Outdoor Music


Minack Theatre Cornwall

The sun is shining, all is right with the world again, and we are all fighting the undeniable urge to avoid work and spend the day picnicking at the park again.

Whilst making time to go for long walks, eat triangle sandwiches and partake in the odd rain spattered BBQ is a given, perhaps we need an even better way to entertain ourselves on those long summer nights. My suggestions? Get out of the house and head to the magic of an open air event, where music meets twilight.

Why not try a proper event at Warwick Castle? They do some of the best open-air events around, with beautiful music neatly matching the stunning scenery. If you want to make a day of it you can explore the castle, enjoying the trebuchet, archers and falconry, before settling down on a blanket in the evening to watch JLS, a Queen tribute, or the beautiful BBC Summer Proms.

If a castle isn’t your favourite destination, then perhaps you would enjoy the variety offered at a summer festival. You are too late for Glastonbury, but the UK is generally packed with music events in the summer, all of which are located outdoors under the sun and the stars. You have to be prepared to be swallowed alive by deep pools of mud and trampled underfoot by over-eager fans, but generally it is agreed that the quality of the music and the company more than makes up for it. City-dwellers can head to LoveBox in Victoria Park, London, whilst those looking for something more wholesome and rural could try out the remarkably affordable Farm Festival in Somerset.

If you love the idea of an open-air event but don’t really fancy a concert or gig, then how about watching some open air theatre? Head down to Cornwall for the most stunning open air performances in the country at the Minack Theatre, balanced on the edge of the stunning Cornish coastline. Alternatively, most towns and cities have summer performances, such as this creepy rendition of the Grimm Fairy Tales, “Into The Woods“, taking place in Regents Park.

You can find a range of festival tickets at lastminute.com.


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  1. On a scale of 0-10 with 0 being completely wolhtress and 10 being superior, my seatmate and I gave Holes scores ranging from 4-7 (some parts were better than others), which gives an overall NTW rating: Not The Worst. Even though the play clicked right along with no uncomfortable pauses (good directing), overall the plot too often developed as if the characters were thinking it up as they went along. It is NOT an inspired plot and that woodpecker song is too dumb for words. The casting was good. Nick Abeel from the start was extremely annoying in every way. I just wanted to slap him, which I suspect is the emotion the playwright intended to engender. Mark Goetzinger and Jennifer Johansen always give solid performances and Milicent Wright is magical, a divine talent. (We attend any play that Milicent Wright and Jennifer Johansen, or Rob Johansen, are in, sometimes twice.) Wayne T. Carr so much presence, just a pleasure to watch him work. All the actors did fine (those delinquent kids must have been good actors, because I found them thoroughly repulsive, wanted to slap them, too). But please, PLEASE tell your young actors that they have to ARTICULATE. They have to make every syllable understandable. You are stage actors, you guys. It’s not TV, not film, not the school cafeteria or mumbling in your sleep, it’s the stage, and many in the audience are over the age of 40, 50, 60 and (gasp) even older. We don’t hear as fast or as well as we used to. We require articulation. Slowing down a teeny-tiny bit would help, but what would help most is to articulate, enunciate, pronounce every syllable. We want to be able to hear and understand. Another magical actor with enormous talent and stage presence Mauricio Suarez. Wow! That kid is going places. Final word: Not the greatest play. I wouldn’t recommend it, except maybe to a talent scout looking for a good 13-year-old actor, and I certainly hope you never reprise it. But I’m not sorry I saw it. In general it was a fun evening and the refreshments were great. We loved those brownies and meatballs!

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