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THE world’s first cycling theatre company, The HandleBards, are to perform at the Courts Garden in Holt, with their hit all-male production of Twelfth Night and their all-female production of Romeo and Juliet.
Since 2013, their two troupes have pedalled over 7,000 miles across the UK to perform their unique brand of ‘charmingly chaotic, environmentally sustainable, bicycle-powered Shakespeare’. Producer Paul Moss explains that, in usual HandleBards style, we can expect “riotous amounts of energy, a fair old whack of chaos, and a great deal of laughter” from the show.
The HandleBards pride themselves on just how accessible they’re able to make Shakespeare and his plays. “The key is not to take it all so seriously,” explains Paul. “We only ever cast four actors in our productions, for the very reason that it’s nearly impossible to perform a Shakespeare play with just four actors – attempting it always leads to hilarity both on and off stage, it’s really a lot of fun.
“We’re on a journey to become the world’s front-runners in sustainable theatre. This year, we’re planting trees to try and offset 100% of our carbon emissions. We’ve talked about climate change (not ‘fake news’ by the way!) for years now, but nothing will really change until we all stop complaining about how awful it all is, and actually do something to change the way we live our lives. Climate change needs real advocates, and we’re prepared to be just that, within the arts.”
The HandleBards also work hard to grow real engagement with local communities. They invite local musicians to play at their shows, and encourage localities to see their shows as an opportunity for the whole community to get together over something positive.
“Why not knock on your neighbour’s door and invite them to share a picnic at the show with you?” suggests Paul.
The boys will be delivering their brilliantly bonkers Twelfth Night on Wednesday 13th June at 7pm. The girls bring their completely hilarious and irreverent Romeo & Juliet to Holt on Tuesday 26th June at 7pm.
Find out more and book tickets for both shows at www.handlebards.com.