Our 250th Birthday Weekend

On May Bank Holiday weekend we celebrated our 250th birthday. Thank you to everyone who came and celebrated with us – what a joy it is to exist in such a vibrant, creative city. Here’s to the next 250 years! Here are some of our highlights for our birthday weekend.

Saturday 28 May – To start off our birthday weekend we hosted a selection of free In Conversation talks from Kneehigh Artistic Director Mike Shepherd and Bristol-based actors, monologues from David Hargreaves as well as guided tours, workshops and a stage fight demonstration.

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Kneehigh’s Mike Shepherd In Conversation with Fran Havard of the Bristol Old Vic Theatre Club.

“I think the reason why Kneehigh have survived for over 30 years is because we have embraced change.” – Mike Shepherd

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David Hargreaves performing monologues from each century our Theatre has been alive.

To follow a fantastic day of free events we gave a gift to the city of Bristol in the form of a free performance of our Kneehigh and Bristol Old Vic co-production The Flying Lovers of Vitebsk.

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Marc and Bella Chagall falling head over heals in love on our stage in The Flying Lovers of Vitebsk

To which some very famous patrons graced our red carpet!

Tim Minchin

Sunday 29 May – To follow Saturday’s day of discovering our theatre, on Sunday we partied in style with a star-studded Anniversary Gala full of glitz, glamour and some surprise guests…

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Caroline Quentin, Pippa Haywood, Greta Scacchi and Gala actors take a bow after their performance.

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Joey the horse even rode into town to help us celebrate!

And after a glamorous dinner, our Gala guests and the whole of King Street were treated to a visual history of Bristol Old Vic projected onto the front of our building by the brilliant Limbic Cinema. Showing how audiences in 1766 entered our Theatre via a secret entrance through Mr Foote’s house, to celebrated productions from Peter O’Toole, to a glimpse of what our Theatre entrance will look like after our redevelopment in 2018 – this spectacular film was full of visual gems!

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King Street packed to glimpse a projected history of our Theatre.

Monday 31 May – On the day of our 250th birthday itself we threw a street party! The sun shone, the music flowed and King Street was packed full of Bristolians eager to take part in our free workshops and enjoy roving street performance and showcases in our Theatre. We loved soaking up the atmosphere!

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Our friends Circomedia serving afternoon tea…the circus way.

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Our family flash mob got King Street moving to summer tunes!

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Performers from Bristol Open Stage returned to showcase their talent in our Theatre.

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Our packed Theatre couldn’t resist the dance moves watching RSVP Bhangra.

And to round off our weekend celebrations we treated King Street once again to the performance of Limbic Cinema’s incredible film. We couldn’t have asked for a better finale!

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Limbic Cinema’s climax to our street party.

Thank you once again to everyone who celebrated with us!

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