Along with fantastic children's performances, a range of Shakespeare comedies and an eclectic music weekend, we also have three incredible theatre companies returning to our stage with their adaptions of well-known classics.
"First up on our outdoor stage from the 28th to the 30th of July, we have a local theatre company, Etcetera!"
The excellent cast will be performing Oscar Wilde's 'The Importance of Being Earnest' with a unique steampunk twist! Etcetera says, "Etc's vision of a steampunk setting for such an iconic 19th-century comedy may at first glance seem puzzling, but director Steve Brigden is confident the quirky twist will add an extra frisson to the entertainment." You can read more about it and purchase tickets by clicking here.
Next, we have the brilliant DOT Productions who will be performing the much-loved play 'Pygmalion', by George Bernard Shaw on 21st August. Phonetician Henry Higgins takes on a bet to transform the speech and manners of a cockney flower seller, Eliza Doolittle, to pass her off as a Lady in just six months. Little does he know that it's not only Eliza's life that will be changed by their encounters.
"You may know it as the inspiration for the musical and film My Fair Lady!"
As DOT Productions says, "Pygmalion explores the English class system with all of its petty attitudes and posturing. Full of wit and wisdom Shaw exposes the hollowness at the heart of that society, but it is not just about accents or class. It is about the battle of the sexes, of control!" Purchase tickets to Pygmalion here.
"Lastly, British Touring Shakespeare will take to our stage with their chilling new adaptation of Bram Stoker's gothic horror classic, Dracula!"
This adaptation captures the spirit of Bram Stoker's classic chiller and is definitely one to sink your teeth into. To add to the eeriness and suspense, Dracula will be performed in the evening on both the 27th and 28th of August. Purchase tickets to Dracula.
Some fantastic productions there to whet your outdoor theatre appetite. We have a jampacked schedule this summer with performances for everyone. Please do check out our What's On page for our full line up.
We hope to see you all next month.
Until next time ...
Would you like to know more?
If anything I've written in this blog post resonates with you and you'd like to discover more about the Arches Theatre and our classic plays (or the entire season), it may be a great idea to give me a call on 01234 241357 and let's see how I can help.
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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