China Kaleidoscope a Confucius Institute Performance.


Hundreds of Merseyside pupils were witness to a stunning performance at Liverpool University’s Mountford Hall today, when the troupe of outstanding students majoring in Martial Arts and Art Performance from the Capital University of Physical Education China, showed off their fantastic skills, to perfection.

This UK Tour, is committed to a display of Chinese traditional culture and a deepening cultural exchange by martial arts and dance. Well, today it certainly hit the spot with this young audience.

All praise goes to the Liverpool Confucius Institute who organised this performance tour, and for transforming the Liverpool University’s Mountford Hall into a dazzling array of fast paced performance acts with split second high kicks and acrobatic somersaults, as this professional Chinese group leaped to and fro across the stage, all to the sound of magnetic drum beats and well timed lighting.

The whole afternoons programme oozed with cultural splendour and excited both child and adult alike.

Halfway through this gripping production, the Chinese Olympic Champion medallist gave a demonstration of martial arts, showing the traditional etiquettes and basic movements and invited the children on stage to partake in the demonstration.

Performances showed the origin of martial arts and as the story goes, in order to survive in the past, humans had to fight against the beasts. We witnessed in one performance, a fight between humans and beasts, with the Humans defeating the beasts by their intelligence and martial arts skills.

In another dance sequence, called Warriors Triumphal Dance, they showed in artistic performance, both the braveness and beauty of women soldiers.

Every act and visual portrayal of exotic moves, showed the expertly choreographed eye, mouth and head movement of the dancers, which in every move, told a story, all to the rhythmical beats and tones of the haunting background Chinese melodies.

This was a fantastic afternoon, showing the beauty of Chinese dance, music and culture.

Today, Mandarin is one of the most up and coming languages today and the Liverpool University has taster courses to suit all.
I was surprised at so many schools in Liverpool both Primary and Secondary that had taken up the challenge of Mandarin, and taken a trip to see todays performance.

They were both educated and inspired by todays performance, to experience and deepen their cultural understanding and awareness of China.

More information, visit:
or call: 0151 795 0551

Time to Shine! Too Much, Too Soon?


Every parent wants their children to shine.
And this is the time to sign up !

Nurturing young talent and building up a child’s confidence and self-esteem is a big part of after school activities.

Liverpool excels in this department! However, with the vast range on offer, it becomes tempting to sign up to a lot more than you need to and finances alone can make this impossible especially when there are several family members.

This is the time of year for you to decide and sign up to one or more of the massive range of activities available.
Consider what’s on the menu for your children and if your offspring are mini Mozart’s, fitness fanatics, masterminds, or mini Thespians, there is something for every kind.

There’s an activity to suit them right out there, so check online to see what’s near you. From archery to zoology, you’ll find something they love.

These clubs and classes offer your child a chance to mix with children from other schools and areas; take part in artistic, musical and sporting activities not offered at school; teamwork skills; confidence; and the ability to develop persistence and patience.

Tread Acting School at the Epstein Theatre has now launched an exciting school where rising stars get the chance to train with West End performers and TV actors. This new academy for 11-18 year olds is on every Saturday 10am-12.30 (07739289995)

After a successful appearance on BBC’s Dragons’ Den in January, Razzamataz Theatre School is now established at The Belvedere Academy, mixing commercial street dance and musical theatre so the children get the very best of what performing arts has to offer.

Liverpool’s arts are certainly enriched. We have the MDI dance initiatives, Bluebell Studios, Stagecoach, O’Grady and LIPA stage schools to name a few.

Resonate Music School still leads the field in instrumentation with Hope and LJMU developing sporting skills. If sports are not to your taste then, new on the scene for the young mastermind who is 5-14 years old, we have the, Explore Learning, an Educational Awards Winner open 7 days a week with free trials to develop maths and English in an environment that children enjoy.

The choice is out there, from budding zoologist courses at Knowsley Safari Park to swimming, dragon boat racing, netball, hockey and football coaching sessions every week at our major sporting venues.

The choice has never been better.
These are exciting times with new ways to challenge, inspire and enrich your children, so sign up to one of these engaging arts programmes and give your child that extra start and a skill for life.


comedy fest1comedy fest

Fans of the cult classic Withnail and I are in for a treat when they get to delve inside the mind of one of the main stars of the film, Paul McGann on Saturday, September 26.

As part of Liverpool Comedy Festival, the ODEON Liverpool ONE will be screening the dark comedy which was a huge hit in 1987. This will be followed by a live Q&A session where the audience get to grill the star who played the “I” character in the movie, better known as Marwood.

For those who have never seen the film, the movie takes place in England in the late 1969 and chronicles the misadventures of a pair of chronically unemployed actors – played by Richard E Grant and McGann.

The screening will take place at 7.30pm followed by the Q&A session when the audience will be encouraged to ask the Liverpool star questions about his life and career.

McGann was born in Liverpool in 1959 and attended Cardinal Allen Grammar School in West Derby, where his teachers encouraged him to taking up acting. He successfully auditioned for the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art where he studied acting. Talent must run in the family as McGann’s three brothers are all actors too!

Paul got his breakthrough role on comedy TV drama Give Us A Break, then was thrust into the limelight in his first dramatic role in the 1986 television serial The Monocled Mutineer in which he played Percy Toplis.He was later cast in his first feature film as one of the main characters in Bruce Robinson’s cult comedy Withnail and I.

McGann has starred in Hollywood movies The Three Musketeers and Alien 3 and played Lieutenant Bush in Hornblower. But Sci-fi fans will know him best for his role as the eighth Doctor Who. McGann starred in the 1996 Dr Who TV film, a role he reprised in over 70 audio dramas and the 2013 mini-episode The Night of the Doctor.

Festival Director Sam Avery from The Comedy Trust said: “We’re over the moon that this event has come together. This city has such a strong back catalogue of comic performers and it’s really important for Liverpool Comedy Festival to connect with that heritage. It’s been great working with ODEON Liverpool ONE after our successful collaboration last year for the Bill Hicks screening.” 

Lewis Wright from the ODEON Liverpool ONE added:It’s great to have this cult classic on the big screen for one-night only, be part of the Liverpool comedy festival and work with Sam and the guys again, as our previous event was such a success.

“We are honoured to have Paul Mcgann attending to give fans an in-depth personal look into Withnail and I and very proud as this exclusive to ODEON Liverpool ONE.  It will be a night not to be missed!”

Liverpool Comedy Festival opens this Friday, 18th September and runs until Sunday 4 October, taking over Britain’s funniest city with events at venues across the city region.

This year’s festival will see some of the biggest names on the comedy circuit, including Chatty Man himself Alan Carr. He performs his brand new show Yap Yap at Liverpool Philharmonic and has now added an extra date due to overwhelming demand, plus also at The Phil is the star of Phoenix Nights and That Peter Kay Thing Dave Spikey with his latest tour Punchlines.

The big names continue, as the Unity Theatre welcomes political satirist Andy Zaltzman and the legendary Jeremy Hardy. British Comedy Award winner Nina Conti with the help of Monkey, presents her new show In Your Face at Liverpool Playhouse. At The Epstein Theatre Only Fools and Horses’ Boycie, one of the nation’s greatest comedy actors, John Challis, will reveal secrets from the set with stories and anecdotes from his dazzling career; and as seen on 8 out of 10 cats, Dave’s One Night Stand, Spoons and John Bishop’s Only Joking, Rob Rouse, presents his new show Roboscopy.

Yearlong comedy clubs Laughterhouse Comedy, Hot Water Comedy Club, Comedy Central and Liverpool Comedy Cellar also present a high calibre of comedy talent across the festival including Live at the Apollo star Shappi Khorsandi; stand-up and BBC2 sitcom Hebburn star Steffen Peddie; Liverpool legend Pauline Daniels; one of the best performers working on the comedy circuit today Dan Nightingale and presenter of Channel 4’s The Word, Terry Christian bringing his one man show Naked Confessions of a Recovering Catholic, plus many more.

81 Renshaw Street will also showcase a whole host of the freshest performers and exciting local and up-and-coming comedy acts including Gein’s Family Giftshop returning after their Foster’s Best Newcomer Nomination at last year’s Edinburgh Fringe; festival favourite Jake Mills; Funny Women finalist and BBC Radio 4 regular Rosie Wilby; left-wing political comedy from the all new unwilling poster child for free speech Kate Smurthwaite; Merseyside funny man John Wilson follows up last year’s Comedy Festival success with his new, laugh out loud, one man show; join Rob Thomas and Katie Tracey as they take you through their average lives which they’ve spent trying to be fabulous; in 1989 Public Enemy decreed that Elvis was racist, now Che Burnley tries to prove power, money and privilege makes it alright; Perrier and Chortle Award winning musical comedian with songs in the key of grrr, Christian Reilly presents Songs of Insolence. Just the tip of the comedy iceberg, check out the full line-up of acts to perform in Liverpool’s newest arts and events venue.

Throughout the run of the festival John Godber’s classic and hilarious show Bouncers is at The Royal Court from 4 September – 3 October. It’s 1985 and Ralph, Les, Judd and Lucky Eric are on the doors of The Grafton. They’re not doormen or security operatives – they’re bouncers and they’ve seen it all. Lads full of lager, girls full of giggles and clubs full of crazy stories in this brilliantly funny show.

There will be acts lined-up to perform in bars, shops, schools and even people’s houses. There is also comedy coach tours, kids shows, pub crawls, poets, podcasts, open mic nights, quizzes, magicians, networking events, rap battles, plays and sketch groups.

Festival Director Sam Avery from The Comedy Trust said: “This year is our biggest and most diverse Festival to date: more shows than ever before and a strong emphasis on the hugely exciting local scene alongside the household names and international acts.”

The festival will take over Liverpool with events taking place at an impressive 19 venues across the city region including 81 Renshaw Street; Unity Theatre; The Royal Court; The Lantern Theatre; The Pilgrim; Laughterhouse Comedy; Liverpool Comedy Central; Hot Water Comedy Club; Liverpool Comedy Cellar; The Epstein Theatre; Ma Egerton’s Stage Door; Maghull Town Hall; Liverpool Philharmonic; Liverpool Playhouse; Ma Boyles; The Sandon; Brownmoor Park Sports and Social Club; Gallaghers Pub and Liverpool John Moores University.

Don’t miss one of Liverpool’s favourite and longest-standing festivals, the Liverpool Comedy Festival from Friday 18 September – Sunday 4 October

Visit for full line-up, information and direct links to book tickets. Follow us on Facebook/The Liverpool Comedy Festival and Twitter @LpoolComedyFest


Sat 26th Sep

Screening @ 7.30pm followed by a Q&A

Odeon Liverpool ONE

Tickets cost £15

To buy tickets click on this link



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