Lexicographer - Best Selling Author – Queen of Dictionary Corner
Take a journey into the curious, unexpected, and downright surreal origins of the words we use every day. Susie will retell the adventures that lie hidden within such words as lasagne (involving a chamber pot) and bugbear (a terrorising monster), and explain such oddities as the silent h in ghost and the mysterious disappearance of kempt, gormful, and ruly (and yes, you really can be gruntled). She will look to the lexicon of the past to fill some of today’s linguistic gaps – such as the frenzied fit of tidying we all do just as guests are about to descend (that’s a scurryfunge).
Alongside such forgotten stories you will hear Susie’s selection of the funniest moments from her 25 years on Countdown and 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown, as well as some startling results from eavesdropping on a group of waiters.
Each evening will include some of Susie’s favourite words from the towns and regions she visits, and she’ll be asking the audience for theirs. In fact, she’ll be welcoming any questions about word origins, usage irritations, the dreaded impact of Americanization, and the very future of our language in her very own ‘word surgery’.
WHY? 'Funny, fact-filled and delightful' Jonathan Ross
'Wonderfully clever and funny... a national treasury from a national treasure Richard Osman
'Susie Dent is a one-off. She breathes life and fun into words' Pam Ayres
Disclaimer: Susie explores the many meanings and origins of everyday words including a short section on swearing. Some may view it as unsuitable for the younger ears.
TV favourite Lucy returns with another fantastic stand-up show.
At Brownies, Lucy thought she’d be prepared for anything as long as she had her emergency 10p for a phone box and knew how to tie a Fisherman’s knot.
Life turned out to be slightly more complicated than Brown Owl let on.
Recent TV includes Would I Lie to You, QI and Impossible, she’s a regular on Radio 4’s News Quiz and The Now Show.
WHY? ‘A treat from start to finish’ The Herald
‘Impeccably punch-lined anecdotes… genuinely delightful‘ The Telegraph
Age Guidance 14+ years.
£16 (£14 conc)
Interactive storytelling in the magical story den.
Join in or unwind in the Café Bar with a latte and the Sunday papers, while your little ones get involved in telling stories from all over the world.
Our storyteller Hayley will be joining us on Sunday 27 October and reading Winnie the Witch by Valerie Thomas and The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson.
Age guidance 4 – 7 years.
WHY? A sociable, creative and entirely relaxed way to do Sundays for families with young children
The Story Den
£3.50 per person (45 mins)
Join us for a panel discussion, featuring special guests, followed by a screening of the film Nicky's Family.
Nicky's Family tells the remarkable true story of Maidenhead resident Sir Nicholas Winton, who rescued over 600 children at the outbreak of World War II.
Heaven 17 and The Human League founder Martyn Ware joins Jeff to chat about his career at the forefront of electronic music over four decades.
He’s been a top music producer for the likes of Tina Turner, Erasure and Terence Trent D’Arby and a leading electronic soundscape artist.
WHY? With vinyl tracks from early Human League plus other examples of Martyn’s craft over the years
£14 (£12 conc)
Coming live to the theatre for the first time in over 60 years is The Navy Lark.
The Navy Lark sees a cast of three, bring to life three classic episodes from the much loved radio series which ran for 1959 - 1977. Originally featuring Leslie Phillips, Ronnie Barker and Jon Pertwee.
Starring James Hurn known for portraying such iconic characters as Tony Hancock, Sid James and Kenneth Williams from his hit one man show Hancock and Co. As well as Richard Usher and Mark Earby best known for The Goon Show Tour and The Lost Hancock’s Vacant Lot.
Presented in the style of a radio performance in front of a live audience. Bringing to life the classic days of radio comedy.
WHY? When HMS Troutbridge docks in Maidenhead it’s going to be “Ev’rybody Down!” For an evening of nostalgic belly laughs
£15 (£13 conc)
The seasoned singer and entertainer presents an hour of chat, looking at the legendary era of Motown.
This detailed presentation includes a look at the driving forces behind the music and original video clips of the artists.
WHY? A unique analysis of the whole of Motown – from the songwriters and producers to the choreographers and singers
£12 (£10 conc)
Grace Campbell survived a childhood in British politics – her dad is Alastair Campbell.
She is co-founder of feminist group The Pink Protest and wants to tell you why she’ll never consider a career in Westminster. Expect vagina jokes, mental health within Parliament and anecdotes of hanging out with Putin’s kids.
WHY? ‘Articulate, witty and very funny’ ★★★★★ The Edinburgh Reporter