BEDFRINGE 2019

Bedfringe was born very simply out of a visit to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe back in 2004. Subsequently, we teamed up with Sandra Dudley (of Art’icle magazine) with the idea of bringing a little bit of Edinburgh back to Bedford.

This year we celebrate the events 13th year with some fantastic acts; fimiliar faces at bedfringe as well as some brand new talent.

Visit Bedfringe.com for the full lineup

RADIO ACTIVE with ANGUS DEAYTON, PHILIP POPE, MICHAEL FENTON STEVENS & HELEN ATKINSON WOOD

★★★★ THE TELEGRAPH★★★★★ BRITISH THEATRE GUIDE★★★★★ THE EDINBURGH GUIDE

Angus Deayton, Helen Atkinson Wood, Michael Fenton Stevens and Philip Pope reunite to take classic scripts from the award-winning BBC Radio 4 show on the road following a sell-out and critically acclaimed run at Edinburgh Festival Fringe.  Among other classic characters expect to catch up with long suffering radio host Mike Channel, original foodie Anna Daptor, and the accident-prone Martin Brown, as well as the cast’s original musical creations, responsible for such parody bands as The Hee Bee Gee Bees and Status Quid.

Based on the sketch show created during their years in the Oxford Revue, ‘Britain’s first ever national local radio station’ was written by Angus alongside Geoffrey Perkins, and ran for seven series before transferring to television in the form of BBC2’s KYTV. All surviving members of the original cast reunite for this tour marking 40 years since its stage debut including:

Angus Deayton is best known for hosting the first 23 series of BBC One panel show Have I Got News For You, along with the first 3 series of Hell’s Kitchen and Would I Lie To You. He’s also presented the BAFTA Awards and Comedy Awards, and starred in sitcoms One Foot in the Grave, Pramface and Nighty Night. More recently he’s appeared in Waterloo Road and Bake Off: Creme de la Creme.

Michael Fenton Stevens co-founded The Hee Bee Gee Bees and performed Spitting Image’s number one hit single The Chicken Song. His television credits include roles in My Family, Nighty Night, Outnumbered, Action Team,  Ballot Monkeys and Benidorm.

Helen Atkinson Wood played Mrs Miggins in Blackadder The Third. Twice nominated Best Female Comedy Performer by The British Comedy Awards she also appeared in OTT, The Young Ones and Your Cheatin’ Heat. In addition to her acting work, Helen has been a guest on QI and Have I Got News For You.

Philip Pope starred in Who Dares Wins and Chelmsford 123, as made memorable guest appearances in a number of shows including Blackadder and Only Fools and Horses. More recently Philip has appeared in BBC’s Brian Pern and Channel 4’s Ballot Monkeys. As a composer he wrote hit songs for The Hee Bee Gee Bees and Spitting Image (notably The Chicken Song), as well as for TV shows including Not The Nine O’Clock News, Whose Line is it Anyway?, and The Fast Show.

RSC Live: The Taming of the Shrew

In a reimagined 1590, England is a matriarchy. Baptista Minola is seeking to sell off her son Katherine to the highest bidder.

Cue an explosive battle of the sexes in this electrically charged love story.

Justin Audibert (Snow in Midsummer, The Jew of Malta) turns Shakespeare’s fierce, energetic comedy of gender and materialism on its head to offer a fresh perspective on its portrayal of hierarchy and power.

“Deftly provocative and exuberantly entertaining” ★★★★ THE TIMES

“Beautiful…revelatory…wonderful” ★★★★ WHATSONSTAGE

“Justin Audibert’s RSC production extracts every laugh from the subplot” ★★★★ THE SUNDAY TIMES

Ashley Blaker & Imran Yusuf: Prophet Sharing – CANCELLED

Due to a scheduling conflict beyond their control, we are having to cancel the performance of Prophet Sharing at the Quarry Theatre. Full refunds will be issued. Ashley and Imran send their sincere apologies and hope to visit Bedford in the near future.

Two great religions. Two great comedians. The descendants of Abraham may have gone their separate ways but now stand-up comedian friends Ashley Blaker and Imran Yusuf – both stars of their own BBC shows – are joining forces in the most-unlikely double-act since Kermit and Miss Piggy (who neither Ashley and Imran can eat!).

Originally brought together by a passion for the same football team, the pair are travelling the UK uniting people of every faith and none for an evening of laughter.

“A slickly funny stand-up show.” NEW YORK TIMES (ON ASHLEY BLAKER)

“Imagine John Oliver in a yarmulke” NEW YORK POST (ON ASHLEY BLAKER)

“A special vein of comic material” ★★★★ FINANCIAL TIMES (ON ASHLEY BLAKER)

“Intelligent, thought-provoking and laugh out loud funny” TIME OUT ON IMRAN YUSUF

“An hour of cheek and charm” ★★★★ THE INDEPENDENT (ON IMRAN YUSUF )

“Sharp, passionate and uplifting” DAILY TELEGRAPH ON IMRAN YUSUF

NT Live (Encore Screening): All My Sons

by Arthur Miller
directed by Jeremy Herrin
photography by Manuel Harlan

Broadcast live from The Old Vic in London, Academy Award-winner Sally Field (Steel Magnolias, Brothers & Sisters) and Bill Pullman (The Sinner, Independence Day) star in Arthur Miller’s blistering drama All My Sons.

America, 1947. Despite hard choices and even harder knocks, Joe and Kate Keller are a success story. They have built a home, raised two sons and established a thriving business.

But nothing lasts forever and their contented lives, already shadowed by the loss of their eldest boy to war, are about to shatter. With the return of a figure from the past, long buried truths are forced to the surface and the price of their American dream is laid bare.

Jeremy Herrin (NT Live: This House, People, Places & Things) directs a cast including Jenna Coleman (Victoria), and Colin Morgan (Merlin).

All My Sons is an Old Vic co-production with Headlong

Annette Gregory: Intimate Affair / American Songbook

Annette Gregory makes a welcome return to The Quarry Theatre!

Jazz music in its’ heyday was the pop music of the 1920’s to 1950’s.

Annette will perform an intimate session from popular artist such as Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Billie holiday, Julie London and many others.

Come and tap your feet and enjoy some wonderful jazz.

NT LIVE: Small Island (encore screening)

Andrea Levy’s Orange Prize-winning novel Small Island comes to life in an epic new theatre adaptation. Experience the play in cinemas, filmed live on stage as part of National Theatre Live’s 10th birthday.

Small Island embarks on a journey from Jamaica to Britain, through the Second World War to 1948 – the year the HMT Empire Windrush docked at Tilbury.

The play follows three intricately connected stories. Hortense yearns for a new life away from rural Jamaica, Gilbert dreams of becoming a lawyer, and Queenie longs to escape her Lincolnshire roots. Hope and humanity meet stubborn reality as the play traces the tangled history of Jamaica and the UK.

A company of 40 actors take to the stage of the National Theatre in this timely and moving story.

Oysters

A new dark comedy by Neil Salvage, with live music

Johannes Brahms is attending a party to celebrate the first performance of his Violin Concerto – but his genius is overshadowed by his self-destructive ego. His friends are all there, but everyone is caught in a seething cauldron of passionate recriminations – and darkly hilarious outcomes. Everyone has their own agenda – the arthritic, embittered and ageing Clara Schumann from his past: jealous, unstable virtuoso Josef Joachim; pompous and waspish critic Hanslick – and gentle friend and disciple Von Herzogenberg. As the evening progresses and emotions turn on a sixpence, the play moves to its extraordinary conclusion fuelled by turbulent feelings and farcical misunderstandings. Laughing through our tears we are continually challenged with the questions: Why art? – and what price do we pay for it?

More reviews from the 2019 Adelaide Festival:

“Brilliant performances” ★ ADELAIDE ADVERTISER

“A superb evening of theatre” BROADWAY WORLD

Rocket Girl

From the makers of Ingo’s War.

The year is 1969 and the world is changing. Beehives and miniskirts are all the rage; Everyone is listening to The Beatles; Where a bag of fish and chips would cost you 25p. And NASA has just put the first man on the moon. The world is transfixed and everyone is watching, including eight-year-old Maisie Robinson. From the very moment she saw man on the moon, Maisie knew that she was destined to be an astronaut. In her dreams she travelled beyond the earth’s atmosphere and flew amongst the brightest of stars. But unknown to Maisie, people had other plans about her future. After all, girls don’t do science, do they?

Using an amalgamation of storytelling, puppetry and movement with an original score, Ditto Theatre Company invites you to join us in making the impossible possible as one girl battles to become…Rocket Girl!

Rocket Girl was developed in association with the National Theatre of Scotland as part of their 2018 Exchange Programme.

BSL Interpretation: We are excited to announce that the 2.30pm performance on Sunday will have BSL interpretation!

Much Ado About Nothing

The world’s first cycling theatre company, The HandleBards, pedal from venue to venue with all the set, props and costume necessary to perform environmentally sustainable Shakespeare across the globe.

Join their all-male troupe in The Quarry Theatre Garden for a bicycle-powered production of Shakespeare’s ‘Much Ado About Nothing’ like none other. In usual HandleBards style, expect riotous amounts of energy, a fair old whack of chaos, and a great deal of laughter.

And what’s the play about? Well – a group of soldiers return from the war to a household in Messina, causing the kindling of new love interests and the re-kindling of old rivalries. The parallel love stories of Beatrice, Benedick, Claudio and Hero become entangled with plotting, frivolity and melodrama in Shakespeare’s famous comedy.

This is an outdoor production, so please bring your own chair or blanket to sit on, a picnic to dig into, and dress for the weather!

Visit www.handlebards.com to find out more!