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What’s on in Hertfordshire: 5 January events

PUBLISHED: 12:17 03 January 2017 | UPDATED: 19:14 23 January 2017

Swan Lake is being performed at the Watford Colosseum

Swan Lake is being performed at the Watford Colosseum

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We have gathered the best of what’s on in January to help you plan your days out

Nick SarrattNick Sarratt

Pirates & Wellyphants

An exhibition of work by top children’s-book illustrator Nick Sharratt is on show in the Lucas Room of Hitchin Town Hall until January 21. Pirates, Pants and Wellyphants is touring the country with free activities and games for families as well as examples of the artist’s work. Nick is the celebrated illustrator of the award-winning Tracy Beaker books as well as his own writings such as Ketchup on your Cornflakes?

The hands-on exhibition also features a reconstructed version of Nick’s studio, with original artwork from his books and his old school sketchpads.

Nick SarrattNick Sarratt

Polar plunge

Hardy souls are invited to celebrate the new year by taking a dip in icy water in aid of charity at the St Albans Diving Club’s Polar Bear Plunge on January 1. Proceeds are split equally between Rennie Grove Hospice Care and Earthworks St Albans, with last year’s event raising more than £5,000 for the cause.

St Albans Symphony Orchestra will be performing at St Albans Abbey on January 2St Albans Symphony Orchestra will be performing at St Albans Abbey on January 2

At the Cottonmill Lane pool will beAn on-site lifeguards and and plenty of hot chocolate and , cakes whileand spectators will be present to cheer the brave plungers on. T, and there will also be music, face-painting, children’s activities and a bar. Prizes for youngest plunger, oldest plunger, best fancy dress, best corporate effort and best team effort. See renniegrove.org/whats-on/detail/polar-bear-plunge

The gang’s all here

Gang Show takes to the stage at Harpenden Public HallsGang Show takes to the stage at Harpenden Public Halls

The 68th Harpenden Gang Show, the longest running of its kind in the world, takes to the stage at Harpenden Public Halls from January 10-14. The latest Gang has been selected from more than 240 applicants from 14 Cub packs, 15 Scout troops and five Explorer Scout units across Harpenden, Wheathampstead and Kimpton – a total of 152 participants aged from 10-18.

Many Harpenden Gang Show families have been involved since the show’s inception in 1949 with parents and grandparents who were once on stage now helping out behind the scenes to bring the musical numbers, dance and sketches to life. hwgangshow.org.uk

New Year concert

Music lovers are promised a rousing start to 2017 at a new year concert for all the family by the St Albans Symphony Orchestra in St Albans Abbey on January 2 at 7pm featuring what organisers call ‘some of the most exciting works ever written’. The programme from 7pm on January 2 includes Richard Strauss’s Der Rosenkavalier Suite, Schumann’s Konzertstück for Four Horns and Orchestra and selections from Swan Lake by Tchaikovsky, as well as Ladies in Lavender by Hess, Gade’s Tango Jalousie and Tals from the Vienna Woods by Johann Strauss II.

Ticket prices range from £28- to £28. Accompanied children pay £1 and students £5. stalbanscathedral.org/whatson

Russian Swan Lake

Following a triumphant premiere tour of England last year, the Saint Petersburg Classic Ballet returns to Watford Colosseum at 2.30pm and 7.30pm on January 6 with what is promised to be a spectacular version of Swan Lake.

The youthful company, under the direction of Marina Medvetskaya, who founded it in 1996, has been hailed for its ‘impressive technique, exquisite artistry and bold production’ of the best-loved Russian ballets. Its dancers, trained at the top schools under some of Russia’s most esteemed teachers, have won glowing reviews worldwide for performances of its popular repertoire. watfordcolosseum.co.uk

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