Theatre and jazz in a beautiful Circus Tent

Supported by Arts Council England – and the Duke of Devonshire Charitable Trust 

Helen Gardens, King Edwards Parade, Eastbourne

Wednesday 3rd to Sunday 7th August at 7.30pm, entrance from 6.00pm

We are thrilled to be staging a week of Theatre and jazz this summer for the first time in a beautiful ‘little top’ circus tent on Eastbourne seafront up under the Downs. After a packed ten weeks on the road doing outdoor shows nightly right across Southern England we are going to be coming home to Eastbourne where we are based to stage five performances of our brand new play, ‘Gods and Dogs’ (see below), an hilarious comedy of love, marriage and celebrity in  2084 – and what better than in the beautiful environment of a circus tent with its very English cultural traditions in the lovely Helen Gardens? 

The Company 

If you haven’t seen the company before the style is full on physical theatre played by actor /musicians with white face and cartoonised costumes like clowns, and heavily influenced by the Italian Renaissance style of commedia dell’arte, which lead to art forms like the ballet, panto, music hall, circus and silent movie. Think Charlie Chaplin but with a spoken script, songs and poems, lots of physical jokes, moments of poignancy and full of music and songs. The Company works across Southern England and is funded by Arts Council England to mainly take new professional theatre into small rural communities – and a few towns like the lovely Eastbourne. 

And there will also be…

Jazz in the afternoons

Thursday to Sunday at 2.00. Open from 1.30pm

Also don’t miss our laid back afternoon jazz concerts with some outstanding musicians from around the country (See below), assembled especially to make the week like a little mini-arts festival. If the music of Gerry Mulligan and his contemporaries is what you like, or Latin, or bebop, or if you prefer to feast your ears on the old standards, then come for a couple of hours and chill out. We have it all. 

Why not have a day by the seaside? – Maybe paddle in the morning, picnic on the lawn, listen to the jazz in the afternoon and take in a great play in the evening? 

So what’s the play about? 

Gods and Dogs

This hilarious comedy is set in 2084 on the fictitious island of Abatina in a world where people are either glamorous celebrities or slobbering dog-like followers of them gripped to their telepafones – with the exception of the Nevnops (Not Very Nice People) as the President, Big Al, calls them.

The story follows Tina who enters ‘Marriage Maker’, a ‘telepavision’ gameshow. The idea of the game is if you win you get to marry the super-glamorous footballer, Harry Best, on the Saturday, have a weekend of love, then divorce him on the Monday. ‘All the fun & no ties!’ as the compere, Rich Nobb, puts it. Unfortunately, Tina makes the mistake of falling in love when she wins & doesn’t want to divorce. Doreen, her best friend, has her own opinion, but then she might be a Nevnop & the Mind Police might get to her first & send her to the wolves on the ‘Other Side’ – a dangerous world over ‘the mountain’ where the inhabitants of Abatina, according to Big Al, must not go, with dangerous free-thinkers & wolves that might get them.

Will Tina get her man? Will Doreen escape the Mind Police? You’ll have to put your telepafones away and come to find out! Get your tickets now.


…or email, or ring 01323-501260

TICKETS – Adults £22, Seniors £21, Students £15, Children £10, Group of 4 booking & coming together £76, Family group (any two adults & two children) £54. Group of 10 or more £18 each (Large groups only bookable by ringing 01323-501260).


MORE ABOUT – Jazz in the afternoons!

All gigs are 2.00- 4.30.

TICKETS – £10, on the door on the day, no advance sales. Cash if possible please! (though we will have a card reader with us but don’t know about a signal there…) Doors open 1.15pm.

Thursday 4th August:  Andy Panayi Quartet – Andy (saxes and flute), Mark Nightingale (trombone), Simon Woolf (double bass), Steve Brown (drums). The music of Gerry Mulligan and his contemporaries.

Friday 5th August:  Neal Richardson Quartet – Neal (keys/vocals), Sue Richardson (trumpet/vocals), Paul Whitton (double bass), Phil Crabbe (drums).  A programme of mostly standards.

Saturday 6th August:  Terry Seabrook’s T-Rio – Terry (keys), Nigel Thomas (double bass), Tristan Banks (drums).  Latin Jazz.

Sunday 7th August:  Chris Coull’s Quintet – Chris (trumpet), Imogen Ryall (vocals), Simon Robinson (keys), Terry Pack (double bass), Tristan Banks (drums). From standards to bebop.