Romeo and Juliet

Brighton Open Air Theatre is an ideal setting for This Is My Theatre’s mission to bring classic plays to alternative, accessible venues. Warbling blackbirds and the sway of wildflowers lend a fittingly romantic vibe to our doomed lovers, and the sun shone for Montagues and Capulets alike.

An inventive adaptation on a beautiful afternoon.

This small theatre company excel at inventive adaptations, and stage today’s play with only six actors. Ethan Taylor is excellent as Juliet’s nurse, and using him in a traditionally female role means fragile Juliet gets the care and affection her father denies her. Going a step further and casting a woman in one of the male roles would have been a nice counterpoint, though. Shakespeare’s plays are robust enough for more than one gender swap.

I enjoyed watching Matt Tweddle as not one but two villains. He’s fiery as Tybalt and smarmy as Paris, and confidently switches between the two without a hitch in audience understanding. Of the several deaths on stage (this is a tragedy, after all), his was the most convincing, for all that no one mourned him.

In case the sun and birds and Romeo’s smitten grin let us think this was a happy tale, lamenting choral song haunts the play’s most should-be-joyful moments. This Is My Theatre have a knack of using music to enhance the atmosphere of their shows, and this chorus lent a solemn spookiness, foreshadowing the twists and turns ahead.

Which is just as well, as not all key points were signalled well enough for me to understand what was happening. Romeo’s meeting with the apothecary and whatever happened to the Friar’s lost letters seemed unclear, which affected the coherence of the story. Some of the impact was lost in a fumbled end, despite the charm of the majority of the production.

Maybe it was the strength of performance, maybe it’s my age, but for me the heart of this adaptation lay with the older roles in the play. While Romeo and Juliet moped about being young and impulsive, my sympathies lay with the Nurse and Simon Stallard’s tender Friar Lawrence, doomed to fail to protect the vulnerable youth in their care.

It’s always a pleasure to see how different performers use the green canvas of Brighton’s beautiful open air theatre, and I look forward to seeing what Sarah Slator and This Is My Theatre do next.

Reviews by Rhian Bowley

Brighton Open Air Theatre

Romeo and Juliet

Brighton Open Air Theatre (BOAT)

The HandleBards: The Tempest

The Warren: The Blockhouse


Preston Old Church


Brighton Spiegeltent

Bang Said The Gun


Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now



The Blurb

We invite you experience Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare’s most famous love story with modern characterisation, choral song, live music and dynamic performance to engage both young and old.

The streets of Verona are fraught with ceaseless fighting between the Montagues and Capulets.Consequence hangs in the stars, and when the children of these two great households meet, there is hope that their love will conquer all…

You know their story, but not like this....

Most Popular See More

Come From Away

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Mousetrap

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Pretty Woman: The Musical

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Mamma Mia!

From £18.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Moulin Rouge! The Musical

From £30.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Grease the Musical

From £20.00

More Info

Find Tickets