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David Pibworth | The Blog

Actor, Writer, Producer, Director

A Recap On The Arches Theatre Experience

Our 2019 season is opening soon ...

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With The Arches Theatre 2019 season opening in just over six weeks' time, I thought I'd just give you a recap on who we are, what we have planned and what to expect ...

With the Arches Theatre 2019 season opening soon, I thought I'd give you a recap on what to expect!

With the Arches Theatre 2019 season opening soon, I thought I'd give you a recap on what to expect!

copyright: the arches theatre

We are The Arches Theatre, Buckinghamshire's newest and quirkiest outdoor theatre venue. Based in Clifton Reynes, near Olney, our unique open-air venue is situated under a disused railway bridge, complete with four arches, which are used to stage all our summer productions.

We wanted to bring this wonderful, different, and perhaps novel experience to the rolling Buckinghamshire countryside, where our audience won't have to pay through the nose for it!

We are hugely proud and very excited to bring you a full programme of great live theatre performed by professional and semi-professional artists, this year!

August 2018 saw our premiere and sell-out performance of 'As you like it' staged by the professional theatre company, 'The Wet Mariners'. It received very positive feedback from our audience, and we're delighted to say that 'The Wet Mariners' are returning this summer with their fantastic performance of 'Romeo and Juliet.' Tickets are already selling very fast for the productions on 10th August, with the evening show already sold out and the 3pm matinee not far behind.

From 15 - 17th August at 8pm, local comedy theatre troupe 'Milton Keynes Theatre of Comedy (MKTOC) at The Arches will be joining us to perform their hilarious adaptation of 'The Pink Panther - A Shot in the Dark. With a mix of professional and semi-professional actors, plus local individuals starring in their first acting role - this is set to be one of the funniest performances you will see this year.

We also have Milton Keynes based theatre company 'Etcetera' with its production of 'The Taming of the Shrew', from 22 - 24th August at 7.30pm. The show will be directed by Steve Bridgden and will be based in the 1930s. Expect a modern, lively comedy telling the story about love!

"All tickets are £15 per person and can be purchased through The Arches Theatre website!"

To add to what will be an unforgettable experience (for all the right reasons!) we invite you to bring your own picnic and enjoy it in the parkland that surrounds the venue while listening to some great live music. It's situated right next to the River Great Ouse, so you can imagine it is very peaceful and picturesque down here.

We will have a bar selling only draught beer, from the Concrete Cow brewery) and soft drinks. This is a cash-only bar, and please do feel free to bring along your own alcohol.

And don't forget to bring a chair with you! This is paramount, otherwise, you won't have anywhere to sit to enjoy the show! If you get to the venue early, you can bag yourself a great spot as soon as you arrive, by positioning your chairs around the stage before enjoying your picnic. Although don't worry if you aren't heading down early, you should get a great view from wherever you are seated.

Come rain or shine, the show will go on. For suggestions on what we think you should bring with you, please take a look at our last blog post called 'Come Prepared'.

If you want to know more about the shows, sponsorship opportunities or the theatre itself, then do give me a call on 01234 241357 or visit the Arches Theatre website and don't forget to come and meet us at our stand at the Olney River Fest on Sunday 7th July!

Until next time ...


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More about David Pibworth ...

David is the owner and Artistic Director of The Arches Theatre in Clifton Reynes near Milton Keynes. Productions are underneath some flood arches on the disused Midland railway line (Bedford to Northampton). It is equidistant from Bedford, Northampton and Milton Keynes. You bring your food, drink and chairs and enjoy the varied shows that are produced. This year - 2022 - there are 12 productions on throughout the season, from Shakespeare to Ripping Yarns plus a music weekend.

David has been involved in 'Light Ent' for many years, working with Ray Galton and Alan Simpson adapting the scripts of 'Steptoe and Son' and those of Tony Hancock to the stage. He has produced shows for Norman Wisdom (which makes him feel old), Al Murray, and Joe Pasquale amongst others, and also worked in the music business promoting and producing shows with Chas and Dave, Neil Inness, Kenny Ball, Acker Bilk and others of that ilk.

He is also the director of a film school for young people in his home town of Olney as well as supporting many local events.

He recently negotiated permission from Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais to stage a short run of 'Porridge' on stage which proved a success.

This year the annual charity performance at The Arches Theatre will be the last of 'Ripping Yarns' by Michael Palin and Terry Jones, with the profits being donated to The National Brain Appeal' for research into dementia as David's father and uncle died of it, as did Michael Palin's friend and writing partner Terry Jones. Last year they raised an astonishing £10,000 and are hoping to get somewhere close again with the support of audiences and sponsors.

David also has a stage hire company and his wife Julie runs a livery yard, so they are surrounded by horses, dogs, light entertainment and and a 17 year old daughter.

He plays in a comedy jazz band and collects strange props such as the Spitting Image puppets of Denis Thatcher and Alan Bennett, the child catchers bike from the stage show of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, and various other 'things' all of which he sells to raise money for the Arches Theatre, although he always finds it hard to part from these props. However as the theatre receives no funding at all, he is always devising ways to keep it going! Sponsors are always welcome!


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