Kirkgate Arts Out West, the rural touring arm of Cockermouth’s Kirkgate Arts and Heritage, promises a line-up brimming with 'music, magic, myths and medieval mayhem' for the first half of 2024.

The programme featuring around 60 performances will serve a broad region of west Cumbria.

These shows range from nationally recognised theatre companies to international musicians, performing in venues reaching from Furness to the Solway.

Ex-Ocean Colour Scene bassist, Dan Sealey, is scheduled for a solo show of music and anecdotes, stopping at Florence Mine Arts on February 23, Brigham Memorial Hall on February 24, and Santon Bridge Village Hall on February 25.

A new a cappella show by The Pocket Choral Society will hold performances at Kirkstile Community Centre on February 16, and St Bees Village Hall on February 17.

February also brings The Long Way Home, an evening of stories and songs exploring 'the enduring power of place and highlighting Cumbria', at Bassenthwaite Parish Rooms on February 24.

Loshn Klezmer Band, a Klezmer trio, will speak, sing and dance with the tradition's distinct Yiddish accent at The Hill Village Hall, Millom, on February 12, and The Settlement, Maryport, on February 13.

The May programme introduces Believe! – Romany Magic, promising 'quirky' and 'beautiful' theatrical magic. This show will stop across west Cumbria with five planned performances.

Florence, a one-woman show, unravels the 'lesser-known life and legacy' of Florence Nightingale across three May performances.

Canterbury Tales, a one-man performance of Chaucer’s classic, is also set for the west Cumbrian stage across three dates in May.

Kirkgate general manager Emma Heys said: "It’s as much a social occasion as a performance.

"A good night out is guaranteed and all on people’s doorsteps with no driving necessary!"

Kirkgate Arts Out West enjoys support from Arts Council England as a National Portfolio Organisation, in partnership with neighbouring Rural Touring organisation, the Penrith-based Highlights Rural Touring Scheme.

Ms Heys said: "We work with volunteers in village halls and other venues, including libraries, throughout Allerdale and Copeland, providing local audiences with high-quality professional performances of music, drama and dance.

“We’re also affiliated to the National Rural Touring Forum, which helps to ensure we have access to the very best national and international talent who are touring England to entertain people in tucked away places.

“We’re delighted to be able to bring some top-class performances to some of our tiniest venues and the 2024 programme is shaping up very nicely!”

Details of all events, including dates, locations, and ticket prices, can be accessed at Events Archive - Kirkgate Arts and Heritage online.