About The Bard’s Night


What is The Bard’s Night?

It is a celebration of the life of William Shakespeare, through his own mentions of food, drink and feasting, which takes place on the Friday  closest to the great man’s birthday, set against a backdrop of the Shakespeare’s Celebrations weekend, St George’s Day and the Stratford-upon-Avon Literary Festival.


Shakespeare was reputedly born on April 23, 1564 – St Georgeʼs Day. This was also the date on which he is known to have died in 1616. Over four hundred years on and The Bardʼs Night fetes the man, his life and his words in an annual celebration.

The venue for 2018 is again the Stratford ArtsHouse at 14 Rother Street, Stratford-upon-Avon CV37 6LU (the refurbished Civic Hall), which is once again an active supporter for The Bard’s Night 2018.

Themes for the occasion revolve around Shakespeare, the influences on his work, his words, the Elizabethan/Tudor world, and St George and for 2018 we have chosen the theme of “The Elements: Earth, Fire, Wind and Water”.

A menu has been developed with the Four Leaf Clover Foods to create a modern take on “Elizabethan”, with interestingly international influences on a bedrock of local ingredients (Vale of Evesham produce, meat from local farms, for example).

The setting for The Bard’s Night 2018 is in a banqueting format at tables of 8 in the octagonal main auditorium space of the Stratford Artshouse. The space will be dressed simply but effectively with hanging fabric banners, backdrop panels, with back projected images on stage, a 7m x 5m stage for performances, dramatic interruptions from the floor; musicians on ancient instruments, and linking material.

Robert Ball – the professional artistic director who runs Fred Theatre – again joins the Bard’s Night team to cast and direct the performers and create a thoroughly entertaining whole.

The Bard’s Night is a project owned and stage managed by Stratford Projects in association with the independent, professional theatre company, Fred Theatre.

The organisers of The Bard’s Night are grateful for the permissions granted by Judy Methuen – the sculptor who created the remarkable bronze bust from the recently discovered image of Shakespeare – known as the Cobbe portrait – and Kelly Jo Hearsey, the photographer responsible for the images of the bust shown on these web pages.

Supported charities 2018

Performance partners 2018

Media partners 2018

Venue partner