Paisley Arts Centre in New Street

A true story inspires World War II survival tale.

Coming to Paisley Arts Centre on 29 Oct, Lifeboat is based on the extraordinary true story of Bess Walder and Beth Cummings.

Set in World War II, it is a story of courage, survival and enduring friendship brought to life by Musselburgh-based Catherine Wheels Theatre Company.

On Friday 13 September, 1940, a ship, The City of Benares set sail from Liverpool for Canada. On board were 90 evacuees escaping the relentless bombing and dangers of war torn Britain. Four days into the crossing, the ship was torpedoed and sank. Only eleven of the evacuees survived.

Paisley Arts Centre in New Street
Two fifteen year old girls, Bess Walder and Beth Cummings, spent 19 terrifying hours in the freezing waters of the Atlantic on an upturned Lifeboat, willing each other to survive.

The inspiration for Lifeboat came when Catherine Wheels Director Gill Robertson came across a ‘how we met’ article in the Sunday papers in 1999. In the article, Bess and Beth (who were then in their 70s) explained how they first met on the evacuee ship, The City of Benares in 1940, bound for Canada.

Bess and Beth credited their survival on the fact that they were both together and willed each other to survive, and that they were young and did not realise the direness of their situation. The article ended by saying, ‘we were not in the business of giving up…we hung on’ which of course went on to become a key line in the play.

Both Gill and Catherine Wheels writer Nicola McCartney couldn’t ignore Bess and Beth’s compelling, true-to-life story and subsequently brought Lifeboat to life on stage in 2002.

Lifeboat will be at Paisley Arts Centre on Tues 29 October, 7.30pm. Tickets to the show cost £10 (£6 conc) and can be purchased at the Box Office in Paisley Arts Centre, on 0300 300 1210 or online at

For further information on Renfrewshire Arts & Museums’ events log on to or follow us on Facebook or Twitter @RenArtsMuseums.

Some Other Mother – Half price theatre at Paisley Arts Centre

Part of Refugee Week Scotland, Some Other Mother is just one event taking place from 17 – 23 June that celebrates the diversity of Scottish culture and raises awareness of refugee issues. 

Some Other Mother is a new play by AJ Taudevin produced in association with The Tron, the Scottish Refugee Council and support from Stellar Quines. Set high up in a Glasgow tower block, ten-year old Star and her mother await the outcome of their claim for asylum. As Mama’s mind fragments under the pressure of their unknown future, Star constructs a poetic and fantastical world of her own. Some Other Mother is a story of loss and survival which explores the traumatising impact of the asylum system, regardless of the outcome.

Some Other Mother (part of Refugee Week Scotland)

Paisley Arts Centre

Thursday 20th June, 7.30pm

£5 (£3 conc)

Booking: Call the Box Office on 0300 300 1210 or go online to

Heidi Talbot closes a fantastic season of folk music at Paisley Arts Centre.

Over the course of Renfrewshire Arts & Museums’ Spring 2013 season, Paisley Arts Centre has hosted gigs from favoured folk artists like Karine Polwart, Blueflint and the Southern Tenant Folk Union, attracting music fans from right across Scotland. To round off our season of live music at the venue, award winning singer songwriter Heidi Talbot will be performing tracks from her new album ‘Angels Without Wings’ on June 21.

Formerly the lead singer with Irish-American supergroup Cherish The Ladies, the County Kildare songstress is right at home in the twin worlds of Irish traditional and roots music. Subtlety is Heidi’s magic ingredient – from her gossamer voice to the delicate re-working of traditional and contemporary material; a talent that earned her rave reviews for her debut album In Love and Light in 2008.

Thereafter, 2010 saw Heidi nominated for two BBC Radio 2 Folk Music Awards and record and tour with Scottish rock band Idlewild, Eddi Reader, Michael McGoldrick and Kris Drever. It also saw her play sell-out concerts all over the UK and Ireland and launch her new record The Last Star to rave reviews.

On June 21, Heidi promises to treat folk fans to a brilliant live set, peppered with tracks from her latest offering Angels Without Wings; an album packed with original compositions and collaborations with well known artists such as King Creosote, Louis Abbott (Admiral Fallow) and Karine Polwart.

Heidi will take to the stage on Friday 21 June, 7.30pm at Paisley Arts Centre. Tickets to the gig cost £12 (£10 conc) and can be booked by calling the Box Office on 0300 300 1210 or going online to

For more information on Heidi Talbot, future performances or events please visit or follow us on Facebook

Refugee Week 2013 continues: Half price tickets to catch new play by a ‘future star of Scottish theatre’.

Acclaimed playwright, AJ Taudevin was inspired to create new play, Some Other Mother after working closely with refugees and asylum seekers in and around Glasgow. It is perhaps fitting then, that Some Other Mother is touring a number of Scottish theatres during Refugee Week 2013, a festival that celebrates diversity and raises awareness of refugee issues.

refugee week.jpgTaking to the stage at Paisley Arts Centre on June 20, Some Other Mother is a story of loss and survival which explores the traumatising impact of the asylum system, regardless of the outcome.

The play is set high up in a Glasgow tower block, where ten-year old Star and her mother await the outcome of their claim for asylum. As Mama’s mind fragments under the pressure of their unknown future, Star constructs a poetic and fantastical world of her own.

Some Other Mother will be at Paisley Arts Centre on Thurs 20 June, 7.30pm. Tickets for this show are now half price at £5 (£3 concession). Tickets can be bought by calling the Box Office on 0300 300 1210 or going online to
The performance is suitable for ages 14+.

For more information on Some Other Mother, future performances or events please visit or follow us on Facebook

hardeeps indian takeaway

Hardeep Singh Kohli Interview

Peter Greenwood from Interviews Hardeep Singh Kohli before his upcoming show at Paisley Arts Centre (see below)


An Evening of Comedy, Cooking and Curry UK TOUR 2013

“Kohli’s cookery and anecdotes left a reassuringly warm aftertaste.” «««« The Times

Following the success of his other live shows, Nearly Naked Chef and Chat Masala, Hardeep Singh Kohli would like to invite you to his brand new show, Indian Takeaway.

The country is obsessed with curry. That much we know. But how do Hardeep’s home-cooked curries – the recipes inspired by his Mum and his Gran – compare to the local Indian Takeaways we love and adore? Let’s find out!

hardeeps indian takeawayAt the beginning of each show Hardeep will order a takeaway live on stage for delivery to the theatre, having selected a local Indian takeaway from audience suggestions submitted via He will then order an audience member’s favourite meal. Whilst waiting for the order to arrive Hardeep cooks his own food.

Two curries with side orders of delicious cooking tips and lip-smacking Comedy. What’s not to like?

“The ever-affable Glaswegian makes an excellent host and is well worth a taste.” «««« Edinburgh Festivals Magazine

Hardeep’s love of all things culinary has led to him touring the UK constantly for the last three years with his hit shows The Nearly Naked Chef and Chat Masala which have both been huge hits with audiences across the UK. He was also runner-up on the first series of Celebrity Masterchef which led to two series for UKTV Food, New British Kitchen and Chefs and the City.

His first book Indian Takeaway was nominated for an Independent Book Award and he has written about food for Olive, Observer Food Monthly, The Spectator, The Times, The Sunday Times and various other publications and is a columnist for Waitrose Food Illustrated.

Hardeep is a regular host on Channel 5’s hugely popular current affairs show, The Wright Stuff and has been a regular reporter on BBC1’s The One Show and a guest on BBC 1′s Question Time, and This Week with Andrew Neil. For Channel 4 he has written and presented the BAFTA Award winning In Search of the Tartan Turban, the critically acclaimed and award winning Hardeep Does… and the seminal gambling series 50 Says You’ll Watch This.

As a journalist, his column in Scotland on Sunday called “hardeep is your love” saw him twice nominated in 2007 and 2008 for Scottish Columnist of the Year at the Scottish Press Awards. He is also Contributing Editor on the Spectator Magazine, has written for the Independent on Sunday, The Times, Observer Woman, Conde Nast Traveller to name but a few.

Having started his broadcasting career in radio he still holds the wireless very dear, presenting extensively across Radio 4 and Radio 5 Live and has made a plethora of documentaries for Radios 2, 3 and 4. Hardeep’s Indian Takeaway will be at Paisley Arts Centre on Sat 15 June, 7.30pm. Tickets cost £15 (£13 conc) and can be booked by calling 0300 300 1210 or visiting Hardeep’s show is suitable for ages 14+

Be Silent or Be Killed

Be Silent or Be Killed. A terrifying true story brought to life on stage.

Moray based theatre company Right Lines Productions, in association with Eden Court, Inverness, will be visiting Paisley Arts Centre with their powerful new play on May 22. Be Silent or Be Killed, by Euan Martin and Dave Smith is based on the book of the same name by North-East businessman Roger Hunt and Kenny Kemp.

40 hours under siege in Mumbai hidden and alone. What would you do? Be Silent or Be Killed concerns the impact of international terrorism on the individual and the resilience of the human spirit in the face of adversity.

be-silent-or-be-killedIn November 2008, Roger set off from his home in Macduff destined for Mumbai, to set up a new project for the Royal Bank of Scotland in India’s financial capital. However, little did Roger know that this routine business trip would turn into an extraordinary, life-changing experience.

Shortly after his arrival in Mumbai, Roger became caught up in a deadly terrorist attack which claimed the lives of many innocent people. For 40 hours, Roger lay hidden and alone in his hotel bedroom as terrorists moved from floor to floor seeking Western targets. Amazingly, he was able to communicate via his Blackberry phone with colleagues at RBS headquarters in Edinburgh, and it was this support, along with Roger’s calculated decision-making, personal resilience and determination to survive that lead to his eventual rescue. The fourth anniversary of his ordeal was in November 2012.

The highly talented Scottish cast are James Mackenzie (who plays Roger), Helen Mackay (Irene) and Euan Donald (Chris). The play is directed by highly acclaimed creative artist Ian Grieve.

Be Silent or Be Killed is a multi-media project, with both audio and visual aspects forming an integral part of the production from the outset; recreating an evening of dramatic theatre you can’t afford to miss.

Be Silent or Be Killed will be at Paisley Arts Centre on Wed 22 May, 7.30pm. Tickets to the show cost £10 (£6 conc) and can be booked by calling the Box Office on 0300 300 1210 or going online to Be Silent or Be Killed is suitable for ages 14+ and contains some strong language, disturbing images and loud noises.

For further information on Be Silent or Be Killed, future events, exhibitions or shows log on to or follow us on Facebook

Me and My Shadow, My Shadow and I: an innovative show specially designed for kids.

Highly visual, interactive and revolutionary early years’ theatre performance My Little Shadow has been written and produced specifically with young audiences in mind.

Taking place at Paisley Arts Centre in late April, My Little Shadow magically blends dance with live music, song, film and clever puppetry to tell the story of a young girl and her mischievous shadow.

From front row seats, children will join the rogue Shadow as she sneaks out at night for an out of this world adventure. Zoom off on the rocket with her as she flies into space and back – but not before encountering a friendly little alien!

As My Little Shadow is focused on interacting with young theatre-goers, the story is broken up with opportunities for the audience to participate; including helping to launch the rocket with a rousing blast-off countdown and ‘pass the move’, where children mimic the dancers’ movements on stage.

The production has been created and produced by Renfrewshire Arts & Museums’ Outreach Team in partnership with local dance organisation, Right2Dance. Written and directed by Vanessa Rigg, she will also provide the narration and live soundtrack for My Little Shadow. The lead characters, the young girl and her shadow are brought to life by Right2Dance performers Joanne Garbutt and Eilidh McCormick with choreography courtesy of Right2Dance tutor Aileen Palombo.

Young families can join in the My Little Shadow fun at Paisley Arts Centre on Friday 26 and Saturday 27 April. There will be two performances each day at 10.30am & 1.30pm. Tickets cost £4 per adult (an adult ticket includes 1 free child’s ticket) and additional children’s tickets cost £2. Tickets can be booked by calling our Box Office on 0300 300 1210.

For further information on My Little Shadow, future events, exhibitions or shows log on to or follow us on Facebook


Award winning black comedy SLICK to play Paisley Arts Centre.

Using remarkable sleight of hand and ‘human puppets’, multi award winning SLICK is a hilarious, dark and dirty exploration of greed, corruption and loss of innocence. The story is told through the eyes of Malcolm Biggar, a nine year old with a passion for his skateboard, a harrowing fear of his lunatic neighbours and a growing realisation that perhaps his parents don’t always have his best interests at heart. 

SlickImage2013Malcolm’s sole aim in life is to convince his neglectful parents to buy him a helmet for skateboarding. But one day that all changes when crude oil begins pumping out of the Biggar family bathroom. Elation soon turns to desperation as they attempt to keep their new found wealth a secret from their depraved landlord and outrageous next door neighbours; ultimately leading to an explosive showdown that little Malcolm gets caught in the middle of.

Winner of a Scotsman Fringe First (2008) and a Critic’s Award for Theatre in Scotland (2008/2009), Vox Motus’ SLICK combines absurd comedy, visual storytelling, puppetry, object theatre and physical performance to create a unique ensemble show with comic-strip visuals.

SLICK will be at Paisley Arts Centre on Tuesday 5 March at 7.30pm. Tickets cost £10 (£6 conc) and can be booked by calling our Box Office on  0141 887 1010 or visiting . Suitable for ages 14+

For further information on SLICK, future events and shows log on to or follow us on Facebook

renfrewshire arts

Something for everyone: Renfrewshire Arts & Museums is delighted to announce its brand new arts programme for Spring 2013.

Spring has arrived early at Renfrewshire Arts & Museums, bringing with it a wonderful selection of dance and drama performances, museum exhibitions, music gigs and film screenings, as well as a superb range of regular activities and classes for everyone from creative kids to talented tea dancers.

renfrewshire artsOur ever popular array of regular classes kicks off proceedings and places can now be booked for Saturday Art Classes, Creative Art Classes, Fashion Design workshops and Club Animate. Run by our fantastic Outreach Team these classes offer kids the chance to make their own movie, devise a stylish outfit or create their very own masterpiece. Plus, firm family favourites Playdays! @ the museum and themed Baby Discos will be back once again.

Movie time begins in March at Paisley Arts Centre bringing you a great selection of family favourites old and new. Disney and animation fans in particular will enjoy Brave and A Cat in Paris on the silver screen.

On the music scene there will be folk performances from Karine Polwart, Heidi Talbot and the critically acclaimed Southern Tenant Folk Union, a little bit of jazz from Loretta Reid and a tribute to the magic of The Eagles courtesy of Scottish group, Hotel California.

On the stage, hit Edinburgh Fringe show The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs will test our social conscience with a hilarious and sometimes harrowing tale about our beloved iPhones. Or if it’s a laugh you seek there will be plenty to smile about at How to Make a Killing in Bollywood, I Spy Mrs Peery and new comedy show Hardeep Singh Kohli’s Indian Takeaway.

This season we will once again be embracing Refugee Week to help celebrate diversity in Scotland and raise awareness of refugee issues. A Refugee Week Film curated by the African Association of Communities in Renfrewshire will be screened at Paisley Arts Centre where you will also be able to view Spirit, an inspiring photography project launched in partnership by the Scottish Refugee Council and Streetlevel Photoworks.

Paisley Museum will also play host to a number of not to be missed exhibitions this season, beginning with a beautiful display of some of our star artworks as part of Delightful in February. Plus our Alexander Wilson exhibition promises to delve into the social and natural history behind the famous Paisley poet and highly respected ornithologist.

The Guide for Spring 2013, complete with details of our arts programme in full is now available to collect, for free, from Paisley Town Hall, Paisley Arts Centre and Paisley Museum or can be downloaded online by visiting

You can also keep up to date with Renfrewshire Arts & Museums by following us on Facebook (, logging on to or sign up to our weekly e-news service by emailing

0018 Old Bridge St.

Paisley Events Paisley’s River Exhibition

Legacy of the White Cart Water to be brought to life in new exhibition

Paisley’s River, an exhibition which examines the role the White Cart Water has played in the town’s development over the centuries will be displayed at Paisley Museum from 19 September 2012 – 20 January 2013.


‘Paisley’s River: The White Cart Water’ will take visitors on a journey downstream as we follow it from its source on Eaglesham Moor, through Glasgow and its suburbs until it crosses into Paisley at Hawkhead. Visitors will see exactly how the White Cart has shaped the town: from how industry once used the river as a source of power and trade to the wildlife that calls the White Cart Water home. Paisley’s shipbuilding industry, which once rivalled that of the Clyde yards, will also feature, as does the influence of the Cart on artists, highlighted by a number of paintings from the Paisley museum collection.


On display, the museum will showcase models of some of the ships that Cart-based companies such as Fleming & Ferguson would have built, as well as natural history specimens, commemorative items from river-related improvement programmes and a hugely detailed map of the town which features the river. The map has been kindly donated by Strathclyde police and likely dates from 1950’s, however its actual purpose in the force remains a mystery!


To bring the White Cart Water’s story to life, there is also a walk that visitors can follow along the banks of the river through Paisley. The walk begins at the Watermill Hotel and ends at Paisley Museum, taking in many of the historical places featured in the exhibition, including the Watermill, Abbey, Town Hall and the site of Paisley’s earliest harbour. The route of the walk will be printed on the back of the exhibition leaflet, which visitors can collect from Paisley Museum free of charge.

You can download the PDF Brochure by clicking here 

Renfrewshire Council