Laughs before Alban Arena says Yes to prog

COMEDIAN Ardal O’Hanlon will be laughing in the face of mounting adversity when he returns to the Alban Arena next Wednesday, October 27.

The performer, best known as Father Dougal in Channel Four’s Father Ted, will be taking on recession, inclement weather, an ageing body and impending doom and fearlessly turning the spotlight on surviving relationships, raising children and... the Swiss.

Highly acclaimed as a stand up, Ardal has toured to sell-out audiences internationally and is one of the most sought-after comedians working.

As well as playing Father Dougal, he also played George Sunday/Thermoman in My Hero and Eamon in Big Bad World.

Ardal comes on stage at 8pm and tickets at �18 are available from the Arena box office on 01727 844488 or go to

Musicians dressed in RAF uniform and with an RAF ensign background pay tribute to the original Squadronaires wartime orchestra from the 1940s next Thursday, October 28.

The New Squadronaires are made up of young musicians as they looked then and playing the swing music of the era.

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The orchestra will be performing the music of the great swing bands including Glenn Miller, Tommy Dorsey, Harry James, Benny Goodman, Artie Shaw and others. They will include some of the original Squadronaires music arrangements which have not been played since 1964.

The performance starts at 8pm and tickets are �17 with concessions �1 off.

Key members of the classic line up of legendary rock band Yes, Jon Anderson and Rick Wakeman, join forces for a one-off limited-run UK tour calling at the Arena next Saturday night, October 30.

It features classic Yes tracks and exclusive first performances of newly jointly composed Anderson Wakeman songs written especially for the tour, intertwined with anecdotes from the two ambassadors of prog rock.

The show begins at 7.30pm and tickets are �31.50 and �29.50.

Music of a completely different tempo can be heard next Sunday, October 31, when the real stars of the movie Brassed Off, the Grimethorpe Colliery Band, are appearing at the Arena.

In constant demand for concert appearances all over the world and having won almost every brass band accolade, the musicians have an international reputation with numerous TV appearances and recordings to their credit.

The band were recently asked to record a special version of the hymn Jerusalem for the Commonwealth Games in Delhi. In the poll that followed, they took just over half the votes over Land of Hope and Glory and God Save the Queen.

The band are appearing at 3pm and tickets are �18.50 and �16.50 with concessions �1 off.