The Muddy Guide

Surrey Art Fair – Denbies Wine Estate – until Sun 5 Mar

A collection of artworks by 18 contemporary local artists will be displayed in the Picture Gallery at Denbies Wine Estate, curated by Surrey Art Fair. There will be a variety of styles and themes, from vibrant pointillist landscapes and colourful semi abstracts to contemporary pet portraits and photography, by artists including Tracey Jane Cooper, Kirstin Wood, Susie West and Carys Jones. All art is affordable and the kind you really do want on your living room wall. The biggest problem may be deciding which one(s) to choose! The exhibition is open from 9am to 5pm each day (4pm Sundays).

Denbies Wine Estate, London Road, Dorking, RH5 6AA. Tel: 01306 876616. surreyartfairs

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Two Sisters – Epsom Playhouse – Thurs 23 Feb

A heartwarming play, written by award-winning writer Gail Louw, set on a kibbutz in Israel in the early 2000s, reveals the politics, rivalry, sweetness and sadness of the lives of two sisters – Rika and Edith – who are about to discover a shocking truth about their past. It’s been getting fabulous reviews. Tickets are from £12.50.

Myers Studio at the Epsom Playhouse, Ashley Avenue, Epsom, Surrey, KT18 5AL. Tel: 01372 724555. epsomplayhouse.co.uk

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Electric Film Festival – The Electric Theatre, Guildford – Tue 21 Feb to Sat 4 Mar

This special Oscar-themed film festival will see 90 years of the Oscars celebrated, starting with the 1927 film Wings, the winner of the first Academy Award for Best Picture. Other films include All About Eve, Hello Dolly, Annie Hall, Out of Africa (pictured), The Artist and three instalments of Lord of the Rings. Tickets are £7, or £5.75 if you book five or more films.

The Electric Theatre, Onslow St, Guildford GU1 4SZ. Tel: 01483 444789. guildford.gov.uk

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Seann Walsh: One For the Road – Cranleigh Arts Centre – Thurs 23 Feb

I’ve always thought Seann Walsh looks a bit like a lion, with that impressive mane of his. And the way he paces around and totally owns the stage with his sharp, observational comedy is really quite impressive. Curious to see him live, rather than just on the telly. Tickets: £16.50.

Cranleigh Arts Centre, 1 High Street, Cranleigh, Surrey, GU6 8AS. Tel: 01483 278000. cranleighartscentre.org

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Ghost: The Musical – New Victoria Theatre, Woking – Mon 27 Feb to Sat 4 Mar

Here’s a perfect bit of shmaltz for you. Put Unchained Melody on and get that potter’s wheel revolving because Ghost is in town. It’s a musical version based on the hit Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze film. Molly and Sam’s happiness is cut short when Sam is murdered in an apparent street robbery. With the help of a dodgy local psychic, Sam tries to warn Molly she’s in danger. Did someone say “ditto?” <sob>. Tickets are from £17.90-£49.90.

New Victoria Theatre, The Ambassadors, Peacocks Centre, Woking, GU21 6GQ, Tel: 0844 871 7645. atgtickets.com

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Book launch: The Art of G F Watts – Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village, Compton – Thurs 23 Feb

On the evening of G F Watts’s 200th birthday, the gallery hosts the launch of a new book about the artist, The Art of G F Watts, written by Dr Nicholas Tromans, Brice Curator of Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village. There will be a special lecture by Dr Tromans, and signed copies of the book available to buy. The Art of G F Watts provides a lively and engaging introduction to one of the most charismatic figures in the history of British art. Sculptor, portraitist and creator of classic Symbolist imagery, Watts was seen as more than an artist — a philanthropic visionary whose art charted the progress of humanity in the modern world.

Watts Gallery and Artists’ Village, Down Lane, Compton, GU3 1DQ. Tel: 01483 810235. wattsgallery.org.uk

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Snowdrop Walk – Hever Castle, Edenbridge – until Sun Mar 12

For me, there’s nothing that holds more promise than a heavenly carpet of snowdrops… (Well, apart from watching the sunrise from my beach hut in Bora Bora, but you get my drift…) It’s the sign that spring has truly sprung. Visitors can enjoy this magical trail of snowy white bulbs starting to emerge from their winter hibernation, thanks so over 60,000 snowdrop bulbs planted in the Gardens over the past six years. After all that fresh air you’ll want to the Moat Restaurant for a warming drink.

Hever Castle, Hever Road, Hever, Edenbridge, Kent, TN8 7NG. Tel: 01732 865224. hevercastle.co.uk

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My Brilliant Friend – Rose Theatre, Kingston – Sat 25 Feb to Sun 2 Apr

Elena Ferrante’s intense portrait of an all-consuming female friendship in post-war Italy is brought to life for the first time on the Rose Theatre stage. Starring Niamh Cusack and Catherine McCormack, it’s in two parts, each about 2.5 hours long, so epic and long this most certainly is. Tickets can be booked for Parts One and Two on the same day, or separate days if you don’t think you can sit still for that long. I’ve got a good feeling about this one.

Rose Theatre, 24-26 High Street, Kingston, KT1 1HL. Tel: 020 8174 0090.  rosetheatrekingston.org

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Orchids Festival 2017 – Kew Gardens – ends 5 Mar

Last chance to catch Kew Gardens annual Orchids Festival. Inspired by the vibrant colours, culture and plant life of India, this year’s festival features giant floral displays using exotic orchids, decorative rickshaws, Indian soundscapes and much more. Entry to the festival is included in the usual day admission ticket price. Standard adult £15, child (age 4-16) £3.50, under fours are free.

Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, Richmond, Surrey, TW9 3AB. kew.org

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PLAN AHEAD

CARE International’s #March4Women – The Scoop, Southbank, London – Sun 5 Mar

Celebrate International Women’s Day in style, and raise your voice to sing for a fairer world at CARE International’s #March4Women in London. As well as doing your bit for a fairer world, this promises to be a cracking day out. There will live music and entertainment from big name stars, as well as speeches by feminists and activists to get you inspired. Everyone will then raise their voices for equality with a mass CARE-aoke sing-a-long led by Melanie C, VV Brown (above), Kate Nash and more. It starts at 12pm.Register here 

The Scoop, Southbank, London. careinternational.org.uk

 

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The Urban Guide to the Countryside - Surrey