Will Marriott: Arts Diary

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Now we all know that any TV programme which promise to expose Britain’s biggest/largest/dirtiest (you choose the adjective) is generally not worth tuning in for. However, just occasionally you do stumbling across a gem.

Two years ago, as part of its Cutting Edge strand, Channel 4 screened a documentary on chronic hoarder Richard Wallace, whose home and garden was filled with more than 60 tonnes of rubbish. With mountains of papers and packaging filling his property, Wallace was shunned by most of the residents of his Surrey village until one neighbour offered to help him overcome his compulsive behaviour.

Among those who saw the film was Adam Sunderland and David Glass of who decided Wallace’s story would be perfect for the stage. Hoarders will be the first play for Huddersfield’s Sticks Theatre Company and the devised piece will be performed at Scarborough Stephen Joseph Theatre from May 1 to 4.

most people have heard of Bridge, Rummy and Brag, but Leeds? Well yes, there is a card game dedicated to the city and next month there’ll be a chance to play it, so it’s time to brush up on the rules.

First things first, it was invented in 1976 by artist Robert Filliou who before he turned up in Leeds had fought for the French resistance and the playing pieces include an original black and white photograph, croupier’s rake, two blindfolds, an eyeshade and 54 playing cards. playing cards. Confused? You should be. According to Lisa Le Feuvre of the Henry Moore Institute, it also involves a lot of drinking. If you fancy trying your hand, the institute will be hosting a game of Leeds on May 17 from 6pm to 9pm.

After a turn on the Jonathan Ross Show serenading his family, we have a new favourite celebrity. Step forward Sir Ben Kingsley. The Scarborough-born actor has been doing the rounds to promote Iron Man 3 in which he plays the villain, and every interview has been a joy. Take Sir Ben (he famously takes exception to those who ditch his title) on the whole business he calls show, “Acting is hunting,” he told one journalist, eyes staring straight into the middle distance. When I open a script, the hunter in me speaks: it’s an instinct I ignore at my peril.”

Or what about his response when asked in the same interview how he would like people to think of him: “As a story teller,” he said without pausing. “A story teller in the ancient sense, one that the tribe embraces and needs.” The word luvvie it seems was invented for Sir Ben.

It’s comforting to know that even the always youthful, Michael Palin worries about getting older. Asked recently about his advancing years, the Yorkshire-born Python and professional globetrotter, who turns 70 next month, said: “I don’t want to live to an age where all the people I know have died; I think you have got to grow old with your mates. I do wonder about death and I think gosh, I’ll be 93 when they open the high-speed rail line to Sheffield.”