14 August—15 August 2024

The Hay Wain Theatre Production at Bristol Museum & Art Gallery

The Hay Wain was first staged at Flatford Mill, on the Essex/Suffolk borders at the location of John Constable’s renowned painting. It coincided with the 200th anniversary of the painting in 2021. 

This highly acclaimed, atmospheric play with music has been described as East Anglia’s very own Les Miserables, bringing to life the people that populate the picture, lives defined not by simplicity and virtue, but by hardship, hope and resilience. Turning the traditional, bucolic, chocolate box ideal of The Hay Wain on its head, you’ll never look at the landscape in quite the same way again. 

Now, Packing Shed Theatre’s The Hay Wain comes to Bristol alongside its namesake, as part of the programme accompanying the National Gallery’s ‘National Treasures’ project at Bristol Museum & Art Gallery. 

You can choose to see it open air on 14 or 15 August in the grand setting of Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, with a chance to view the real painting in the adjoining gallery.  

Packing Shed Theatre makes work inspired by the East with people from the East, whether that’s site specific verbatim theatre inspired by migrants both young and old; the retelling of ancient myths and legends in modern settings; or an audio podcast prequel to George Orwell’s 1984, called 1954, which is available now on Spotify. 

Check us out at packingshedtheatrecompany.co.uk 

Upcoming dates:

  • Wednesday 14 August, 7pm
  • Thursday 15 August, 7pm

With thanks

With thanks to HR WorldThe CR Group and Maru for sponsoring the Bristol exhibition.

national gallery logo

We are very grateful to The National Gallery for sponsorship of the events programme through their NG200 celebrations of the gallery’s bicentenary. This event is part of a programme to accompany the National Treasures: Constable in Bristol “Truth to Nature” exhibition at Bristol Museum & Art Gallery.



Book Tickets

£16 full price
£14 concessions
No specific child tickets, recommended age 12+

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Additional information

The performance will take place in Blaise amphitheatre. Seating is on grassed terraces with no roof. We recommend you bring a rug or cushions to sit on, and wear sensible footwear and warm/waterproof clothing. The performance will go ahead unless severe weather is forecast. A bar, soft drinks and snacks will be available to buy and you are welcome to bring a picnic.

There is an accessible toilet on site and it is possible to access the amphitheatre by wheelchair, but please note the route does go over slightly uneven and grassed land and the seating may not be comfortable for all. If you have any questions about access, please contact us.

Limited parking is available at Henbury Lodge car park by Blaise café and play area, around 400m walk from the amphitheatre.