Audience reaction to The Alchemist

Tuesday night was press night for The Alchemist, and the Belgrade Theatre captured some of the audience reaction to the show. Do take a look…

We’re also starting to get a few reviews in too. Here’s a couple of our favourite quotes so far:

“A pacey and polished production that demands your fullest attention from start to finish.” 
(Daventry Express)

“The characters are so vibrant, the acting of such quality, that this is an experience that will command your attention while rewarding you amply with laughs.”
(Leamington Courier)

There’s also a fantastic comment from an audience member on the comments section of the Belgrade website (where you can also find out more about the show) Of course, if you’ve seen it yourself, we’d love to hear what you thought too!



Director’s Video Interview for The Alchemist

UPDATE: Part 2 of Paul’s interview has been added below.

When The Alchemist was first performed in York at Friargate Theatre we relocated the play from Blackfriars, London to York.

Now that we’re taking it to the Belgrade Theatre, once again Paul has dug up Ben Jonson’s London roots and replanted them in Coventry. He took a break from the rehearsal schedule to explain why…


and here’s part 2…


You can also watch a teaser trailer for the show here.

Further Alchemical Updates

The Coventry Telegraph also spoke to cast members Sarah Jane-Lee and Barrett Robinson about their roles in the play. You can have a read on their website.

Oh and The Belgrade’s prop department are after your old beer cans for the show

The Alchemist is being performed at the Belgrade Theatre, Coventry from 1st Feb to 22nd Feb. You can book tickets through their box office.

The Alchemist

The Alchemist 2013While the master of the house is out of town to escape the plague, his house-keeper sets up with ‘a cheater and his punk’ as the city’s premier conman.

A full range of alternative services are offered to the citizens who beat a furtive path to their door – anything from the secret of eternal youth, to that recipe of recipes which will turn a tin can into bankable gold.

Masters of the ludicrous disguise, the team of con-artists find their multiple deceptions spiralling out of control, until they receive some alarming news…

Jonson’s brilliant satire burns away the dross, exposing a society whose obsessions make it vulnerable to any well-worked scam. This explosive production of The Alchemist from Riding Lights, especially revived for Coventry, is fast, furious, feisty and very, very funny.

Saturday 1 – Saturday 22 Feb 2014
The Belgrade Theatre, Coventry – B2 Stage
Tickets: From £8 – £20 (concessions £7.75 – £18)

More info and online booking:
Belgrade Theatre Box Office: 024 7655 3055

Presented by The Belgrade Theatre and Riding Lights Theatre Company
Written by Ben Jonson, Directed by Paul Burbridge, Designed by Sean Cavanagh


Familiar faces in new places

With Roughshod nearly at their last week of tour, and Summer Theatre School not long after, now is probably a good time to give you a glimpse of what we’re planning for the rest of the year (and beyond.) So here goes…

The Alchemist poster

First off, we have a very exciting piece of news! Riding Lights are pleased to announce that we’ll be reviving The Alchemist with the Belgrade Theatre Coventry in February 2014.

Originally produced for our opening season at Friargate Theatre, Ben Jonson’s The Alchemist is a fast and feisty city farce, poking fun at our obsessions and vanity, making us susceptible to any well-worked scam. A tale of double dealing, con-artists and ludicrous disguises, the production received top reviews when it was first performed in York, and we’re delighted to be taking the play to a new audience in Coventry.

Performances run from 1st to the 22nd of February 2014 in the Belgrade’s wonderfully flexible B2 space. We’ll be telling you more about the show soon, but for now, why not take a look at their website?

A second beat of the ‘drum’

We’re also thrilled to announce that we’re able to re-tour a different drum this autumn.

After the show received such wonderful audience responses (including a number of sold out houses) earlier this year, we’ve been keen to extend its life. We’re incredibly grateful to the communities who hosted the show the fist time round, and looking forward to woking with new venues who’ve made this second tour possible.

a different drum will be touring again from the 27th of September to 2nd November. You can see the performances we’ve got booked in so far here.

…plus, we’ve still got a couple of evenings to fill, so if you’re interested in bringing the show to your community – give us a call.

Oh, and don’t forget there’s always Christmas.

The cast - checking lines ready for the autumn?