Twelfth Night - open air Shakespeare

12-22 July 2023 - Past Event

"Board her, woo her, assail her!"

It is the age of the privateer, and Viola is shipwrecked on the coast of Illyria. In grief for her lost brother, she joins Orsino's crew and carries his messages of love to the haughty Olivia. But while some people are falling in love with the wrong person, others brim with wit and trickery, until "the whirligig of time brings in his revenges".

Join this jolly crew of characters, with their disguises, deceits and pranks, in this witty comedy from the quill of William Shakespeare. All in the atmospheric setting of Reading Abbey.

See Planning Your Visit for directions, times, facilities and what to bring.

Wet weather will not stop the show, unless conditions become dangerous. There are no refunds but if there are tickets available later in the run we can transfer your tickets to another night.
Contact [email protected]

Audience comments

"I have never been drawn to Shakespeare but ‘Twelfth Night’ might have just changed my mind! This is a great play and even greater acting by Progress Theatre cast with the backdrop of the Abbey Ruins. The play is both tragic and humorous and abound with music, drunkenness, in the most endearing way of course, miscommunication, contradiction, love and unrequited love."

"Progress Theatre were in fine voice last night in a production of Twelfth Night that would have sung the roof off of Reading Abbey's chapterhouse if it still had one! With hilarious performances by Jo Green (Sir Toby Belch), Guy Nicholls (Sir Andrew Aguecheek) and Alex McCubbin (Malvolio), this open air production is not one to miss! "

"This production of Twelfth Night was a joy to watch, with a truly impressive cast. Barnaby McArthur as Feste is worth the ticket price alone, delivering a West End-worthy performance. The addition of impeccably sung sea shanties interspersed throughout the play was cleverly conceived, and the outcome made a rousing and engaging atmosphere for all to enjoy.


  • Viola - Imogen Lilley
  • Sebastian - Freddie Meader
  • Duke Orsino - Adam Wells
  • Olivia - Caroline White
  • Malvolio - Alex McCubbin
  • Maria - Stephanie Clark
  • Sir Toby Belch - Jo Green
  • Sir Andrew Aguecheek - Guy Nicholls
  • Feste - Barnaby McArthur
  • Fabian - Zac McAllister
  • Launce - Juliet England
  • Antonio - Chris Gunner-Lucas
  • Valentine - Flora Paulo
  • Curio - Hugo Parker-Farrell
  • Sea Captain/Priest - Daniel Gladwell

Directed by Trevor Dale and Laura Mills.  

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