Arts Theatre new season

A new season at the arts theatre brings a variety of top quality performances from dance, to serious drama

The new season at the Cambridge Arts Theatre features something for everyone, whether you like crime mysteries, great impersonations, wicked witches, classic musicals or cool jazz, with Noël Coward and a bit of the Bard thrown in, too.

Ian Rankin’s acclaimed Rebus book series has dominated detective fiction in recent years, now it’s adapted for the stage for the first time, as the Arts Theatre presents its own co-production Rebus: Long Shadows, starring Game of Thrones actors Ron Donachie and John Stahl, plus Mona Lisa actor Cathy Tyson from 11 to 16 February.

For a game of spot the voice, head along on 3 February for a show by Rory Bremner and Jan Ravens, two of Britain’s finest impressionists, as they join forces, together with special guest Jo Caulfield. For more laughs, there’s world-famous student comedy troop Cambridge Footlights, featuring Sunday night stand-up, sketches and songs on 10 and 17 March. Those shows come either side of The Comedy About a Bank Robbery, from 19 February to 2 March, by the team that created The Play that Goes Wrong.

Matthew Cottle and Charlie Stemp feature in Tom Stoppard’s Rough Crossing, from 8 to 13 April, as playwrights headed for New York on an ocean liner, while Josie Lawrence and Freddie Fox star in Edmond de Bergerac, a multi-award-winning comedy that has gone down a storm in France, from 15 to 20 April.

Mark Benton and Nigel Harman star in David Mamet’s Glengarry Glen Ross, a tale of stress, not success, for Chicago salesmen facing high stakes from 11 to 16 March. Meanwhile, acting royalty, in the shape of Simon Callow and Jane Asher, star in A Song for Twilight, by Noël Coward, from 4 to 9 March. Another national treasure, actor Ian McKellen, performs as part of his birthday tour, talking about his prolific career on 10 and 11 May.

The Worst Witch leaps from the page to the stage in an adaptation of Jill Murphy’s books, featuring songs, music and magic perfect for anyone aged seven and up, from 6 to 10 February.

Ballet Black return on 7 and 8 May, contrasting dramatic and inventive storytelling in a lively showcase of modern ballet, while jazz fans can see Cambridge-based saxophonist Dan Forshaw and his sextet pay homage to a pivotal year for the genre on 3 March, in 1959: The Year That Jazz Changed.

From 2 to 6 April, opera fans can enjoy English Touring Opera’s season of Kings and Queens in the battle for love, loyalty and power, with three operas: Giuseppe Verdi’s Macbeth, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Idomeneo and Gioachino Rossini’s Elizabeth I.

A new take on Shakespeare’s Richard III is promised by Headlong, from 24 to 27 April, while renowned historian David Starkey presents an evening exploring the marriage customs of the British monarchy, from the Middle Ages to Meghan Markle, on 28 April.

Whodunnit fans can feast on Agatha Christie’s The Mirror Crack’d, adapted by Rachel Wagstaff (19 to 23 March), while there’s intrigue of a psychological kind in Equus (26 to 30 March).

For fans of horror, The House on Cold Hill, adapted from the novel by Peter James, is a tale of intrigue and mystery with a terrific cast (20 to 25 May).

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