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David Pibworth | The Blog

Actor, Writer, Producer, Director

The Arches Theatre: All The World’s A Trailer Stage!

On the inside looking out ...

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Posted by David Pibworth on 21/07/2020 @ 8:00AM

Due to the Coronavirus outbreak and the subsequent Government regulations, we’re having to think outside the box this year as we must, of course, adhere to the social distancing and outdoor theatre regulations ...

The Arches Theatre is about face this summer to stay within social distancing guidelines!

The Arches Theatre is about face this summer to stay within social distancing guidelines!

copyright: the arches theatre / david pibworth productions

So, for all our August performances, we will be using our magnificent trailer stage instead of the arches themselves. The team and I were at The Arches again over the weekend to set up the trailer stage, as well as carry out a sound check with our sound engineers.

"We were lucky to have the MKTOC cast with us to try out mics. As you know MKTOC don't do things by halves, so they arrived in full 'Allo 'Allo costume. They looked and sounded great!"

So, it's going to be a little different this year. However, we are still going to provide you with an excellent live theatre experience. The audience will sit in front of The Arches Theatre, facing out onto the parkland where the trailer stage will be situated. All audience members will sit in their 'bubbles', two metres apart from other bubbles.

As you can see from the photos, the stage is raised and there will be a larger gap in between it and the front row, in order to protect both our audience and the actors. There will be no problem seeing the performances, but we will have to sadly miss out some of the immersive elements. However staged, the performances are going to be fantastic. I know just how hard our visiting theatre troupes are working to bring you some amazing live shows.

With only a few more pieces to pull together, we are almost ready for going live on 15th August with the sold-out performance of 'A Comedy Of Errors' by The Wet Mariners. Tickets are selling fast to our other productions: 'Allo 'Allo! performed by MKTOC, Aladdin – the family summer panto and an intimate gig with Richard Digance.

Get your tickets while you still can and join us for some great live theatre in our quirky outdoor venue. We can't wait to welcome you this August.

Until next time ...



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If anything I've written in this blog post resonates with you and you'd like to discover more, it may be a great idea to give me a call on 01234 241357 and let's see how I can help you.

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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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