For the past few weeks, FellSwoop Theatre has been on a small national tour, taking our latest production, Ablutions, to Exeter, Canterbury, Poole, Lichfield and Chippenham.
The tour began in spectacular fashion at the stunning Bike Shed Theatre in Exeter as part of Ignite Theatre Festival. In between rehearsing, long ping-pong rallies, strolls by the quayside, free book shop browsing and catching loads of the festival’s excellent programme, we performed Ablutions to three packed-out crowds and even received a critics’ choice award from Wildfire, the festival’s daily critical review paper. A special mention must be made for one of our cast, Harry Humberstone, who somehow had the energy to also perform in Juncture Theatre’s excellent A Little Nonsense while at the festival. Ablutions went down really well in Exeter and we got loads of wonderful feedback from audiences including several people telling us that the show was their festival highlight.
The Ablutions road trip continued with a couple of one-off performances; first at The Marlowe Theatre in Canterbury (where audiences got the added bonus of a Luxury Liner (the Ablutions americana band) gig during a local open mic night), and then at The Lighthouse Arts Centre in Poole where we enjoyed an interesting post-show chat with the audience. Next on the map we played at the Lichfield Garrick for a couple of nights in between gorgeous sunny days of coffee-shop hopping, charity shop bargain hunting and wonderful lazy afternoons under the city’s pink cathedral. Lichfield Festival was in full swing during our stay and they looked after us really well.
Finally, last week we visited Chippenham’s Neeld Hall as one of the headline shows at the inaugural Chippenham Drama Festival. The show went really well thanks to the festival’s superb team and we especially enjoyed running a workshop on theatre devising with a wonderful group of young theatre-makers from the town.
Thanks to the wonderful audience reacts we’ve been getting for Ablutions everywhere we’ve visited, June and July has really whet our appetite for touring this show and it has made us even more determined to book a bigger and better tour for spring 2014 – watch this space for details. Until then, go easy on the whiskey and “beware the plygs of Colorado City, Arizona. They have no cups of coffee for the likes of you.”