What's on;Arts in Scotland;Theatre;Exhibition

29th December 1996 at 00:00
* An exhibition covering 100 years of shopping has been pulling in the crowds at Perth Museum (tel: 01738 632488). "Are You Being Served?'' tells the story of women's clothes shopping in Perth from 1870 to 1970, using 30 costumes from the museum's collection, many of them from McEwen's, which opened as a draper's in 1868 and still exists as an independent department store.

Susan Payne, who curated the show, recorded interviews with local sales assistants, including one who, when she went for a job in the 1930s, was told she would be expected to wear a stout corset to work. "Shopping,'' Payne points out, "`is a relatively modern activity'', which makes you wonder what all those women who "shop 'til they drop'' would have done with their time in the days before Mamp;S, BhS and Next. This fascinating exhibition ends on December 10.

* A pre-performance talk and a masterclass led by leading British actress Prunella Scales are on offer to pupils and students of theatre as part of a package drawn up by the Festival Theatre, Edinburgh, and the English Touring Company whose production of Henry IV, Parts I and II runs there from December 9 to 14. The production stars Timothy West as Falstaff with Samuel West (son of Timothy West and Prunella Scales) playing Hal, the future Henry V. The pre-performance talk will be given by director Stephen Unwin on Tuesday, December 10 at 6.30pm and is free to those who buy tickets for that performance (box office, tel: 0131 529 6000). The masterclass will be held on Wednesday, December 11 at 5pm, involving pupils from James Gillespie's High School in pre-prepared scenes from the play, but is open to all comers. A limited number of tickets (pound;3) are available from Jo Pink, tel: 0131 662 1112.

* Aberdeen Museums want primary schools to book now for free sessions with American sea shanties supremo, Simon Spalding who is making his fourth visit to the Grampian area due to popular demand. The Maritime Museum is closed for major refurbishment, so sessions with Spalding, who dresses in period sea-faring costumes and plays a variety of musical instruments, will take place at the schools from January 6 to 10 or January 20 to 24. Songs can be based on a variety of seafaring themes, such as migration and fishing and pupils are expected to join in. To book, contact David Atherton, tel: 01224 522080.

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