which considers Ovid's Metamorphoses in the light of genetic engineering. Each has its own narrative constructed from cut-outs, found objects, sculptures and text, so the gallery should be transformed into a walk-through book.

EAAI, Grosvenor Place, London SW1 (0171-235 0303) Mon- Fri 10am-5.30pm pounds 3

DANCE

If you enjoyed their cheeky adaptation of Swan Lake, why not have another fling with Adventures in Motion Pictures? After the success of the former production, the company is reviving Highland Fling (right), an equally muscular modern ballet which, you won't be surprised to learn, dances a blue streak through the old tartan. The Place Theatre, London WC1 (0171-387 0031) Tue-Sat 8pm pounds 10

JAZZ

Tonight is your last chance to catch Azerbaijani musician Aziza Mustafa Zadeh (right), dubbed the "Jazz Princess of the Orient". Presently touring with her wild mixture of modal jazz, classical music and Azerbaijani folk, Zadeh offers an intriguing blend of Occident and Orient, sporting hot pants, while singing songs which sound as if they should be drifting from a minaret. Henry Wood Hall, Glasgow (0141-227 5511) tonight 8pm pounds 7.50

PHOTOGRAPHY

Society photographer Madame Yevonde had a lot of fun in the 1930s creating faux classical portraits such as Mrs Anthony Eden as the Muse of History and Lady Alexandra Haig (Baroness Dacre) as Circe. Her motto was "be original or die", which led not only to experiments with still life Surrealism (left), but also to her becoming, in 1932, the first photographer to exhibit colour portraits in Britain. Djanogly Art Gallery, Univ of Nottingham Arts Centre, Nottingham (0115-951 3192) Mon-Fri 10am-6pm Sat 11am-6pm, Sun 2-5pm

HYPE ALERT

Pants will be on fire throughout the East End of London on Monday, when the Hackney Empire holds its Liar's Night. Eight performers will tell stories and gullible audience members vote to decide who gets the double accolade of The Pork Pie Award and Certificate of Sincerity.

Lounge culture goes into overdrive with news that Glasgow-based artist Andrew Brook has decided to curate an exhibition in "his flat". Smooth Operation includes installations, sculpture and photography, from Dundee to Barcelona. 253 Perth Rd, Dundee (01382-665023) ends tomorrow

FILM

John Wayne rides again at Bristol's Watershed cinema this week in classic westerns, Rio Bravo and Red River (below). In the first film, Wayne sports the pointy badge of marshall, fending off a clan of villains with the help of a rag-tag army of supporters (including an alcoholic Dean Martin). In the latter, the laconic actor plays an authoritarian cattleman who comes into conflict with his liberal son (Montgomery Clift) as they run cattle. Given the spate of re-released Howard Hawks' romances, this is a chance to broaden your knowledge of the director's work from screwball sets to the wide-open plains of the Wild West.

Watershed, Canon's Rd, Bristol (0117-925 3845) `Rio Bravo' Sun 3pm, `Red River' Wed 5.45pm pounds 4

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