News


A touch of Bristol Old Vic history by Anne Lovejoy

posted 2 Apr 2019, 12:17 by Bristol Old Vic Theatre Club

If you venture to the very end of left pit passage you might have noticed recently a large… television? … shiny table at a funny angle?.. display board? Don’t be afraid, for this is A Touch of History, a way for you to quickly access an ever-expanding treasure trove of images from Bristol Old Vic’s past.

The touch table was installed as part of the recent capital works project and is one of several heritage exhibitions and interventions dotted around the new foyer and around the auditorium. The touch table’s interface was created by Nick Harpley at Satzooma in collaboration with archivists at Theatre Collection and Bristol Old Vic heritage staff. The content was selected by Theatre Collection archivists. We wanted initially to provide a small selection of material giving an idea of the breadth of the company’s repertoire, and some of the notable members of the its cast and crew. 

To launch the touch table we decided to use the grouping Bristol Stories. These are plays written about Bristol, usually specifically for BOV, or existing texts re-imagined in a Bristol setting. 

New Plays in Rep season

posted 5 Mar 2019, 02:52 by Bristol Old Vic Theatre Club

Bristol Old Vic’s Writers Department has partnered with Bristol Old Vic Theatre School to present 5 plays and a musical born from The Open Session. 

New Plays in Rep will include two fully staged productions and four workshop performances. 

The season of work will take place in BOV’s Weston Studio in repertory style and will be performed entirely by Bristol Old Vic Theatre School actors-in-training. 

Also involved are students on other BA and MA courses, including Design, Production Arts, Costume, Directing and Scenic Art. 

For more details on the productions see page 10 of the March Newsletter

we bid farewell to Emma Stenning

posted 2 Dec 2018, 07:17 by Bristol Old Vic Theatre Club

As we bid farewell to Emma Stenning leaving for her new post in Toronto, an interim Executive Director steps up to support BOV’s senior management team settle into the new building and progress exciting programming plans for 2019.  

Sally Cordwell was, until recently, Deputy CEO and Director of Marketing and Visitor Experience for the SS Great Britain Trust, so has in-depth experience of the heritage industry which is a relatively new dimension of BOV’s offer. This is key to making sure BOV can attract visitors all day long as a ‘heritage destination’ as well as a highly regarded theatre on the national stage.  

After ten years of redevelopment...

posted 1 Nov 2018, 07:36 by Bristol Old Vic Theatre Club

the extraordinary new frontage of Bristol Old Vic is now open, inviting any and everyone to enter into a world of live performance of stories and experiences as broad as the human spirit itself. We hope the new front of house, indeed, the whole theatre will be for many, many generations to come, a place of excitement, reflection and imagination as audience members make the transition from everyday life to a place of magic and dreams. 

We wish everyone who works in or visits the theatre days and nights of wonder in our new home theatre, and offer thanks to all who have in any way contributed to this moment. 

The excitement is palpable ...

posted 12 Sep 2018, 08:18 by Bristol Old Vic Theatre Club

as Bristol Old Vic prepares to open its new front doors.  It will expose, for the first time in its history, the original wall of the theatre, and welcome people in from King Street to enjoy the stunning, award-winning-architect-designed front of house.  The new building will be a heritage destination in itself, as well as a fitting foyer for Bristol Old Vic      (Photo: Haworth Tompkins).

Just days before the re-opening, Emma Stenning, BOV’s Chief Executive, will conduct a tour for our stewards and invite their comments on the theatre’s new catering offer.  Our stewards will then be ready to help run our events, welcoming members to the new way into the theatre.  

12 May: In Conversation - the Directors’ Cuts Season

posted 1 May 2018, 06:28 by Bristol Old Vic Theatre Club

Something a little unusual this time when we move to the Wardrobe Theatre to host two directors and two designers representing the four plays which comprise this year’s Directors’ Cuts season at the Wardrobe throughout May.  Two of the cast of Four Play will also be joining us. 

Exploring all four plays together gives us an opportunity to compare and contrast the choices which were made. All four plays explore relationships in one way or another and as we have come to expect from this season of new or rarely seen short plays, all are challenging and provocative demanding the audience thinks afresh of the timeless themes of love, friendship and sex. 

Why not stay on for a delicious lunch before catching the afternoon matinee of Four Play?  If you do, be warned that this play explores sex and commitment between men - but it is a comedy! 

2018:Year of Change - part 2

posted 10 Jan 2018, 03:16 by Bristol Old Vic Theatre Club

This is part 2 of 3 of our report on the launch of Bristol Old Vic’s 2018 programme. We continue to focus on BOV’s own productions in this historic year during which the theatre is literally opened up to the city for the first time since it was built almost 252 years ago.

In October Twelfth Night will be co-produced with the Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh and directed by The Lyceum’s Associate Director Wils Wilson. The year will end and lead us into 2019 with a new version of A Christmas Carol, for which the creative team is due to be announced shortly.

2018 as a Year of Change is inspired by the anniversaries of some significant and powerful advocates for change; the 50th anniversaries of the assassination of Martin Luther King and the Black Power salute, the 70th anniversary of the voyage of the Windrush, the centenary of women’s suffrage and the bicentenary of the birth of the abolitionist Frederick Douglass. 

Bristol Old Vic is participating in a city-wide process, re-examining our relationship with our past and, alongside many others in the city, resolving to look afresh at Bristol’s involvement in the transatlantic slave trade, which made it so wealthy and contributed so strongly to many of its most beautiful buildings, including our theatre.

BOV’s ambition as a theatre is to be a place where the city can hold itself, its history and its future to account, and where those histories can be re-understood, so it is pleased that the Year of Change programme can also accommodate this powerful and important conversation.

As part of that conversation, Bristol Old Vic has commissioned a major new play. See the February edition for a report on that and related activities.

2018: Year of Change

posted 10 Dec 2017, 09:10 by Bristol Old Vic Theatre Club

BOV has just launched an extremely exciting and ambitious programme, not just for the next few months, but for a full range of Bristol Old Vic productions for 2018, under the striking banner 2018: Year of Change

The changes include the return of Season Tickets, something many members long hoped for. Five committee members attended the launch, greatly assisting us to plan the Theatre Club’s programme of related In Conversations, InHouse Days and Theatre Club Nights. 

See some highlights of the launch on page 9 of the Newsletter

The Little Match Girl

posted 25 Oct 2017, 09:59 by Bristol Old Vic Theatre Club

Emma Rice's production comes to Bristol this Christmas following its critically acclaimed premiere at Shakespeare's Globe.

Struggling to keep warm the little matchgirl begins to strike her dwindling stock of matches. Each strike conjures a new story, and while the flame burns she escapes into a world of magic and mystery.  Inspired by the beautiful Hans Christian Andersen tales, we follow her through a series of spell-binding stories.

For adults and brave children alike this will be a truly remarkable theatre experience, full of music, laughter, puppetry and magic which asks us to consider the true meaning of Christmas spirit.

The Little Matchgirl and Other Happier Tales is at Bristol Old Vic 30 November - 14 January.

For tickets or further information on the above shows, please visit www.bristololdvic.org.uk or telephone 0117 987 7877.

BOV Theatre Club Nights

posted 9 Sep 2017, 12:52 by Bristol Old Vic Theatre Club

Bring a friend or come alone. See a show, meet other members, and afterwards, maybe chat to actors and other artists involved in the production.  

Our August Theatre Club Night was for The Flying Lovers of Vitebsk.  The enchanting Audrey Brisson (recently seen at BOV in The Grinning Man and La Strada, as well as her previous visit in Flying Lovers), willingly caught a later train to London so she could spend more time with Theatre Club members. The cast, musicians and crew were delighted with our welcome and confirmed that these occasions bring joy all round. 

Book your own ticket for any performance below, then enjoy our reserved area of the Backstage Bar. You’re sure to meet other members and guests and spend the evening in good company.  

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