A Futuristic Visit to Exeter
A couple of minutes walk from visiting the Cathedral and we’re back at the theatre. We had heard that Exeter has a treat for theatre-goers but we weren’t expecting this! A landscaped and paved area forms an amphitheatre approach to a beautiful new building. The wide graceful steps lead us down to the front entrance, to the place that earlier was a stage but now has tables and chairs for people to sit and relax at the end of the day.
We came past this afternoon and saw a local clown troupe performing one of their shows here. They were drawing quite a crowd as people were walking down to the quay from the city centre. Their new van was parked outside so we knew that they were around and we’ve always liked their work – very spontaneous; you never know what’s going to happen next.
Beyond this open space is the new theatre. Striking architecture with graceful lines that compliment the surrounding area; the outline of the building hinting at the spaces inside – the main auditorium, the fly-tower and a studio space.
Glass fronted so that people outside can see into the foyer; they can see the audience collecting tickets, enjoying their pre-show drinks or early evening meal. We go in and there is a buzz in the foyer and the bar; the show tonight is full of promise – it’s the first night of a tour that is playing in the regions before going into London.
We’ve been invited by a large business that recently re-located to Exeter. They have sponsored tonight’s show and there is a reception in one of the function rooms before the performance followed by dinner at a local restaurant afterwards. It was tricky finding a hotel room as the opening night has drawn people from all over the country. A lot of them have spent the day in the shops or down on the Quay where there was a Dragon Boat race earlier.
The show was brilliant. The two lead actors are from that new sitcom on television who were very funny and obviously enjoying playing to a live audience as they were reacting to the laughs and applause all the way through. The other cast members were good as well and I’m sure we saw two of them having a coffee this morning in John Lewis.
The bar was alive with people after the show. They were serving themed drinks and the actors came out to sign autographs for donations to a local Hospice charity. We picked up a brochure while we were having a drink after the show and might come back to Exeter next month to see the ballet that is on. We can visit the Museum in the same trip so I’d better ask back at the hotel if they have a room free.
So, off to the restaurant on Cathedral Green and then a short stroll through beautiful Southernhay to our Hotel. Exeter is fast becoming our favourite short break destination!