Audiences flock to Kettering Arts Centre in first month back after reopening

The venue was closed for 18 months during the pandemic

Friday, 8th October 2021, 7:00 am

Laughter and applause have returned to a Kettering venue with audiences once again able to enjoy a night out at the historic landmark.

Kettering Arts Centre - housed in St Andrew's Church in Rockingham Road - has seen hundreds of leisure-seekers returning for their diverse offering of music, comedy and arts.

The centre relaunched their busy programme with comedian Mark Watson of Taskmaster and Bear Grylls Celebrity Island fame taking to the stage.

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Mark Watson with the team from Kettering Arts Centre

Rev Tom Houston, the arts centre manager, said: "It was amazing to see such a great turnout and the atmosphere was electric. There weren’t many in the audience who weren’t crying with laughter.

"The arts centre has gone all out, with back-to-back events each weekend. Hot on the heels of Mark Watson were the Comedy improv group, The Noise Next Door, who wowed the crowd with their lightning fast jokes, all created on the night from the audience's suggestions.

"George Egg followed on from them turning the Arts Centre into a ‘moveable feast’ as he mixed comedy with teaching the audience how to cook in the most bizarre of places. We were a little worried when he grilled a haddock with a flamethrower, but it sure tasted great."

More comedy came from Edinburgh Fringe favourite Rob Auton who received rapturous applause with his The Tommy Cooper Experience show but it wasn’t all laughs as music returned with the Fed sisters and Hazey Jane taking to the stage.

Audiences have packed the town centre venue

The month ended with a feast of comedy as the Rolling in the Aisles Comedy club, a once familiar fixture, returned and closed the month-long relaunch with a bang.

Rev Houston added: "More than 600 people have been to the venue, some long-term supporters but also lots who were there for the first time.

"Despite not being able to open for 18 months, we have been busy improving where we can, from an upgraded sound system, contactless payment and from October, new seating. If you’ve never been before, we are well worth checking out.

"The Arts Centre was set up by St Andrew’s Church in 2010 with an ethos of offering the arts for all at a price that was affordable for all.

The Tommy Cooper Experience

"We continue to seek to offer great entertainment for everyone in Kettering and we are delighted to reopen with such amazing support from the community."

For upcoming events including the Rubbish Shakespeare Company, The Just us league: Marvellus: All the marvel movies....kind of and Gary Delaney: Gary in Punderland, go the Kettering Arts Centre website.

The Noise Next Door with the Kettering Arts Centre crew