Back for its eighth season with a burst of exciting artistic events and activities, The Library Presents will be returning to Cambridgeshire communities, launching on 13th October in a colourful flurry of music, theatre, workshops, comedy and family friendly shows. This year’s Autumn season will run until 8th December, with tickets available to purchase from the evening of 22 September.
Funded by Arts Council England and run by Cambridgeshire County Council working with Babylon ARTS, The Library Presents brings accessible events to local residents hosted in locations throughout the county, ranging from Arbury, Sawston and St Ives, to Ely, March, Wisbech and more. Following the success of the Spring programme earlier this year, the new season is set to include over 35 events tailored to all age ranges, with ticket prices ranging from £3 to £8. The programme will also include online arts and culture events which audiences can enjoy from the comfort of their own home.
Musical highlights set for the season include the ever-popular The Opera Dudes, who on 20 October will launch a short series of highly accessible, interactive online singing workshops, designed to help participants gain confidence and skill in singing as well as song writing. For those looking for a more hands-on musical instrument experience, professional drummer Anthony Paul will be bringing beats to Wisbech on 23 October in a fully interactive Samba Drumming workshop, in which participants can learn to play intricate rhythms from scratch.
Audiences won’t have to travel far for exciting stage shows; the mesmerising juggling duo, Chris Patfield and José Triguero are bringing their performance Gibbon to Ely on 13 November – a humorous and surreal live show combining juggling, dance and physical theatre.
For classic Shakespeare seekers, New International Encounter (NIE Theatre) will be treating Haddenham and St Neots residents to a funny and accessible version of the powerful revenge tragedy Hamlet. For those wanting a family-friendly stage show, the award-winning Ditto Theatre Company returns with The Unexpected Adventures of Darwin the Chimp, an original story combining storytelling, puppetry and movement.
Showcasing a topical twist in online theatre, Resistance Theatre will bring its highly-acclaimed solo play Under Heaven’s Eyes to home audiences on 23 October, displaying powerful writing, creativity and emotion, surrounding the topic of George Floyd’s murder last May.
This year’s Autumn schedule was designed with the help of Cambridgeshire residents, following an invitation earlier in the summer to submit their choices online, selecting from a ‘menu’ of events which could come to their local library.
Reflecting on the season of activity, Councillor Tom Sanderson, Chair of the County Council’s Communities, Social Mobility and Inclusion Committee said: “I’m delighted that we can build on the momentum we gained during our Spring Season and return to live shows. The unique and added benefit to the upcoming scheduling stems from our own community selecting the art forms they most want to see, which truly helps to engage everyone with these types of activities and give them a say in what goes on in their neighbourhood. I can’t wait to see the exciting buzz that will surround our local libraries; I know it’s going to put a lot of smiles on faces.”
Commenting on the upcoming events, Hazel Edwards, Area Director, South East, Arts Council England, said: “The Library Presents’ Autumn season will once again ensure that libraries across the county are bustling hubs of creative and cultural opportunities. It is wonderful to see that local communities continue to be such a vital part of developing the programming – empowering them to decide what they want to see in libraries near them.”
All scheduled performances will fully adhere to Covid-19 safety measures and Government guidelines in place at the time.
Cambridgeshire libraries have reopened, and upcoming show dates, tickets and this season’s brochure can be found at main library desks, or by visiting library.live. Events will be held in local venues, online and at libraries including: Alconbury Weald, Arbury, Barnwell, Buckden, Cambourne, Clay Farm, Ely, Haddenham, Huntingdon, March, Sawston, St Ives, St Neots, Whittlesey and Wisbech