OPEN air Shakespeare is coming to the elegant historic surroundings of Leighton Hall next week.

Back by popular demand, the celebrated Shakespearean touring theatre company The Festival Players stage Much Ado About Nothing on Friday, July 19, the Bard's fast paced comedy full of twists, turns, verbal dexterity and jealous plotting.

Performed by a traditional all-male cast, just as it would have been in Shakespeare’s day, the famous line "the course of true love never did run smooth" will never have been more true, as the sparring antics of Shakespeare’s erstwhile lovers, Beatrice and Benedick, provide great hilarity for the other members of the household who plot to reunite them.

The delicious comedy will be brought to life in a crystal clear, energetic, colourful production, enhanced by original songs, plus lightning fast costume changes.

The Festival Players are a professionally renowned theatre company delivering the best in open air Shakespeare and touring theatre. Leighton Hall is something of a fixture for the company, which has delighted in using its elegant façade and grounds as a stunning backdrop to performances for more than 20 years.

Suzie Reynolds, owner of Leighton Hall, says they love welcoming theatre audiences to see Leighton Hall 'out of hours'.

"As twilight falls during the play, the atmosphere in the garden becomes truly magical. Bring picnics and drinks and as Beatrice says in the play, we will be 'as merry as the day is long.'"

The performance starts at 7.30pm, with Leighton’s grounds open from 6pm for visitors to take a pre-show picnic, settle in and enjoy the atmosphere. Guests are reminded to take warm clothing and something to sit on, in order to stay comfortable throughout the evening.

Tickets available online at or from Leighton Hall on 01524-734474.