Chichester – from The Spiegeltent to The Nest in exciting times

Spiegeltent interior (contributed pic)Spiegeltent interior (contributed pic)
Spiegeltent interior (contributed pic)
Presumably if you want to gauge the possibilities of Chichester’s new proposed third theatre, The Nest, you just have to go back to Chichester’s Spiegeltent on the Festival Theatre site just a few years ago.

And what an astonishing place that was. Amongst the shows was Sing Yer Heart Out for the Lads, a visceral exploration of the ugliness which can so easily adhere to football (which is obviously not something we should dwell on in this week of all weeks!)

It was heart-wrenching, in-your-face, intense, memorable stuff which put you absolutely amongst it all in a way that sit-and-watch-at-a-distance theatre simply can’t. You felt horribly, thrillingly connected, and that was priceless.

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There are huge numbers of things that the main house and the Minerva do brilliantly, but there are clearly some things that a considerably smaller venue will do even better. Sing Yer Heart Out for the Lads was one of them.

Big is beautiful – but there are times when small, indeed very small, might be even better. And that’s what makes The Nest in Chichester such an enticing prospect.

The new 120-seat studio theatre will be “vibrant hub for talent development and innovative and community performances.”

As Dame Patricia Routledge, president of the Nest Appeal, added: “For us to create The Nest and have it ready for 2025, we need to raise at least £1.5million by the end of March 2025. We’ve set aside £250,000 from our own reserves to kickstart the fundraising appeal – now we need your help!”

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For more details on the plans for The Nest and how to donate, visit If you'd like to discuss supporting this project or learn more about it, the theatre would love to hear from you. Call 01243 212869 to chat to a member of the team.

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