Immersive Theatre: Clarke Andrews Tempest

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This March sees the Garden Suite of The City Gate Hotel in Exeter transformed into the 1930s dressing room of washed up silent film star Clarke Andrews.

Clarke Andrews Tempest is a collaboration between actor Charlie Coldfield and award winning film maker and photographer Benjamin Borley. The show features a combination of live performance, film and computer generated images.

Dreamy, mysterious and magical The Tempest is a story of love, loss and the illusion of justice. Thought to be the last play that Shakespeare wrote so fitting then it should be performed this year as we mark the 450th Birthday of the Bard.

Audiences are invited inside to watch as Clarke prepares his solo rendition of Shakespeare’s The Tempest an hour before the curtain goes up. Charlie explains “As he begins to lose himself in Shakespeare’s verse, gamely assisted by an open bottle of gin, the events of the play start to collide with his own story. The dressing room dissolves revealing Clarke’s memories, dreams, hopes and fears in the form of silent film and digitally created images.”

The show originally premiered at the 2013 Ignite festival at Exeter’s Bikeshed Theatre and won high praise for its beautiful visuals and Coldfield’s mature and sensitive performance.

This might be a one man show but an array of characters pop up throughout via film sequences projected through the mirror of Clarke’s dressing room. Audiences will no doubt recognise some of the locations used in the films including the Babbacombe Cliff Railway which still possesses the charm of an era gone by.  Music from The Dalwood Rocket and vintage costumes from The Exeter Northcott  add to the evocative jazz age setting.

See the show at The City Gate, Lower North St, Exeter, March 19th – 21st at 7.45pm.  Tickets are £7, available on the door or at

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