Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Portuguese Maverick Fadista Claudia Aurora to give two more concerts in the UK in March 2012

A chance to see and hear Claudia Aurora:

8th March 2012 - Green Note, London

22nd March 2012 - Howard Assembly Room Leeds.

Follow Claudia on Facebook and Twitter.

For further information please see www.claudia-aurora.com

Green Note, 106 Parkway London NW1 7AN www.greennoteco.uk
Howard Assembly Room, Grand Theatre, 46 New Biriggate, Leeds LS1 6NU

Acclaimed by Time Out London, NME, The Last Tuesday Society, BBC Radio 3 and Venue Magazine, Porto-born singer/songwriter Claudia Aurora enraptures with spine-chilling emotion.  Her mournful Portuguese Fado songs are drenched in a sadness (Portuguese Saudade) that courses through the audience.

Snake Davis the Saxophonist on Tour 2012

Just a few of the opportunities to see Snake in action during the next few weeks:

Guest Appearance - Oxford
Thursday February 2nd Snake will be playing with The Spin Trio at Oxfords Jazz Club at The Wheatsheaf, 129 High Street, OX1 4DF. Doors 8.15pm on stage for 9pm Tickets £9, £7 and £6 Online booking or call 07711 671647

The Snake Davis Band - Witney
Saturday February 4th The Snake Davis Band will be performing at Cokethorpe School, Witney, Oxfordshire, OX29 7PU. The school transforms into their own version of Ronnie Scotts Jazz Club. 7.30pm Tickets £24 includes food. There's also a bar (cash only) Tel: 01993 892 338 or email boxoffice@cokethorpe.org

The Snake Davis Band – Blackpool
Friday February 10th returning to the newly refurbished, fabulous venue, The Sands, on the Promenade in Blackpool. Entrance £15.50 or £29.99 with meal. http://www.the-sands-blackpool.co.uk/artists/313/Jazz-Night--with-Snake-Davis-/1630 Tel: 01253 625 262

The Burden of Paradise - Hovingham
Saturday February 11th Returning to the legendary Shed venue at Hovingham Village Hall near Pickering.  Tel: 01653 668494 and online booking http://www.theshed.co.uk/gigs#11.02.12

Guest Appearance – Bury St Edmunds
Friday February 17th appearing with the Chris Ingham Trio at The Hunter Club, St. Andrews Street South, IP33 3PJ. On stage at 8pm tickets £10 Tel: 01284 748 280

Guest Appearance - Stokesley 
Thursday February 23rd with The Colin Holt Band at Stokesley Town Hall. Tel: 01642 710 270 or 01642 711 566 (Also on Friday but sold out).

Snake Davis & The Suspicions – Blackpool
Saturday February 25th The Sands Venue, The Promenade, Blackpool. Entrance is £15.50 or £29.99 to include a meal Tel: 01253 625 262 or  http://www.the-sands-blackpool.co.uk/artists/646/Sands-Soul-Night-with-the-Suspicions-/1638

SnakeStrings – Barton Upon Humber
Friday March 2nd Bringing the new line up to Ropery Hall at The Ropewalk, Maltkiln Lane, Barton upon Humber. 8pm Tickets £15 in advance or £17 on the door Tel: 01652 660 380.   http://www.the-ropewalk.co.uk/roperyhall/music.htmThe Ropewalk coffee shop are also serving a set 3 course Greek meal earlier on that evening for £14 a head. Booking essential and early sitting so as not to miss the show.

Special Guest with Reuben Richards & Soul Train – London
Saturday March 10th at The Boisdale Club, Cabot Place, Canary Wharf, E14 4QT. Tickets from £10 to £35 Tel: 020 7715 5818 or online booking. http://tickets.boisdale.co.uk/?view=3/2012

Jim Diamond & Snake Davis acoustic – Cheltenham
Wednesday March 21st  Appearing together at Vonnies, Charlton Kings Social Club, Cheltenham, GL53 8AP. 

SnakeStrings – Darlington
Thursday March 22nd Returning to a favourite  venue of ours, Darlington Arts Centre. Tickets £14 & £12 http://www.darlington.gov.uk/NewCulture/EventsDetails.htm?EventID=159864
Tel: 01325 486 555

SnakeStrings – Kirby Overblow
Friday March 23rd All Saints Church, Kirby Overblow near Harrogate. Email kirkbyoverblowevents@gmail.com www.kirkbyoverblow.org

SnakeStrings – Horkstow
Saturday March 24th This is where it all began, returning to where SnakeStrings first performed. Tickets £15 each £5 for school children or £20 on the door. 6.30pm Great acoustics and natural raised stage in the chancel. Tel: Henry on 01652 618329 Robert on 01652 618 207 or Email: Henry.Fell@tiscali.co.uk

SnakeStrings – Goole
Saturday March 31st at the Junction, Paradise Place, Goole, DN14 5DL On stage at 8pm Tel: 01405 763 652  http://www.junctiongoole.co.uk/programme 

All dates, times & prices correct at time of going to press and may be subject to change. Please check with venue before booking.

Friday, 20th April and Saturday, 21st April 2012 Circque du Ciel at North Pier Theatre Blackpool

Blackpool North Pier Theatre is pleased to announce three stunning performances of ShangHi from the award-winning Cirque du Ciel; direct from China, beyond Gravity.

The highly awaited and internationally acclaimed production of ShangHi from Cirque du Ciel arrives in UK this Spring and you can see this spectacular show at Blackpool’s North Pier Theatre on Friday 20th and Saturday 21stApril.

Cirque Du Ciel’s ShangHi will take you on a journey through the mysterious dreams of a little girl as she explores her fantasies. The production was originally directed in China by Cirque Du Soleil’s Guy Caron and will captivate and enthral every audience member.

With over 30 amazingly multi-talented and skilled performers, this marvellous two-hour extravaganza combines acrobatics, modern dance, martial arts, original music and many other traditional and modern Chinese elements in an amazing fantasy adventure. ShangHi is an unforgettable spectacle that you will find hard to believe – it really is the next generation of Cirque du Soleil.

Cirque du Ciel’s ShangHi boasts over 500 superb costumes, intricate scenery, and fantastic and evocative lighting. This stunning production showcases the skills of not only these striking performers, but also the world-class artistic team who created and devised this brilliant multi-media spectacle.

The astonishing routines include hat juggling, terrifying yet beautiful aerial silks, acrobatics and stunts, amazing magical illusions and the famous death defying Chinese monkey poles, a dizzying mix of balancing, tumbling, spinning and brilliant live drumming.

Miss this and you will miss the most daring, breathtaking and stunning family entertainment show of the year!

There are three performances of Cirque du Ciel’s ShangHi; Friday 20th April at 7.30pm and Saturday 21stApril at 2pm and 7.30pm. Tickets are priced at just £21.50 for adults, £19.50 seniors, £15 for children and just £60 for a family of four (minimum one adult and one child, saving up to £19.50!) and are on sale now. They can be booked by calling the North Pier Box Office on 01253 623304, visiting our website www.northpierblackpool.co.uk, or via the 24-hour Ticketmaster Hotline 0844 847 2452.

Auditions at the ACE Centre in Nelson for Star Maker - Pendle's own "X Factor" style contest

Do you have the X Factor?

If so, now is your chance to shine!

Star Maker is a brand new singing competition open to people in Burnley, Pendle and Craven.

Just like the TV talent show X Factor, there will be three different age categories, a boot camp and a live final!

And the prize is up to £1,000 in cash, a recorded album and two festival appearances, including a slot on one of the Roadhouses at this year’s Great British R&B Festival in August.

Organiser, Aaron Whitehall-Pain, from LKJ Security, said: “The aim is to find local talent and give them a chance to get noticed.

“I know there are a lot of gifted people out there just waiting to be discovered and I want to find them!

“We are looking for solo artistes or duos, but strictly no professional or semi-professional singers.

“We are also hoping to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support, with 50 pence from every entry and ticket sold being donated to this very worthy charity.”

The three age groups are: 12-18 years; 18-25 year and over 25s.

The judges will be the three members of local band Diva Dynamic.

Auditions will be held at The ACE Centre in Nelson, on Thursday and Friday, May 24thand 25th.

The live Final will be held at The Muni Theatre in Colne on Friday, July 20th

The cost is £3.50 per entry which can be paid via The Muni Theatre’s Box Office on 01282 661234. Audition forms will then be sent out.

Live show tickets cost £5.00 each, which can also be bought from The Muni Theatre’s Box Office or The ACE Centre on 01282 661080.

13th May 2012 Frank and Janice Flynn Open Day in aid of Over Wyre MacMillan Cancer Support

Janice and Frank Flynn are pleased to announce:



Tel 01253 790293
11.OOam TO 3.00pm
ADMISSION £5 PER ADULT to include tea/coffee and biscuits.
1ST PRIZE £100. 
2ND £50. 
3RD £25.
ALL PROCEEDS WILL BE DONATED TO THE Over Wyre MacMillan Cancer support
Please note 
there is a Japanese Water Garden and large pond so children 
must be supervised at all times

Celtic Dream Saturday, 7th April 2012 at North Pier Theatre, Blackpool

Saturday 7th April is a date to put in your diary. That is when Ireland is coming to Blackpool! Celtic Dream has been created to bring one of the most original and authentic shows in the world to you.

With a selection of the finest dancers, vocalists and musicians from around Ireland, Celtic Dream will enchant and take audiences on an uplifting journey of song and dance with a kaleidoscope of colour against a backdrop of highly infectious, powerful and spirit invoking music.

The Celtic Dream show is the perfect blend of traditional Irish music alongside modern and popular songs. Heartwarming performances feature astoundingly choreographed dance routines and a touch of the old Irish ‘craic’.

Celtic Dream is also delighted to include among its cast, the magnificent Dream Tenors, a trio of talented young male vocalists with a very special sound, who were recently invited by Tourism Ireland to support music icon Van Morrison in a show-stopping performance last night at St James’ Palace especially for Irish ministers and members of The English Royal Family.

Dream Tenors’ vocalist John Ward has also penned a forward-looking, positive and uplifting, national song for Northern Ireland titled Home.

Show creator and producer Peter Tobit said, “England has it’s Jerusalem, Scotland has it’s Flower of Scotland and now thanks to the songwriting skills of John Ward, Northern Ireland has it’s anthemic Home, the lyrics of which sum of the hope and positive future for Ireland.”

Celtic Dream embodies the true spirit of Ireland and will leave you mesmerised and wanting more and more of the ultimate Irish experience.

Audiences will be delighted with time-honoured tunes like Danny Boy and Carrickfergus to the haunting modern day classics of Sarah McLachlan's In the Arms of the Angels.

To experience Celtic Dream is to experience the genuine heart and soul of Ireland.

Celtic Dream at Blackpool’s North Pier Theatre on Saturday 7th April at 8pm. Tickets are priced at just £22.50 and £20.50 and are on sale now. They can be booked by calling the North Pier Box Office on 01253 623304, visiting www.northpierblackpool.co.uk, or via the 24-hour Ticketmaster Hotline 0844 847 2452.

Monday, 30 January 2012

Review: Schools Alive 2012 on Monday, 30th January at the Grand Theatre Blackpool

The annual celebration of the multitude of talent that we have here in Blackpool that is Schools Alive, featuring some of the primary and secondary schools in the area, is on this week at the Grand Theatre. We were very lucky to get tickets for Monday's show because this event is always a sell-out.

Promoted by Blackpool Music Service, which has deservedly won the highest ‘National Music Council’ accolade, “The Major Trophy” for being its best Music Service, the show features different schools each evening.

Tonight, it was the turn of Park School, Kincraig Primary, St. John’s C of E Primary, Unity College, Palatine Community Sports College, Roseacre Primary, Collegiate High School, Our Lady of the Assumption Catholic Primary and Thames Primary.

Compered and introduced by our very own Star of Radio - Hayley from Radio Wave’s Breakfast Show - the evening was brilliant from start to finish.  Hayley began by telling us all to switch our mobile phones off or onto silent and also to remember that we weren’t at Bloomfield but in the gorgeous Grand Theatre.  Some people may not realise that Blackpool’s Grand Theatre is one of the most beautiful theatres in the world and that performing on that stage is something really special.

The show began with Park School’s Brass Band who played a selection of foot tapping tunes.  It is really great to see the tradition of brass bands is in safe hands and that it is not in danger of fading away.

Then Kincraig Primary gave us their version of “Staying Alive” with great enthusiasm and lovely dresses.

St. John’s C of E Primary presented an ambitions sketch entitled “The Only Way is made in Blackpool”, reminding us of how very lucky we are to live in the entertainment capital of the world.  Their rendition of the song “Blackpool Belle” and of the monologue “The Lion and Albert” was delightful and their final song in praise of fish and chips very catchy.

Then came Unity College with an excellent mixture of mime and also singing themselves some of the songs and dances from “Sister Act”. 

Palatine Community Sports College finished the first half in true theatre tradition with a professional and polished performanc - singing and dancing their way through songs from the show “Lion King”.   The costumes, props and make up were absolutely awesome and the singing and dancing to an extremely high standard indeed.  We take our hats off to the pupils from Palatine Community Sports College because we would have been scared stiff on that stage in front of a packed house but there was no sign of nerves at all in this slick performance.  

Roseacre Primary came in straight after the Interval with “Grease Lightning” – brilliant use of props such as hubcaps as drums, blow-up guitars and an impressive piece of scenery in the shape of a red car from which popped some of the lads straight from Rydell High.

Collegiate High School sang and performed “Food glorious food”, “Consider Yourself Well In” and “Oom pa pa” from Oliver with great gusto, followed by a dance choreographed to music from the “Lion King” from Our Lady of the Assumption Catholic Primary.

Thames Primary School finished off the evening “Daisy’s Dream” – a modern moral tale with some excellent and very amusing performances narrated, sung and danced by magic mushrooms, wise owls, ninja squirrels, a ‘fab four’ of beetles, complete with guitars and drums, lots of fairies, some elf confidence, leprechauns, a rainbow and a pot of gold. The young lady who played the part of Daisy also sang and played guitar.

WELL DONE EVERYBODY!   Apologies if we have left anyone out – there was just so much to see.

It would not be fair to pick out one school as our favourite because the standard was very high indeed and we are aware of the differences the teachers have with the material they work with. 

All credit to the teachers as well as to the pupils because a standard that high cannot be reached without hours and hours of dedicated unpaid overtime.

Each evening, there are programmes of acts:  Tuesday is the turn of BASSO, Christ the King Catholic Primary, Woodlands School, Revoe Community Primary, St. Mary’s Catholic College, St. Bernadette’s Catholic Primary. St. George’s C of E College, Devonshire Primary, Mereside Primary, Bispham High,

Wednesday – First Beat Orchestra, Holy Family Catholic, Baines C of E Primary, St. Kentigern’s Catholic Primary, Norbreck Primary, Claremont Primary, Bispham Endowed Primary, Anchorsholme Primary and finally on Thursday – Layton Primary, Waterloo Primary, Hawes Side Primary, Moor Park Primary, Melissa Miles BMS Brass Band, BMC Youth Concert Band, Marton Primary, Westcliff Primary and Montgomery High.

With our thanks for a wonderful evening to the staff and backroom guys at the Grand Theatre, to Hayley from Radio Wave, to Andrew White (Blackpool Music Service Music Adviser), to the parents, teachers and pupils who make Schools Alive so fantastic. 

Hayley promises to mention the schools on the Radio Wave Breakfast Show each morning - worth getting up early for.

The Pavilion Restaurant and Tea Room in Ashton Gardens St. Annes announces evening a la carte dining with live entertainment on Fridays and Saturdays in February 2012

The delightful Pavilion Restaurant and Tea Rooms in Ashton Gardens, St. Annes-on-the-Sea, Lancashire have announced their programme of fine dining on Friday and Saturday evenings in February 2012:

Friday, 3rd February - "Just John" - vocalist
Saturday, 4th February - Peter Ritmo - Swing singer

Friday, 10th February - "Just John" - vocalist
Saturday, 11th February - Peter Ritmo - Swing singer

Friday, 17th February - To be confirmed
Saturday, 18th February - "Just John" - vocalist

Friday, 24th February - "Just John" - vocalist
Saturday, 25th February - Peter Ritmo - Swing singer

For further details, to book a table, or to have a sample menu, please call 01253 724440.

Check out the Pavilion website on www.ashtonpavilion.com

The Pavilion Restaurant and Tea Room
Ashton Gardens
St. Georges Road
St. Annes-on-the-Sea
FY8 2AE.

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Valentine's Day entertainment at The Galleon Bar in Blackpool

As a special treat for all you romantic people, Sara Cheston and her Band That Swing Thing will be at The Galleon Bar in Blackpool to entertain and delight you.

Stephen Pierre will also be there to sing for you.

The fun starts at 8pm and there will be a buffet - so don't be late!

The Galleon Bar
68-70 Abingdon Street

01253 751488

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Ice Hockey: Flyers Give Sharks Scare In Close Opening

Saturday 28th January 2012
English League Division 2 North

Fylde Flyers 3 - Solway Sharks 11

Period scores; 2-2, 0-4, 1-5
Flyers Scorers:  Veldze 1+2, K Hall 1+0, Caunce 1+0
Shots On Goal: Flyers 57 / 3 Goals - Sharks 76/11 goals
Penalties In Minutes: Flyers 26 - Sharks 43
Flyers MVP: Tony Melbourne

Our Report:A game of two halves is normally used to describe a football match but it is also very apt for this fascinating end to end ED2n encounter played out at Cleveleys Sub Zero rink.

The Solway Sharks breezed into town  (or should that be swam...?) as runaway league leaders with 18 wins from 18 matches and had anybody suggested before the game that an 11-3 win for the visitors was on the cards, they probably would't have got any argument from me.  The Sharks have a far stronger team than anybody else in this division and should have been playing in Division One this season but, for the opening period, you really would have been hard pushed to tell which was the superior side!

After a nervy shart, the Sharks took the lead as early as the 3rd minute but the Flyers fans were brought to their feet by a splendid solo effort by Latvia Under 20 international Elvis Veldze for an equaliser mid way through the period.  A further Sharks strike was equalised late on by Kurtis Hall and the  2-2 scoreline at the end of the first period really did reflect the superb effort that the Flyers had made - matching their visitors in every department on the ice.

Second periods ought to banned in Flyers games as, just like last weekend's home encounter against Hull ENL Stingrays, an unfortunate occurence helped turn the tide in favour of the opposition.

The Flyers really came out - well, flying... - for the second period and battered the Solway goal. It seemed only matter of time until they took the lead but, once again it was the Sharks who struck first - with goals on 23 and 27 minutes.  At the mid point of the game 7th place Flyers were "holding" the runaway league leaders to a narrow 2-4 scoreline - a really superb performance by a side playing their first ever season in senior ice hockey.

Then, in the 36th minute, the improbable occured. Solway were a man down due to a roughing penalty and the Flyers were regrouping for another powerplay assault on the Sharks net. During a momentary lapse of concentration, the puck was passed from beind the goal, took an unfortunate deflection off a Fylde skate and ended up creeping over the goalline past the despairing dive of Steve Gilmartin who, incidentally, played heroically throughout. An own goal - except that you don't have "own goals" in ice hockey, they don't exist. The goal is awarded to the last attacking player to touch the puck and, in this case, it had been the Sharks netminder Gary Russel who had cleared the puck from his own goal line.  

It is such an unusual occurence for a netminder to score a goal in open play with a guarded net (ie not an "empty net" goal), that when this happened to Peterborough Pirates netminder Tony Melia in 1996, his shirt was placed in the NHL's Hall Of Fame - so this was certainly an interesting piece of history for Flyers fans to witness, even if the goal was at the wrong end....

A powerplay goal for the Sharks wrapped up the 2nd period scoring making for a 6-2 scoreline after 40 minutes.

Solway's strength in depth really began to show through in the last period and they managed 4 more goals (1 shorthanded) before Bobby Caunce's 57th minute strike gave the home fans the morale boost they had been hoping for.  It was a niggly last 20 minutes with 55 minutes of penalties being dished out  and, while the Sharks may have had the last word in the scoring stakes with their 11th goal on 58.20, Flyers Tom Murphy had the last laugh as he emerged victorious from a 59th minute roughing session with Sharks debutant - former Fife Flyers Elite League player  Marc Fowley.

The Flyers have a quick chance of revenge as they face the Solway Sharks again at the Sub Zero rink in Cleveleys next Saturday 4th February in a 5pm face off.  Don't miss it!  

Top: Flyers top points scorer for the season Bobby Caunce perpares for a face off.
Bottom: Sharks netminder Gary Russel faced 57 shots, letting in just 3 goals - and also scored one himself to be named Solway's Most Valued Player.

NWCFL Premier Division: Squires Gate 3 - Maine Road 3


Glossop North End 2 - AFC Blackpool 0


photos and stories to follow

Friday, 27 January 2012

Review: Soul Night At The Sands Venue Blackpool feat. Marvin Ruffin and Sara Dowling

We went along to the Sands Venue on the Promenade in Blackpool on Friday evening 27th January 2012 to see the Soul Evening featuring Marvin Ruffin and Sara Dowling.

We took advantage of the special ‘buy one get one half price’ offer that the Sands had in January and had the most wonderful evening.

First of all the food which is really delicious.  Paul had the Lancashire Cheese and Ham Rarebit with Home-made Piccalili Pickle and I had a superb salad.  That’s the marvelous thing about the Sands – they will always do their best to help if you have any special dietary needs.   Next, Paul had braised shin of beef, which came with creamed potatoes and gravy and I had the most amazing Roast Vegetable Cobbler with an enormous suet crust (see photo below) and delectably sautéed potatoes.   For desert we both chose the pancake with yummy cream and rhubarb filling, finishing off with tea and coffee. 

Marvin Ruffin and Sara Dowling (photo above) certainly brought the sunshine with them to Blackpool last Friday.  The show was a sizzler.

Accompanied by the amazing and very versatile Sands House Band, led by Neil Shatliff on trumpet, Marvin and Sara sang a huge range of Soul Songs (all of which I LOVE) – Signed, Sealed Delivered, You make me feel like a natural woman, Need your loving,

At this point, I really must mention (and thank) Mark, the sound engineer at the Sands.  Mark keeps on checking throughout the evening in order to make sure the sound really is the best you will hear in the UK today. 

On with the show – You make me feel brand new, Young Hearts Run Free, You got the best of my life, Your love is lifting me higher and higher, Same old Song (with a different beat since you’ve been gone), For Once in my Life, You can’t hurry love.

Both Marvin and Sara are extremely talented singers and what a brilliant combination they make – not just with their singing but also with their stage craft and interaction with the audience.     

The Second Half of their performance began with Freedom, then Midnight Train to Georgia, My Girl (which Marvin’s cousin David Ruffin who was in the Temptations made famous), Build me up Buttercup.  Then with George, the pianist and arranger with the Sands House Band Ain’t no mountain high enough, Son of a Preacher Man.  Then Marvin gave a rousing rendition of Mustang Sally, going seamlessly straight into The Midnight Hour.

Sara introduced the band members: guest on Guitar Johnny Hayes,  Drums Erroll Roberts, Trumpet Neil Shatliff, Tenor Saxophone Mike Hope, Piano George King, before finishing with  Ain’t nobody and finally Another Star.

Marvin and Sara then found more voice for us to interview them and you can hear these interviews on our next show on Preston FM 103.2 (http://www.preston.fm/ “Listen Live) on Friday, 4th February 2012 at 7 p.m.

All in all an absolutely fantastic evening – we went home our heads full of songs and haven’t come down to earth yet! 


Thursday, 26 January 2012

Ice Hockey: Sharks Boost Squad For Trip To Fylde

Fylde Flyers ice hockey team's opponents for Saturday's match, table topping Solway Sharks, have signed young Scottish forward Marc Fowley (in photo) after he was released by Elite League side Fife Flyers.

Sharks Coach Martin Grubb had this to say about his latest capture, “I am delighted to be able to bring someone of Marc's quality to the team as he will add speed, skill and a goal threat to our forward line. I have followed Marc's situation in Fife closely and I know that he is desperate to be playing regularly. He will be a valuable member of our team as the push for the league title continues and I know the fans will love his style.”

Marc himself was quick to add, “I am pleased to be signing with the Sharks for the remainder of the season. I have only heard good things about Spud as a coach and am aware of the talent on the roster. I have also played with some of the guys before and know there are some characters in the dressing room. I hope to help the team achieve their goals of winning the title and promotion into League One."

Before Fife, Fowley had previously also played Paisley Pirates. He was unavailable for the Sharks' matches last weekend but is expected to make his Sharks debut against the Fylde Flyers at the Sub Zero rink in Cleveleys on Saturday - 5pm face off.

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Holidays for Dancers announce dates for dances at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool in 2012

Holidays for Dancers are bringing their dances to the Spanish Room in The Winter Gardens in Blackpool.  Previously, Holidays for Dancers have booked into an hotel in Blackpool but this year people can make their own accommodation arrangements.  Following the extensive work that has been carried out on the Winter Gardens, Holidays for Dancers have arranged dances in the Spanish Hall on the following dates:

13 -18th March,
7th - 13th May,
1st - 7th October,
5th - 11th November, (12th - 14th November = Pre British Nationals) and
24th - 31st December.

Dancing is all day, every day at the following times:

11 am - 12.30 - 50/50 dancing
12.30 - 13.30 - Sequence lesson
13.30 - 14.30 - Sequence only with leaders
14.30 - 16.00 - 50/50 dancing
20.00 - 23.00 - Dancing 50/50

Paul and Carole Eden are the hosts and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves when they came to the Savoy Hotel a couple of years ago. 

Prices per person for passes:  

Access all dances (evening and daytime):

1 day £12.50
3 days £30
5 days £40
7 days £55

Daytime only:

1 day £10
3 days £25
5 days £30
7 days £40

Evenings only:

1 day £10
3 days £25
5 days £30
7 days £40

For further information, to find out about other Holidays for Dancers activities and/or to book passes for the Winter Gardens,  please call 01395 223645 or online at www.holidays4dancers.com

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Review: Sara Cheston At Peek A Booze, and Parks Art Deco Cafe, Blackpool

Having followed talented and highly versatile singer Sara Cheston with and without her band That Swing Thing for some time, we had a real treat last Sunday.

First of all lunch at the Parks Art Deco Café in Blackpool’s Stanley Park, where Sara was appearing with her band.  Sara sang several old favourites, along with some we had not heard her sing before, such as Noel Coward’s “Mad About The Boy” plus a salute to Etta James who died last week with “I just want to make love to you”.

Then later on in the evening, Sara performed minus the band at the recently-opened Peek-a-Booze Cabaret Bar in Dickson Road, Blackpool.   With a select audience of friends and admirers, Sara asked what we wanted to hear and sang pretty much to order.   Old favourites, such as “Mambo Italiano”, “If you’re good to Mama” (from Chicago), mingled with more modern songs such as “The Apartment”, some Liza Minelli with “Cabaret” and my own favourite (which I’ve never heard anyone sing live before) “Losing my Mind” and some Shirley Bassey with “What now, my love” to name but a very few.  Sara sang from 9 p.m. until late with very short breaks.  She is amazing.

Peek-a-Booze has a wonderful warm, welcoming atmosphere and gorgeous resident DJ Cybil Du Vuax – who also performed some Bassey and Bette Midler numbers – makes you feel welcome from the moment you step through the door.  The music is fantastic and not too loud; they also have a great selection of drinks at very reasonable prices and in case you don’t feel like driving home, there is a hotel attached.

Unfortunately, we had to leave before the end of the show and missed Cybil’s impersonation of Danny la Rue.

Sara Cheston with That Swing Thing will be at the Parks Art Deco Café in Stanley Park, Blackpool on Sunday, 5th February from 13.00 to 15.00 and at Peek-a-Booze on 12th February from around 8 p.m.

Sara Cheston on her own appears regularly at Peek-a-Booze so check out their website where you will also find mention of the other talented local singers who entertain there on a regular basis, such as Kristian (who is organising the charity event on 26th February) and Liam Halewood.

On 26th February 2012 Peek-a-Booze are hosting an event in aid of Blue Skies Hospital Fund and Blackpool Fylde and Wyre Cancer Unit.  Starting at 2 p.m. and going on until late, there will be a multitude of talent performing for your entertainment, including singers, magicians, a hypnotist.  There will be a raffle and entry is free – a golden opportunity to hear Sara, Kristian and Liam sing and of course Cybil Du Vuax - so don’t miss it.

Sara’s pupils will be entertaining at the Blackpool Grand Theatre’s “Schools Alive” on Monday, 30th January.

72 – 74 Dickson Road, Blackpool FY1 2AR

Parks Art Deco Café, West Park Drive, Stanley Park, Blackpool, FY3 9EQ http://www.parksartdecocafe.co.uk/

Ice Hockey: Flyers Out To Sink Sharks In Tough Encounter - 28th January

Fylde Flyers ice hockey team face two challenging home games in quick succession as they welcome runaway league leaders Solway Sharks to the Sub Zero rink in Cleveleys on both Saturday 28th January and Saturday 4th February.

The Sharks have won all of their 18 games in the English League Division 2 North so far this season and are 8 points clear at the top of the table with an amazing  +201 goal difference.

The Flyers played the Scots twice away earlier in the season losing 16-0 and 18-6 on subsequent weekends in October. However, the Flyers 6-goal haul is the most goals that any team has put past the league leaders all season - including challenge matches against higher league opposition such as Blackburn Hawks, Billingham Stars and Whitley Warriors - so it should be a really fascinating encounter....

Flyers team manager Mick Caunce said: "This is the first season a Scottish side has entered the English League and the Sharks are running away with it.  3 of the Sharks are leading the scoring in the North II table:  Adam Reynolds 34 goals 44 assists, Mark Gallagher 24 g 49 a, Nathan Salem 39 g 23 a. Flyers need all your support this week to attempt to be the first team to take points from the "Jaws" of the Sharks!"
Face off is 5pm on Saturday at the Sub Zero Ice Rink, Jubilee Gardens, Cleveleys, FY5 1DB 
Admission: £5 adults, £3 concessions.
Photo: Flyers in action away at Solway in October (Solway Photographer)

Mid Winter Jazz Date For Sara Creeney - Chorley Town Hall, 27th January

Friday 27th January 7.30pm

Sara Creeney will be performing with
The Lancashire Youth Jazz Orchestra
In ‘Mid Winter Jazz’
in the Lancastrian Suite, Chorley Town Hall, Market Street, Chorley PR7 1DP

£5 entry, free for children accompanied by an adult

Release Of The Week: "Wasted On You" by Loaded 44

In our radio show on Friday evening on 103.2 Preston FM, we featured this CD as our new release of the week and played the track "We Saved The World"

"Wasted On You" by Loaded 44
STP Records STP009

We Saved The World / Drop That Bomb / Last Drink / 10 Years / Radio / Life’s Wasted / I’m Not The One / Lets Get Away / Bad News / No Time / Say Nothing / When I’m With You / I’ve Got No Name / Wanna

For a much better review than I could write, have a look here: http://www.studsandpunks.co.uk/cdreviews.php?nid=157
To buy your copy, go to the STP Records website here: http://www.stprecords.co.uk/page4.htm
To find out more about the band Loaded 44, try here: http://www.myspace.com/loaded44uk

Monday, 23 January 2012

Review: Dreamboats And Petticoats 2012 Tour - Blackpool Grand Theatre

This is an absolutely sensational nostalgic show with a great cast, wonderful costumes and great music throughout. A real feelgood show that will set your feet tapping, your fingers snapping, your heads shaking and have you singing the songs all the way home!  This show proves that Rock n' Roll is timeless.  Bet you can't sit still all evening!  Don't miss it!

Without giving too much of the story away: Bobby wants to be a singer in a rock n roll band but is thwarted by the older and cooler Norman. Bookish Laura wants to write songs with Bobby but his head is turned by the charms of Runaround Sue but she only has eyes for Norman....

Add in the distractions of a Youth Club trip to Southend, a national songwriting competition and Laura's 16th birthday party - along with all the other usual teenage trials and tribulations - and you have a recipe for a great evening's entertainment.

The cast is superb, the dancing eye catching and highly energetic and - verey important to note - all the music is played live on the stage by the incredibly talented  "Conquests" youth club band.
The show is packed with wonderful songs from the period which you'll enjoy whether you remember the early 60s or not so catch Dreamboast and Petticoats while it is in town - or check out the tour dates to see when it is coming to yours!   .

Dreamboats And Petticoats runs at Blackpool Grand Theatre until Saturday and tours around the country until June.

For full national tour dates and a preview with X Factor's Terry Winstanley, click here:  http://www.bestkeptsecrets.biz/2012/01/dreamboats-petticoats-exclusive-preview.html

Cafe Chat: Dona Williams - Travel Counsellor

We had a great chat on our radio show on Friday evening with Dona Williams who is a travel counsellor and helps people to customise their holiday requirements.

She also talked about the Denise Hendry Foundation and The Villa Womens Networking Group (both in part 2 of the interview)

You can hear what he had to say by clicking on the relevant sound icon below (this may take longer to load if you are using a Mac...):

You can find out more about what Dona does by looking at her website:  www.travelcounsellors.co.uk/dona.williams

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Schools Alive! at The Grand Theatre, Blackpool Monday, 30th January - Friday, 3rd February 2012

Every evening from Monday 30th January to Thursday 2nd February the Grand Theatre will be filled with music, song, dance and comedy from budding young performers across Blackpool with Schools Alive 2012.

As part of Blackpool Council’s commitment to Culture a unique strategic partnership has been implemented between the Council’s schools, Blackpool Music Services and the Grand Theatre.

This year there will be at least eight contrasting themed performances each evening, a total of 34 acts from Blackpool schools between Monday and Thursday. Band and orchestral contributions will also include instrumentalists from most of the remaining Blackpool schools.

The fantastic Schools Alive performances highlight the huge impact that Blackpool Music Service has had on Blackpool school children in the last eight years. With over 6,000 pupils having weekly music lessons it’s no surprise that Blackpool Music Service has been recognised as one of the most successful in the country by the National Music Council for the last six years. The Performing Rights Society also awarded the 2008 Creative Music Award to the Service.

The Grand’s CEO, Neil Thomson said, “Schools Alive is an amazing opportunity for local school children to visit The Grand and experience performing on the mainstage. The show is a brilliant evening’s entertainment for both the students onstage and the audience.”

Andrew White, Music Advisor for Blackpool Music Services said; “Schools Alive is a fabulous way for us all to celebrate the children’s talent at such a beautiful theatre as The Grand. Our 2,000 participants love taking part in this unique event because it challenges and excites them, and is just as fantastic for those watching in the audience as those performing on the stage!”

Schools Alive 2012 returns to The Grand Theatre on Monday 30th January to Thursday 2nd February 2012. Book early as shows sell out!

To book for any show you can call the Box Office on 01253 743339 or click on http://www.blackpoolgrand.co.uk/ , or visit the Grand Theatre information sales point in the Houndshill Shopping Centre

NWCFL: AFC Blackpool 2 - St Helens 2

Story and pictures to follow



DANCE EASY Lytham announce Saturday dance dates for Social Dances at the White Church, Fairhaven

Dance Easy - run by Paul and Jean Durham - have announced their Saturday Social Dances for 2012 at the
White Church in Fairhaven:

11th February, 14th April, 2nd and 9th June, 14th and 21st July, 13th October, 10th November and their annual Christmas Party Dance 8th December 2012.

Dates for Dance Easy Bedford Hotel Dinner and Dance are 12th May and 15th September 2012.

Jean and Paul also offer a wide range of dance classes.

For further details, please call 07909 945567.

Saturday, 21 January 2012

Ice Hockey: Flyers Lose To Stingrays In 13 Goal Thriller

English League Division 2 North
Saturday 21st January 2012

Fylde Flyers 6 - Hull ENL Stingrays 7
Period Scores: 1-2, 4-5, 1-0
Shots On Goal: Flyers 63/ 6 goals - Stingrays: 48 / 7 goals
Penalties In Minutes: Flyers 6 - Stingrays 8

Photo: 2 goal Hall (by James Birtwistle) stock photo - not from tonight's game

Flyers Scorers: Kurtis Hall 2+1, Bobby Caunce 1+3, Andy Clark, Sam Chaddock, Ric Hulme all 1+0, Mark Gillingham, Tony Melbourne, Tom Murphy, Dan Fearon, Jack Jones, Janis Grinbergs all 0+1.

Fylde Flyers ice hockey team were denied the opportunity to register back to back wins for the first time this season by a well organised Hull Stingrays side  in a game that was pretty much decided in the first 40 minutes.

After a tense opening, it was the Flyers who broke the deadlock with a well worked goal from Kurtis Hall (assists Bobby Caunce and Dan Fearon) but they were unable to build on their lead and were pegged back to 1-2 by the end of the first period. The second period saw some of the most amazing end to end hockey that has been seen this season so far at the Sub Zero rink as the Flyers hit 3 straight goals in less than  a minute - Kurtis Hall making the most of a 5 on 4 powerplay advantage followed by quick even handed scores by Andy Clark and Ric Hulme.

Looking good for their 4-2 lead, the home side then picked up a 2 minute bench penalty for making a change during an icing call and this really seemed to knock them off their stride. The Stingrays hit back with a powerplay goal  and scored 4 more goals during the 2nd period, with Flyers only managing to stem the tide with a Sam Chaddock strike just before the 2nd hooter. 5-7 to the visitors.

In a tense final 20 minutes, the Stingrays were kept goal less but that 5 goal spell in the 2nd period was enough to win them the game as Flyers only managed one more goal - from strike came from Bobby Caunce on 42 minutes.  Hull shut up shop - making only 7 shots on Steve Gilmartin in the Flyers net throughout the whole of the period while the Flyers peppered the visiting net with 27 (63 to 48 overall)  - but the home side were unable to make that all important breakthough and also failed to take advantage of a powerplay situation in the closing  minutes of the game. 

The Flyers next match is on Saturday 28th January when they are home to runaway league leaders Solway Sharks at the Sub Zero rink in Cleveleys in a 5pm face off.

More info: http://www.eiha.co.uk/Leagues/EnglishNational/North2.aspx


Friday, 20 January 2012

Chase away the winter blues with a Singing Workshop on Saturday, 11th February 2012

Sue Keady and Sue Jeaves, experienced folk singers with a love of group harmony singing, are organising a Singing Workshop entitled"Singing in the Warmth of Winter".

This is to be held from 9.30 until 13.00 on Saturday, 11th February 2012 at The Earth Room, Sanctuary of Healing, Dewhurst Road, Langho, Blackburn. The cost is £20 per person, which includes drinks and warm berry punch.

On offer in this special workshop to find your voice:

Physical exercises to warm and relax
Breathing exercises to deepen the breath and support the voice
Vocal exercises to warm, relax and prepare the voice
Improvised singing, Chanting, Mantras, Songs, Rounds
Simple harmony singing
Songs with a winter feel.

Say Sue and Sue "Who knows where the creative process will take us?  Sound is vibration - an invisible energy that manifests outwardly as sound and inwardly as resonance".

You don't have to be able to read music or have experience of singing in a group. If you sing in the shower or the car and it makes you feel good then this is for you.

Equipment required:  A willing voice, an open heart and a sense of fun

For further information, contact Sue Keady on 01772 456657 or e-mail sue.keady@yahoo.com