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Cabaret, comedy and theatre all coming to a …library near you?

Upper Norwood Library Hub will be transformed into a pop-up cabaret, comedy club and theatre to host the Attic Arts Club during the Crystal Palace Festival this year (4-17 June 2018).

Thirty-four separate shows, spanning comedy, theatre, music and family entertainment will take place over a fortnight in the recently reclaimed library, which has secured a late-night alcohol license over the period.

Comedy acts featuring across the fortnight include Irish hip-hop comedian Abandoman, Fringe award winning writer Alice Fraser and Live at the Apollo and Live at the Comedy Store star Jen Brister. Theatre contributors include Inua Ellams, performing White Rabbit Red Rabbit, a theatrical experiment by internationally acclaimed Iranian writer Nassim Soleimanpour. The experiment sees the actor open an envelope with a yet unseen script at the beginning of each show.

Poetry evenings will be hosted by local prize-winning writer Joe Duggan, who will be joined by guests from the spoken word, literature and music worlds – all of whom will take part in an audience Q&A. is this true?

The library will be transformed into a den of war-time japery on 14-15 June, as cabaret queen Eva Von Schnippisch will entertain with high-energy dancing and singing, with support from acts Charlie Bouquett, Margo Marshall and live musicians Such Sweet Thunder.

Young Palacians needn’t miss out either, with thirteen separate events delivered by four different acts on offer, including a re-telling of Enid Blyton’s The Famous Five adventures, Comedy Club 4 Kids, poetry by CBEEBIES favourite Joseph Coelho and Half Moon theatre who will be putting on a sensory show about the seasons for those under three years of age.

In addition, Friday and Saturday evenings throughout the fortnight will see a range of parties being thrown from 10.00pm after the shows wrap until late. The library will be transformed into a cocktail bar of soulful sounds, with DJs playing until the early hours.

Norman Murray, director of Attic Arts Club said: “We’ve always believed that Crystal Palace was in need of a great theatre space. It’s exciting to change underappreciated and under-funded buildings into spaces that can inspire and bring communities together.” 

The Upper Norwood Library came into community ownership in 2016, and is located in the heart of the Crystal Palace triangle. The space reopened following the cessation of public funding, and is run by a newly formed community trust. Emily Jewell, Hub Director, said: “We couldn’t be more excited by this residency; we have commissioned a two-week season of events, shows and comedy that we hope will change the landscape of the library and transform it into a unique space for all to enjoy.”

For more information about the Crystal Palace Festival’s Attic Arts Club go to www.atticartsclub.com

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