Tobacco Factory Theatres

Tel: 0117 902 0345,
E-mail:
Website: http://www.tobaccofactorytheatres.com (opens in new tab)

Tobacco Factory Theatres produces and presents excellent art in unique, intimate and visceral spaces, including our Factory Theatre, as well as off site in Bristol and in venues across the country.

We present a jam-packed programme of diverse and exciting shows, workshops and events, from classic and contemporary theatre, to theatre for families, comedy, dance, music, opera and puppetry. We also programme an extensive programme of engagement, learning and participation opportunities for audiences, artists and young people.

Tobacco was the main industry in South Bristol from the beginning of the twentieth century and at its peak around 40% of the local workforce worked in the Imperial Tobacco Factory. The relocation of Imperial Tobacco in the 1980’s was devastating to the local area, causing massive unemployment and deprivation. The Tobacco Factory building itself fell into disrepair but rose again from the late 1990’s when George Ferguson acquired the building, inviting Show of Strength Theatre Company to use part of the first floor as a theatre space. The building became a mixed-use cultural space driven by a café-bar and a 250 seat studio theatre, under the name of Tobacco Factory Theatre. This has had a transformative effect. In the early 1990’s BS3 was one of the ten poorest postcodes in the country but it is now a confident and affluent area that retains a distinct individuality.

In 2005 the Tobacco Factory Theatres became a charitable trust and in 2007 it became a Key Arts Provider of Bristol City Council. It has made significant capital improvements, which include installing the second largest renewable energy system of any arts organisation in the country. It attracts an annual ticketed audience of over eighty-five thousand to more than six hundred performances plus several thousand more to talks, workshops, school visits etc. The theatre has excellent programming standards and is regularly attracting national critical acclaim. It has strong relationships with many individual artists, with venues and with theatre companies. It has a wide-ranging programme and is particularly well-known for world-class Shakespeare, critically acclaimed and popular inhouse family-friendly productions and an unrivalled comedy line-up, as well as classic and contemporary theatre, dance, puppetry, film, opera and music.

 

Shows

Still No Idea

No Idea is a mischievous look at where we were then, and where we are now. Part-verbatim theatre, part-confessional, part-comedy sketch show, with a touch of singing and dancing – these are the adventures of two friends in search of a story.

Dead Men’s Eyes

Robert Lloyd Parry from Nunkie Theatre returns to Tobacco Factory Theatres this autumn to continue his M R James Project, re-telling more of M R James’s most eerie spine chillers by candlelight.

A Warning to The Curious

Robert Lloyd Parry from Nunkie Theatre returns to Tobacco Factory Theatres this autumn to continue his M R James Project, re-telling more of M R James’s most eerie spine chillers by candlelight.

Charmane

Charmane is a story about acceptance, courage and learning how to find your inner ROAR!

Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare

Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory (stf) return to Tobacco Factory Theatres this autumn to celebrate their 20th Bristol season. Elizabeth Freestone (Henry V) is back to direct Shakespeare’s comedy about the precarious path to finding love.

Queens of Sheba

Jessica L Hagan’s debut play shines a light on the lives of everyday women battling what shouldn’t be an everyday problem: the collision of racism and misogyny.

Living Spit’s Odyssey

Captivating singer Kate Dimbleby joins Bristol’s favourite comedy theatre troupe Living Spit to reimagine Homer’s classic work.

Of Christmas Past

Douglas Walker unwraps the shocking true origins of Santa Claus in a one-man epic taking in 100 years of history and almost as many characters.

Noisy Nativity

Bristol’s much loved Kid Carpet gives the traditional Christmas story a radical remix with big beat songs, live special effects, puppetry and animation. Prepare for the wonkiest Nativity ever!

Snow White

This joyful re-telling of the classic Brothers Grimm fairy tale is about growing up, growing old, growing your own food and why you shouldn’t trust a very shiny red apple. Overflowing with charm and wit, this laughter-filled festive delight celebrates how we can all make the world a better place.

Spaces

Factory Theatre: Tobacco Factory Theatres

Tobacco Factory Theatres produces and presents excellent art in unique, intimate and visceral spaces, including our Factory Theatre in Bristol, as well as off site in Bristol and in venues across the country. We present a jam-packed programme of diverse and exciting shows, workshops and events, from classic and contemporary theatre, to theatre for families, comedy, dance, music, opera and puppetry. We also programme an extensive season of TF+ events and activities for audiences, artists and young people. The Factory Theatre is a non-conventional, versatile theatre space, which has been used for performance since 1998, exciting audiences and performers alike. Often described as ‘intimate’ and ‘raw’, the space seats between 230 and 300 people and can be arranged end-on, in the round or thrust.