Bristol Shakespeare Festival has gone online!

10 July 2020

It’s been a hard year for the arts, and the ongoing health crisis means that live performances are banned. 

…But thanks to a truly breathtaking response by so many of the amazing companies we’ve worked with, and by our loyal and wonderful audience, we’ve got a chock-full schedule this July.

We’ve got all kinds lined up – here are just some of the treats we’ve got in store for you!

  • Recorded performances from high-profile companies like the Lord Chamberlain’s Men
  • Legendary performers such as the Scullions and Derekk Ross performing monologues and excerpts from your favourite plays
  • An exciting, groundbreaking piece of interactive theatre, born of a collaboration between BSF superstars The Raymondos and Fresh Life… watch this space!
  • Fascinating Bardic talks and discussions with Sun and Moon Theatre in their delightful Tea And Cakespeare event
  • Chances for YOU to get involved! For our 30-Day Bardfest, we’ve asked the public to film themselves speaking their favourites line of Titania’s ‘These are the forgeries of jealousy’ speech from Act 2 Scene 1 of A Midsummer Night’s Dream,  in preparation for a big community compilation of the speech at the end of the month. The deadline is the 12th July, but if you miss your chance don’t despair - we’re hoping to make this an annual tradition!
  • We’d also love to see your home-filmed monologues or scenes, whether it’s a fully-rehearsed on-location scene, your audition monologue in front of a webcam, or your grandparents reading from the Complete Works by the fire!

Many of these will be released first on social media, but we’ll also be putting as much as we can up on the website for you to enjoy at your leisure. To participate in our community projects, please contact

We’re also planning on making the festival much more accessible going into the future, which will involve including much more digital and hybrid content in the festival from 2021 onwards. If you’re a company or a fan with suggestions of what you’d like to see or produce, please drop us a line at

We’re so proud and grateful of our contributors and fans for making BSF 2020 something a little bit special, despite all the difficulties. However, there’s no denying it’s an incredibly difficult and uncertain time for the arts industry, and for all the creatives and venue staff that keep the world of theatre – Shakespeare’s legacy! – alive.

Although the government has just announced a stimulus for the arts, it seems likely that much of this will go toward larger, high-profile venues and companies. The smaller operations that make up the life-blood not only of Bristol Shakespeare Festival, but the heart of the British theatre scene, are still under huge threat as a result of the COVID crisis.

If you love small-scale theatre and want it to survive into the future, we encourage you to follow the theatre company links and consider making a donation for the fantastic content they’ve contributed. Likewise, if there’s a venue you loved seeing one of our previous shows in, please check out their websites and see if they’re in need of support. Help us take arms against a sea of struggles!

Thank you so much for all your ongoing enthusiasm and engagement with BSF.

“Come now! What masques, what dances we shall have!”