Toby Jones is BOV’s first “castaway”

MULTI-talented actor Toby Jones, an associate artist of Bristol Old Vic, will be at the country’s oldest theatre on Thursday 8th October as the first guest in a new series, Desert Island Theatre.

The acclaimed actor, whose recent successes include Uncle Vanya, The Girl and Captain America, will be at the beautiful Georgian theatre in conversation with his long-term collaborator and friend Tom Morris. This will be a unique theatrical event in which Toby Jones will recall – and attempt to recreate – seven moments of theatre which have had a profound affect on him and his career. One of the greatest talents of British theatre, he has played everything from Dobby the House Elf in Harry Potter to Truman Capote and starred as Lance in the third series of the BBC hit comedy The Detectorists.

The event will be part of a new series of one-nighters in the Old Vic theatre and on the newly-christened The Courtyard stage, in the theatre’s spacious and award-winning bar and café.

The rolling programme of work ­– theatre, spoken word, dance, live music and poetry – will run through the autumn as Bristol Old Vic continues to discover what theatre can be in the current climate, while supporting freelance artists to perform once more.

On Friday 9th October,  on The Courtyard stage, cult Bristolian cabaret artist and storyteller Tom Marshman curates a wild night of Covid Cabaret in Going Out with Annette Curtain (and friends). Join Bristol’s biggest gossip, Annette Curtain (aka Tom Marshman) and her glamorous assistant Ryan the Geeky Twink.

On Saturday 10th, The Courtyard stage is handed over to music as Ian Ross (multi-instrumentalist, composer and music director for Kneehigh and Wise Children) presents The Magpie Collection, including compositions from some of his theatre productions (Flying Lovers of Vitebsk, Wise Children, Mallory Towers) and original folk trio compositions from Eleven Magpies. Ian will be joined by Elizabeth Westcott (violin) and James Gow (cello).

The Courtyard stage name was chosen to reflect the space’s unique history. From 1766 until the 1820s, Bristol Old Vic’s current foyer included a paved courtyard in front of the theatre, and open to the sky, a place where people waited before they were let in for the latest piece of prohibited theatre.

Bristol Old Vic producer Sian Weeding said: “The Courtyard stage’s name felt particularly apt at a time when theatre feels indirectly prohibited and we are all held in this space waiting to be let in.”

Pictured: Toby Jones with Tom Morris.