Zoom in on this best man speech at theatre’s live stream debut

Danny Swanson in Glyn Maxwell's The Best Man will be the Barn Theatre's first live-streaming Zoom ev

Danny Swanson in Glyn Maxwell's The Best Man will be the Barn Theatre's first live-streaming Zoom event. Picture: Simon Wallace / MeltingPot Pictures - Credit: MeltingPot Pictures

A Welwyn Garden City theatre is embracing the latest web technology with its first live-streamed show.

Glyn Maxwell's The Best Man starring Danny Swanson will be the Barn Theatre's first live-streaming Z

Glyn Maxwell's The Best Man starring Danny Swanson will be the Barn Theatre's first live-streaming Zoom event. Picture: Barn Theatre - Credit: Barn Theatre

In a December when theatres across the borough are dark and Christmas will be a bit different, to say the least, the Barn Theatre is taking exciting first steps into Zoom theatre, with live performance delivered right into people’s living rooms.

The subject of the experiment will be The Best Man, by local award-winning poet and playwright Glyn Maxwell.

Danny Swanson, well known for his fine performances on the Barn stage, collected glowing reviews when he took the show to Edinburgh in 2004.

The Scotsman wrote: “Glyn Maxwell’s poetic verse is a work of art in itself and is coupled with Swanson’s precise and passionate delivery.”

Danny Swanson in Glyn Maxwell's The Best Man at Edinburgh in 2004. Picture: supplied by the Barn The

Danny Swanson in Glyn Maxwell's The Best Man at Edinburgh in 2004. Picture: supplied by the Barn Theatre - Credit: supplied by Barn Theatre


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In this one-hander, Bailey is the eponymous best man. His best mate and boss, Addy, is the groom – but this is not the speech that Addy was expecting to hear.

Bailey discovered more than he bargained for when hunting for stories for his best man speech – and is more than happy to fill the congregation in on all the details.

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The guests want to leave, but Bailey presents an explosive reason for them to stay: a tale of love, revenge and cheating, with a sting.

Swanson is delighted to have the opportunity to reprise the role on home turf – literally.

Due to COVID restrictions, he is currently rehearsing in his dining room.

He said: “I feel like I’m meeting up with a friend I thought I’d left behind 17 years ago. But I get him now.

“I weirdly like the masochistic line learning that goes with a one-man show.

“The dialogue is beautifully written and I get Bailey – all the love and hope and disappointment.

“It’s a tale for all ages. How we strive to be better and learn from the mistakes from our past. Haunting and hopeful because finally he does the right thing and stands up to injustice.”

Barn artistic director Clive Weatherley knows the creative and technical teams are at the top of their game.

He said: “We have a very skilled and experienced team of writers, directors, camera and lighting men, whose combined skills will keep audiences entertained while we wait for that wonderful day when we can all gather again in the foyer.”

The Best Man will be streamed for four nights from the Barn Studio from Thursday, December 10 to Sunday, December 13 at 8pm, for donations starting at £10.

Don’t miss the Barn Theatre’s first live online production. It’s not recorded – it’s live theatre that’s open to all to watch online.

To book your place, go to www.barntheatre.co.uk

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