Category Archives: Aberration

Queer-themed events for all at Aberystwyth Arts Centre

Cabarration 10 October 2015

previously at Aberration…

Aberration Cabaret

A Queer thing’s happening at the Arts Centre

Saturday 10 October 2015, Great Hall, Aberystwyth Arts Centre

Lou Safire

Doors open 7.30pm (with entertainment while you settle in); show starts 8pm

Tickets: £12 / £9 from Aberystwyth Arts Centre box office

Join us for the return of Cabarration: the cabaret night with a very queer bite. Prepare to be amazed by a glitzy line-up of local and national talent in the Great Hall, from burlesque to comedy via circus and song.

LGBT theme (lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans). All welcome. Dress style: putting on the glitz.

“The rich atmosphere could only be described as Gatsbian with a queer twist!” – Ego magazine


Bethany Black
Bethany Black

Bethany Black: Standup comedy from Bethany Black, who played Helen in Channel 4’s Cucumber & Banana, and will appear in the next series of Doctor Who. Funny, fabulous and queer. ‘Something quite special and unique… I was genuinely grateful for the experience.’ – Time Out

Lou Safire: Bohemian burlesque and vaudeville from a man who is 96% Extrovert, 4% Polyester. Lou brings together circus and striptease, strutting his stuff and scaring the horses.

Kate O’Donnell: Kate returns to Aberration with ‘A Short History of My Tits’, told with music, tassels and pizzazz. As seen at Mother’s Ruin in Manchester and Duckie’s in London. ‘Loud and proud trans woman making waves’ – Sunday Times

Kate O'Donnell
Kate O’Donnell

Arms Like Legs: ‘Four apocalyptic noise spirits invite you to succumb to the whims of sound for the liquefied pleasure of all!’ Imagine Black Sabbath blended with Patti Smith with a handful of doom and hip hop thrown in. 2013 MidMad Band Slam winners.

Nic Herriot will be reading us one of her cheeky short stories. She lives locally with her wife and, when not trying to tame the jackdaws who live in her chimney,  enjoys researching plots for her erotica.

Maj Ikle is proud to live off grid in a rural women’s community, not a million miles from Aber. She will be performing the first chapter of her forthcoming autobiography, entitled ‘Maggie Thatcher made me an SM Dyke’.

Ali Cocks: last seen teaching us all some moves on the pole, Ali will be making magical shapes in the air from her new aerial hoop. Ali also teaches pole fitness classes in Aberystwyth. Accompanied by Lucy Edwards.

Aber’s newest musical duo, László Xavia and Emily Farr, are influenced variously by Paolo Nutini, Passenger, Amy McDonald and Alanis Morissette. The result is a melodious set that you may well be the first to hear!

We will have a charity raffle in aid of LGBT good causes with fab prizes donated by local businesses including meals out, drinks and a weekend away.

Ali Cocks
Ali Cocks (by Craig Kirkwood)

Cabarration is hosted by Helen Sandler, who  has compered at the York Lesbian Arts Festival, L Fest and London’s Bar Wotever. Keeping you happy through the night. Unless you don’t like to be happy – no pressure.

The night ends with DJ and dancing – everyone’s favourite DJ Boundary (of Swing City fame) will play us out.

Oh, what a night! Don’t miss it!

View photos from last year’s Cabarration>>


Aberration is programmed by Enfys Aber (Aberystwyth University Staff LGBT Pride Society) and SpringOut, and is a partnership with Aberystwyth Arts Centre.

Aberration May 2015 PROGRAMME

Aberration presents:

Hoyw Heddiw // Gay Today

>>Cymraeg yma>>

7pm (for 7.30) Saturday 9 May 2015
Main Hall, International Politics Building,
Aberystwyth University, Penglais Campus
£7 (includes a glass of wine)
Aberration, 1st feb Aberystwyth Arts Centre. Photo by Daryl Ras Gdalya Jemmott

What’s it like to be LGBT in Wales (and beyond)?
An evening of live music, discussion and readings

7pm Drinks

7.30pm Introduction by Dr Jenny Mathers, head of the International Politics department, an expert in Russian human rights issues including Pussy Riot and anti-gay legislation.

7.45pm Discussion about being LGBT in Wales, with our fabulous panel:

Jaci Taylor, who served as mayor of Aberystwyth in 2000-01, with her partner as mayoress.

Gareth Lloyd Roberts, director of Aberystwyth Arts Centre, past producer at Wales Millennium Centre.

Paddy O’Malley, co-editor and founder of The Aberystwyth EGO magazine and part of Sgarmes singing group.

Chaired by Elisa Haf, an Aber native with a degree in International Politics from the university and an interest in left-wing feminism.

The panel will be held in Welsh and English, with simultaneous translation. Followed by Q&A – join in with your questions for the panel.

8.45pm Interval

9pm Richard Margraff Turley will read from and talk about his new novel, The Cunning House, about attacks on gay culture in Regency London and the raid on the White Swan molly house.

9.15pm Multilingual live music from Machynlleth’s answer to Edith Piaf – Nicola Burgess & friends.

10pm Ends – come with us up to the Arts Centre to buy a drink in the bar and continue the conversation.

Timings are approximate. Programme subject to change.

Aberration is brought to you by Enfys Aber (Aber Uni’s LGBT staff network) and SpringOut (arts events for women, LGBT folk and friends).

>>View photos of the last fabulous Aberration>>

Aberration Quiz 27 Feb

Aberration Quiz

Blackouts (smaller)

Queer Quiz, Friday 27 February 2015

Dickie Beau is performing his show Blackouts: Twilight of the Idols at Aberystwyth Arts Centre and the Aberration team have arranged a fun pre-show quiz in the theatre bar at 5.45pm prompt, as part of LGBT History Month UK.
Bring your friends or join a team to meet new people. Questions will include the queer history of Wales and a photo quiz. Ends in time for a chat or a bite to eat before the show. All welcome, whether you are lesbian, gay, bi, undecided, straight, trans, intersex, whatever.
£1 per person on the night.
Quizmasters Mike Parker & Helen Sandler.
It’s Aberration’s first birthday so we hope you will raise a glass with us to celebrate!
Please book separately for the show, see below.
Quiz organised by SpringOut and Enfys Aber for Aberration.

Blackouts: Twilight of the Idols

Drag fabulist Dickie Beau shapeshifts through a shadowy soundscape of lost souls in a theatrical trip to the subconscious underworld of his future self. Bringing to life extraordinary audio artefacts, Dickie leads us on a bewitching adventure in found sound as he channels the ghosts of his childhood idols. Includes previously unheard tapes of Marilyn Monroe’s final interview.

Book your ticket to the Blackouts show on the Aberystwyth Arts Centre website>>

Cabarration lineup announced


Aberration meets cabaret!

[Rhaglen Cymraeg>>

Cabaret night with a very queer bite
8pm Saturday 8 November 2014, Great Hall, Aberystwyth Arts Centre, £10

Doors 7.30pm (with entertainment while you settle in), main show onstage at 8pm.

Book online now!


Sgasgarmes-2132rmes: Aber’s dynamic close-harmony chorus gives it some glitter, bringing you camp classics, pop covers in two tongues… and surprises.



Mimi Amore: A burlesque star who is sexy, humorous and downright dazzling, Mimi has been voted ‘Legend in the Making’.

IzzyRabeyIzzy Rabey & Bill Sutton: Izzy’s knockout voice soars through jazz classics and her own soulful songs.





Ali Cocks: Melding dance, gymnastics and aerial arts with pole-dancing in a unique show of fitness and thrills.



Hilary Ramsden: The surreal and funny rebel clown of Ceredigion.




Helen Sandler: Your host for the night.


Ted Wroxley: Amazing table magician with nothing up his sleeve.


Cabaret artist Mar Gonga (photo: Dawn Kilner)

Mar Gonga: Juggling her magic crystal ball.

VestaClitoriaThe Swan Vestas: The music hall’s last surviving male impersonator treads the boards in the cheeky style of Tipping the Velvet.




Grit book coverCarey Wood-Duffy: Short passionate poems from the Cardiff American’s new collection, Grit.




george 2George Sandifer-Smith: Aber-based poet engages the audience with both humour and depth.

Emily Farr: … And her guitar!

Plus Raffle in aid of LGBT causes overseas, with acerbic writer and broadcaster Mike Parker, Plaid Cymru’s out gay parliamentary candidate for Ceredigion.


Prizes from Over the Rainbow vegetarian guesthouse, Light of Asia Indian restaurant, Sombrero at Sophie’s, Irie’s cocktail lounge, Rummer’s bar and other friends of Aberration. Proceeds from raffle and popcorn sales will be distributed by Stonewall to LGBT causes overseas.

And at the end of the evening, DJ Boundary (Swing City) returns by popular demand to fill the dancefloor till late.


Book online now!

Don't miss this amazing night, which is an Aberration event, programmed by SpringOut and Enfys Aber supported by Aberystwyth Arts Centre. You won't find many LGBT arts events in Mid Wales and we're proud that Aberration is giving lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans audiences and their friends top-quality nights out in Aberystwyth.

Cabarration: Aberration meets cabaret in November

A Queer thing’s happening at the Arts Centre
Saturday 8 November 2014
8pm Great Hall, Aberystwyth Arts Centre

Join us for Cabarration: a cabaret night with an LGBT* bite. Prepare to be amazed by a glitzy line-up of local and national talent in the Great Hall, from queer burlesque to camp comedy via circus and song. Stay late and dance with Swing City’s DJ Boundary – back by popular demand. All welcome.

Tickets: £10

Aberration is programmed by Enfys Aber (Aberystwyth University Staff LGBT Pride Society) and SpringOut.

*LGBT: lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender


 Photo of Mar Gonga by Dawn Kilner

ABERRATION programme for May

ABERRATION at Aberystwyth Arts Centre on Saturday 31 May 2014

aberration spring poster web5.30pm till late

Spring into summer with dancing, tea and cake, cocktails and entertainment at May’s ABERRATION: a lounge event with an LGBT* bent. Everyone’s welcome! Dress to impress!

{*LGBT = Lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans/ transgender, queer, questioning, or intersex.}


Here is the thrilling programme. Take a look and then book your tickets by clicking HERE.

5.30pm Tea Dance


ABERRATION kicks off in style with a tea dance: Latin and Ballroom Dancing led by experienced Bristol teacher Norma Daykin. Whether you’re a star of the dancefloor or a complete beginner, join in! No partner needed; you can lead or follow. And there’s a prize for most creative hat.

Read more about Norma Daykin and places where you can do more dancing with her.

7.45pm Play: Big Girl’s Blouse


Kate O’Donnell performs her short one-woman show Big Girl’s Blouse, using humour, music, high kicks and theatrical tricks to tell the story of a little girl who was born a boy – and had to use every trick in the book to get by. We were wowed by this at Contact Theatre Manchester and were delighted when Kate agreed to bring it to Aber. There will be a chance to ask her questions at the end of the performance.

8.45pm Beth Prior


Talented Borders singer-songwriter Beth Prior plays her folky, rootsy, soulfully shapeshifting songs. Nomad, her hot new debut EP, epitomises Beth’s infectious guitar and compelling vocals. An absolute delight.

Listen to some of Beth’s music.

9.30pm Gypsy Wine Cartel


Gypsy Wine Cartel, the electrifying local seven-piece gypsy-ska band, play their last Aberystwyth gig before leaving town. Their energetic and fun live show always stirs the crowd up into a frenzy of dancing and revelry. If you’ve never seen them, prepare to become a big fan.

10.30 to late: DJ Boundary


Multi-genre DJ Boundary, head honcho of Swing City and Black House, will keep up the tempo with killer floor-fillers, exhibiting his penchant for classic mashups and vintage sounds.

Plus Raffle with proceeds to LGBT charities and amazing prizes: tickets to London Fashion Week, afternoon tea at Ynyshir Hall and more.

It’s going to be fabulous. Bring your friends. Tickets £10 for whole evening including tea dance, entertainment and DJ (limited number of £5 tickets for those coming to just the tea dance).


When we say ‘all welcome’, we mean EVERYONE, whether gay, straight, trans, cis, bi, poly, female, male, in-between, all things to all people, or prefer not to say. Please come and be part of our unique and friendly events.

Brought to you by SpringOut, Enfys Aber and Aberystwyth Arts Centre with financial support from the Arts Council of Wales.




All timings are approximate and may change on the day.

Grant money for Aberration

Arts Council Wales grant for Aberration
aberration spring header

SpringOut has received a grant for £4,200 from the Arts Council of Wales for the next Aberration event on 31 May.

SpringOut co-chair and lead programmer Helen Sandler says: ‘We are delighted that we will now be able to put on the full programme we’ve been dreaming of!’

Highlights include a tea dance with lessons from Norma Daykin, a new one-woman play from Kate O’Donnell, singer Beth Prior and some secret surprises!

Book now at Aberystwyth Arts Centre







Aberration 2014 dates

ABERRATION: Dates announced


A Queer thing’s happening at the Arts Centre
Hwyl Hoyw yng Nghanolfan y Celfyddydau

After a fabulous night at our first Aberration in February 2014, SpringOut and Enfys Aber are delighted to announce the next two dates for this ongoing series of LGBT arts events at Aberystwyth Arts Centre:

31 May 2014: ABERRATION LOUNGE: Tea dance and entertainment for a lazy Saturday

8 November 2014 (change from previously advertised date): CABERRATION: Aberration meets queer cabaret in the Great Hall

Watch this space and Aberystwyth Arts Centre brochures for details.

Aberration Feb 2014

ABERRATION: A queer thing’s happening at the arts centre…


The full programme for the launch night of Aberration has now been announced and it is looking fabulous. On the evening of 1 February 2014 at Aberystwyth Arts Centre, you can enjoy films from the Iris Prize, a talk by Mike Parker about the queer history of Wales, readings by poet Stephanie ‘Sonority’ Turner and novelist Jonathan Kemp, live music by Chocolat, Stephanie Finegan and Sam Scott, DJs and dancing till late… and more! Take a look at the programme and book your tickets now on the Aberystwyth Arts Centre website. Or search Google for ‘Aberration Aberystwyth’.

SpringOut are working with Enfys Aber to programme Aberration. This first event is part of LGBT History Month UK.