About garden theatre festival


The Garden Theatre Festival is Bath’s only purpose-built open-air theatre festival, running from the 10th – 21st July 2024. New for 2024, we’re also able to offer covered seating*!

Taking place in the magical gardens of the Holburne Museum, expect two weeks of superb performances from nationally renowned companies, in our beautiful, open-air thrust stage space, with something for all of the family to enjoy.

And there is so much more to enjoy aside from the performances. Tickets include time to relax in the Holburne’s beautiful gardens after evening performances – enjoying the space is all part of the Garden Theatre Festival Experience!

At the Garden Theatre Festival, we have deck chairs available to hire, or you can bring your own blankets, cushions and camping chairs. Take advantage of our amazing on-site food and drink providers, or bring along your packed picnic. Why not grab a drink from the bar, and discover the best outdoor theatre the UK has to offer!

*While we do have a new shelter in place for 2024, under cover priority is given to those that have booked deckchairs. Covered space for those bringing their own blankets or seats is on a first-come, first-served basis. Not all of the audience area is covered.


The Journey of the Garden Theatre Festival is now becoming a rather large story. Here’s the brief version:

Summer of 2020, restrictions for outdoor events were lifted! Kerry Irvine and I spent many long Zoom calls seeing how we could bring theatre back to Bath. Then Spencer Hancock at the Holburne Museum got in touch to say we could use the garden! We booked our good friend The Three Inch Fools and hosted Baths’ only night of theatre that summer.

In 2021, I booked 7 nights at The Holburne, and The Garden Theatre Festival was born. Selling out every evening, and establishing Baths only outdoor theatre space.

In 2022, Josh Beaumont (executive director) and I set out to create Bath’s largest open-air theatre in the city. By July 2022, we’d opened the newly branded GTF, with a marketing team, our big blue box office, a tech team, a bar and the biggest acts and audiences we have ever hosted. We even had a launch party! With the world’s most expensive falafel … Free for our guests, eye-watering for us.

In 2023, we refined our theatre festival offering with a brilliant programme of events, and created a theatre space that – while still outdoors – felt sealed off from the rest of the world.

For 2024, we have something truly special in play – shelter! Whether it’s shade from the hot sun or a roof from the rain, GTF 2024 is ready for a British summer of theatre.

But this would not be possible without the initial support of Kerry Irvine, Bath Spa Productions, Zenith Youth Theatre, Producer Works, the Emerge Studio and Charlotte Godfrey my family and friends, my wonderful fiancé, the power that is Josh Beaumount, our local press, our team, our champions, sponsors, partners and you! Our wonderful audiences. 
I look forward to welcoming you to our beautiful festival this year. You may see me in the box office, by the bar, or onstage for our inhouse production. Come say hi!

Here’s to a very exciting summer of theatre!

Matthew Emeny (Artistic Director)