Storyhouse Chester has revealed the final programme for its very first Spring Season – with a line-up packed with showstopping entertainment promising audiences a fantastic start to 2018.

The £37million new Chester arts venue is bringing a whole host of big names in comedy and dance and must-see shows to the city’s cultural hub during Spring 2018.

The New Year of entertainment at Storyhouse Chester starts on Monday, January 29 when the hilarious The Play That Goes Wrong pays its first visit to the city. The multi award-winning West End and Broadway smash hit is a slapstick delight which promises to leave its audiences in stitches. The show runs until Saturday February 3.

Dance theatre company Motionhouse brings its incredible new multi-media dance circus production Charge to Storyhouse Chester for one night only on Tuesday February 6. This unique collaboration between art and science sees six performers use dance and acrobatics to delve deep in to the human body, telling the important story of energy in our lives.

Andy Kirkpatrick is one of the world’s most accomplished mountaineers, big wall climbers and Winter expedition specialists. Now he’s written a book about his adventures and is heading for Chester. Join him on Wednesday February 14 for Andy Kirkpatrick – Psychovertical: A Higher Education, when Andy will be sharing tales of his daring ascents in locations where other climbers fear to tread.

Dance enthusiasts will be thrilled to see a stunning double bill from the Saint Petersburg Classic Ballet. Firstly, on Friday, February 16 they present Giselle, one of the few 19th Century romantic ballets to survive intact. Then on Saturday and Sunday (February 17-18), the company present Tchaikovsky’s masterpiece Swan Lake.

Get ready to set sail on Tuesday, February 20 for a pirate adventure with Captain Flinn and the Pirate Dinosaurs 2: The Magic Cutlass. Flinn, Pearl and Tom are in the middle of their school play when their old nemesis, Mr T the T-Rex, appears and kidnaps the children forcing them to hunt for the secretive Magic Cutlass – a sword that grants the holder any wish.

Comedy fans are in for a triple treat with the appearance of three favourites in mid-February.

First up is Sarah Millican on Thursday February 22 with her show Control Enthusiast. She is followed by writer and comedian David Baddiel, who presents his Olivier Award-nominated show, My Family: Not the Sitcom, on Friday, February 23. And it’s a return to Storyhouse Chester for 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown star Jon Richardson on Saturday, February 24 with The Old Man tour.

The life of Liverpool songbird Cilla Black is celebrated with Cilla – The Musical from Tuesday, 6 March to Saturday, March 10. The acclaimed musical stars Kara Lily Hayworth as the Scottie Road songstress and soap favourite Andrew Lancel as Brian Epstein.

TV historian Dr Lucy Worsley pays a visit on Thursday, March 15 to take listeners on a journey into the life of one of the greats of English literature. At Home With Jane Austen coincides with the publication of a new biography by Worsley of the author.

Dust off those dancing shoes and ballgowns when Strictly Come Dancing professional Brendan Cole brings his own sizzling touring production All Night Long to Storyhouse Chester on Saturday, March 17. A matinee show has now also been added.

Opera fans have two shows they won’t want to miss this Spring at Storyhouse Chester. A fantastic double bill from the English Touring Opera will see the company firstly present an energetic new production of one of the world’s most beloved operas, Mozart: The Marriage of Figaro on Tuesday, March 20. This will be followed on Wednesday, March 21 by Puccini’s one act operas Il tabarro and Gianni Schicchi. There will be pre-show talks at 6.30pm ahead of each performance.

Comedian Russell Kane and Friends heads for Chester on Saturday, March 24 for an evening of stand-up. Award-winning comic Kane has become a favourite on the comedy circuit with appearances on BBC’s Live At The Apollo, BBC3’s Stupid Man, Smart Phone, and BBC3’s Live At The Electric.

Michelle Gayle and Alice Barlow lead the cast for the heart-warming new musical Son of a Preacher Man, which features a host of songs made famous by the late, great Dusty Springfield. The show runs from Tuesday, March 27 to Saturday, March 31.

Edinburgh Fringe favourites and Ireland’s top comedy trio Foil, Arms & Hogg bring their sketch show Oink to Chester on Friday, April 6. Expect fast-paced gags and plenty of energy from the team, who boast more than 50 million YouTube views to their name. Aimed at ages 14 and above.

Dinosaur World Live is a new interactive show for all the family and it’s roaring into Storyhouse Chester for two days of prehistoric fun on Saturday, April 7 and Sunday, April 8. Grab your compass and join intrepid explorer across unchartered territory to discover a prehistoric world of astonishing inhabitants.

Another family favourite visits in April with the arrival of Birmingham Stage Company’s David Walliams’ brilliant Gangsta Granny from Wednesday, April 11 to Saturday, April 14.

Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s hit musical Evita will move and entertain Chester audiences from Tuesday, April 17 to Saturday, April 21.Returning to the role of Eva Perón is Madalena Alberto, who is considered as one of the West End’s prominent leading ladies. Fresh from the recent West End production in July 2017, Madalena is joined by leading Italian performer Gian Marco Schiaretti as Che, a character who reflects the voice of the Argentine people. The show features a host of memorable songs, from Oh What a Circus and Another Suitcase in Another Hall to the famous Don’t Cry For Me Argentina.

And rounding off an exciting Spring Season are the Grumpy Old Women 2018, starring Jenny Eclair, Dillie Keane and Lizzie Roper on Monday, April 23. The Grumpy Old Women have put their feet up in retirement, free at last to practice their extreme colouring-in, ukulele orchestra and novelty fudge-making. Join them for 90 minutes of brand new comedy.

Storyhouse Artistic Director Alex Clifton said: “We’ve had an amazing response to our autumn season – audiences are loving the theatre space and the amazing public spaces we offer too.

“So I’m really proud of the calibre of performers and must-see shows we’re attracting to Storyhouse, ensuring spring 2018 is equally exciting with a brilliant mix of big stage musicals, household comedy names, family favourites, pioneering contemporary dance and fascinating human tales.”

Book online at www.storyhouse. com, by phone on 01244 409113 or in person at the ticket kiosks at Storyhouse, Hunter Street, Chester, CH1 2AR or visit Chester Visitor Information Centre.