Wednesday, 27 November 2019 11:38

The Kibworth Theater

The Kibworth Theater (Theatre) is believed to have been situated on the turnpike road in Main Street, Kibworth Harcourt during the 18th and 19th centuries. The exact location has not been confirmed but is believed to have been to the rear of 25 Main Street. This location would have been convenient to entertain passengers taking a rest break at the many inns when journeying through the village on the many stage coaches travelling along the turnpike route. Indeed travelling theatre players would also have also used the coaches and taken advantage of the theater to perform plays. In addition local residents particularly from the Dissenting Academy and the Grammar School in Kibworth Beauchamp may well have been patrons of the theater.

Copies of two posters advertising productions at the theater are shown below. The first on Wednesday evening September 29th 17890 was a production of the celebrated comic opera ‘INKLE and YARICO’ followed by ‘ALL THE WORLDS a STAGE’ The second was on Friday evening October 1st 1790 when a production of ‘RICHARD 111 Or, The Battle of Bofworth Field’ followed by ‘The Agreeable Surfrise’ was performed.

TheatrePoster1      TheatrePoster2

Attendance was not cheap, the posters shows prices for both productions at 2s for the Pit and 1s for the Gallery. Possibly these prices would have been unaffordable by many local residents.

Although a poster is not available on the theater bill for the evening of 28th October 1802 was the comedy play ‘School for Scandal’ a 1781 comic opera to music by Samuel Arnold and a libretto by John O'Keeffe.

Acknowledgements:
British Library
BBC

Additional Info

  • Acknowledgement: The Kibworth Improvement Team thank and acknowledge the Warden and Fellows of Merton College, Oxford for permission to use images on this website of the college and archived material.
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