YOUR MONTHLY FIX OF
The best outdoor dining & drinking in the city Eat Alfresco
THE ULTIMATE BUCKET LIST How many can you tick off?
Meet the Cambridge Shakespeare Festival team BACKSTAGE
CAMBRIDGE CREATIVES Six rising stars to get on your radar
SAIL THROUGH SUMMER WITH UNMISSABLE EVENTS, DELICIOUS DISCOVERIES AND CAPTIVATING CULTURE
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A summer’s day
EDITORIAL Editor in chief Nicola Foley 01223 499459
ambridge is known around the world for its prestigious university and dynamic technology cluster, but – as we discover inside this issue – our city is also becoming a hotbed of artistic pursuits. From a local photographer garnering national press for her ethereal celebrity portraits, to a revered podcaster, fashion designer and viral pop star – we meet the local creatives rocketing to stardom on page 37. Other cultural powerhouses in the spotlight include Samantha de Reus and Vienna Zhang, the mother-and-daughter co-founders of a gallery in the city centre dedicated to showcasing the work of budding young artists; as well as local kids’ author Lou Carter, who talks about the art of writing for children on page 31. In this month’s Backstage, we hear from David Crilly, the brain behind Cambridge Shakespeare Festival. Launched in 1988, this unique cultural gem attracts around 25,000 visitors each summer, presenting the Bard’s best on lush college lawns throughout the season – find out how it all comes together on page 18. Elsewhere in the magazine, we compile a bucket list of quintessentially Cambridge must-do activities (if any readers can tick all of them off, let us know!), as well as rounding up the city’s finest outdoor drinking and dining spots to bask in this August. Enjoy the issue and see you next month!
Cambridge Edition Magazine Bright Publishing Ltd, Bright House, 82 High Street, Sawston, Cambridgeshire CB22 3HJ, 01223 499450, cambsedition.co.uk • All rights reserved. Material contained in this publication may not be reproduced, in whole or in part, without prior permission of the publishers. • Views expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of Cambridge Edition or Bright Publishing Ltd, which do not accept any liability for loss or damage. • Every effort has been made to ensure all information is correct. • Cambridge Edition is a free publication that is distributed in Cambridge and the surrounding area. email@example.com Assistant editor Miriam Balanescu Editorial assistant Alex Fice Editorial director Roger Payne Chief sub editor Alex Bell Deputy chief sub editor Matthew Winney Sub editor Harriet Williams ADVERTISING Sales director Sam Scott-Smith 01223 499457 firstname.lastname@example.org Ad manager Maria Francis 01223 492240 email@example.com CONTRIBUTORS DESIGN & PRODUCTION Senior designer Lucy Woolcomb firstname.lastname@example.org Ad production Man-Wai Wong & Russell Gray MANAGING DIRECTORS Andy Brogden & Matt Pluck Mark Box, Charlotte Griffiths, Anna Taylor & Elisha Young
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04 Starters Our favourite Instagram pics of the month, plus brilliant buys from local indies 07 Culture Club Art, theatre, interviews, book picks, cinema hits, street-style portraits and other highlights 33 Bucket List 25 things to do in Cambridge before you die, from punting on the Cam to pints at the Beer Festival 37 Cambridge Creatives Budding artists of all disciplines making a mark in the city and far beyond 49 Food News The local gastronomic goings-on to get on your radar for the month ahead 53 Elisha Eats Ideas and inspiration for making the most of courgette season
54 Alfresco Dining Luxurious roof terraces, classic beer gardens and riverside cocktails 57 Adventure Time
Some special family outings to keep the kids entertained during the summer holidays 59 Beauty Bible Treat yourself to a trip to one of these sensational pamper parlours 61 Space Exploration Planning an event? Check out this assortment of amazing venues around Cambridge 67 Charity Spotlight Volunteers from CamCRAG tell us all about their vital work 69 Home & Garden Tips on creating an eco home, gorgeous homewares and garden advice
Illustration by Hedzlynn Kamaruzzaman, inspired by an Instagram photo by @cambridgetoursguides
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FOLLOW @CAMBSEDITION ON INSTAGRAM FOR LOTS MORE STUNNING SNAPS OF THE CITY
@ZOESMITH4 #instacamb OUR FAVOURITE CAMBRIDGE INSTAGRAM PICS OF THE MONTH. USE THE #INSTACAMB HASHTAG FOR A CHANCE TO FEATURE!
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THIS MONTH’S MUST-HAVES FROM LOCAL INDIES
1. Yasleafo midi shirt dress, £75, Iris & Violet A super-wearable silhouette with bold print, this jazzy shift dress is a wardrobe staple in the making 2. Lind plantpot rose, £28, Iris & Violet This rustic stoneware pot by Bloomingville is a beautiful addition to any plant lover’s collection 3. Elizabeth Scarlett Crane eye mask in mint, £25, Lilac Rose Treat your peepers to a luxurious experience with this lavender-scented velvet eye mask by designer Elizabeth Scarlett 4. Olive green bubble candleholder, £12.99, The Manor Gift Shop Available in a range of colourways, this glass candlestick adds 70s chic to your table 5. Botanical dessert plate, £7, Curating Cambridge This floral tin plate is perfect for summer entertaining 6. Bardenas laptop case, £54.99, The Manor Gift Shop Painterly strokes in pastel hues adorn this classy 13in laptop case from Burwash Manor’s gift shop 7. Marie pullover, now £83.50, Cuckoo Clothing A bright, striped jumper from Dutch designer POM Amsterdam, available to buy at Cuckoo Clothing in Burwash Manor
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Culture Club WORLDBUILDING The Brick Wonders
PLAYTIME another brick in the wall
display takes you around the globe using Lego – see it at the Grand Arcade this August
GALLERY OPENINGS, SHAKESPEAREAN TALES AND LOCAL CREATIVES MAKING A SPLASH
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Arts & Culture THE MUST-SEE EVENTS AROUND CAMBRIDGE THIS MONTH
AN AMBASSADOR FOR BRITISH AND EUROPEAN VIOLIN MAKING, LUTHIER LIBBY SUMMERS IS DETERMINED TO MAKE STRINGS ACCESSIBLE TO MUSICIANS OF ALL LEVELS They say a good craftsman never blames their tools; when it comes to music, however, having the right instrument can make all the difference between being successful or not. That’s according to Stamford Strings owner Libby Summers, who has worked as a violin teacher for 25 years. “I believe not having the right instrument is the reason why so many give up early,” she explains. “All the time, you hear people say the violin is so difficult to play, with a really Instrumental
repairs or achieving a particular sound. “We want to be more than just a violin shop,” says Libby. “We’re trying to be a community for string players; a hub where musicians can come and try different violins or talk about any issues.” In particular, Stamford Strings prides itself on getting the best possible sound from your instrument. For example, if it’s coming out dull, they can improve resonance; or if it develops a buzz – which could simply be due to a change in the
high-quality, yet affordable – perfect for students looking for their first strings, or professionals in need of a beautiful-sounding backup when on the road. “I identified that there was a gap in the market between the standard factory instruments (which aren’t terribly good) and really dependable, artisan- made ones – this is where our own brand comes in,” she explains. “As a violin teacher, I’m passionate about people having really good instruments, set up properly, because it can make such a difference to the student’s whole musical journey and playing experience.” Stamford Strings is open Tuesdays to Saturdays (Wednesdays by appointment only) and has several workshops in the pipeline for the autumn – so stay tuned! stamfordstrings.co.uk PLANING AWAY Libby Summers (top) trained for four years at the prestigious Newark School of Violin Making, before establishing Stamford Strings
Having the right instrument can make all the difference
scratchy sound at the start. But I tell them this isn’t true – it’s just that they haven’t got a good instrument.” In 2019, after four years of study at the Newark School of Violin Making, Libby set up
weather, an issue with the tailpiece or through general wear and tear – they can fix it. Whatever the challenge, Libby and her team – comprised entirely of luthiers
Stamford Strings to ensure all string players – from beginner to professional – could have access to an instrument that would make them want to keep picking up their bow. The shop sells a wide range of violins, violas and cellos for all abilities and budgets, but is also committed to supporting people along their journey, whether demonstrating how to properly look after their instrument, making
(highly skilled violin makers) and musicians – are well-attuned to identifying it and making appropriate mends. “What we do is highly specialist, and the fact we are all musicians is really important. It means we understand what other musicians want.” Stamford Strings also sells its very own brand of violins, making quality instruments more accessible to all. Brazenose violins are
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Collective wisdom NO SMALL FRY There’s plenty to see this month at Fry Art Gallery in Saffron Walden, including The Many Sides of Isabel Rawsthorne , an exhibition that delves into the story of a local artist who rose to international acclaim for her revolutionary work. Known as the muse of 20th-century giants such as Pablo Picasso, Alberto Giacometti and Francis Bacon, her value as a multifaceted artist in her own right has often been overlooked. This shines a light on her talent, featuring 13 striking costume designs made by Rawsthorne for the 1953 Royal Opera House production of Strauss’ opera Elektra , along with selected portraits and still lifes. For highlights from Fry Art Gallery’s permanent collection, a visit to Regeneration is a must. On display in the newly expanded gallery, it demonstrates the breadth and depth of the North West Essex Permanent Collection, which comprises 3000 items and counting. Noteworthy are works by the Great Bardfield artists, a community from north-west Essex in the mid-20th century. Both exhibitions run until the end of October and are free to book – head to fryartgallery.org to find out more.
4 DANCERS © THE ESTATE OF WARWICK LLEWELLYN NICHOLAS
WORLD OF WONDERS LIFE IN LEGO The Grand Arcade has opened its doors to an exhibition of Brick Wonders , featuring Lego recreations of iconic sights and landmarks from around the globe. It will lead you on a tour across all continents, from the seven wonders of the world to natural and historic marvels. Discover mini models of an Egyptian pyramid, the Grand Canyon, Old London Bridge and the Aurora Australis, as well as depictions of modern miracles, like broadcasting and the internet. One highlight includes an impressive centrepiece depicting the Great Barrier Reef, complete with underwater lighting and sound effects, it is rich in Lego marine life, from turtles to reef-dwelling fish such as blue tangs, angel fish – even a ray. Brick Wonders is curated by artist Warren Elsmore, with 40 models and a whopping total of over 500,000 bricks – find it in the Grand Arcade until the end of August.
CAMBRIDGE GALLERIES SUMMER EXHIBITIONS
Sunny scenes abound in Byard Art’s Mixed Summer Exhibition , which runs till 4 September. From calming cobalt and electric aquamarine ceramics by Carolyn Tripp, to verdant scenes of orangeries, lakes and riverboats by Jamie Poole, there’s plenty to evoke a hot, heady atmosphere. While you’re there, don’t miss the astonishingly crisp brushwork of CJ Green, whose photorealistic paintings extract clarity and beauty from mundane household items. For those inspired by the plein-air paintings of the Fitzwilliam’s True to Nature showcase, Cambridge Contemporary Art has a selection of stunning landscapes, from coastal dunes to rolling countryside. Find work by Alice Thomson, whose colourful and spontaneous style gives a fresh perspective to some familiar Cambridge scenery. The display is also available until 4 September. SEASONAL SPECIALS Morning Dance by Jamie Pool (above right) at Byard Art; Quite Contrary by Kate Burns (right) at Cambridge Contemporary Art
5 AUGUST THE WOMBATS Newmarket Racecourse, 8.35pm, from £30.24 7 AUGUST MUSIC IN THE PARKS: CAMBRIDGE ROCK CHOIR Chesterton Rec, 3pm, free 11 AUGUST THE PRIMITIVES Cambridge Junction, 7pm, £22.50 11 AUGUST HERITAGE LIVE: SIMPLE MINDS Audley End House and Gardens, NOT TO MISS UNCONQUEREBELS Cambridge Junction, 7pm, £30 13 AUGUST HERITAGE LIVE: ELBOW Audley End House and Gardens, 4pm, from £66.40 21 AUGUST MUSIC IN THE PARKS: WATERBEACH BRASS King’s Hedges Rec, 3pm, free 24 AUGUST NATALIE BERGMAN The Portland Arms, 7pm, £13.75 4pm, from £55.15 13 AUGUST HEMPRESS SATIVA & THE
THE HIGGINS BEDFORD Body & Soul
Gathering works from Cecil Higgins Art Gallery, Body & Soul explores female representation in art over the past two centuries, through the eyes of artists like Edgar Degas, Edvard Munch, Dora Carrington, Lucian Freud and more. With a range of media, from sculptures to watercolours, the works highlight how women have been portrayed as both objects of desire and creatives in their own right. Depictions of women by male and female artists are placed in juxtaposition, revealing fascinating contrasts. Free to visit at The Higgins Bedford, ending 2 October.
© EDWARD BURNE-JONES, CUPID DELIVERING PSYCHE © TRUSTEES OF THE CECIL HIGGINS ART GALLERY
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FOR ART’S SAKE New on the scene It’s a big month for Cambridge’s cultural landscape, which will be bestowed with a prized new addition. AKA Fine Art started life as a pop-up gallery in 2021, but will now put down roots, kicking off with a shimmering launch party on 26 August. This marks the beginning of a star-strewn exhibition that will run until 15 October. Behold works by the likes of the Connor Brothers, Ben Eine and Hans Arp.
Don’t Miss! FARCICAL THEATRE AND A WELSH LEGEND ARE AMONG AUGUST’S TOP PICKS
THE PLAY THAT GOES WRONG 16-21 August, Cambridge Arts Theatre, 7.30pm, £20-£40 International smash-hit comedy comes to Cambridge, with accident-prone actors battling against the odds to reach their final curtain call.
WHAT LIES BENEATH Until 28 August, The Women’s Art Collection, 10am-6pm, free Unravel commentaries on politics and society, woven through the works of multiple generations of women across the world, over at Murray Edwards College on Huntingdon Road.
HERITAGE LIVE: TOM JONES 14 August, Audley End, 4pm, from £66.40 Sir Tom heads to Saffron Walden for an irresistible live performance packed with iconic hits, with support from the UK’s best-selling country act of all time, The Shires.
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A trip through time The rest is history
THE SUMMER HOLIDAYS ARE THE PERFECT TIME TO VISIT ONE OF CAMBRIDGE’S WORLD-CLASS MUSEUMS: HERE’S A TASTER OF SOME OF THE CITY’S MOST ILLUMINATING INSTITUTIONS
MUSEUM OF ZOOLOGY The Museum of Zoology showcases the diversity of animal life – from moths to monkeys, mammoths and manatees – bringing to life stories of extinction, survival and exploration. On arrival, you will be greeted by an impressive 21m fin whale called Bobby, while other collection highlights include a giant ground sloth, a dodo skeleton and Captain Cook’s conch. Special exhibitions over the summer include Butterflies Through Time , which runs until 18 September and uncovers how the natural world has been affected by environmental change over time. Plus the LGBTQ+ Bridging Binaries Guided Tour , which promises an enlightening look at gender and sex in the animal kingdom – tours are available on select weekends until 20 August. SEDGWICK MUSEUM OF EARTH SCIENCES The oldest of the university’s museums, the Sedgwick provides a suitably historic backdrop to a collection that turns back time nearly 4.5 billion years to the origins of life on Earth, with dinosaurs, meteorites and fossils waiting to be explored. Showstoppers in the collection include a complete replica of an iguanodon skeleton – and a megaloceros (a giant prehistoric deer). This month, there’s also the chance to see a touring miniature statue of Mary Anning, a little-known pioneer of palaeontology, with events aimed at sharing her story over the holidays . Visit sedgwickmuseum.org for more info. MUSEUM OF ARCHAEOLOGY AND ANTHROPOLOGY With a lens on human history over hundreds of thousands of years, the terrific Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology is the place to go for broadening your understanding of our planet’s diverse, fascinating cultures through the centuries. On the ground floor, it houses an exhibition dedicated to the archaeology of Cambridge and the surrounding area, with around 1,200 objects telling the story of the region’s past. It’s here you can find the Arbury coffin, containing the bones of a woman, a shrew and a mouse, which famously inspired Sylvia Plath to write the poem All the Dead Dears . Upstairs, you’ll discover items from Oceania, examples of Asian sculpture, a Maori flagpole, plus unique objects from North America and the Arctic, collected on the voyages of Captain Cook.
MUSEUM OF CLASSICAL ARCHAEOLOGY Ignite a sense of awe as you walk among the gods and heroes at the Museum of Classical Archaeology. With 450 plaster versions of some of the most iconic sculptures from classical antiquity, it holds one of the largest surviving collections of Greek and Roman statue casts in the world. On display until the end of the month, this year’s summer exhibition sees the Cast Gallery transformed. A series of installations created by Danish artist collective Guirlanden, in response to the permanent collection, sparks creative conversations across time and place. THE POLAR MUSEUM Take a trip to the Antarctic at Cambridge’s very own Polar Museum – finding out about science, discovery and endurance at the most extreme ends of the earth. Covering everything from penguins to sleeping bags, Inuit art and explorer diaries, you’ll gain unique insight into British Antarctic Expeditions and life in the polar regions. WHIPPLE MUSEUM OF THE HISTORY OF SCIENCE Educate yourself about the scientific instruments that made groundbreaking discoveries possible, dating from the Middle Ages to the present. From a papier mâché anatomical model of a human created around 1890, to the grand orrery (an ornate mechanised model of the solar system), and Charles Darwin’s very own microscope, the Whipple Museum is an extraordinary cabinet of curiosities, detailing the development of mankind’s knowledge. CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY BOTANIC GARDEN The perfect place for a stroll in the sun – and a guaranteed hit for children in need of letting off some steam – the Botanic Garden is a treasure trove in the summer months, overflowing with lush wildlife and floral scents. Home to over 8,000 plant species and its very own arboretum, the gardens have much to offer for budding horticulturalists. Families can get stuck into special activities on the first Saturday of each month – keep an eye out for the free Petal Potions session on 6 August in the Schools Garden between 10am and 1pm. You’ll have the chance to use scented shrubs from the garden to make your very own concoction for bath time.
© MUSEUM OF CLASSICAL ARCHAEOLOGY, CAMBRIDGE
LEARN BY VIEWING The museum scene covers the spectrum of human culture and history. From ancient artefacts to living and breathing plant life, the scope for scholarly growth is endless
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DAWN FRENCH 1 OCTOBER, CAMBRIDGE CORN EXCHANGE, 2.30PM OR 7.30PM, FROM £43 Returning to form in this tongue-in-cheek solo show, the beloved TV vicar looks at her biggest faux pas, with a peek behind the scenes of an illustrious career.
AN INSPECTOR CALLS 11-15 OCTOBER, CAMBRIDGE ARTS THEATRE, 2.30PM OR 7.30PM, £20-£35 J.B. Priestley’s classic returns. Enigmatic Inspector Goole forces the Birling family to examine their consciences for the first time.
SAM RYDER 29 MARCH 2023, CAMBRIDGE CORN EXCHANGE, 7.30PM, £25.50 After soaring to second place at Eurovision, Sam Ryder is taking a whirlwind tour of the UK, spreading good vibes with his out-of- this-world performances.
© HOWARD RICE/CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY BOTANIC GARDEN
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GALLERIE V MEET THE MOTHER-AND-DAUGHTER DUO PROVIDING A PLATFORM FOR BUDDING ARTISTS TO SHOW OFF THEIR WORK ONE BIG FAMILY
Cambridge is fortunate to be home to an ever-growing arts scene – from Byard Art to collectives such as Cambridge Artworks and quirky spaces like Extraordinary Objects. Enriching the tapestry of unique locales in the city is Gallerie V on St John’s Street, an independent gallery spread over four floors that exhibits work by young artists aged exclusively between 14 and 25. This is the passion project of mother and daughter Samantha de Reus and Vienna Zhang, who had wanted to open something for years, but couldn’t find the right circumstance – until moving to Cambridge in 2020. Vienna was in the first year of her GCSEs, balancing studies with redesigning the gallery interiors, creating a website, social media and posters, as well as curating the opening exhibition and producing her own paintings to display. For Samantha, it was following her daughter’s development that encouraged her to open a spot for supporting young creatives. “I realised there are so many talented artists out there, but it’s really difficult for them to get into galleries,” she says. “Ours gives them the ability to get exposure, and experience what it is like to exhibit in a physical space.” Vienna adds: “It’s very hard for any artist, let alone young people, to be taken seriously. We rarely get a chance to have work displayed to the public.” Add to that the restrictions imposed by the pandemic – forcing them to miss out on presenting finished pieces at their usual degree shows – and it’s clear that the need for a public platform has never been greater. “Since we are in such a central location, many tourists and locals visit – it’s a great opportunity,” she beams. Gallerie V holds regular exhibitions through the year, but is always open to submissions. “We have received applications from every walk of life – GCSE pupils to fine art graduates and students from the University of Cambridge – as well as people who aren’t involved with the university,” says Samantha. The gallery is currently holding its summer exhibition, with oil paintings by Vienna – who is artist in residence at the gallery – and
RISING STARS Gallerie V focuses on eye-catching pieces that display the creativity of young artists
submissions from multiple artists in a range of different media. There will also be screenings of a short film produced for the gallery by freelance artist Anamaria Koeva called The Artist Speaks . In it, past contributors pay testament to what the experience has meant to them. The gallery welcomes proposals from artists looking to hold their own events, too. Anna Dermitzaki, who was selected for the opening show in 2021, is organising an open call for a display run by her and two artists she met studying at the University of Loughborough. Based on the theme of nostalgia, Beyond the Bubble alludes to the university environment and the confinement people felt during lockdown. “Gallerie V has been extremely supportive throughout. We are so grateful to be able to use such an amazing location for our exhibition, which will open to the public from 10 to 24 September,” says Anna. For Anna, now navigating the art world post-university, it’s also an ongoing source of inspiration, with a chance to mingle with others like her. “Since opening in 2021, Gallerie V has hosted various performances, exhibitions and events that enabled us to make connections nationwide,” she explains. “As young artists, it means a lot to have this opportunity. We want to encourage creatives to get involved in the ever-expanding community Gallerie V has established in Cambridge.” Gallerie V is now accepting submissions for its autumn exhibition. For more, visit galleriev.com or follow @gallerievcambridge on Instagram.
NOBLE ART EVENTS AT GALLERIE V
Gallerie V hosts various events and talks throughout the year. In the past, these included a performing arts evening, film screening by a visiting artist from Syracuse University in New York, and fundraising event for a Ukrainian children’s charity showcasing works by artists from the country. Freelance creative Molly Cawthorn runs workshops based on her two main forms of practice – abstract landscape and realist charcoal drawings. Find out further information on Molly’s work at mollsportfolio.com , or by following her on Instagram: @mollsportfolio
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EVERY YEAR, CAMBRIDGE SHAKESPEARE FESTIVAL TRANSFORMS ALL THE CITY INTO A STAGE – MIRIAM BALANESCU MEETS ARTISTIC DIRECTOR DAVID CRILLY AND STAR ANDREW STEPHEN HOUSE OF BARDS Midsummer Madness
heatre has long thrived in the city, but when things quieten down for the major establishments during the summer, the best place to
A fresh troupe of actors frequents the lush gardens of colleges the festival started small, it has grown beyond David’s expectations. “I’ve had people calling from California, saying they’re organising their vacation and always plan around the festival,” he says. “The loyalty we have from our audience is quite astonishing.” Bringing the bard outdoors has a long precedence, dating back even before the Globe Theatre’s opening in 1599, although Cambridge Shakespeare Festival was the first of its kind. “What we do is directly tell the story, as effectively, colourfully and dynamically as we can,” says David. “Our circumstances and the environment that we’re in dictate how we approach each production. I don’t feel that we’re performing in any kind of historical search for shows is not indoors, but out. The Cambridge Shakespeare Festival has been a magnet for theatregoers since its inception in 1988, founded by then-music student David Crilly. “It was almost accidental,” David laughs. “We actually started the festival in Oxford, then transferred to Cambridge when I started my PhD at Magdalene College. I had friends doing student shows and they asked if I would be musical director. I had no background in theatre, but didn’t really like what I was seeing. I thought I’d have a go and see if I could do a better job.” Such stuff as dreams are made on, across four weeks a fresh troupe of actors frequents the lush gardens of Cambridge colleges – usually closed to the public – to perform the troubadour’s greats. Although
ONCE MORE UNTO THE BREACH August sees renditions of Henry V, The Taming of the Shrew and A Midsummer Night’s Dream “But they’re all staying close by in three large Victorian houses in Lucy Cavendish College, living, working and socialising together. It’s a sudden, immediate and dynamic environment – it fires itself up.” Andrew is accustomed to switching between tragedy, comedy and farce. “A kind of musical rapport with your characters is more important in comedy, in order to let the laughs in,” he explains. “All characters are essentially you and, as an actor, you have certain tricks for making them different. It’s a matter of latching on to something that is unique or sufficiently specific. It is quite surprising when that grows and how suddenly you can feel like you’re a different person when you click into it.” Although this is his 15th Shakespeare Festival, Andrew doesn’t quite know the plays backwards yet. “It’s interesting what sticks with you and what doesn’t – and how it doesn’t necessarily relate to how much you enjoy playing the part. “Three weeks is not enough for anybody to get remotely jaded with what they’re doing,” enthuses Andrew. “Right from the beginning, you’re going to see something exciting.” Audience sizes range from eight to 700, shifting the approach that actors must take – from more intimate performances to energetic renderings, it’s certain that no show will be the same. Details for all performances and tickets can be found at cambridgeshakespeare.com
context. We’re independent in terms of our artistic mission.” This summer brings a veritable feast for the eyes, from forest frenzy in A Midsummer Night’s Dream to regal gallantry in Henry V . Andrew Stephen first joined the festival in 1994 – and following his thunderous portrayal of King Lear, will now take on Gremio in The Taming of the Shrew . “It’s a fantastic experience for actors who want to find out what they can do, because there’s little to hide behind,” Andrew says. “You’re on a beautiful lawn in front of an eager audience and have to deliver the goods.” The cast and crew have so far survived “a phenomenally intensive two-week rehearsal period”, followed by the first set of shows running every night for two weeks, interwoven with rehearsals for the next. Most don’t know the other people in the company to start,” says David.
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All Revved Up ALEX FICE SPEAKS TO GEOFF AYMER AHEAD OF HIS APPEARANCE IN AN AUGUST AFFAIR
CAMBRIDGE ARTS THEATRE’S JITNEY – A TALE OF LOVE AND LOSS IN RACIALLY SEGREGATED, POST-VIETNAM AMERICA
he stomping ground of seminal playwright August Wilson,
Pittsburgh’s Hill District is the steely backdrop to Cambridge Arts Theatre’s latest show – Jitney . Elusive in origin, this slang term refers to the unlicensed cab drivers in US cities that used to offer cheaper fares to those who couldn’t afford official taxi services. Written in 1979 and set in the 70s, Jitney is considered Wilson’s first ‘real’ play, and centres on the relationships between five cab drivers and four supporting characters, with intermingling generations both jaded and hopeful about what the future holds for African Americans in the US. “It’s set against the backdrop of impending gentrification,” explains Geoff Aymer, who plays Doub – one of the cab drivers and a Korean War veteran. “A lot of the area is being boarded up, so the place they work – and a lot of others nearby – is being threatened with closure, which creates a certain uneasiness. Are they going to do anything about it; do they have the power to stop it? “The theme of gentrification is pertinent now because it seems to be happening everywhere – not just in the US. I live in Hackney, which used to be a very low-income area once upon a time, and I’ve watched it undergo a dramatic transformation over the past 15 years or so. On the one hand, it’s a good thing because we now have a lot of nice shops, but on the other, it means ordinary working people can no longer afford to live there.” Uncertainty caused by gentrification lingers in the air throughout the play, as characters come and go between shifts, leading to amusing, thought-provoking and impassioned interactions with each new arrival. Underlying tensions soon bubble to the surface, leading to dramatic climaxes that will tear you from one end of the emotional spectrum to the other in a matter of minutes. A heart-wrenching finale leaves audience members with an especially poignant message, says Geoff: “If you’ve got something important to say to those close to you, or if there’s been a falling out with somebody you love, don’t wait too long before you make up or say
musical. “Working with Tinuke is great,” he enthuses. “I’ve found her very easy-going, but meticulous at the same time, so you feel yourself in the hands of somebody calm and assured, as well as technically strong. She’s a really intelligent person, too, and has brought that to bear with the way she’s handled Jitney .” Although it’s common for adaptations to offer fresh interpretation of a text, Jitney is relatively unmarked territory in the UK, with its last production (in 2001) also its first. Back then, it was performed with actors from the New York cast, but this features an all-British ensemble using American accents. One notable innovation is movement director Sarita Piotrowski’s decision to replace ‘lights down’ with small acts in-between scenes. “There’s always something for the audience to see,” says Geoff. “It might be a sequence showing the passing of time, or focusing on a particular foible of a character – but there are plenty of different things to keep the audience’s eyes peeled!” This visually enticing character study comes to Cambridge Arts Theatre on 2 August and runs until 6 August. Book your tickets at cambridgeartstheatre.com
those things. Circumstances may conspire that you never get the chance to do so.” With nine actors waiting in the wings, it takes sharp coordination and attention to detail to convey the complex dynamics between each personality that steps through those taxi station doors. Steering the cast towards success is director Tinuke Craig, who collaborated with Geoff previously on The Color Purple CABBIE OFF THE RANK Fielding (Tony Marshall) squares off against Becker (Wil Johnson) in one of Jitney’s many fraught encounters
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FRESH EYES From pop-up to picture gallery, AKA Fine Art is paving the way for artistic excellence in Cambridge
fter accumulating over 40 years of experience between them, spanning restoration and conservation of paintings to
framing and design, Ali Porter and Kevin Youngman have long worked to consolidate Cambridge’s place on the map when it comes to fine art. BREAKING THE MOULD It was in 2021 that Ali (spearheading Conserve Paintings for 24 years and counting) and Kevin (a Wildwood Gallery partner since 2002) first joined forces. Launching the AKA Fine Art pop-up in that year, the innovative duo decided to donate a share of their profits from each sale to charity Arts and Minds – inspired by the late painter Peter Denmark. The gallery owners set out to carefully toe the line between showcasing lesser-known local artists alongside established greats. Details of the launch were aired on Cambridge 105 Radio and, listening in, developer Ronald Pile caught the whiff of potential for a fully fledged gallery. Along with overflowing armfuls of art, the pair are ready to move into a purpose-built space proposed by Ronald this August. TAKING WING A launch party on 26 August at 6pm will mark the beginning of AKA Fine Art’s residence at 54a Cherry Hinton Road, with Cambridge 105 DJ Alex Elbro cutting the ribbon. Culture lovers and collectors are expected to flock to enjoy fizz, nibbles and three rooms bursting with creativity. AKA’s opening exhibition, Catch 22 Artists , sets sail the next day, with a flurry of big names and budding talent from 27 August to 15 October. Become engrossed by Jeff Lowe’s striking abstract sculptures and absorb the impressive detail in East Anglian watercolourist Lillias August’s work. The vivid hues of Charlotte Cornish’s prints will be displayed alongside the unapologetically
eye-catching paintings of Cambridge street artist Mr Penfold. Pre-eminent creators will also find a home in the new gallery space, like the legendary Connor Brothers, bold and brilliant Ben Eine, late avant-garde visionary Paule Vézelay, pioneering painter of abstracts John Hoyland and German- French dadaist devotee Hans Arp. Other gems include Corinna Button, a London- based artist whose work melds painting and photography to shed new light on perception – plus Eugenie Vronskaya, whose ethereal creations hark back to abstract luminary Wassily Kandinsky. Full details of those on show will be available on the AKA Fine Art website. Merely the beginning for the gallery, the AKA collection is certain to grow. Looking to the future, Ali says: “We have built up a good rapport with a number of established artists, and look forward to
EVOCATIVE Francesca’s Aria by Jeff Lowe (left) is among the AKA Fine Art collection
curating their work in exhibitions over the next few years. We also wish to extend our enthusiasm towards new artists aiming to raise their profiles.” For a chance to soak up the talent, RSVP to the launch event at akafineart.co.uk
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FROM THE SMALL TO BIG SCREEN, HERE ARE AUGUST’S ON-SCREEN ESSENTIALS ON THE BOX
READY, SET, ACTION What Matters
MIRIAM BALANESCU SPEAKS TO ANGLIA RUSKIN’S RESIDENT DOCUMENTARY CREATOR AND FILM ACADEMIC DR LISA LIN
shining a light on the continent’s more eerie past. “Documentaries are a creative treatment of the reality,” Lisa explains. “It’s become a way for me to discover the world, explore issues surrounding society and find my authentic self. “There’s a lot of storytelling potential. As a producer-director, you are the one working from the beginning, pitching ideas, developing a concept, doing archive
harting China’s production culture, the rise to fame of Hong Kongese pop star GEM and fake news in
the age of Donald Trump, the career of Anglia Ruskin media scholar Dr Lisa Lin has been kaleidoscopic. Her work as a documentary producer spans ten years, but Lisa’s passion took root after dabbling in photography as a child and being swept up in French New Wave cinema. Knowing film was
research and composing the story structure. The director only comes on board close to the filming process.” More recently, however, Lisa has tried her hand at directing. Last Breath (2017) journeyed to Qian’an,
for her, Lisa studied television production as an undergraduate, making her first ever documentary Matter Patterns in 2014, presented by academic Lawrence Drever. “That was my early
A creative treatment of the reality
High-octane drama ensues in this Charles Officer film, fronted by the multitalented Saul Williams (who worked on its score with Massive Attack’s Robert Del Naja), unpicking the scars left by Jamaican gang culture. Where to Watch: Select cinemas When: 26 August AKILLA’S ESCAPE
where Beijing’s economic expansion has had devastating consequences for those missing out on the capital’s wealth, but living nearby. “I enjoy uncovering under-represented human stories, which cannot be seen in mainstream media. I have been following social injustice behind air and water pollution since 2015, when I travelled to China for my PhD research and lived in the so-called smog city. You couldn’t see beyond five metres. It was a violation of human rights – the right to breathe.” Experiencing the commercial constraints on creativity in US media, as well as censorship in China, Lisa sought another outlet for her filmic interest. Taking an anthropological approach, she headed to China. “I was like a fly on the wall, observing the day-to-day practice, meetings and productions of three TV stations.” She now specialises in digital streaming aesthetics and convergent media – but what she loves most is teaching the next generation of filmmakers. Lisa says: “When I go to see my student graduation films, I feel it’s somehow more meaningful than making a film myself.”
connection with Cambridge,” Lisa laughs. “It was a very good team. We used high-end cameras, and post-production work was completed in Soho. Plus, we did mixing with Warner Bros Studios.” From there, during her graduation trip around south-east Asia, the production company behind National Geographic Channel Asia called her in to work on I Wouldn’t Go in There , a documentary series
With truly chilling performances from Daniel Kaluuya and Steven Yeun, Jordan Peele’s subversive summer movie may be a welcome relief from the heat. Where to Watch: Light Cinema, Vue When: 12 August NOPE
STAYING BUSY Dr Lisa Lin has worked with the likes of National Geographic Asia, Channel 4 and the BBC
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In this holiday flick produced by Pedro and Agustín Almodóvar, Brit abroad Timothy Spall wades into deep mystery after discovering his Benidorm-residing brother is missing. Where to Watch: Vue | When: 19 August IT SNOWS IN BENIDORM
From Bafta-winner Sharon Horgan comes an Irish comedy set in the aftermath of the death of five sisters’ parents, enwrapped in deliciously dark humour. It’s based on a Flemish series called Clan . Where to Watch: Apple TV+ When: 19 August BAD SISTERS
I CAME BY
Friday Night Dinner mastermind Robert Popper finds funniness in love-hate relationships for his fresh new sitcom. Where to Watch: Channel 4 When: Date yet to be announced I HATE YOU
Privilege and corruption are uncovered by stealthy graffiti artists in Babak Anvari’s latest film. The glittery cast includes George MacKay, Hugh Bonneville and Kelly Macdonald. Where to Watch: Select cinemas and Netflix | When: 19 August
Picturehouse Picks CAMBRIDGE ARTS PICTUREHOUSE SINGLES OUT THE NOT-TO-MISS MOVIES THIS MONTH FISHERMAN’S
DISCOVER: WIM WENDERS RETROSPECTIVE Go on a whirlwind Wenders tour this month, with all the major cinematic stop-offs that mark the German’s career. Kings of the Road heads to the Picturehouse on 7 August. The American Friend , 14 August , sees Dennis Hopper play Tom Ripley. Dive into danzón with Buena Vista Social Club on 21 August , while a nationwide issue of Paris, Texas lands on 28 August .
CULTURE SHOCK: KIDS IN AMERICA
FRIENDS: ONE AND ALL Chorusing comrades Jim (James Purefoy), Jago (David Hayman), Leadville (David Johns) and Rowan (Sam Swainsbury) return, following the riotous success of their debut album – and the arrival of a new band member. Based on the heart-warming true story of Cornish shanty singers who were plucked from obscurity and rocketed to fame. Released on 19 August .
School’s out for summer and Picturehouse is celebrating with an all-American season, starting off with Dazed and Confused on 8 August – a quest to find the ultimate house party. Feel nostalgic with Buffy the Vampire Slayer on 15 August . Clueless struts in on 22 August, followed by But I’m a Cheerleader on 29 August, on the struggles of being a queer high schooler in the 90s.
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Cambridge PHOTOGRAPHER MARK BOX SHARES SOME OF HIS FAVOURITE PORTRAITS FROM THE STREETS OF CAMBRIDGE THIS MONTH – CAN YOU SPOT ANYONE YOU KNOW?
When you accidentally match the iconic red of Britain’s beloved telephone box!
All wrapped up for summer!
Humans of Cambridge is an Instagram photoblog by local photographer Mark Box. It began as a ABOUT THE PROJECT lockdown project and has turned into a sensation, featuring an ever-growing number of Cambridge’s colourful characters on the @humanofcambridge grid. Mark is out most days snapping, and can usually be found in the Market Square, on King’s Parade, Burrell’s Walk and Garret Hostel Bridge – your best bet for being papped is to head out around lunchtime wearing something suitably eye-catching!
Rockin’ that 70s
vibe, right here in the Cambridge University Library
Say hello to Bryony ‘Bread’ Doyle, an illustrator and creative, who founded Uncle Bread’s Art Club. Take a look at their awesome work over on IG @uncle.bread
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Celebrating end of exams... it’s a tradition to throw food, particularly flour and eggs!
All you need is love!
Always good to meet a fellow human who shares the same name. Did you know that ‘Mark’ is related to the Latin word ‘Mars’? It means consecrated to the God of Mars, and also may mean God of War, to be warlike or a warrior
Summer is here, and so are the jazzy shirts and vibrant colours!
Today’s colour is sponsored by Mother Nature
Book Club CAMBRIDGE EDITION THERE’S NOTHING BETTER ON A LONG, WARM EVENING THAN RELAXING WITH THE TOP NOVELS OF THE SUMMER
WORDS BY CHARLOTTE GRIFFITHS
In a world where fakes fool even the most eagle-eyed fashionistas, trust nothing: especially not the narrators of this brilliant, heist-like caper. Ava is a high-achieving lawyer who’s recently stepped out of the career race to raise her toddler. A chance encounter leads her to reconnect with an old friend called Winnie, who left Stanford in a disgrace-clouded hurry before completing her course. Yet several years later, Winnie is now the picture of success – especially to Ava, who is beginning to wonder if she’s made the right decision by leaving her job. It’s slowly revealed that Winnie’s lavish lifestyle is funded by questionable business activities, which prove so lucrative that she needs some help managing the tasks – asking her old friend to lend a hand. As expected, Ava proves extremely able at her new career and is soon in deep, but is it what she really wants? And is it too late to get out? Packed with accessories from legendary labels, both fake and not-so- fake, this satisfying novel is an ideal weekend read. COUNTERFEIT BY KIRSTIN CHEN
Lessons in Chemistry The sleeper hit of the summer. If you have made it this far through the season without falling head over heels in love with Elizabeth Zott, her daughter Madeline and their truly superb dog Six-Thirty (named for the time he arrived in her life), then put down Cambridge Edition and order a copy to arrive at your door ASAP. Set in the US in the 60s, our hero Elizabeth is a research chemist trying to change the world, starting with her misogynistic colleagues at the Hastings Research Lab – all except star scientist Calvin Evans, expert grudge-holder and rower who quickly becomes Elizabeth’s adoring lover. Ten years later and now a single parent, Elizabeth has a chance encounter which leads to an unexpected career in television, where she steals the hearts of housewives across the nation, empowering them with no-nonsense recipes, cooking strategies and well-deserved respect. She gives short shrift to those standing in her way, refuses to ‘dumb down’ and constantly questions conventions, baffled whenever required to constrain her vastly superior intellect. And it’s all perfectly rendered by Bonnie Garmus’ atomically precise prose. “Once a research chemist, Elizabeth Zott was a woman with flawless skin and an BY BONNIE GARMUS
unmistakable demeanour of someone who was not average and never would be” gives you a taste of what you’re in for. The extraordinarily well-drawn characters will utterly command your attention and leave you ‘devastated to have finished it’ – as Nigella Lawson proclaimed. And we haven’t even covered the dog! This novel will make you cry, want to take up rowing, reconsider how you cook dinner and stand up to those in your way. It is a completely perfect book, whatever time of year, and I simply cannot wait for the inevitable film. ALL THE RIGHT ELEMENTS This debut novel from copywriter and creative director Bonnie Garmus is filled with humour, fantastic characters and plenty of wry observations
’TIL YOU MAKE IT Get drawn into a world of fakes – as two women embark on a fascinating journey
Put down Cambridge Edition and order a copy to arrive at your door ASAP
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BREAKOUT CAMBRIDGE-HAILING CHILDREN’S AUTHOR LOU CARTER SHARES A SNAPSHOT OF HER PROFESSIONAL LIFE, AS HER LATEST BOOK – THE GREAT HAMSTER GETAWAY – IS UNLEASHED
Knowing your audience is vital for any book writing, but when it’s for children you have to go further and really choose which age your text is aimed at. If I was writing for older children, I would need to change an awful lot in terms of vocabulary, theme and length. It’s important to let the pictures tell half the story – neither words, nor pictures should make complete sense on their own – this is a partnership. As the author, it is my responsibility to visualise exactly how this will work and include any artwork suggestions. Writing doesn’t get easier – even though picture book texts are very short, choosing the right few words for a page can take days and drive you slightly bonkers. My writing has, however, definitely developed along the way. I’ve learned what will or won’t work, how important it is to be inside the head of your character before you start – and how to create those all-important moments of tension. I do experience writer’s block, especially when working with rhyme. I have discovered that sitting there trying to power through is never the answer – good ideas do not flow once frustration has set in. I walk away, leave it for a day or two, try to imagine the animation in my head taking a different path and eventually something will fall into place. Out now, The Great Hamster Getaway is published by Bloomsbury.
nspiration comes from absolutely everywhere – things I see, hear, smell or something else. Ideas just spark and I follow them and see where they go. Most don’t go anywhere, but every now and then they will lead to something fantastic. As a primary school teacher in my twenties, I loved reading picture books to my class at the end of each day, and decided writing was something I wanted to do. I just close my eyes and let my imagination run. As the stories develop, they play in my head like an animated film and I can get a good idea if it does or doesn’t work. Much as I would love to spend my days writing, it’s a case of fitting it in-between my other full-time work as a boot camp and mobility instructor. My day starts at 5am to get to an early morning session, followed by one-to-one mobility work and classes for older people or those with multiple sclerosis. My dedicated writing time is a couple of hours in the afternoon, twice a week. I’ll sometimes spend that time thinking, others I’ll be actively writing or editing with my publishers, then it’s back to work for evening boot camp. I’m lucky to have such a mix of jobs, which I love. I often have more time to write when on holiday, so have ended up writing all over the place. The Great Hamster Getaway was written in Greece by the
pool. I don’t have a lot of time to actually sit at my desk, so the majority of story planning goes on in my mind for weeks or months before typing my first word. I always have the main character clear in my head and the general story framework sorted on paper before starting. First up, I divide my page into 12 spreads, then see how the story skeleton might fit within that. I don’t really work with any of my illustrators – it’s more a case of the words being passed down a long line to Deborah Allwright, then her ideas are sent back up. PET PROJECT Lou’s latest escapade tells the story of a rodent runaway seeking some excitement in his life, with plenty of lessons learned along the way
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