Exciting news! York Theatre Royal is back (outdoors)

Patio YTR

Anyone else been missing York Theatre Royal? It seems a loooong time since they closed their doors, but York Theatre Royal is returning this week with Pop-up on the Patio. It’s a festival of live outdoor performances on the theatre’s patio stage, featuring performers from across Yorkshire and it all kicks off on 14th August. The festival will take place over three consecutive weekends in August, ending on Saturday 29th August.

The full lineup includes a wide range of art forms, including children’s theatre but also dance theatre, improvised comedy, magic, storytelling, theatre, puppetry, poetry and music.

Thom Freeth, York Theatre Royal’s Producer, said: “We’re so excited to have been able to bring live theatre back to our city this summer. Our building may still be closed, but we didn’t want that to stand in the way of entertaining the people of York during this difficult time. Pop-up on the Patio also gives us the opportunity to showcase the work of brilliant locally-based performers, many of whom are part of our freelance family, who have been disproportionally affected by this pandemic.

Safety measures and what to expect


The theatre’s patio area has been reconfigured to allow for a socially-distanced audience and stage, with extra safety measures in place to ensure that audiences and staff are safe. A limited range of soft and alcoholic drinks will be offered, as will ice creams and chocolate.

What’s on at the Pop-Up Patio – for kids!

Story Craft Theatre York

Find the full programme of events on the York Theatre Royal website, but here is our pick of the highlights for families, including the fabulous and inimitable Mud Pie Arts and Story Craft Theatre.

– At 11am on Saturday 15, 22 and 29 August, Mud Pie Arts presents their Silly Summer Stories, interactive storytelling for ages 4 to 11.

– At 1pm on Saturday 15 and 22 August, Story Craft Theatre presents Crafty Tales, an hour of storytelling designed around a picture book for ages 2 to 6.

– York-based writer and director Paul Birch presents a bite-sized improvisation show at 4pm on Saturday 15 August. Fool(ish) is an hour of spontaneous comedy where the audience provide the suggestions and the actors ‘make stuff happen’.

– On Saturday 29 August at 1pm, Just Josh presents his Ultimate Family Show, with magic, juggling and balloon art to entertain everyone aged 4 to 104 years.

Just Josh York Party Entertainer

Tickets for all performances can be purchased through the York Theatre Royal website.

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