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Regent's Park Open Air Theatre

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by Bryony Harrison (subscribe)
Freelance writer and poet from London; if you would like to read my poetry, please check out my book, 'Poems on the Page', available from
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A Play's Not the Only Thing to Catch the King
regent's park open air theatre

Before visiting Regent's Park, the only thing I thought its Open Air Theatre had to offer were plays. Plays are wonderful, don't get me wrong, but I was excited to find out that there is even more to see over the next two months than theatre performances. And if you think a little tub of ice cream is going to be your only snack of choice, think again.

If you want to get the most out of your visit, here's a quick guide on how to enjoy Regent's Park Open Air Theatre:

What to See

25 - £55

Starting with what you would usually expect to see from a theatre, The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess is currently showing until the 23rd August. It is a powerful play about love and betray, telling of a crippled beggar's attempts to tame a wild young woman and prevent her ruining her life. This will be followed by To Kill A Mocking Bird, which runs from 28th August - 13th September.

16 - £30

Seeing actors live on stage is great 'in the moment' experience, but sometimes if you prefer to hark back to memories of the past, then celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of Goldfinger with a screening on the 17th August. Breakfast at Tiffany's will follow on the 1st September.


You can get funny plays and you can get funny films, but if you want to laugh about real life, then stand up comedy is the best way to get your funny bone ticked. Miles Jupp Is The Chap You're Thinking of, and you can see him on the 8th September.

22.50 - £31.50

Visual spectacles are not the only way to be entertained. On the 3rd August, songwriter, Seth Lakeman, takes the established folk orthodoxy and turns it on its head. Then on the 10th August, Clare Teal and Her Big Band will pay tribute to some of her favourite music heroines, such as Ella Fitzgerald, Peggy Lee, Judy Garland, and Doris Day.

What to Eat

The Regent's Park Burger
7 (advance) £8 (on the day)

100% Prime Hereford beef, slowly matured and served with melted cheddar cheese in a toasted bun. Vegetarians can swap the meat feast for a Mediterranean vegetable stack with seasoned mushrooms, courgettes, aubergines, and, bell peppers.

Covered Dinning
£27.50 (advance) £32.50 (on the day)

A fairy-lit terrace with waiter service. You get your main course before the performance, and your dessert during the interval. Advanced bookings are recommended.

Luxury Champagne Hamper

Only available when you book in advance, your hamper will include a bottle of Canard-Duchene Champagne, vintage Godminster Cheddar, oat biscuits, crisps, summer fruits, ice cream, coffee, and a programme.


No champagne, but you still get a bottle of wine. Pre-book a picnic for two, and you'll get traditional sandwiches, salad, crisps, cake, and strawberries, along with a programme.

Afternoon Tea
£14.95 - £23.95

Afternoon Tea is served during Porgy and Bess matinees when pre-booked. It includes all your usual delights, such as finger sandwiches, scones with clotted cream and jam, cakes, and for an additional price, you can order a glass of prosecco or champagne.

Summer Cafe

The Summer Cafe is a new venue this year, featuring soups of the day, cold cuts, pasties, quiche, salmon, seasonal salads, and strawberries and cream.

What to do

Queen Mary's Garden

queen mary's garden, regents park

So you've arrived early? Good on you; it's never fashionable to turn up late. But what are you going to do while you wait? Queen Mary's Garden is a beautiful place to explore, with fountains, roses, statues, and tropical plants. Why not take a stroll?

£7 - £9 Adult, £5.50 - £7

regent's park, boat hire, rowing, pedalo

Regent's Park has a boat cafe, where you can hire a row boat or Pedalo. Choose between thirty minutes to an hour.

What to Know

Useful Information

1. The auditorium is uncovered, so be prepared for all weather.
2. There is a bike storage area.
3. The theatre is outside of the congestion zone.
4. Photography and filming is not allowed.
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Why? Get the most out of outdoor performances
When: Until 13th Sept
Phone: 0844 826 4242
Where: Regent's Park
Cost: £16 - £80
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by Bryony Harrison on 03/01/2014
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