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A Salisbury Playhouse Production

Epsom Downs

by Howard Brenton

Main House

2 - 26 May 2012

epsom downs 1
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Mark Meadows, Ben Wigzell, Simon Muller and Michael Roberts. Photo by Robert Workman

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The cast. Photo by Robert Workman


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Video: Epsom Downs audience reactions

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"It romps home a winner... a production that embraces the carnival atmosphere of national celebration"   The Stage, May 2012
"Many fine performances... an engrossing and entertaining night out"   Salisbury Journal, May 2012
"Crammed full with a myriad characters... the race itself is triumphant and brilliantly executed"   What's On Stage, May 2012
"Nine tremendous actors play more than 50 different characters... Entertaining and thought-provoking"   Southern Daily Echo, May 2012

1977. The Queen's Silver Jubilee. It's Derby Day and sporting fever is sweeping the nation. On Epsom Downs, horse trainers, policemen, families and socialites rub shoulders with travellers, buskers and bookmakers.

There's Margaret, Sandy and their two children, who live in a caravan. They hope that if they place a bet on the big race they'll win enough for a deposit on a house. But will they back the right horse?

And there's Charles Pearce, the trainer of two Derby runners, who has trouble with his stable lads, and Superintendent Blue who's hoping not to have trouble with the large Derby Day crowd.

As the tension builds, and the great race approaches, the sun beats down, the beer flows freely, and lives are changed forever...

With a large cast playing a panoply of colourful characters, and epic staging, Epsom Downs celebrates the suspense, anguish, triumph and tragedy of a great British sporting occasion in unashamedly theatrical fashion.

Directed by the Playhouse's new Artistic Director, Gareth Machin, Epsom Downs is a unique theatrical event, with the foyer specially themed and the chance for audiences to place bets on televised races during the interval! Don't miss it.

Please note: this production includes occasional strong language.

Approx. Running Time: 2hrs 25 minutes (including one interval).


Join the racegoers with special Hospitality packages!

If you're coming to Epsom Downs, add to your enjoyment with one of our great Hospitality Packages, and believe you're actually at the races...

The Final Furlong Package includes best available ticket for the play, a programme, entry badge, 3-course meal, and a race-card to place your bet on a televised race during the interval. £45 per person (Tue-Sat eves).

The Winner's Package includes all the benefits of The Final Furlong plus a champagne reception on arrival and cheeseboard & port during the interval. £59 per person (Tue-Sat eves).

These packages are not available online. Call the Box Office to book on 01722 320 333.

Booking Details

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Performance Times

Monday - Wednesday evenings: 7.30pm

Thursday - Saturday evenings: 8pm

Matinees on Thursdays and Saturdays (from 10 May): 2.30pm. No Saturday matinee on 19 May.

BSL interpreted performance

Wednesday 23 May, 7.30pm

Audio Description & Touch Tour
Thursday 24 May, 2.30pm & 8pm


Ticket Prices

£12 - £21


Tours and Talks

Theatre Day
Thursday 17 May, 11.30am

Talk Out: Post Show Discussion
Tuesday 22 May


Discounts and Concessions

Over 60s (Available Tuesday – Saturday evenings)
£2 off full-price tickets

Under 25s, NUS cardholders, disabled, Jobseekers Allowance, income support,Wiltshire Passport, Equity members
£10 at all performances (Proof of status required)

School groups & youth organisations
£8.50 at all performances

Groups (available Tuesday - Saturday evenings)
Groups of 12+ £3 off full price
Groups of 40+ £4 off full price

Only one discount or concession per ticket. Subject to availability.


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Echoes Bartholomew Fair: a great public festival, held on common land and pulling in punters of every degree..."

The Times