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Humour, culture and history

Published: 20 Sep 2012 13:000 comments

The coming fortnight at Ardhowen brings a classic Northern Irish mixture of humour, culture and history.

Conor Grimes performs Marie Jones' A Night in November at the Ardhowen this Saturday, September 22.

We start this weekend with the legendary Roy Walker of 'Catchphrase' fame in his own stand-up show, followed by Marie Jones's celebrated play 'A Night In November' and next week we have the Ulster Cultural and Historical Society with 'Covenant Day Remembered' followed by 'Steam Around Fermanagh' presented by Headhunters Railway Museum.

LEGENDARY BELFAST COMEDIAN

Roy Walker has been a regular on our TV screens since his success on ITV's 'New Faces', when he received the highest marks ever given to a comedian. Many major television appearances followed and in 1986 he became host of 'Catchphrase' which he co-hosted with his computer character friend Mr Chips, from 1986 to 1999. He was the subject of 'This Is Your Life' in 1998, appeared as himself in the first episode of the hit series 'Phoenix Nights' and became a popular member of Living TV's "I'm Famous And Frightene" cult TV show. Recently he has won a whole new fan base through his regular 'Carpark Catchphrase' feature on Chris Moyles' BBC Radio 1 breakfast show. With over thirty years stand-up experience Roy Walker is often coined the 'King Of Deadpan'. He brings his hilarious one-man stand-up show to Ardhowen Theatre on Friday 21st September at 8pm.

A NIGHT IN

NOVEMBER

Grand Opera House Productions bring us Marie Jones' smash hit 'A Night In November' on Saturday 22nd September at 8pm. Conor Grimes, of 'Grimes and McKee' and 'History of The Troubles' fame, stars as Kenneth McCallister, a protestant dole clerk on a search for his own identity, sparked by the bigotry he witnesses during a football match at Windsor Park. When Kenneth finds himself on the football terraces for a crucial Northern Ireland v Republic of Ireland World Cup qualifying match, little does he know that his hum-drum life is about to change forever. Kenneth embarks on journey of self-awakening as he faces up to his own bigotry and questions some of his strongly-held beliefs and of those closest to him. Jones' enduringly humorous and challenging play is both uncomfortable and compelling as it lays bare the issues of identity in 1990's Northern Ireland. Audiences should be aware this performance contains strong language.

COVENANT DAY

REMEMBERED

Continuing on the theme of Northern Ireland's complex past, the Ulster Cultural and Historical Society presents 'Covenant Day Remembered' on Friday 28th September at 8pm. This is an evening to commemorate the events of 28th September 1912 when the men of Ulster signed the Ulster Covenant. The organisers of this event hope to attract a wide reaching audience to reflect on the pivotal events that a hundred years ago shaped our country in what should be a thought-provoking and entertaining evening. The show will feature the re-enactment of the signing as well as an address from an eminent Historian, Dr Jonathan Mattison. Celebration in music and song will come from Lisbellaw Primary School choir, Linda Lindsay and the Curran Flute Band from Magherafelt. Compere for the evening will be former BBC correspondent and newspaper reporter Mr Austin Hunter.

STEAM AROUND

FERMANAGH

As part of the 'Keeping It Rail' weekend, Charles Friel, railway photographer, author and founder member of the Railway Preservation Society of Ireland, will once again take people on a nostalgic journey throughout Fermanagh, recalling the wonderful era of steam travel as well as bringing you up to date with various projects which have been successful in keeping the railway story alive since the lines closure on the 30th September 1957. Fermanagh's railways will come to life with historic photography, film footage and fond memories shared by special guests and former railway employees. An event for all the family, 'Steam Around Fermanagh' is on Saturday 29th September at 8pm and is brought to you by Headhunters Railway Museum.

PETER AND THE WOLF

On Tuesday 2 October at 10.15am, Clydebuilt Puppet Theatre presents one of the company's most successful touring shows ever. 'Peter and the Wolf' is a wonderful rich story which follows the adventures of Peter's visit to his grandfather's cottage at the edge of The Great Forest. Along the way we meet all the familiar characters - the Duck, the Cat, the Little Bird and of course, the wonderful life-sized Wolf! This performance is suitable for 4 -10 years.

FERMANAGH LIVE

The Fermanagh Live Festival has launched a varied and extensive programme of events taking place in many popular venues around the town. The Ardhowen Theatre is delighted to be part of this and will be hosting Donal Lunny and Andy Irvine on Thursday 4th October, Juliet Turner on Friday 5th October and on Saturday 6th October we will have Vladimir and 'Classical Twist' followed by a later performance from 'Yankee Panky' in the Gallery Bar. Enniskillen Photographic Society will present the Young Digital Photographer of 2012 Competition exhibition at Ardhowen from Thursday 4th to Saturday 6th October.

Details for all the festival events can be found on www.flive.org.uk and tickets are on sale now at the Ardhowen Box Office along with all the upcoming shows in our autumn programme.

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