YOUR MONTHLY F IX OF
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Blue sky thinking SENSATIONAL STAYCATION IDEAS, UNMISSABLE EVENTS, NEW OPENINGS & MORE TO DISCOVER THIS SEPTEMBER
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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. EDITORIAL Editor in chief Nicola Foley 01223 499459 firstname.lastname@example.org Editorial assistant Frances McNaughton 01223 499469 email@example.com Editorial director Roger Payne MatthewWinney ADVERTISING Group ad manager Sam Scott-Smith 01223 499457 firstname.lastname@example.org Sales executive Hannah Gurney 01223 499463 email@example.com CONTRIBUTORS Alex Bloxham, Mark Box, Charlotte Griffiths, Charlotte Phillips, Alex Rushmer, Anna Taylor & Elisha Young Chief sub editor Alex Bell Sub editors Elisha Young & DESIGN & PRODUCTION Senior designer Lucy Woolcomb firstname.lastname@example.org Ad production Man-Wai Wong MANAGING DIRECTORS Andy Brogden &Matt Pluck
eather-wise, the last few months have been such a mixed bag that there’s no telling if we’ll be spending September in hailstorms or (fingers crossed!) balmy, Indian summer bliss – but whatever the climate’s doing, there’s plenty to tempt you out this month. The always intriguing Open Cambridge is back between 10-19 September, serving up 65 free events that explore the city’s heritage and history – this time with a theme of ‘Edible England’. Expect fascinating forays into some of our regional dishes, tales of Queen Victoria’s coronation feast on Parker’s Piece, and plenty more – details on page 12. Also bursting with edible inspiration is this month’s food and drink section, where we round up some of Cambridge’s top brunch spots, plus share news of a beautiful new bistro, a soon-to-open dessert parlour, and a very exciting, wine-based pop-up at one of our favourite Mill Road restaurants. We also catch up with local couple Rob and PamMarsden, who’ve just released a new recipe book of sun-drenched Mediterranean dishes – get the lowdown in Savour & Sip, from page 37. If you’re keen to relish the last bit of summer before autumn sets in, our staycations guide (from page 63) could be just the thing. From luxury spas to gourmet hotspots and glamping resorts, there are excellent options in all directions around East Anglia. For some closer-to-home fun, have you ever considered curling? Cambridge is the only ice rink in England where you can participate in this ancient sport – and it’s certainly made a convert out of Frances from our editorial team, who gave it a go for our latest Tried & Tested feature – have a read on page 31. We’ve also got autumn theatre highlights (page 18), the best new books (page 27), and home and garden inspiration (from page 93). Enjoy the issue and see you next month!
EDITOR IN CHIEF
F IND US @CAMBSEDITION | CAMBSEDITION.CO.UK
04 Starters This month’s wish list from local indies, plus our top social media pics of the month 07 Culture Club Art exhibitions, theatre, great reads, this month’s street style portraits and more 31 Tried &Tested Frances McNaughton has a go at the ancient Scottish sport of curling 33 Out of Town A look at what’s coming up in Ely and our
63 Staycation in your City! From luxury camping to brand-new hotels, we’ve got the ultimate guide to minibreaking 75 Education Edition Extra-curricular excellence, a spotlight on STEAM, adult learning and more 89 Beauty Ditch lockdown minimalism and go all out with some high-voltage glam this autumn 95 Edition Loves Our homewares round-up takes on a colourful, playful feel this month 97 Property News Bidwells considers the impact of the pandemic on the rental market locally 98 Gardens Anna, owner of Anna’s Flower Farm in Audley End, shares what’s happening in her garden
other neighbouring environs 37 Food &Drink
New openings, brunch tips, recipes, events, and foodie insights from Elisha and Alex 61 Indie of the Month In the spotlight this September, Bryan Turner Kitchen Furniture
Cover illustration by Lucy Woolcomb, based on a photo by David Valinsky. davidvalinsky photography.com
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LOCAL L I FE Starters
#instacamb OUR FAVOURITE CAMBRIDGE INSTAGRAM PICS OF THE MONTH!
After cancelling its 2020 event due to the pandemic, Walk for Parkinson’s returns this month, encouraging people to sign up to a 1.5- or 4.5-mile route around Wandlebury Country Park on 25 September. Despite huge breakthroughs in the past 50 years, there is still no cure for Parkinson’s, and current treatments are not good enough – but by supporting this event and the work of Parkinson’s UK, you can do your bit to drive forward research which will transform lives. The sign-up fee is £12, and everything raised will be matched by the Frank and Evelyn Brake Connect Fund, which offers information and support services for Parkinson’s walk at Wandlebury EVERY STEP COUNTS
people with Parkinson’s. events.parkinsons.org.uk
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LOCAL L I FE
THIS MONTH’S MUST-HAVES FROM LOCAL INDIES
1. Betty, £945, BEG Bicycles Breeze into autumn on the beautiful Betty, a stunning Dutch bike built to order in the Belgian countryside, and available locally at Hemingford’s BEG Bicycles 2. Block reversible glass vase, £21, Kettle’s Yard These pink-hued, geometric glass vases are the perfect vessels for either a single beautiful bud or a mini floral arrangement 3. Best day ever card, £2.65, Click It Local We’re huge fans of local designer Clare Gray Makes – and this cute card is a perfect token of your affection for someone special 4. Face mask, £7, Curating Cambridge Stay safe in style with this verdant face mask, inspired by one of Cambridge Botanic Garden’s most famous residents: the glorious jade vine 5. Powder headband, £27.50, Lilac Rose Add a touch of elegance to your outfit with this intricate embroidered headband, available from Bridge Street’s Lilac Rose 6. Hanging plant globe, £159, Angela Reed Designed to hang inside or out, this handmade accessory has space for a plant and four candles in its ‘orbit’ 7. Gina round neck knit blue, £30, Iris & Violet You’ll be happy to welcome the cooler weather in this pastel knit jumper from newcomer Iris & Violet 8. Jute bag, £75, Ark This handmade bag is from city centre gift emporium Ark, and comes in a range of colourful styles
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HIGHLIGHTS melting pot
FROM LONG-AWAITED FILM FESTIVALS, TO THE LATEST LIVE THEATRE, THIS MONTH’S ARTS SCENE IS STACKED
© SARAH GRAHAM
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CULTURE CLUB Arts & Culture THE MUST-SEE EVENTS AROUND CAMBRIDGE THIS MONTH
Man of the hour WE CATCH UP WITH SIMON AMSTELL ABOUT HIS NO HOLDS BARRED NEW COMEDY SHOW, SPIRIT HOLE A STAND-UP LEGEND
that nothing happened – nobody walked out of the room – it’s incredibly freeing.” While many have fallen prey to dark thoughts during lockdown, Simon seems to be flourishing. “I think I learned to surrender, finally,” he says. “We’re all under the illusion we have any control over our lives. This was some pretty strong evidence we don’t.” Ageing – another uncontrollable aspect of life – is also a big theme. “A lot of the show is about getting older,” says Simon. He turned 40 in
have never felt more excited about a tour in my life,” says Simon Amstell. The British comedian and filmmaker is talking up his return to stand-up, as he prepares to bring his new show Spirit Hole to audiences this autumn.
A ‘blissful, spiritual, sensational exploration of love, sex, shame, mushrooms and more’, this 39-gig odyssey promises to rival his 2019 Netflix special Set Free , which took viewers on a surreal meander through his mind. After months of lockdown left him contemplating life, the universe and stand- up, Simon has found himself more than ready to go back on the road. “The show’s better now as a result of all this,” he says. “If there’s a silver lining, I may be funnier!” Fans of his acute observational humour certainly won’t be disappointed. Right back to his early forays at the Edinburgh Fringe, and shows like 2010’s Do Nothing , Simon has proved himself a master at skewering his own social embarrassment. Take shame – an emotion he tackles in this latest show. “I clear away a lot of it by voicing out loud what I’m worried about saying,” he says. “I’m really scared of not saying everything, but leaving something out – then it remains this little demon in my head, making me feel like there’s something wrong with me. But the second I vocalise what I’m embarrassed about, and realise
IF THERE’S A SILVER LINING, I MAY BE FUNNIER!
November 2019, a milestone he struggled with: “In our culture, we’re told there’s options, we get sold anti-ageing products. Really, the advert should say: ‘Hi. Nothing can be done. Maybe get a hobby.’” After the year the world has endured, Simon sees light at the end of the tunnel. “This is a planet we’re not treating well,” he says. “My hope is that we’ve been challenged enough to change.” Rest
assured, though: Spirit Hole won’t be one long gig about Covid. “I feel like not mentioning it would be peculiar, but going on about it would be unbearable. I’ll only discuss it through the prism of my own weird emotions.” We wouldn’t want it any other way. You can catch Spirit Hole at Cambridge Corn Exchange on 8 November. Tickets are available via the venue’s website. cambridgelive.org.uk
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THE SKY’S THE LIMIT CINEMATIC MARVELS
he Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour has always championed the best in action and adventure – and this year’s celebrations will be
no different. The tour features two different collections of inspirational films from the world’s top adventure filmmakers, including extreme expeditions, fearless characters and astounding cinematography from the wildest corners of the planet. The chosen films were selected from hundreds of entries from the annual Banff Mountain Film Festival in Canada, and none of the line-up in this year’s programme have been shown at any of Banff UK & Ireland’s virtual events over lockdown, so you’re about to be treated to a series of premieres! “We can’t wait to get these epic adventure films back where they belong – up on the big screen,” says tour director Nell Teasdale. “With mind-blowing stories of human endeavour from rarely seen parts of the world, Banff events have a thrilling atmosphere – and we guarantee audiences will leave inspired to have adventures of their own.” The Chairlift , directed by seasoned filmmaker Mike Douglas, celebrates one of the underdogs of the winter sports world: the chairlift itself. Crafted in the thick of lockdown last year, it’s a feel-good film that should serve as a nice distraction for those still feeling decidedly weathered. “In a world that seems to go faster and faster, to me the old chairlift represents nostalgia for a slower pace of life,” Mike explains. “It’s all about more, higher, better these days – but the film can be a moment of reflection for us all. Stop and look around, and you’ll feel like you can breathe again.” With over 25 years of experience in the video, film and TV world (including 14 years as a commentator at ESPN), Mike’s background set him up perfectly to play with the crucial relationship between audience and camera. He first gained recognition as a professional skier – giving him a second- to-none understanding of the sport itself. “I suppose I started out by being big-eyed in front of the camera, then became more intrigued by the action behind the scenes,” he explains. When asked for any parting words, Mike harkens back to his roots, showing support for his fellow adrenaline aficionados. “To the skiers in the UK: hang in there,” Mike affirms. “We’ll get out again.” For more information, and to book your tickets, visit the website. banff-uk.com
Dive in In a similar vein, this year’s Ocean Film Festival returns with a brand-new selection of the world’s most inspirational ocean-themed films, capturing the action both above and below the surface. “We can’t wait to set sail back to theatres with our latest collection,” says Teasdale. “Witness intrepid human-powered challenges, mind-boggling marine life and incredible ocean cinematography, without getting your feet wet!” The festival originated in Australia, inspiring people to explore, respect, enjoy and protect the oceans. “We are so excited to share this newest set, and bring together ocean-loving communities around the UK,” adds Nell. “Dive in for a night of ocean adventure – up on the big screen.” More details can be found on the website. oceanfilmfestival.co.uk
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STOP AND LOOK AROUND – YOU’LL FEEL LIKE YOU CAN BREATHE AGAIN
WONDROUSWILDERNESS The Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour and the Ocean Film Festival both return, with first looks at some adventurous cinema – frommountain peaks to ocean depths
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CULTURE CLUB Open Cambridge CELEBRATE LOCAL CULTURE AT ONE OF THE CITY’S MOST-LOVED FESTIVALS WORDS BY FRANCES MCNAUGHTON
An event for all the family to enjoy, the exclusive tour of Cambridge University Farm will allow you to explore the century- old farm to your heart’s content. See the animals and machinery on a guided tour led by staff, and learn how the farm aims to manage livestock operations in ways that demonstrate animal welfare and keep up its commitment to farming in a sustainable manner – including maintaining and enhancing the conservation value of the farm. It’s also home to a herd of pedigree Holstein Friesian cattle – so if you’ve been enjoying the Cows about Cambridge
his year’s Open Cambridge extravaganza promises to be bigger and better than ever. The theme for 2021 – ‘edible England’ – focuses
on the city’s culinary heritage and culture, both past and present. It’s sure to be a real treat, with a series of unmissable events between 10 and 19 September. The festival is part of the national Heritage Open Days scheme, which provides special access to places that would otherwise be closed to the public (or charge admission). It’s run by the University of Cambridge Public Engagement team, with support from Cambridge BID. As a consistently popular free annual festival, Open Cambridge is continuing its tradition of upping days – have more than tripled this year, and will include tours, walks, films, talks and a whole host of online activities, designed to bring local people together and encourage widespread celebration of Cambridge’s unique community spirit. From this fantastic selection, potential favourites include a behind-the-scenes tour of Cambridge University Farm, a look at the dietary changes Americans brought to Cambridge during World War II, and a talk that reveals what food provisions are necessary when embarking on an Antarctic expedition. the game for 2021, maxing out on both in-person and digital events. The festivities – which usually span three
exhibition this summer, why not head down to feast your eyes on the real deal? There are several events for history buffs to revel in, with a particular focus on Cambridge’s gastronomic past. ‘What
IT’S A SERIES OF UNMISSABLE EVENTS
did the Americans bring to the table
during World War II?’ tells the tale of how Americans brought their food and culture across the pond during this time of global conflict. Airmen, soldiers and sailors arriving in Britain – unprepared for the sheer drabness of everything – identified a sure-fire way to lighten our spirits. They brought edible delights over as gifts – including tinned hams, ‘jello’ and sugar- loaded candies. Find out more about these stories during a 50-minute walking tour of the hallowed grounds where young men and women of the Friendly Invasion are commemorated – and learn more about the so-called ‘forbidden fruits’ they brought along with them. You can also enjoy ‘Feasting histories hunt: discover the rich culture of feasting in the city of Cambridge’, which promises plenty of rich, juicy details concerning historical culinary events. From collegial dinners in medieval halls to Queen Victoria’s coronation feast in a park – take it all in on a virtual tour. Short videos will be available to access on demand on any mobile device, revealing a conglomeration of stories full of exciting places, objects, food and people. If you’re a regular at Cambridge’s bustling market, there’s an event that may pique your interest. ‘Meat from the market, spices from the fair: feeding townspeople, students and visitors in past Cambridge’
reveals the ways food has been distributed in the city over the years. In the early days, there were gardens and orchards right in the centre of town where vegetables and fruit were grown, while more exotic foodstuffs primarily reached Cambridge through annual fairs. There’s plenty to learn, as it seems the city’s food supply was never completely straightforward! For adventure-loving visitors, the Scott Polar Research Institute’s archivists will be running ‘Crossing Antarctica: How do you cross a continent made of ice?’, at which they will discuss the planning, provisions and progress of a timeless journey across the icy continent, from the 1950s era of exploration. There’s also the chance to hear about Cambridge resident Vivian ‘Bunny’ Fuchs – the first person to traverse the Antarctic’s uncharted territories in the Commonwealth Trans- Antarctic Expedition. The full programme – which has 65 free events in total – is available to look through now. For more information, visit the Open Cambridge website. opencambridge.cam.ac.uk
KNOWYOUR ONIONS Among the events Open Cambridge offers is a talk from food historian Dr Annie Gray – she reveals the lunch habits of the Churchills
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Grayson Perry Coming to the Corn Exchange this September is Grayson Perry, with his all-new production, A Show for Normal People . The award-winning artist, BAFTA-winning TV presenter, Reith lecturer and bestselling author is here to declare that he is, in fact, a normal person. And despite his illustrious career, he’s not immune to the seemingly incessant mundanity of life. But he’s doing it all with a sense of humour; at the end of the day, he’s a man in a dress taking to the stage to both distract and entertain you. Make sure to catch him on 12 September. cambridgelive.org.uk
Roll the credits There’s another quick-fire round of cinematic screenings coming your way this month from The Star and Mouse Picture Show – this time set in the stunning grounds of Stanford Hall. On 2 September, you’ve got Knives Out , followed by A Star Is Born on 3 September. The action continues with Top Gun on 4 September, and the month’s offering ends with a showing of Dirty Dancing on 5 September. This is your last chance to enjoy some outdoor cinema in 2021, so make the most of it! Ticket details can be found at starandmouse.com
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Artsfest St Paul’s Church on Hills Road will be the setting for a four-day festival of music, workshops, talks and exhibitions, when the biannual Artsfest returns from 15 to 18 September. Performances include folk legend Martyn Joseph, jazz from Tony Kofi and Tim Boniface, and a concert of 19th-century music from members of the Queen Victoria’s Consort ensemble. For a more immersive experience, join in with workshops – from screen printing to quiltmaking – or write and record electronic music with drum-and- bass royalty Logistics and Nu:Tone. There’ll also be visual art from Fiona Stevenson, plus talks from speakers including art historian Ruby Wroe and Anglican priest Reverend Dr Ayla Lepine. Find out more and book events via the website. stpaulsartsfest.org
FUNKE & THE TWO TONE BABY 7 NOV, 7.30PM, £10.80 ADV, THE PORTLAND ARMS Generating huge sounds from seemingly nothing, this unique act is a one-man phenomenon, offering a frenzied fusion of organic and electronic that defies classification.
This October, Cambridge Photography Week will be hitting the city for the second year running, after it was such a resounding success in 2020. Hosted by Campkins Cameras – who have been holding fort in central Cambridge since 1952 – it’s a week dedicated entirely to photographing the city in all its glory, providing photographers with plenty of advice and inspiration to get out and snap some stellar shots. The event will be running from 25 to 30 October, with experts on hand to offer top tips throughout, culminating in the official Cambridge Photography Show at the Cambridge Guildhall. For all of you budding photographers out there, or even those simply looking to brush up and refine their skills, CAUGHT ON CAMERA CAMBRIDGE PHOTOGRAPHY WEEK
25 NOV, 7PM, £21 ADV, CAMBRIDGE JUNCTION Join the captains of ever-upbeat, communal tunes as they bring their haywire AC/DC covers to the Junction.
it’s one to pencil in to the diary. cambridgephotographyweek.com
TOM ODELL 6 MAR 2022, 7.30PM, £31.50, CORN EXCHANGE Chart-topping, platinum- selling artist TomOdell brings his fourth album, Monsters , to the stage.
Expect an evening of alchemised emotion.
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In the spotlight LOCAL LIFE WANDER OVER TO SAFFRON WALDEN THIS SEPTEMBER, FOR A FANTASTIC LINE-UP OF CULTURAL EVENTS
© THE SAFFRON WALDEN GALLERY
irst up, Saffron Screen is showing an exhaustive list of stellar shows this September, starting with André Rieu’s summer concert
© AUDLEY END HOUSE & GARDENS
Together Again , featuring a hand-picked selection of the composer’s favourite music from his performances all around the world, many of which have never been seen on the big screen. Dangerous Liaisons sees Northern Ballet take the classic play in an enlivened new direction on 21 September, infusing it with unbridled energy and eloquent control. You can then catch Romeo and Juliet on 28 September, in a theatre production filmed at the National Theatre during lockdown. The adaptation is an inventive take on Shakespeare’s play, capturing the defiant spirit that has ensured the story’s timeless appeal. Saffron Hall is also presenting an impressive line-up of live shows to enjoy this month, with the venue set to welcome a slew of talented musicians and performers to the lovely market town. Revel in an evening of jazz with Dan Forshaw, Joel Humann and Derek Scurll’s #JazzTrio on Friday 17 September, or witness an array
FINE SELECTION From historic houses to modern art, there’s much to discover
REVEL IN AN EVENING OF JAZZ WITH DAN FORSHAW
© HEATH KANE
delving into the surreal, juxtaposed world of Heath Kane at his studio; or going back to basics and enjoying the impressive offering of local artists on display at The Fry Art Gallery, you can get your fill of artsy content in the town anytime you like. Be sure to visit the websites of each of the galleries to check booking availability for current exhibitions. There are more events to look forward to elsewhere in the area, too. Bolford Street Hall in nearby Thaxted is running a special event to celebrate Moorcroft Pottery, and commemorate 35 years of Maureen and Hugh Edwards’ stewardship of the brand. There are plenty of talks to enjoy, along with a host of designs and heritage pieces on show – plus discounted blemished items. Catch it from 3 to 4 September.
of dazzling, classic operatic arias from vocal superstar Joyce DiDonato on 18 September. There are plenty of performances coming up throughout October, too, including an appearance from the London Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Edward Gardner. Or, for those interested in the history and heritage of Saffron Walden, you can enjoy one of the Historic House Tours. These will take you behind the scenes at 25-27 Church Street, exploring the unmodernised interiors, chalk-floored cellars and extensive surviving medieval fabric. There are two chances to join in this month (4 and 25 September). Gallery-wise, you’re spoilt for choice in Saffron Walden. Whether you’re exploring a conglomeration of contemporary works at the aptly named Saffron Walden Gallery;
© HEATH KANE
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Dose of culture
A PAIR OF EVENT HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE COMING MONTH
CAMBRIDGE CRAFT FESTIVAL This year will see Cambridge’s second online Craft Festival, helping to promote local crafters and makers and their handmade businesses. Behind every small business is someone with a passion for what they do – and this festival is your best shot to catch those creatives all in one place, and show your support for Cambridge’s ever- growing arts scene. Make sure to catch it on Saturday 4 September – and keep an eye on Instagram for live content on the day.
© PAMELA RAITH
WALDEN On 8 September, enjoy a screening of Amy Berryman’s compelling debut play Walden , in which two estranged twin sisters – and NASA employees – spend some intimate time together in a remote cabin in the woods. Old wounds resurface as the pair attempt to repair their relationship, unpicking the rivalry that broke them apart and forging new ties. With stellar performances from stage and screen starlet Gemma Arterton, plus Fehinti Balogun and Lydia Wilson, this star-studded production is not to be missed. Catch the screening at the Arts Picturehouse.
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TAKINGA STAND FOR THIS AUTUMN ARTS SEASON, LOCAL THEATRES ARE CENTRE STAGE. HERE ARE THE HIGHLIGHTS SHOWSTOPPERS
WORDS BY FRANCES MCNAUGHTON
starring Olivier Award-winner Matthew Kelly, alongside Julian Clary. Then on 17 October, two decorated UK jazz musicians – vocalist Claire Martin OBE and pianist Nikki Iles – will perform a concert of songs recorded by legendary singer Tony Bennett with Bill Evans. As the season draws to a close, Mischief Theatre’s Groan Ups finally takes to the stage from 18 to 23 October, after multiple pandemic postponements. Then, from 27 to 30 October, catch a production of David Walliams’ smash-hit story Gangsta Granny , full to the brim with fun for all the family. The autumn season at Cambridge Arts Theatre closes with Private Lives , another of Noël Coward’s stylish plays, starring the fabulous Patricia Hodge – along with the man himself, Nigel Havers. It’ll be running from 22 until 27 November. Find details for the full calendar of shows at Cambridge Arts Theatre over on the website. cambridgeartstheatre.com As usual, there are plenty of highlights from the Junction, too, but keep your eyes peeled for these shows in particular. Kicking everything off on 1 September is Ed Byrne, with his brand-new masterclass in observational comedy, If I’m Honest . And on 11 September, fellow comedy legend Tom Stade is back on the road with You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet – his irrepressible sense of mischief leading the way as always. There’s a smattering of concerts to catch next, including The Primitives, whose brilliantly independent sound fills the venue on 19 September as part of their Crash! Bang! Wallop! tour. The Psychedelic Furs follow on 5 October, offering a night of refuge for late- 1970s post-punk fans. Then, on 12 October, Scouting For Girls are on the scene for what is sure to be a sell-out show. Or, for anyone missing their daily dose of Love Island , voice of the show Iain Stirling is in the mix on 8 October, promising more hilarity following his 2018 smash-hit tour U OK HUN? X . November is set to be similarly packed with nights to remember. This is the Kit finally get their time to shine, with a rescheduled show – performing their new album Off Off On – on 9 November. Next up, Snapped Ankles remind us of their outsider status on 11 November, with an infectious show of boundary-blending, art-rock prowess. And why not finish off the season with a night of Shame? The band are at the venue on 23 November. Find all details and ticket information on the Cambridge Junction website. junction.co.uk
t’s all happening at the ADC Theatre this season, so buckle up! From 1 to 11 September, iconic musical Grease thunders into the venue. Follow summer lovers Danny and Sandy as they navigate the trials of high school, all to the unforgettable rock ’n’ roll soundtrack that’s defined generations. The Cambridge Festival of Drama follows on 16 to 18 September, with a celebration of amateur talent, featuring seven short plays by drama groups from Cambridge and beyond. Then, from 21 to 25 September, catch Present Laughter , the most autobiographical of Noël Coward’s plays. It considers the price of fame, as theatrical impresario Garry Essendine entertains both male and female stalkers in his studio. At both the ADC and Corpus Playroom, there’s the Cambridge International Arts Festival LABS , which promises seven days of experimental theatre and dance. Showcasing acts from across the UK, it brings together some of the most risky and boldly brilliant theatrical events on the scene. Catch it from 26 September to 2 October. Also at Corpus Playroom, Ghost Quartet is an intoxicating song-cycle with live music and strange tales of love, revenge, and spirits – alcoholic or otherwise. It runs from 26 to 30 October. Towards the end of the season, enjoy two Chekhov plays – The Proposal and The Bear – from 9 until 13 November. A Small Family Business follows from 16 to 20 November, in which honest protagonist Jack McCracken aims to transform his criminal family’s furniture company. The season ends on a high, as usual, with the CUADC/Footlights Pantomime, featuring a very special rendition of Rapunzel . Be sure not to miss it (between 24 November and 4 December). More information and ticket details for all ADC Theatre shows can be found on the website. adctheatre.com Similarly, over at Cambridge Arts Theatre, there’s a slew of shows coming to take you by storm. First up, from 7 to 11 September, Absurd Person Singular (Alan Ayckbourn’s comic masterpiece) presents a perfect mix of farce and black comedy. The Hound of the Baskervilles is next up from 16 to 18 September, offering a brilliantly inventive take on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s most celebrated adventure. Acclaimed drama The Dresser – which will be showing from 12 to 16 October – is an evocative, hilarious portrait of backstage life,
BACKSTAGE DRAMA The Dresser stars Matthew Kelly and Julian Clary
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The best of Byard AT THIS UNASSUMING GALLERY ON KING’S PARADE, THE WORKS ON DISPLAY ARE ABOUT TO GET REAL
WORDS BY FRANCES MCNAUGHTON
ver the next couple of months, you can look forward to some stellar exhibitions at Byard Art. From 9 September through to 3 October, the gallery’s Hyper Realist Exhibition will showcase a selection of works, some of which are so realistically rendered that you’d be forgiven for thinking they were photographs. Works by Tommy Carlsson, CJ Green and Sarah Graham are striking examples of hyperrealism. In the case of Carlsson’s oil paintings – depicting taut, restricted balloons, along with heavy-duty, dented lockers – the contrast between fragility and force is brought to the forefront. The works are loaded with tension, whether implicit in the nature of the subject, as with the lockers, or explicit in the imagery, as with the balloons. There’s a real sense of threat present in the subtext, and the use of bright, often primary, colours against bleak shades of grey emphasises this oppressive energy, and its underlying potential for unpredictable disruption. CJ Green combines oil and acrylic paints – and the results almost defy logic in their ability to replicate reality. The artist tackles reflective glass and chrome surfaces with aplomb, setting them against clean colour palettes in sparse compositions that offer nowhere to hide. Jelly Bean Jar is a particularly satisfying example, but be
sure to look out for his deceptively modest series of egg cups, too. As for Graham, her art is gloriously vibrant, depicting delicious confections drenched in colour. Among these, find decadent French Fancies, ribbon-wrapped candies and fruity Chupa Chups lollipops – all starkly foregrounded and set against diffused, smoothly blended backgrounds. They’re a real visual feast. Check out I Fancy You for an especially potent hit of nostalgia; its rich, glazed rhubarb-and- custard colours will take you back to your childhood sweet-shop days – or at least have you licking your lips. Following the Hyper Realist Exhibition , works by the immensely popular Jack Frame will be on display from 7 October. The paintings are delicate and simple, yet stand out with the artist’s frequent use of metallics and bold backgrounds. In many ways an ode to painting itself, they are characterised by a unique attention to detail, allowing the subjects to be appreciated in their own right – with a heightened sense of awareness that lends itself to considered, quiet reverence. For more details about the upcoming exhibitions, head to the Byard Art website, or keep up to date with the gallery on social media ( @byard_art on Instagram). byardart.co.uk
CONFECTIONS DRENCHED IN COLOUR
LOSE YOUR MARBLES The art on display at the Hyper Realist Exhibition can play tricks. They aren’t photographs, but glossy, highly-skilled paintings – check them out at Byard Art
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PENCIL IT IN
COMING UP AT KETTLE’S YARD This autumn, Kettle’s Yard is keeping up appearances with not one but two impactful exhibitions to add to the city’s already loaded arts scene. Untitled: Art on the conditions of our time – an exhibition that brings together the work of ten British African diaspora artists – will be running until 3 October. Exploring the long-standing historical convention of leaving artworks ‘untitled’, the exhibition is made up of pieces that sidestep over-contextualisation. Instead, they spotlight the connections between art, culture and society, without the identity- focused labels that often cloud how they are viewed. In addition to Untitled , British Indian artist Sutapa Biswas will bring her vital works to Kettle’s Yard as part of her Lumen exhibition. The artist’s visually disruptive, challenging works highlight the limitations of Eurocentric discourse, examining gender, identity and desire – and the integral roles they play in understanding our everyday lives. The first substantial solo show from the artist in 14 years, you can see it for yourself from 16 October. kettlesyard.co.uk
Art exclusive There’s a very special event coming up at Kettle’s Yard on the evening of Friday 1 October (and continuing from 10am until 4pm on Saturday 2 October). Hosted by online gallery AKA Fine Art – the brainchild of Conserve Paintings’ Ali Porter and Wildwood Gallery’s Kevin Youngman – the exhibition is a fundraiser for mental health charity Arts and Minds, with whom the team work very closely. “Mental health has always been an important issue – and lockdown has only increased the strain on people’s lives,” said Kevin. “AKA is our opportunity to help. That’s why we are giving a donation from each sale to Arts and Minds.” In terms of what you’ve got to look forward to, Cambridge-based artist Charlotte Cornish will discuss her work and career on the Friday evening, complete with fizz and nibbles, while other artists exhibited across the weekend include sculptors Jeff Lowe and Laurence Edwards – and the multi-talented Mr Penfold. “Our vision is to promote the most exciting artists, building a team of talented individuals,” Ali comments. “We’re using traditional means of promotion: exhibitions, art fairs and artists’ talks, while attracting the next generation of artists and art lovers by building a strong online presence.” AKA Fine Art will be opening its Cambridge gallery next spring. Keep an eye on the website and the gallery’s social media channels ( @akafineart ) for updates. akafineart.co.uk
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Humans of Cambridge PHOTOGRAPHER MARK BOX SHARES SOME OF HIS FAVOURITE PORTRAITS FROM THE STREETS OF CAMBRIDGE THIS MONTH – CAN YOU SPOT ANYONE YOU KNOW?
ONE OF MY FAVOURITES FROM AUGUST! THIS LOVELY IMAGE OF PAPA AND HIS MINI- HUMANWEARING A HOMEMADEDENIM JACKETWITH FRIDA KAHLO ON THE
BACK (MADE BY MAMA) IS TOO CUTE!
About the project
Humans of Cambridge is an Instagram photoblog by local photographer Mark Box. It began as a lockdown project and has turned into a local sensation, featuring an ever- growing number of Cambridge’s colourful characters on the @humanofcambridge grid. Mark is out snapping most days, 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 and wear something eye-catching!
THE BEST WAY TO GET NOTICED IS TO WEAR YOUR FAVOURITE COLOURFUL ITEM OF CLOTHING – AND THIS HUMAN DID EXACTLY THAT! THE BEAUTIFULLY VIBRANT ORANGE JACKET WITH EXQUISITE EMBROIDERY DETAILS REALLY STOOD OUT FOR ME. IT’S ALL ABOUT COLOUR AND CHARACTER!
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STREET STYLE THIS HUMAN HAS ALL THE ELEMENTS THAT I LOOK OUT FOR WHEN I’M ‘ON THE HUNT’. ECLECTIC FASHION, ATTITUDE AND COLOURS! THE COMBINATION OF TEXTURES, MATERIALS AND COMPLEMENTARY COLOURS REALLY MAKES THIS PORTRAIT WORK. GOTTA LOVE THOSE COW-PRINT TRAINERS!
IT’S NOT EVERY DAY YOU BUMP INTO TV PERSONALITIES. FUNNILY ENOUGH, I ACTUALLY MET DR PIXIE MCKENNA ABOUT 15 YEARS AGO WHILE WORKING AT BORDERS IN CAMBRIDGE. WHEN I APPROACHED HER, I SAID, ‘I KNOW THAT YOU KNOW THAT I KNOWWHO YOU ARE, BUT IT’S YOUR DRESS THAT I SAW FIRST!’ SHE SMILED AND PROMPTLY GAVE ME 30 SECONDS – AND SHE WAS ABSOLUTELY LOVELY!
THIS DAPPER HUMAN TICKED ALL THE BOXES! SLIGHTLY TAKEN ABACK BY MY APPROACH, BUT PLEASANTLY HAPPY TO TAKE PART, THIS WONDERFULLY DRESSED HUMAN KNOWS HOW TO LOOK SMART AND SASSY AT THE SAME TIME. LOVING THE BURGUNDY TROUSERS AND MATCHING BAG... AND THAT CAT BROACH IS BRILLIANT!
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ARTS & CULTURE
Book Club FIND FAMILY DRAMA, ROMANCE AND HEARTBREAK IN OUR ECLECTIC SEPTEMBER READS – PLUS ENJOY A TALK FROM A GIANT OF IRISH LITERATURE CAMBRIDGE EDITION
WORDS BY CHARLOTTE GRIFFITHS
BY ELIZABETH STROUT OhWilliam!
the book’s title); the quiet thoughts where the pair reflect on what they’ve just learned about each other; or the stunned silences as long-held family secrets unfurl. It’s a beautifully satisfying portrait of a long marriage, and the love and respect two people can hold for each other – even after vows are broken and children are grown. No one writes quite like Elizabeth Strout – if you’ve read the others in the Lucy Barton series, this exquisitely crafted book is a genuine must-read. And if this is your first encounter with a truly unforgettable character, I strongly recommend seeking out the others as swiftly as possible. A STROUT SPECIAL Oh William! is the latest release from Elizabeth Strout, offering another chance to spend time with unconventional heroine Lucy Barton
Opening a new Elizabeth Strout book is like stepping into a warm bath at the end of a hard day. You can surrender your attention, safe in the knowledge that you’ll be taken by the hand and shown what good writing looks like. Oh William! is no exception to this rule, giving readers another chance to spend time in the company of Lucy Barton, Strout’s unconventional heroine with a knack for highlighting both the pain and beauty of existence with her off-hand observations on life, love and loss. The writing seems so easy – almost sparse – but that skill of knowing what to leave unsaid is where her power truly lies. The book shines in the confident gaps around the words – those rests in conversation between Lucy and her second husband (the William of
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ARTS & CULTURE
The Nine Lives of Rose Napolitano If you’ve ever wondered whether or not to have children, attempted and heartbreakingly failed, avoided it but become pregnant accidentally – or indeed chosen not to have children and then desperately wanted them – then this, the brilliant debut novel from writer Donna Freitas, is for you. The book follows Rose Napolitano, a resolutely child-free professor, as her photographer-husband Luke – having previously agreed to a child-free life – changes his mind, and decides he does want to have kids with Rose. Her multiple lives diverge during an argument over prenatal vitamins, and different paths unfurl from that point. Each chapter announces which life you’re experiencing, but every single one of her existences is packed with emotion, heart-wrenching sacrifice and compromise, love, grief and meaning. Rose encounters similar challenges in each of the tales, whether she decides to have children or not, and there are key figures who find their ways into her worlds via different doors, depending on the life you’re reading. It’s easy to forget the specifics of each situation, but you can surrender to the joy of letting the chapters wash over you. As this book powerfully illustrates, there are many, many routes to achieving a meaningful existence, and there are no right choices – only consequences. BY DONNA FREITAS
WHAT YOU CAN SEE FROM HERE
BY MARIANA LEKY
After a long wait, this international bestseller has finally been translated from German and released in English. Set in a small rural village in West Germany, the book opens with the news that Selma has dreamed of an okapim, meaning one of the community will die in the next 24 hours. Selma’s ten-year- old granddaughter, Luisa, introduces us to an ensemble cast of unforgettable characters: from the optician who has spent his life silently adoring Luisa’s grandmother, to her hard-working mother and father, and her very best friend Martin. All are introduced within anecdotes and village legends, shared in that overly familiar way where the speaker assumes you’re already aware of the parties involved – and since asking for clarification would slow the pace of the excellent story, you nod along and encourage them to continue, constructing fully rounded people from these shards of stories as you go. Packed with diversions, hilarious set pieces and hand-to-mouth tragedies, this cheerfully intimate book is a treat – an immersive, semi-surrealist experience that features (amongst many things) a monk from Japan, a Little Women -style romantic walk in the rain, and an excellent dog called Alaska. It is far-fetched in precisely the way that real life is, and as with the best stories, sometimes you simply had to be there – and this book allows you to do just that.
Aria This debut novel immerses us in the Iranian revolution through the eyes of Aria: a motherless girl found in an alleyway in Tehran as a baby. She makes her way through life with three different women, each with unique attitudes to the child entrusted to their care, beginning with Behrouz (the man who discovered her) and Zahra, his abusive and apparently disinterested wife. An eye injury caused by neglect then leads her to the lavish home of Fereshteh, a wealthy woman with no children. She sees potential in the child, sending Aria to school and forcing her to visit the home of Mehri, an impoverished woman, to give her daughters reading lessons and learn about privilege at the same time. A heady yet well-handled blend of the personal and political, Aria gives readers a fascinating insight into life in Iran between the 1950s and the late 1970s. As the young woman grows up and moves between households, she encounters people who will become Revolutionary Guards, and those who’ll turn to communism, all while learning more about her heritage, uncovering the truth of her past and falling in love. This cinematic saga was one of two books selected by the Rare Birds Book Club, a service designed to help people read for fun. Each month, subscribers choose between two novels, one of which then arrives in the post, beautifully wrapped and ready for your literary enjoyment. BY NAZANINE HOZAR AN IRANIAN EPIC Follow Aria on her travails in Tehran during the Iranian revolution. Hozar paints a beautiful picture of a changing land
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ARTS & CULTURE
Literary star comes to town Presenting his new book The Magician , Irish novelist, poet and critic Colm Tóibín is back in the city for a special Cambridge Literary Festival event on 29 September. The book tells the story of troubled novelist Thomas Mann, offering an ambitiously sweeping story of unrequited love, exile, war and family, which takes the reader from the turn of the century through both world wars. Catch Colm in conversation with writer and broadcaster Alex Clark at the Cambridge Union. cambridgeliterary festival.com
I came to this extraordinary book knowing nothing about it, except that I’d adored both Fates and Furies and Florida , but the first few pages made me wonder if my Kindle had downloaded the wrong file. Lauren Groff is normally associated with contemporary fiction, but this book is set in 12th-century France and England, following Marie de France, a 17-year-old outcast whose blood connection with the throne sees her banished to a life running a failing, backwater convent. Marie shuts out the unfriendly world, heartbroken by the cruel loss of her lovers at court, but over time – thanks to her furious ambition and childhood experiences with the powerful, confident women of her family – she turns the convent’s fortunes around, attracting novices from far and wide. It soon seems these women can accomplish anything when freed from the expectations of society, and the burden of child-rearing. As Marie observes early in her training: “...women in this world are vulnerable: only reputation can keep them from being crushed”. So she builds a psychological fortress around her nuns, and the physical barrier of an impenetrable labyrinth, to help keep the world at bay. But with success comes greedy eyes and their associated dangers – can the sisters reach too far? Can they remain an island forever? An adventurous tale of love – both spiritual and secular – passion, community and devotion that will leave you stunned at Groff’s creative vision. And wondering where we might find a similar community to move to… BY LAUREN GROFF Matrix
SISTER ACT Matrix is a departure from Groff’s usual themes, telling a period story of nuns in the middle ages
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TR I ED & TESTED
CAMBRIDGE CURLING Playing the long game
HERE IN CAMBRIDGE, YOUR CHANCE TO TRY OUT CURLING IS ONLY A STONE’S THROW AWAY. FRANCES MCNAUGHTON OFFERS HER SPIN ON THINGS
t the time of writing, Cambridge is home to the only ice rink in England where you can practise
curling. So, when it comes to keeping the sport alive and kicking in the UK, it appears we’ve got an important role to play. And it truly is an art. For those of you who have never tried curling before, it may seem like a straightforward notion; just push stones across some ice and hope they stay in the zone. But in fact it’s quite the opposite, as curling is a game that involves an incredible amount of precision, control and strategic thinking. Every aspect requires careful consideration. The granite stones, although possessing no weight bias, are topped with handles that cause them to rotate when force is applied, meaning every move you make has to be treated as a gradually unfurling curve, rather than a straight, direct line. The ice itself – which at high-level championships is purposely manipulated to allow for optimum game conditions – can be sprayed with water to alter the impact of friction, or brushed vigorously to ensure momentum is not
BREAK THE ICE Curling is a cool experience and a great way to meet new people
If it’s your first time, you’ll start by learning how not to fall over, slowly but surely building confidence, until you feel comfortable enough to give it your all. This involves trying out shoes designed for both grip and slip, as being able to slide over the surface is essential for effectively pushing off from the ‘hack’ (starting block) in order
to direct the stones across the ice. And you’ll need to practise ‘throwing’ (sliding) the stones plenty too, to master the required skill and technique to execute a shot, as well as your own balance. As you progress, you’ll be able to take part in actual games.
lost when a stone is in motion. And then, of course, you’ve got the players, whose job it is to stay cool as the game unfolds – making sure to direct play as much as possible, so as not to allow the opponent to gain a crucial advantage. Before you get into any of that, though,
CURLING INVOLVES INCREDIBLE PRECISION
switching for each round. But this can vary, as occasionally it becomes statistically impossible to win before the ten ends are up, so teams may concede once they realise what they are up against. One thing’s for sure: the more you get into the game, the more there is to learn. So, when it comes to trying out curling for yourself, the only thing you need is a sense of curiosity – along with a willingness to accept that some aspects of the game will always be out of your control. Sessions commence on Thursday 23 September and continue weekly at 8pm (£15 per session). To find out more, visit the Cambridge Curling Facebook page, or email email@example.com.
Cambridge Ice Arena is well-equipped for curling sessions, with five separate lanes laid out for play. Each team is made up of four players, whose job it is to get as many stones into the ‘house’ (end zone) and as close to the ‘button’ (centre point) as possible. A standard game lasts ten ‘ends’, with the direction of play
you’ll need to learn the basics – and this is where the Cambridge Curling Club comes in. Started by professional curler John Brown, who boasts 54 years of experience on the ice, the organisation runs sessions every Thursday during the season (September through May), and invites all ages and experience levels to come along.
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