WITH the usual exciting programme of everything from drama to dance and talks to tribute acts, Malvern Theatres’ autumn programme once again spoils its audience for choice.

Well-known names from stage and screen will be taking to the Malvern stage in a wide variety of drama – Warren Clarke (Dalziel and Pascoe) plays Winston Churchill in Three Days in May, and the ever-charming Nigel Havers appears as the unreliable Guy in Nick Fisher’s Basket Case, which also sees the first stage appearance of Graham Seed since his alter ego Nigel Pargetter fell to his death from the roof of Lower Loxley in The Archers.

A new play from the award-winning Red Cape Theatre, 1 Beach Road, asks “what is it like to lose everything” in a tale of defiance, a shrinking island, synchronised swimming and trying to turn back the tide.

Simon Callow follows last year’s brilliant appearance at Malvern in Being Shakespeare with another one-man show, as he brings to life two plays by Charles Dickens, Dr Marigold and Mr Chops, and the end of October brings Keeler, “The inside story of the Profumo Affair”, starring Paul Nicholas and Alice Coulthard.

From September 14 to 17, local amateur company the Malvern Theatre Players present much-loved classic thriller The Ghost Train by Arnold Ridley.

Early October brings a co-production from Headlong Theatre and the National Theatre, Earthquakes in London, which premiered last year at the National Theatre and promises to be “an exhilarating whirlwind of a play”.

Dance comes from internationally renowned contemporary dance company Phoenix Dance on their first visit to Malvern with Reflected. “Everyone should see this company,” declared Dance Europe.

And from Hereford company 2Faced Dance there is In The Dust, a triple bill of darkly explosive new break-infused contemporary work, exploring themes of decay and destruction.

The sounds of Bon Jovi, Simon and Garfunkel, Pink Floyd and The Eagles can be enjoyed as top tribute acts run through some of the best-loved and best-known of soundtracks.

Beyond the tributes, there’s a feast of music with performances for every musical palate - from Bill Wyman’s Rhythm Kings to English Touring Opera with a programme of Handel and Purcell, from Shakin’ Stevens to the Syd Lawrence Orchestra and world-famous soprano Emma Kirkby in a concert performance of Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas with The Armonico Consort and Baroque Players.

The Yamaha International Piano Series 2011-2012 opens on October 22 with a Liszt 200th birthday concert given by H J Lim.

With more than 70 events in the new brochure, including an exciting Kids’ Club programme and more great live by satellite presentations of National Theatre and Metropolitan Opera productions, the challenge will be deciding what not to see.

For full details of the new season, visit malvern-theatres.co.uk.