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PUBLISHED: 10:34 13 March 2008 | UPDATED: 13:01 06 May 2010

Caroline Harding stars in Pretty Witty Nell

Caroline Harding stars in Pretty Witty Nell

PRETTY Witty Nell once trod the boards for a king – later this month she will do the same for St Albans audiences. The Maltings Arts Theatre is hosting a production of Pretty Witty Nell starring RSC actor Caroline Harding at 8pm on Friday, March 28. With

PRETTY Witty Nell once trod the boards for a king - later this month she will do the same for St Albans audiences.

The Maltings Arts Theatre is hosting a production of Pretty Witty Nell starring RSC actor Caroline Harding at 8pm on Friday, March 28.

With King Charles II on his death bed and creditors knocking on her door, Nell Gwyn recalls her radiant life. Born in the gutters of Covent Garden, she became the most glittering actress and best-loved character of her day by sheer force of her wit and charm.

The story of a woman who survived the Plague, the Great Fire - but not the pox - and spent 18 turbulent years as the mistress of Charles II was originally performed to great acclaim at the Edinburgh Fringe Theatre.

The performance is not suitable for under-12s and tickets at £11 with concessions £9 are available from the box office on 01727 844222.

Resident arts theatre company Lanternfish is putting on Oliver for children on the following afternoon, Saturday, March 29.

The production, which has toured in both England and Italy, follows the fortunes of orphaned Oliver as he escapes the workhouse in search of a better life.

Unfortunately he falls in with Fagin's gang of pickpockets and a gallery of well-known characters that includes the Artful Dodger, Bill Sikes and Nancy.

Lanternfish's style of presentation directly involves the audience who are encouraged to become London crowds or members of Fagin's gang. They are invited to wear Victorian costume and children from the audience will be invited on stage to play the role of Oliver.

Elaborate scenery, props and costumes are used by a cast of professional actors in an action-packed theatrical event which fulfils the requirements of Key Stage 2 in English and History and is particularly suitable for seven to 11-year-olds.

The show starts at 3pm and tickets are £4.50.

The arts theatre hosts its second monthly over-16s Laughter Lounge with Barnstormers Comedy on the same night, Saturday, March 29.

The Saturday Night Stand-Up made its debut at the end of February and is now a permanent feature in the venue's calendar.

The line-up includes Nick Doody, who has built a steady reputation over the last 10 years on the London circuit for intelligent and articulate comedy. Joining him will be Otiz Cannelloni who is well-known as the "comic's comic".

Another surprise guest will appear and the MC duties are in the capable hands of long-time comedy jobber and Barnstormers stalwart, Kevin Precious.

The entertainment gets underway at 8pm and tickets are £8 with concessions £6 in advance or £10 with concessions £8 on the night.

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