Looking back and moving forwards: Winter programme

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Autumn is over, Winter is here. As the weather worsens I’m thrilled as the programme gets more festive, a glittering beacon of creative energy in the bleak winter months. And as the newbie at Span Arts, I’m pleased to be able to look back at the last few months, my first few here, and share my thoughts on what’s coming up.

Glenn Tilbrook, face of 80s chart toppers Squeeze stopped over in Narberth once again for a nostalgic performance at the Queens Hall, despite the poor chap having an upset belly. Fuelled by a dodgy curry, he valiantly powered on to finish his lively 90 minute set only 3 songs short, (including a brief stop in the middle to vomit backstage).

The sympathetic audience had a great time and have been phoning to ask what became of him since, which as the new administrator at Span, has had me attached to the phones since.  Thanks Glenn!

And what a successful night we had with the John S Davies Ensemble at Pisga Chapel last week. Lots of cheerful locals, John S Davies’ wonderful music, candlelit advent ambience and delicious mulled wine to wash it down. Hurrah! Christmas! Wine!

As the time approaches to pile into the living room, a family member filling every available nook and cranny including on each other’s laps and Grandad’s shoulders, here’s a tip – you can create some personalised candles and Tea light holders to illuminate those special evenings at an Oed y Byd craft session.


For “homemade” families like mine, we’ve got some great socials coming up. I’m looking forward to getting creative with Bettina Becker in Clarbeston Hall making a Christmas Wreath with which I intend to treat my loved ones to a thoughtful and carefully designed Christmas gift, hopefully with my excellent personal taste shining through.

Head down in a group or come along secretly to get your hands dirty and create a specially made surprise festive festoon.

In my new capacity as administrator at Span Arts, I am lucky enough to work in a tiny office with a jazz fanatic. He’s obviously excited and can’t stop telling me he will spend a blustery evening with friends enjoying The Nigel Price Organ Trio on 1 December.

I’m told they are a sexy, sixties style combo of guitar, organ and drums, full of clipped, funky rhythms and phrases, jazzy guitar runs and grooves. My interest piqued, I think they will be perfect in the cosy atmosphere of Plas Hyfryd, Narberth and I might experiment and go.


Or, for the comedy fans in the family you could get tickets for Span’s next Comedy Club. On the 8th December at The Queens Hall, Narberth Jim Smallman will be compering the tongue-and-cheek mischievousness  of Jo D’arcy and the manic comedy powerhouse that is John Robertson, no doubt with a festive twist.

Now, I’m going to Lincoln on the 16 December and am coming back pretty much as soon as I’ve got there. However, if I weren’t going to be spending three days on a train over this period then I would definitely be watching The Correspondents at the Queens Hall, Narberth for the most explosive Xmas Bonanza yet, a local tradition. It’s been going for years and so have I.

My friends all have husbands and other such responsibilities so this is our time to let our hair down and limbs bounce; the excitement of getting ready together, comparing our best festival clothes is wonderful. I’ve seen The Correspondents before and can testify to Mr Bruce’s wild moves and intoxicating energy.


So if I were you, I wouldn’t miss the chance this season to be thrilled by The Correspondents (again) at a Christmas cracker of a party at The Queens Hall, Narberth this 16 December. The others here at Span Arts dare you to keep up with the explosive dance moves and electro beats, they’ll be there trying.  I suppose I can wear my party hat on the train.

L’Hotel Noel is coming to Narberth, and those families ready to brave the frenzy of mayhem and frantic activity will experience the most unforgettable seasonal stay of their lives as Circo Rum Ba Ba return with a decidedly Christmas flavour.

It’s Christmas Eve – the tree is decorated, the table is laid and the rooms are set, are you ready for this franticly festive experience? Witness acrobatic elves; a flaming Christmas pudding; flying pancakes and a personal visit from Father Christmas himself – all in one night at L’Hotel Nӧel.


In the Christmas spirit of giving, this scheme makes theatre going possible for everyone. Pay What You Can afford for this festive performance, open to all, on 28 December at The Queens Hall Narberth.

So, that’s my season planned out, what will you be doing?

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Lauren Blacklaw-Jones

Events & Communications Administrator

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