Of Love and Laughter

Directed by Gill Morell

Thank you to all that attended at our initial performances at Cleeve House on 12th and 13th September. We are currently working with local theatres to bring this show to other locations in Wiltshire and Somerset. Please check back for more information on future dates or sign up to our mailing list to receive updates straight to your email. 

We are excited to say that Shakespeare Live are back on stage! Come and join us for our properly socially distanced autumn production of "Of Love and Laughter". 

We are currently working with local Theatres to book dates - please check back later

Please visit the specific venues website for prices. All performances will be socially distancesd as per the venues policies and procedures. 

Shakespeare knew a thing or two about disease and quarantine – he lived through the plague. He also knew, and wrote, a lot about love and laughter and the role of theatre in preventing us from taking ourselves too seriously. We’ve plundered the plays to pull out a selection of our favourite bits. Some will surely be familiar to you, some probably not, but all of them probe what is laughable, touching or simply absurd in human behaviour – sometimes all three at once.

As we take our first tentative steps out of the months of enforced abstinence we are thrilled to be able to return to the garden of Cleeve House to present our antidote to the lockdown blues. We invite you all to join us and to enjoy with us a fresh start, doing what we love in a way that is carefully managed and safe.

So pack up your picnic rug or your folding chair. We are looking forward enthusiastically to welcoming friends and colleagues back to Cleeve House to share a bit of Shakespeare – something that we thought we might not see this summer!


First and foremost, we do hope that you and your families are keeping safe and well at this difficult time.

With very great regret we have now had to accept that our production of The Winter’s Tale will not be able to go ahead this summer. Our hosts at Cleeve House have been forced to suspend all activity at the house for the foreseeable future. Although this is a bitter disappointment to us we are looking ahead with optimism and enthusiasm to the time when we can pick up where we left off. Our Winter’s Tale has a cast, a production team, costumes, even a bear… all of which will be ready to take to the stage with renewed vigour in 2021.

We are at the moment unsure about the prospects for our other projects, most notably our touring show which we would have hoped to take to Stratford upon Avon in August and to local theatres in late September. We have a little gem of a play planned and ready to go and we remain defiantly hopeful that we may at least be able to bring that to the stage in some form this year. Our latest message from the RSC suggests they still hope they may be able to run a programme at The Dell in the summer. Watch out for more news of that as soon as we are able to see the way ahead.

We very greatly value and appreciate all of you who join with us, whether by participating actively in staging our productions or as members of our audience. We wish every one of you well, and we extend our particular thanks and admiration to any of you who are working to keep our essential services going under huge pressure. We’ll keep you informed as our plans take shape and we look forward to welcoming you back on, behind or in front of the stage when we are able to raise the curtain on our activities again.


Shakespeare Live Trustees

The Winters Tale

Directed by Gill Morell

Postponed until 2021

Cleeve House, Trowbridge Road, Seend, SN12 6PG

This is a play of two halves - a heart-rending study of marital jealousy  ending in apparent tragedy and realisation of guilt, and the light-hearted, romantic  Bohemia where young love is fulfilled . So, typically for one of the late 'problem' plays, it appeals both to lovers of serious, thoughtful Shakespearian tragedy, and to those who enjoy laughter, love and fun. 


Starting in a formal garden in winter in late !8th century Sicily, and moving to mid-European summer fifteen years later, a fairy-tale happy ending and redemption are almost miraculously contrived amid an explosion of joyful sound and colour.


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