A thrilling new drama inspired by Bristol’s legendary nightclub


Venue: Factory Theatre

Thu 30 May – Sat 15 June, 8pm (Sat matinee 2.30pm) (No show Sun)

Press Night: Friday 31st May, 8pm


Written by Amanda Whittington / Directed by Kath Rogers / Designed by Halla Groves-Raines / Lighting by Mike Gunning / Sound by Charlie Knight / Choreography by Oscar Anderson / Assistant choreography by Cleo Lake /


Performed by Cate Cammack, Annette Chown, Peta Cornish, Natasha Pring, Ryan Calais Cameron, Damson Idris, Hamilton Lee and Zachary Momoh and featuring DJ Kinsman.


Following the success of Under Milk Wood and Sus, Splice Theatre return to the Tobacco Factory Theatre with a fresh, original play inspired by Bristol’s iconic nightclub on Park Row, The Dug Out. During the 70’s and 80’s The Dug Out was one of the few hangouts where black and white teenagers were free to socialise together, drink and dance the night away.


Written by Amanda Whittington (The Wills’ Girls, Be My Baby), this is a powerful and uplifting play based on real-life events. The story brings together two significant moments that had a huge impact on Bristol’s social history, December 1974 when an IRA bomb exploded on Park Street and thirty years earlier in July 1944 when a black GI was shot by American Military Police during protests against the US army’s attempts to impose racial segregation in the city centre.

Director Kath Rogers said:

“Rumour has it there was a bar called The Dug Out on Queens Road during the Second World

War. The Dug Out on Park Row was an extremely significant music club through the decades. It was originally a Jazz club in the 60s – Oscar Peterson used to jam there after gigs at the Colston Hall. In the 70s it was Motown, reggae and funk with a bit of disco thrown in and then there was punk and two tone.

In the 80s it was hip – hop and Jazz/funk/soul. This dark and dingy cellar inspired many artists, DJs and musicians. The ‘Bristol Sound’ was born there and it’s still going strong in other dark and dingy cellars around the city. And it’s inspired this play. Must’ve been something in the air. Or the beer. “


Splice Theatre’s Kath Rogers directs a cast that includes Bristol based actors Annette Chown last seen in Bunnies at the TFT’s Brewery Theatre, Natasha Pring who performed in Splice’s acclaimed Under Milk Wood and Hamilton Lee. Also Bristol Old Vic Theatre School graduates Peta Cornish and Cate Camack together with Ryan Calais Cameron, Damson Idris and Zachary Momoh.  The professionals are supported by a community chorus of young people playing The Dug Out ‘Young Clubbers’.


Lighting Designer Mike Gunning (Kneehigh/Punchdrunk) and Halla Groves-Raines (recently graduated from BOVTS) will transform the Tobacco Factory Theatre into Bristol’s popular dark and dingy nightclub and a live DJ will spin records of 70s ska, reggae and funk spliced together with 40s black American jive as the soundtrack to Amanda’s witty, sharp dialogue. The Dug Out will be a fantastic and immersive experience appealing to a wide Bristol audience from old Dug Out regulars all the way through to young clubbers today.