Welcome to the Candlelight Cafe: An evening of words at music at Grimsby Minster

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There was an impressive turnout at the Grimsby Minster as Minster Events hosted the first of its Candlelight Cafe events.

Musical highlights included some mesmerising classical and flamenco guitar pieces by Hull virtuoso Ron Burbella and folk harmonies from Grimsby duo Honeysuckle, made up of Sue and Sime Naylor. Words were by members of the Driftnet Poets who read selections from their work to an appreciative audience.

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The event also served as the launch of the Driftnetters’ new project, Crossing Lines, which will see a host of readings, workshops and performances as well as collaborations with local artists, film makers, theatre groups and dancers. There’ll be a weekend literary festival in the spring and a five week exhibition at Abbey walk Gallery curated by Barton novelist Nick Triplow in October 2015.

The next Candlelight Cafe will be on Friday 3rd October in the Minster and special guests will be Cleethorpes born poet Anthony Dunn, Artistic Director of the Bridlington Poetry Festival, and Steven Maxson, organist and master of choristers at the Minster, who will be playing a selection of piano pieces. Tickets are £5 and the evening starts at 7.30pm.

This article can be read in full online in The People’s Issue 29 web edition.

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Ha Ha! Hood With Cannon and Ball Comes To The Auditorium

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If you’re looking for a pre-Christmas treat for all the family and a great night’s entertainment with loads of laughs then you can’t go wrong with Ha Ha Hood!, a deliciously twisted take on the tale of Robin Hood, starring Cannon and Ball and Su Pollard, which rides into the Grimsby Auditorium on Thursday 25th September.

The show recounts previously undocumented adventures of Robin Hood and Maid Marion set long after the ordinary story books usual storybook writers had put down their pens, as the couple, who have just been through a messy divorce are forced to put aside their differences and join forces to fight the evil Sheriff of Nottingham and his henchmen. Ha Ha Hood! And The Prince of Leaves is the latest hilarious production from the Ha Ha! team who brought us Ha Ha Holmes!, Ha Ha Hitler! and Ha Ha Hamlet! and it’s guaranteed to be just as funny and its predecessors.

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This year Cannon and Ball are celebrating forty years since their first television appearance and a whopping fifty years together as a duo. The Cannon and Ball Show ran for nine hugely successful years and they have two sitcoms and numerous theatre and pantomime appearances under their belts, not forgetting, of course, their hilarious stint on I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here.

Tickets can be purchased from Grimsby Auditorium on telephone 0844 8713016 or on the web at www.atgtickets.com

Josie-Anne Gray talks to Jan Dowson

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In the run up to the launch of the Ebb and Flow axhibition at the Fishing Heritage Centre and The Minster, Josie-Anne Gray profiles a leading light of the local arts and textiles scene.

Jan Dowson is an award winning textile artist, a founder member of the FABRIK group and an inspirational teacher of textiles and mixed media as Creative Arts Co-ordinator at the Thrunscoe Centre. She has enjoyed success as an exhibitor locally and nationally, both on her own and as part of FABRIK.

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She is also a teacher, part time at first, but she soon found that her role as an artist had begun to be overtaken by that of mentor.

She had found a new vocation and for the past seventeen years Jan has been focused on Community Learning at Thrunscoe, working with students over nineteen. The centre offers courses in the creative arts up to City and Guilds Level 3.

When she talks about her students her pride in their achievements is evident.

“We’ve had four Gold Medal winners and this year another student has been nominated and our adults have a real passion for learning. Many of them travel a long way to the centre because so many other areas have cut their creative arts programmes. North East Lincolnshire is a beacon not just for textile arts but also for creativity in general. The area is bursting with talent.”

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It’s not just Jan’s students who are award winners. In 2013 she was nominated for the City and Guilds Gold Award for teaching and she won in the textiles category. Afternoon tea and a presentation from the Princess Royal at Buckingham Palace followed although what was most moving about the experience was reading the testimonials from students past and present.

“They said wonderful things and I have a disc with all their testimonials recorded on it that I treasure.”

2013 was certainly Jan’s year. She was runner up for the Guild of Broderers Beryl Dean Award and enjoyed a magical presentation evening in St Paul’s Cathedral with the Duchess of Gloucester and Giles Brandreth.
Jan’s inspirational powers as a teacher were in evidence at the recent exhibition of her students’ work at the Thrunscoe Centre, the theme of which was women’s lives. Learners were encouraged to look at and discuss serious issues such as human trafficking and FGM and this was reflected in the work. The result was a very grown up exhibition that was moving and powerful as well as beautiful.

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The exhibition has led to big things for Jan and her students with some of their work has been selected to be part of a major exhibition. Ebb and Flow, curated by the 62 Group of Textile Artists opens on Saturday 13th September in the Fishing Heritage Centre (3pm) and Grimsby Minster (5pm).

Jan’s students have been involved with Communities Together at the Mela events and she is always looking for ways to inspire new learners. She is certainly keeping the great heritage of arts and crafts, particularly stitching, alive and vibrant here in NE Lincolnshire and her enthusiasm in infectious. After talking to her for just an hour I returned to my own sewing basket with my inspiration renewed.

You can read the full article in our print edition Issue 29 or online here.