Arts and Entertainment in Ipswich

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2020 Arts and Entertainment ideas in Ipswich

Ipswich has so many fun-filled, moving and exciting shows playing in theatres this year. If you’re looking to try something new or find an activity that’s wonderful for the whole family, then look no further! Ipswich is home to five magical theatres which showcase dance, music, comedy and more. There are so many options you’ll be spoilt for choice, to help you choose here are some highlights of what’s happening throughout 2020.



Clannad music group on a boat

The BAFTA and Grammy winning quartet, Clannad, will be performing in Ipswich as part of their final farewell live stadium tour. With 8 UK Top 10 albums, this gig is sure to be a sing-along hit. Their tour will celebrate an incredible 50-year career and see the group say farewell to an active touring life, it’s now or never if you want to see them!

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Nine Below Zero

Founding members of Nine Below Zero, Dennis Greaves and Mark Feltham, promise a supercharged show from start to finish. Breaking the mould 40 years prior, offering a rhythm and blues alternative to the pop-punk of the 80’s, they took inspiration of the R&B greats of the 60’s. Joined by Sonny Greaves, Ben Willis, Tom Monks, and Charlie Austen, this critically acclaimed expanded line up is celebrating the release of their new album named ‘Avalanche’. This is bound to be one of the best Ipswich gigs in 2020!

The Shires

The Shires

The Shires hold many claims to fame, from being the first UK country act to be signed by a major Nashville label, winning CMAs ‘best international act’ title, to being holders of two gold certified albums and three UK number ones. If you’re a fan of folk or country music, then you’re bound to know The Shires.

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Derren Brown Showman Live Tour

The multi award-winning master of mind control and psychological illusion, Derren Brown, is at his very best on stage. His one-man shows have received wide critical acclaim and more Olivier wins and nominations than any other in history! Now with his first brand new theatre show in five years, Derren Brown returns to astonish and amaze audiences up and down the country. The content of Showman remains a closely guarded secret, but if you’ve seen him before, you know you’re in for a powerhouse treat!

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La Boheme

Known as one of Puccini’s best operas, this romantic and tragic show will tug at your heart strings whilst you immerse yourself in the fateful tale of the doomed, consumptive Mimi and her love for a penniless writer. The set reflects the beautiful Bohemian art of 19th century France and will include, a brass band, snow effect. Expect to see a very special four-legged actor too!

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Dad's Army Radio Show

Dad's Army live

Comedy at its finest! Perry and Croft’s classic BBC sitcom is brought gloriously to life. Three episodes of the hugely popular radio series will be hilariously and lovingly enacted by two master performers. David Benson and Jack Lane will transport you right back to Walmington, working from original radio scripts, and are guaranteed to make you chuckle. Complete with sound effects, vintage music and all of Perry and Croft’s beloved characters and catchphrases. This show is highly acclaimed by critics and loved by audiences of all ages.

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Broadway is coming to The New Wolsey Theatre! Once tells the uplifting yet yearning story of a part-time Dublin guitarist busker who falls unexpectedly in love with a young Czech immigrant and fellow musician. As we follow their relationship across five short days, big changes happen to both of them in little ways. This show has had countless hits on both Broadway and the Westend and is guaranteed to be a sell-out.

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The Ballad of Maria Marten

A thrilling retelling of Suffolk’s real-life murder mystery summer, 1827. In a red barn Maria Marten awaits her lover. A year later her body is found under the floor of the barn in a grain sack, barely identifiable, and the manhunt begins. Maria’s story sent shock waves throughout the country. A chilling murder mystery that will capture the whole family’s imagination.

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Madama Butterfly

Madama Butterfly performance

Welcoming back the fabulous Korean soprano Elena Dee and the celebrated international soprano Alyona Kistenyova. Back by overwhelming public demand, this award-winning Opera returns in a new production with exquisite sets including a spectacular Japanese garden and fabulous costumes including antique wedding kimonos from Japan. One of the world’s most popular operas, Puccini’s Madama Butterfly tells the heart-breaking story of the beautiful young Japanese girl who falls in love with an American naval lieutenant – with dramatic results.

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A moving and theatrical dance performance by Botis Seva on what it is like to survive adulthood with a childlike mind. This blend of freeform dance and hip-hop shows a dynamic search for acceptance by an aging artist attempting to retain his youth. This show is perfect for those looking for a fun and exciting new experience with the family, this sell out performer will not disappoint.

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Brendon Cole Show Man

Brush off your tails, Brendan is back!

Expect every style of ballroom and Latin dance from Brendan Cole and his hand-picked championship dancers, performed to the music and songs of some of the greatest legends and contemporary artists. Whether you love a cheeky Charleston or a sexy Salsa, with music from Beggin’ to Bublé, plus numbers from The Greatest Showman and La La Land – this show has it all.

The Russian State Ballet of Siberia, The Nutcracker

The Russian State Ballet of Siberia performing The Nutcracker

Performed by The Russian State Ballet of Siberia and accompanied by a live orchestra, The Russian State Ballet Orchestra, this most famous of fantasy ballets for all the family begins as night falls on Christmas Eve. As snowflakes fall outside, the warm glow of the open fire sends flickering shadows across the boughs of the Christmas tree and all the presents beneath. When midnight strikes we are swept away to a fairy-tale world where nothing is quite as it seems, toy dolls spring to life off the set, the Mouse-king and his mouse-army battle with the Nutcracker Prince and we travel through the Land of Snow to an enchanted place where the magic really begins.

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Chotto Xenos

Inspired by Akram Khan’s award-winning full length solo XENOS, Chotto Xenos is a captivating dance production that takes young audiences back in time, exploring the often forgotten and untold stories of World War I colonial soldiers, in order to shine light on our present and future. This explorative dance performance will capture the imagination of its audiences and have you thinking about the impact of actions.

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Hansel and Gretel

This clever retelling of a classic fairytale will leave you utterly enchanted with dance. Our two young heroes find themselves lost in London, overwhelmed by the sights, sounds and smells of the city. Together the brave duo must outwit the adults to find their way back to their family, in a show where kids are number one!

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Milton Impossible

Milton Impossible

This hilariously quick-witted and daft show from Milton Jones will leave you in stitches. Divulging secrets from his double life as an international spy before his disappointing downfall leading to him becoming a comedian... This show is wonderful for all the family and will have you giggling by the minute.

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This is Going to Hurt

The award-winning comedian Adam Kay shares entries from his diaries as a junior doctor in this electrifying evening of stand-up and music. Kay has had sold out shows at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and multiple successful runs on the London Westend. The success of these shows is a testament to how funny and entertaining Kay is, you and your family will chuckle your socks off at this show.

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Ed Byrne: If I’m Honest

Join Ed as he takes a long hard look at himself and tries to decide if he has ANY traits that are worth passing on to his children. Best known for appearing on panel shows, the Graham Norton Show, and Dara and Ed’s Great Big Adventure on the BBC. Ed Byrne presents his brand-new masterclass in observational comedy hot on the heels of his 17/18 Touring hit, Spoiler Alert!

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Jim Davidson – Last Man Standing

The masterful, outrageous and hysterically funny comedy legend ‘General’ Jim Davidson OBE’ embarks on his comedy campaign around the UK in 2020, following the acclaimed sell-out ‘The People Fight Back’ Tour.

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The Guilty Feminist Live

The Guilty Feminist podcast has become a comedy phenomenon with over 70 million downloads since it launched in late 2015. Comedian Deborah Frances-White and her guests explore the noble goals of 21st century feminists whilst confessing the insecurities, hypocrisies and paradoxes which undermine those goals. Along with some of your favourite comedians, guests and musicians, Deborah will host this joyful celebration of how far we’ve come and continue the conversation about what remains to be done.

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