Whether you’re keen to try your hand at acting for the first time, or you’re already experienced on stage, The Bear Pit Theatre productions are open to you.
If you’re interested in finding out more join our mailing list or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Some of our plays have smaller and/or non-speaking roles that offer those who want a taste of the stage, or to gain experience.
If you already have experience on stage, then The Bear Pit Theatre Company offers a range of productions that will offer new and different opportunities.
All of our auditions are open to anyone and are announced on our website, to our mailing list, and on social media. We try and make auditions enjoyable and there is usually nothing to prepare in advance. Auditions for plays tend to be a reading through of the play or key scenes.
The plays selected for 2020 are as follows. Auditions will take place on Wednesday 18 September 2019 at The Bear Pit Theatre from 7:30pm. Further audition dates will be announced later this year.
The Norman Conquests by Alan Ayckbourn
Directed by Nicky Cox
21 February – 14 March 2020
Press Day: Saturday 22 February, 10:30am, 3pm & 7:30pm
The Bear Pit Theatre Company brings Alan Ayckbourn’s comic masterpiece, The Norman Conquests, to Stratford-upon-Avon with an ensemble cast of six actors, directed by Nicky Cox in The Bear Pit’s newly reconfigured 108 theatre-in-the-round.
The three interconnecting plays, Table Manners, Living Together and Round and Round the Garden, follow Norman, his in-laws and the local vet over a summer weekend in an English country house.
Norman is intent on making all the women in his life happy and takes every opportunity to seduce his sister-in-law Annie, charm his brother-in-law’s wife Sarah and woo his wife Ruth – embroiling everyone in the action along the way with both tragic and comic consequences.
On these award-winning plays, Ayckbourn focuses his inimitable, sharp, acerbic wit to reveal the secrets, lies and deception, which bubble beneath the surface of family relationships.
Just choose a perspective, the dining room (Table Manners), the living room (Living Together) or the garden (Round and Round the Garden) Or of course you can piece the puzzle together and get the whole picture by seeing all three in any order you like
Alan Ayckbourn is one of Britain’s most popular and prolific playwrights, with over 80 full-length plays to his name, which have been translated into more than 35 languages. These multi-award-winning plays include Absurd Person Singular, recently revived in the West End plus Just Between Ourselves, A Chorus of Disapproval, Woman in Mind and House & Garden to name but a few.
Bear Pit Associate Artist, Nicky Cox returns to The Bear Pit after assisting on a sell-out success of Tartuffe at the RSCs’ Swan Theatre. Nicky’s other recent productions at The Bear Pit include, The 39 Steps, One Man Two Guvnors & Brief Encounter. Nicky was also part of the directing team for the RSC’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream: A Play for the Nation.
Humble Boy by Charlotte Jones
Directed by Tony Homer
24 April – 2 May 2020
Press Day: Saturday 25 April, 2:30pm & 7:30pm
Winner! 2000-2001 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize, Winner! The Critics’ Circle Best New Play Award, Winner! The People’s Choice Best New Play Award
Charlotte Jones’ play, Humble Boy, is a modern play inspired by Shakespeare’s Hamlet and will be directed by Tony Homer.
The play begins when news of the sudden death of Felix’s father is announced. Felix, a Cambridge astrophysicist who is in search of a unified field theory, returns to his family home and his difficult and demanding mother, where he soon realizes that his search for unity must include his own chaotic home life. Simon Russell Beale and Diana Rigg first performed this play at the National Theatre in 2001, Charlotte Jones’ witty, original, intelligent and touching comedy.
Bear Pit Associate Artist, Tony Homer, recently directed Visitors by Barney Norris and as a performer for Bear Pit has been involved with productions such as God of Carnage, Toad of Toad Hall & A Christmas Carol.
Hobson’s Choice by Harold Brighouse
Directed by David Draper
19 – 27 June 2020
Press Day: Saturday 20 June, 2:30pm & 7:30pm
First performed in 1916 and made famous by David Lean’s 1954 film starring Charles Laughton, Harold Brighouse’s Salford comedy, Hobson’s Choice will be performed in June.
Directed by Bear Pit Associate Artist, David Draper with Associate Artist, Paul Tomlinson taking on the cantankerous, drunkard shop keeper, Henry Horatio Hobson.
David Draper returns to the Bear Pit following his inaugural outing directing On Golden Pond. He has performed in various Bear Pit Theatre Company production, including Habeas Corpus and Private Lives. David is well known at the Talisman Theatre in Kenilworth, both as a performer & director.
One Week of One Act Plays
Curated by Steve Farr & Nicky Cox
14 – 19 September 2020
Press Night: Monday 14 September, 7:30pm
One Week of One Act Plays, curated by Steve Farr & Nicky Cox
A series of one act plays in one week. An opportunity for actors and directors to play and learn at Bear Pit. We will be producing play scripts written by established playwrights such as Pinter, Beckett & Mamet. Curated by Steve Farr & Nicky Cox.
Steve Farr is a Bear Pit Associate Artist and local playwright. His most recent work as a director with The Bear Pit Theatre company includes: The Pillowman & Moira Buffini’s, Dinner.
The Cherry Orchard by Anton Chekhov, adapted by Michael Frayn
Directed by Colin Lewis Edwards
6 – 14 November 2020
Press Day: Saturday 7 November 2:30pm & 7:30pm
Written in 1903, The Cherry Orchard is widely regarded as a classic of 20th-century theatre, with the play being translated and adapted into many languages and produced around the world.
The play focuses on an aristocratic Russian landowner Madam Lyubov Ranevskaya, who returns to her family estate (which includes a large and well-known cherry orchard) just before it is auctioned to pay the mortgage. Unresponsive to offers to save the estate, she allows its sale to the son of a former servant; the family leaves to the sound of the cherry orchard being cut down. Directed by Colin Lewis Edwards this play offers nearly 20 actors to be part of a magical ensemble full of eccentrics, tragedians, comics and clowns.
Bear Pit Associate Artist, Colin Lewis Edwards, has enjoyed an extensive career first as a professional actor and then as a teacher of drama both here and in the USA. Colin has advised on curriculum development in the UK, taught courses in Shakespeare for the Department of Education as well as being a Theatre Studies examiner.
Colin became Director of ITV’s Children’s Television Workshop in Birmingham in 1989, winning a special BAFTA for its contribution to Children’s television. Colin’s previous directing credits at The Bear Pit Theatre include, Noel Coward’s Hay Fever & Blithe Spirit & Yasmina Reza’s, God of Carnage.
The Railway Children by E. Nesbit, adapted for stage by Mike Kenny
Directed by Emily Myerscough
11 – 19 December 2020
Press Day: Saturday 12 December, 2:30pm & 7:30pm
Mike Kenny’s imaginative stage adaptation of E Nesbitt’s much-loved children’s classic ‘The Railway Children’ directed by Emily Myerscough.
Famously filmed, this is the story of a prosperous Edwardian family forced into poverty in the rural north of England and captures the anxieties and exhilarations of childhood with great tenderness and insight.
Mike Kenny’s version of The Railway Children was first staged at the National Railway Museum in York in 2008, before receiving a major production at London’s Waterloo Station in 2010 a featured a real steam engine.
This version of The Railway Children, which offers three plum roles for young performers and an ensemble of actors to play a multitude of roles.
Emily Myerscough is a Performing Arts & LAMDA Specialist, Outdoor Educator and Coordinator of the Arts. Emily has been teaching drama and performance technique to children of all ages for over 10 years. As an experienced classroom drama and LAMDA teacher, she has helped young people to build their communication and performance skills and boost their self-esteem and confidence.
Emily now runs a theatre workshop business called Green Room which specialises in providing performance workshops and event entertainment. They are now offering acting and performance workshops during the school holidays and term time as part of the Flourish at the Farm Team.