Outdoor performances return to the Marine

Matt Carter will return to the Marine Theatre for an outside performance alongside Leigh Coleman

HAVING had its doors closed since the end of March due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Marine Theatre in Lyme Regis is looking forward to welcoming audiences again to a series of outside events this summer.

With theatre, music and a children’s disco, the programme boasts something for everyone, with performances held on Theatre Square with stunning views across Lyme Bay.

The events will start with Folksy Theatre’s production of Shakespeare’s hilarious comedy ‘The Taming of the Shrew’ on Saturday, August 15.

Folksy Theatre will perform ‘The Taming of the Shrew’

Baptista Minola is attempting to marry off his two daughters; however, he will not marry off his youngest, the fair Bianca, until her elder sister, the ill-tempered Katherine, has found a husband.

When the brave and lusty young nobleman, Petruccio comes to town, Bianca’s suiters are elated to learn that he intends to take on the challenge of taming and marrying Kate. But will Petruccio succeed in taming the wild and witty shrew?

Filled with Folksy’s wonderful live music, bold characters and downright silliness, this hilarious production is not to be missed! The bar will open at 6pm for a 7pm start.

Tickets cost £15 for adults, £12 for children or a family ticket permitting two adults and two children costs £48.

Jazz Jurassica will be hosting the ever-popular Matt Carter and his dynamic trio of talented young musicians to electrify some jazz classics on Friday, September 4.

With Matt’s percussive piano playing and catchy arrangements overlaid with Leigh Coleman’s velvety vocals they add new zest to familiar favourites.

Matt is developing a national reputation for his dynamic piano playing and creative arrangements. He is a keyboard player of choice for the likes of Alan Barnes, Mike Outram, Brandon Allen and Greg Abate, and has played at some of the most iconic venues in the country, including Ronnie Scott’s, the 606 Jazz Club, the 100 Club and The Vortex.

Leigh Coleman will perform alongside Matt Carter

Leigh Coleman is not known as ‘Soulman Coleman’ for nothing! He’s worked with Joss Stone, Beverley Knight and the legendary Betty Wright in the US and is a fine soul singer.

Last year, together with Matt, he delivered one of the Jazz Jurassica festival’s most memorable shows with a vibrant and passionate tribute to Stevie Wonder.

They’re joined on bass and drums by Seth Tackaberry and Luca Caruso.

Seth is the only electric bass player ever to make the finals of BBC Young Jazz Musician of the Year in 2018. He has also worked with Cory Wong (Vulfpeck), Caleb Hawley, and Hamish Stuart.

Rising star Luca has performed with internationally world-renowned jazz musicians including Wayne Escoffery, Joe Sanders and Etienne Charles.

Advance tickets for this not-to-be-missed musical events cost £14, with the bar opening at 6pm for a 7pm start.

Gnora the Gnome’s Daytime Disco will keep the kids entertained on Thursday, September 10.

Gnora the Gnome will keep the kids entertained with her afternoon disco

Gnora the gnome, and her brothers Gnorman and Gneville, have all been stuck underground for months. Now that they can get back outdoors they’re going to have a disco to celebrate – and you’re invited!

With smash disco hits and lots of dancing bits, Gnora the Gnome’s Daytime Disco is fun for all the family, so come and join us outside the Marine Theatre for a boogie, hosted by the HandleBards theatre group.

The disco starts at 4.30pm with the bar opening from 4pm. Tickets cost £12 per child with each child allowed one free adult to accompany them. Additional adults should purchase a separate ticket.

Later that evening, the HandleBards will be hosting their production of Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo & Juliet’ – but this comical version is no normal rendition of the romantic tragedy.

With music, mayhem and more costume changes than you can shake a spear at, expect the HandleBards’ usual irreverent, charming and hilarious style to come bursting onto Theatre Square.

handlebards romeo juliet
The HandleBards will perform a comic version of ‘Romeo & Juliet’

Forget the tears and tragedy, pack a picnic and get ready for some socially-distanced, live and wired Shakespeare as you’ve never seen it before.

The bar will open at 6pm for this 7pm show. Tickets cost £17 for adults, £9 for under 18s and £5 for recipients of JSA, ESA or PIP. One free child under 10 is permitted with each adult ticket purchased.

Full details and tickets for all the above events are available at www.marinetheatre.com or call 0333 666 3366 to book. All tickets are for unreserved seating – and don’t forget to wrap up and warm and bring along a blanket!

The Marine Theatre has not yet announced when it will be reopening for indoor events.

Although live indoor theatre was given the go ahead from August 1, the theatre has said that operating under social distancing guidelines will cut its audiences by two thirds and will make many performances financially unviable.

As a result, the Marine is reviewing costs and raising money, while looking forward to the lifting of restrictions that will make live performances more viable in the historic building.

Members of the public have been donating to a reopening fund, details of which are on the website www.marinetheatre.com/reopen-the-marine-theatre-fund/. So far, just over £5,000 has been raised towards the theatre’s target of £21,000.

Theatre director Gabby Rabbitts said: “We are working hard to raise funds and reduce costs, so we are confident that we will open again in the coming months.

“Like everyone, we are in an evolving situation where public safety is a priority and restrictions are out of our control. That makes it hard to predict a reopening date. “I’d like to personally thank all those that have donated to our reopening fund, which is really helping us.

“Better times will come when we can welcome our volunteers and audiences back to enjoy music, comedy, and other performances, along with all the wonderful socialising that comes with those things.”

Woodmead Halls

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