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Cherwell Theatre Company

Live theatre for unique local space.

Cherwell Theatre Company’s young theatre makers will perform new plays in a unique Banbury location this month, underneath the Town Hall.

Following their 2017 production of ‘Treasure Island’ in the main hall, and thanks to generous support from Banbury Town Council, ‘CTC’ participants are currently devising ‘Bunker Plays’ inspired by this distinctive space with a unique local history.

Artistic Director, Tristan Pate said;

”In recent years we’ve experimented with alternative performance spaces in the heart of our community.

”Having created theatre for Little Amsterdam Restaurant, Rock the Atic Comedy Club, Katharine House Hospice and Broughton Castle, we’re now excited to give audiences the opportunity to see the decommissioned Cold War Bunker underneath Banbury Town Hall.”

Banbury Town Hall

Emily Butler, who will direct the plays, used this atmospheric location as a catalyst for the young people, who have devised two original works, created in collaboration with Banbury Museum’s reminiscence groups.

Ms Butler said;

”One of the plays is partly inspired by Aldous Huxley’s ‘Brave New World’, a story that battles with freedom and happiness as the use of technology to control a society.

”The other explores our obsession with ageing, and wanting to prevent it. In this piece society has created a solution to the problem of ageing, but everything is not what is seems.”

Both plays are presented as promenade productions, where the audience journey around the bunker, led by the actors.

Ms Butler added;

”It has been such a pleasure to watch and even learn from the young people, ‘they have been very curious about the history and this unusual space and this has led to some innovative and exciting new ideas.

”We hope Banbury residents will take the opportunity to come and see them in action.”

The performances take place on the 30 and 31 March, with showings at 2.00pm, 4.00pm and 6.00pm each day.

Tickets can be booked by emailing the company directly at .

Mr Pate said;

”Booking is essential as the audience will be taken around in small groups.

”it is important to us that we keep our work accessible, so there will be no charge for this event, but a suggested donation of £5 will be accepted on the day, to those that can afford to support our work.”

As a registered charity, Cherwell Theatre Company will invest all monies raised back into theatre projects for young people in the area.

Mr Pate added;

”We do hope to see lots of local supporters at the show, and would especially like to meet Banbury residents who have any knowledge or stories to share on the origins of this truly original performance space.”

Regrettably, due to the nature of this site specific venue, there is no disabled access to the bunker.

More information can be found at Cherwell Theatre Company’s website: www.cherwelltheatrecompany.co.uk

Pictured: l-r Elly Henshaw, Max Sharman, Claire Foster, Grace Stutchbury, Nicola Anderson, Tilly Vere.

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