‘no one leaves home unless
home is the mouth of a shark’         
Warsan Shire


Audiences who joined us last term to see the NT live production of Hamlet, would have heard Benedict Cumberbatch read the poem above in full as he drew attention to the Syrian migrant crisis, and thus it is hugely timely that our main junior production this term is an adaptation of John Steinbeck’s famous novel, ‘The Grapes of Wrath’ which details the mass migration from the ‘Dust Bowl’ of Oklahoma to the greener fields of California in the 1930s. It promises to be an excellent show which is well complemented by other pieces of drama this season, including the critically acclaimed ‘Hangmen’ by Martin McDonagh, Arthur Miller’s classic play, ‘A View from the Bridge’, and ‘The Audience’, all of which are coming once again to the EM Forster Theatre courtesy of NT Live. Exciting new talent will be live on stage with Abi Zsakarian’s play, ‘Fabric’ and the EM Forster theatre is continuing to develop its reputation for children’s drama with the acclaimed pieces ‘Fly Away Katie’, ‘The Day it Rained in Colours’ and ‘The Curious Adventures of Pinocchio’ all coming this season; they are sure to keep our younger audiences entertained and delighted in equal measure.

Following on from the outstanding end of term concert in the chapel when the school orchestra and choir performed Fauré’s Requiem and Shostakovich’s Symphony No.5, our musical offerings take on a different flavour with the Alan Bunney concert showcasing the guitar talents of Marin Kolarides and Matt Ridley. Earlier in term, the Jazz and acoustic evening in Big School promises to be the perfect way to relax on a Friday evening. The Lower school concert at the end of term complements the school’s focus on its younger talents seen in the Junior Play. There are many visual delights to behold as well in the exhibitions put on by the DT department and the Art department where the senior school Artists have the chance to display the fruits of their labours pleasing with this year’s leavers’ exhibition ‘You say Goodbye and I say Hello’, the Lower Sixth’s ‘Can You Tell what it is yet?’ following the GCSE ‘ They Think it’s All Over’ exhibition in early May.

If that is not enough to convince you, then please do come and see ‘the new poster boy for British Comedy Magic’, Pete Firman, who will be here on the 9th June as we look to bring one of the brightest new talents to Tonbridge; it promises to be an excellent show and hopefully the first of many. This programme is jam-packed with exciting talent and once again we are confident that there is something here for everyone. We look forward to welcoming you.

John Bleakley

Chair Tonbridge Arts Committee