A Romantic Affair at Kedleston Hall

Sat 10 Feb and Wed 14 Feb, 7:15pm, Kedleston Hall

After two sell out Valentine’s shows last year, Lost Boys and Derby LIVE have taken the very easy decision to reprise, and revise, A Romantic Affair at Kedleston Hall for 2018. The Lost Boys Theatre Company, Derby LIVE, the National Trust and Sinfonia Viva are joining forces once again to provide a unique romantic experience to celebrate Valentine’s Day which will take place on Sat 10 and Wed 14 Feb in the exquisite surrounds of one of the country’s finest stately homes.

On arrival participants will enjoy a glass of bubbly, sensuous cello playing and a fire-lit three course meal at a long-table in the sumptuous Caesars’ Hall. They will then journey through part of the ground floor of the house to witness A Romantic Affair, an intimate drama recounting the first meeting between two great Romantic poets and rakish lovers, Byron and Shelley. Only this year there’s an additional twist. In the 200th anniversary of the publication of her novel Frankenstein, we will also bump into Mary Shelley – a woman ahead of her time and every bit as brilliant as the male poets she joins.

The year is 1816 and the “mad, bad and dangerous to know” Lord Byron is about to leave his ancestral home, and his country, for good. And for bad. The infamous Earl’s departure is interrupted by the arrival of another great, revolutionary poet, Shelley, who has already found his ideal woman, Mary. Fire and brimstone collide as the poets’ brilliance and bravado clash. The two depart but will soon meet again. This time on the continent and in the company of two women- Mary Shelley, who will write Frankenstein, and her sister Claire who will throw herself at another demon - Lord Byron himself. 

This year the entire evening will feature music from Sinfonia Viva’s outstanding cellist, Deirdre Bencsik. Deirdre, Sinfonia Viva’s principal cellist, studied at the Guildhall School of Music and began her career freelancing with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the Northern Sinfonia, English String Orchestra, Peterborough String Orchestra, Opera North, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, the Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, the London Mozart Players and Scottish Opera Orchestra. Deirdre joined Sinfonia Viva in 1983 and is currently Director of the Lincolnshire Youth Cello Ensemble.

Derby LIVE and The Lost Boys are pleased to continue their collaboration in producing Peter Roberts’ work, following on from last year’s great sell out success. The Lost Boys specialise in producing published works and new writing, creating exciting opportunities to work with emerging artists, new talents, other organisations, and more experienced collaborators. In this play they offer guests the opportunity to witness important and stirring events in the lives of these great Romantic writers, in the elegant setting of Kedleston Hall.

National Trust’s spectacular 18th century mansion Kedleston Hall provides the ideal setting for the immersive drama. Guests will begin in Caesars’ Hall (think of open fires and Jane Austen-style banqueting) for their three-course meal. This will be followed by a promenade through the ground-floor of this magnificent stately home to the Servants’ Hall. In the Servants’ Hall guests will experience a close encounter of the dramatic kind with Byron, Shelley and Mary.

A Romantic Affair will be performed at the National Trust’s Kedleston Hall, Derby on Sat 10 and Wed 14 Feb at 7.15pm, suitable for ages 18+, containing adult material. Tickets are priced at £65. This price includes a three course meal with a glass of prosecco on arrival and tea and coffee after the meal. Additional drinks are available to purchase throughout the night, and food is to be pre-ordered. Guests can look forward to a delectable selection of foods to choose from including the following menu choices:

StartersSalmon rillettes served with dressed salad leaves and toasted bloomer bread


  • Mushroom, sage & cheese tart

Both served with mini garlic roast potatoes, red cabbage & fine green beans


  • Spiced poached pear with clotted cream & butter shortbread heartderbylive.co.uk
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