Grosvenor Park Open Air Theatre in Chester is set to stage its most eco-friendly season of shows yet – on a meadow of native grasses ringing the theatre’s central performance area.
Plants and seeds will create a garden within a garden that will be tended and grown throughout the three-month season of three plays by Storyhouse, which has staged the open-air theatre for the past 11 years.
The season opens on May 29 with Glyn Maxwell’s new adaptation of The Jungle Book. Shakespeare’s farce The Merry Wives of Windsor runs June 4-August 30, and Pride and Prejudice joins the plays in repertory from July 9.
Set and costume designer Jessica Curtis is working on the garden plan with a team of volunteer gardeners, who are planting hardy, fast-growing native varieties before the season starts.
Plants used as natural dyes will also be included – in the hope that some might be used for natural dyes for costumes before being recycled into later set designs.
Bark chips that make up the performing surface are already recycled at the end of each season into mulch used in the park. This year sections of the matured meadow will also be offered to the park and local community gardens after the theatre season ends.
Jessica Curtis said: “Even though this is one space within which we will tell three stories, the joy of it is that it will bloom and grow as we go through the season, constantly changing.”
Visit here for more information on the season.