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Raise a Glass to the Fair Maid of the West

The Fair Maid of the West Company outside the Swan Theatre_2023.Image by Simon Hadley (c) RSC.

Raise a glass to The Fair Maid of the West with pub-style seating and enjoy ‘interval Drinks’ with RSC artists.

This festive season, visitors to the Royal Shakespeare Company’s (RSC) production of The Fair Maid of the West in Stratford-upon-Avon can immerse themselves in the authentic atmosphere of a 1590s tavern, with pub-style seating in the Swan Theatre. Adapted and directed by Isobel McArthur after Thomas Heywood, The Fair Maid of the West is a music-filled Elizabethan comedy centred around pub landlady Liz Bridges (Amber James).

The seating was made possible through a collaboration with Stratford’s famous The Dirty Duck pub, who donated a range of items following a recent refurbishment to reduce waste and promote environmental responsibility.

The pub-style seating, featuring bar stools and benches, will be located on the Ground level of the Swan Theatre, in rows A, B, and C on either side of the stage and may involve some limited interaction with the acting company during the performance.

Commenting on the approach, the show’s designer Ana Inés Jabares-Pita said: "Isobel and I wanted to create an immersive and unforgettable experience for the audience, transforming the Swan auditorium into a giant pub where everybody is welcome.

“Thanks to our brilliant production manager Matt Aston, we’ve managed to recycle some of The Dirty Duck’s old furniture including bar stools, tables and chairs. The Dirty Duck is a Stratford-upon-Avon institution, much-loved by visiting acting companies and residents, so it felt absolutely right to collaborate with them on bringing a slice of authentic pub-life to the Swan Theatre this festive season.”

Tickets can be booked online at or via the Box Office on 01789 331111 (Monday - Friday, midday - 6pm).


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