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A Year at the Shed

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by Bastion 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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Watch plays in the shed

I always feel a surge of excitement when I find out about a pop-up shop in London. There is something thrilling about visiting somewhere that you know will not be there for long, and a sense that you are experiencing something exclusive. There is also the anxiety and fear that you might miss it if you are not quick on your heels.

A shop is one thing, but when it comes to something a bit more special, the feeling is intensified. Nights at the theatre are always special, generally because we do not go every week. Seeing a play is one of those odd treats we save for special occasions.

Imagine then, the fuss that will be made over The Shed, a pop-up theatre in South Bank that will only be open for a year. The red castle like building was commissioned by the National Theatre and erected in just eighteen weeks by the architect, Haworth Tompkins. With just 225 seats, it is is an intimate setting that brings you closer to the actors, with a choice of sitting at the stage or gallery level, both of which are 20 when booked in advance. While with most places, advanced booking usually save you money, you can actually get 12 tickets if you buy on the day, but there is a severe risk of them selling out, as is already the case with Bullet Catch. There is still the opportunity, however, to see Table by Tanya Ronder, which is a multi-generational story all set around one special piece of furniture (I bet you can't guess what kind). There will be a pre-show talk on the 18th April, and post-show talks on the 25th April and 9th May.

Mission Drift, which runs between the 5th-28th June and tells a pioneering journey across the USA through atomic blasts, lizard ballet whatever that is), and glitzy gospel music. Then relive the most famous love story of all time with Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet from the 25th July-5th August. More plays will be announced later, so keep a look out.
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Why? It will only be open for a year
When: Until April 2014
Phone: 020 7452 3244
Where: Theatre Square
Cost: 20
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