The entertainment at Bristol spans 16 different performance areas and all the streets in between! You’ll find daredevil acrobats, soulful musicians, side-splitting comedians, three full-contact jousts, and hundreds of performers who bring the city of Bristol to life!
Entertainment Stage Schedule
The Entertainment Stage Schedule will be posted the Wednesday evening before each weekend.
Although unusual, scheduled acts may change due to weather, illness, or Her Majesty’s whim.
Adam Crack: Fire Whip (all season)
Holder of NINE Guinness Book World Records, Adam Crack’s skills are unrivaled anywhere. Adam performs sophisticated, high-energy routines, featuring his own dry humor in spoken material, anecdotes, historical or educational stories. And yes, there is always room for audience participation, so come prepared!
Aerial Silk Fantasy (July 9 – Aug 7)
Lauryn Murray graces the floor and nimbly climbs the precarious heights of silk, appearing as though gravity were merely a suggestion, not reality. Lauryn’s beauty, grace, and skill will awe the young and old alike as she floats effortlessly 30 feet above Shakespeare’s Meadow near the RenQuest™ encampment.
ARNE PARROTT (July 9 – 31, Aug 13 – Sept 5)
Whimsical, wonderful, and always witty, Arne Parrott’s music captures the simple enchantment of the faire and encapsulates it within a myriad of musical mirth.
Audience with the Queen (all season, Sundays only)
For those who live in the Faire city of Bristol, this is their once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet Her Majesty. Will they bring joyous song and comedy as a gift or a serious matter that can only be settled by royal decree? Join us on Sunday evenings at the Nobles’ Glade. No two audiences are ever the same!
Barely Balanced (all season)
Bristol’s favorite masters of acrobatic comedy have come home to roost, climb, balance and amaze! Performing acrobatic feats that you will see nowhere else, as well as their end of day fire show, Barely Balanced must not be missed!
NEWLY RETURNING! Thee Bluebeard (Aug 6 & 7)
Captain Thee Bluebeard, a pirate man of the high seas, the low seas, and the inland seas is looking for crew members once more! Will you be chosen to demonstrate your abilities as a fellow pirate and wag skallies with the captain? Every recruit will receive their personal certification. In addition, Captain Thee Bluebeard will be available for random marriages for those ready to tie the knot! All ages show!
Bounding Main (July 23, 24, Sept. 3, 4)
Bounding Main is a Great Lakes based acapella vocal group that sings richly harmonic versions of traditional and contemporary maritime songs. Their shows are filled with spirit, humor, and harmony and their arrangements of nautical-themed music bring the listener into the world of fellowship, adventure, and romance.
Breakfast With The Brass (all season)
Start the morning entertainment off with an infusion of music that will carry you throughout the day. Bristol’s Royal Brass is a team of master musicians who play their way through a morning set that both provokes and invigorates. Awaken the dawn and have a cup of Breakfast with the Brass.
The Bristol Buskin’ Frolic (all season)
The Bristol Buskin’ Frolic can be found dancing and singing throughout the city. Whether they are at the Maypole or in the city streets this group is the life of the entertainment party!
Broon (July 9 – 31, Aug 27 – Sept 5)
Broon brings a conversational style to the variety comedy world with less emphasis on corny gags and empty flash and more on audience interaction and personality. While cracking bullwhips, juggling bowling balls, or eating fire Broon keeps the laughs alive with a dry wit and extemporaneous style that keeps audiences in stitches. With his variety skills and stand-up comedy style Broon presents a show filled end to end with sly humor and impressive stunts and Broon’s extensive improvisational experience guarantees no two shows will be exactly alike.
BROTHERS BLACKQUILL: IMPROVISED PLAYS (July 9 – 24, Aug 20 – 28)
Join Johnathan and Quentin in their quest to write the greatest play ever written. With their trusty bag of scrolls and suggestions from the audience, watch as the Brothers Blackquill create a brand new hit play on the spot. A completely improvised show where you, the audience, get to influence the story, create the characters, and tell us what happens next!
Chalk Artist (all season)
Bristol’s own Magdalena daVinci returns! Join the incredibly talented and self taught chalk artist as she creates massive works of art!
Children’s Knighting Ceremony (varies, check schedule)
Does your young one (age 12 & younger) demonstrate the knightly virtues and deserve to be elevated by the Queen? Join us at the Nobles’ Glade promptly at 4:00 p.m. (limited dates, check schedule) to review the manners knights/ladies/guardians are expected to demonstrate, and then meet Her Majesty!
(Please arrive on time for this limited event as we may not be able to accommodate late arrivals.)
photo: Gretel M Hansen
Cirque du Sewer (July 9 – Aug 21)
You may recognize the trained rats, cats, and acro-human of Cirque du Sewer from their national and international tv appearances, including a standing ovation and multiple rounds on America’s Got Talent. But watching them live at a renaissance faire is even more thrilling because we can’t edit out when cats are jerks! Melissa combines her skills with the talents of her rescue animals, creating complicated obstacle courses for the rats, dancing with cats, and balancing upside down on a half-inch slack rope.
Clan Tynker (Aug 13 – Sept 5)
An enchanting kaleidoscope of skills from around the world performed to live music. An impressive variety of juggling skills, stage magic, comedy, Central Asian/Middle Eastern dance, sword swallowing, fire-eating, and tight-wire walking with an accompanying musical soundscape played on an eclectic variety of instruments. Fun for the whole family!
Country Dancing (all season)
Can you hear the beat of the drums? The sweet melody of the violin? Perhaps the soaring notes of a flute? It must be time for country dancing! Join us to celebrate the Queen’s arrival in Bristol by dancing with our family, friends, neighbors, and even travelers from distant lands. You can come to watch, or even better, grab a partner and join the dance!
Court of Common Pleas (all season)
Laugh your way to the stocks as the Sheriff of Bristol hears the many zany crimes committed on this festival day and hands out their special brand of justice. No crime, however small or obscure, will be ignored while the Queen is in the city.
Courtly Fashion (all season)
Have you ever wondered how many layers the nobles are really wearing? Why do certain nobles wear certain items? How long does it take to put all that stuff on? All these questions and more will be answered! If you are lucky, Her Majesty the Queen may stop in to display the current style. photo: TG Davison
Courtly Life (all season)
You’re invited to rub elbows with your noble cousins in the Nobles’ Glade all day, every Faire day! Highlights include…
Present the Nobility: First impressions are everything. Will the nobles meet with Her Majesty’s approval this day?
Music & Dance: Before taking their meal, the court works up an appetite with music – the food of love! Witness the stately dances and the swirl of jewels as the nobles woo one another on the dance floor.
Court Feast: Bring your lunch and join us for a picnic in the shady glade. We’ll provide the finest entertainment for Her Majesty and you, her guests!
Sewing Circle: Have you ever wondered what it took to hand sew an Elizabethan shirt? Ladies from the court will be in the Nobles’ Glade working on clothing, hand blackwork embroidery, weaving, and more.
Craig of Farrington (all season)
A wandering minstrel, specializing in love songs and bawdy songs. Craig of Farrington has been a fixture of Bristol since our inaugural season and continues to delight lovers and sweethearts with songs to bring them closer together. This delightful balladeer can be found wandering the lanes throughout the festival. Stop, listen, and learn to love.
DAN THE BARD (July 9 – 17, 30, 31, Aug 13 – Sept 5)
Teller of tales, singer of songs, master of musical humor Dan walks the land, singing songs, telling tales, and doing good deeds. Listen to the tale of the “Drunken Gnome Illusionist.” Learn why a mouse, a bird, and a sausage are doomed to death! Be sure to look for Dan near the RenQuest™ encampment and ask about this one time… at Bard camp…
Ded Bob Sho (Rated PG-13) (July 9 – Aug 21)
“Hey Audience!” Announcing the return of the Ded Bob Sho! The hardest working cadaver in show business is back with all matters bawdy and profane. Corpse comedy and audience interaction at their finest!
Dirk and Guido: The Swordsmen! (All Season)
Blades flash in the sunlight and the cry of “What ho!” echoes through the air. Dirk & Guido: The Swordsmen, return to Bristol for another season of flashing steel, daring-do, and the wooing of women. Bold and Stupid Men at your Service!
The Mighty Drum Jam with The Great Antone (all season)
This is the roaring crescendo of a day at Bristol, where the thunder of drums fuses with the crashing waves of dance to form the sound and fury that is the Bristol Drum Jam.
Eddie Jeff Cahill (July 16 – Aug 21)
Songs, stories, and tall tales tumble from his lips like barrels over a waterfall, shattering rings & staves on the water. A True Wandering Minstrel!
THE FREESTYLERS OF PIPING (July 30 – Sept 5)
Inspired by the progressive rock bands and jazz musicians of the 60s and 70s. The Freestylers of Piping, consisting of long-time Renaissance faire performers David Duncan, and Michael Huebner along with Armando Wood, aim to create music that reflects these influences with the use of The Great Highland Bagpipe, Percussion, and Bass.
Gabriel Quirk (July 9 – Aug 21)
Gabriel Q is a puppeteer, costume and puppet builder and a variety performer. He has performed for 25 years at major Renaissance Festivals across the country. He has also performed at the Kim Tom Clown festival in Shaghai, China in 2008. For the past 10 years Gabriel has built and performed large puppets for the krewes of Orpheus and Muses for the Marti Gras parades in New Orleans.
How Not to Die! (All season)
Whether it’s succumbing to disease or getting three feet of steel thrust at you, health and wellness in the 16th Century can be hard work! Join your Bristol Trayn’d Bande in an entertaining look at health, and swordplay, and learn the most valuable lesson of How Not to Die!
Ivanovich! (Aug 14, 21, 27, 28, Sept 3 – 5)
Ivanovich the Impossibilist, master of prestidigitation, brings his own flavor of magic, mystery, and illusion to Bristol.
The Jackdaws (all season)
The Jackdaws deliver original, contemporary, and traditional Irish Rock to audiences across the land. This trailblazing trio will excite and have you coming back for more with their driving melodies and relentlessly aggressive lyrics. More Irish than a drunken roar, and a damned sight messier, meet The Jackdaws.
NEW! John O’Monroe (all season)
John O’Monroe has traveled the known world listening and learning music from faraway lands. John can be heard in the lanes masterfully performing on big drums, bigger drums, and the hammered dulcimer.
The Jousters (all season)
The Jousters are excited to bring their fully armored, hard-hitting and wholly unique style of jousting to Bristol. This is a true sport – every lance break and shield shatter achieved is done in an authentic quest for victory! Come cheer for majestic steeds and noble knights as they compete for The Golden Chain of Bristol!
Lady Ettie – Lady Ettie’s “Me Playce” (all season)
Join Lady Ettie for her version of tea-time as she takes a well-deserved break from her self-appointed position as Bristol’s welcoming committee. Bring the whole family to what is truly a mad tea party, filled with games, stories, and laughter.
The Langer’s Ball (ALL SEASON)
The Langer’s Ball is a two-piece Irish Folk-punk band that has been writing, touring, and performing for well over a decade. Playing their own brand of traditional drinking songs and original material, their sound is harder-hitting and bigger than you’d expect it ever could be. With a thumping beat and a flurry of notes and harmonies, you’ll dash to refill your drink and cheer for more.
The Lynx Show (all season)
The Lynx Show is a unique blend of magic, sword swallowing, and comedy. Lynx is a veteran when it comes to performing at Renaissance festivals across the country. Not only is there audience interaction and participation but a strong positive message at the end. From death-defying feats of amazement to bewildering moments that just can’t be explained, The Lynx Show is sure to thrill you! So, don’t miss out and be part of the fun!
Manticore Consort (all season)
Share a musical moment with the Manticore Consort as they travel the lanes of Bristol presenting a magical blend of music performed on an intriguing array of ancient musical instruments including the hurdy-gurdy, gemshorn, recorders and more!
Ménage À Moi Comedy (Rated R)(all season)
One naughty, bawdy comedian who is on stage playing with himself for your pleasure! Humorously indecent yet always discreet the top-shelf drinky, kinky stylings of Ménage À Moi comedy pair nicely with a cooling beer or a warming tequila shot. Come for the sexually liberated, inclusive camaraderie. Stay for the belly laughs, new friends, and an organic unpredictability that ensures every show is unique. Mature themes.
MooNie the Magnif’Cent (all season)
Enchanting audiences for over 20 years without saying so much as a word, MooNie is the undisputed master of Bristol’s Globe stage. MooNie presents a show that combines classic clowning, slack rope work and enough comedy to leave you gasping for breath. Enter the mind of MooNie.
Musical Blades (Aug 20 – 28)
Since the turn of the century, this fearless band of misfit rogues has been terrorizing and delighting the Midwest with a unique blend of hilarity and harmonies. The Musical Blades have spent the last 13 years bringing soaring vocals and vibrant performances to countless renaissance festivals and clubs in 11 states across the country’s midsection.
Musket Firing (All season)
Join your Bristol Trayn’d Bandes as they showcase the latest in modern military technology. Witness how black powder firearms were used historically, and the spectacle of smoke and fire!
New Minstrel Revue (all season)
The New Minstrel Revue has traveled all across America sharing their unique mixture of original and traditional music to excited and appreciative audiences. With a focus on vocal harmonies and a high level of musicianship, these seasoned performers are consistently finding new ways to make you laugh, make you cry, or make you want to get drunk and start a band.
PRESHOW WITH ODORFERIOUS THUNDERBOTTOM – FRONT GATE (ALL SEASON)
Start your day at the fair, BEFORE the faire with the preshow provided by Bristol’s “Keeper of the Privies.” Audience participation is just the thing to set the right tone for a wonderful day at the faire, and Odorferious Thunderbottom (aka “OTB”)’s just the thing to get you started. Watch as contestants are put through their paces in a series of challenges that only the mind of a Thunderbottom could provide. Come down to the show before the show!
Rambling Sailors (July 9 – Aug 21)
Rambling Sailors is a new effort by performers Gregg and Susan Csikos. Both successful soloists in their own right, Gregg and Susan performed for over a decade individually. Now with a combined experience of 25 years on the circuit, a repertoire of hundreds of songs, and harmonies that please the ear and lift the spirit, Rambling Sailors is on a mission to bring traditional sea music, history, and stories to the stage, delivered in the style that inspired generations of sailors to go to sea.
NEW! Randal Piper (July 9 – Aug 21)
A glimpse into the musical mind of chaos, Randal Piper makes his debut playing the streets and stages with some of his intergalactically renowned critical hits, some of which are so spontaneous they haven’t been written yet! Come out for the tunes, stay for a ‘Riggle Do’ or two and leave with some Bardic Inspiration!
The Raven (all season)
The Raven combines street magic, circus skills, and clowning to create close encounters and circle acts in bursts around Bristol. The Raven flies on top of a giant ball using fans or a silk cloak as wings and drops down spontaneously to present mystery. The energy is unique, mesmerizing, and humorous.
RenQuest (all season)
RenQuest™ is a game full of thoughtful and fun puzzles, a story where you are the main character hero, and a place where the epic legends of King Arthur’s Court live on during Queen Elizabeth’s Renaissance. If you can prove that you are a worthy Heir of the Round Table, you can select who will wield the mighty sword Excalibur.
Gameplay is $10, recommended for ages 12 and up (but we’ve had players as young as 8 with accompanying parents). Sign up at the RenQuest™ Red Vardo, located near the Cheshire Chase stage on your Faire map. Tickets are available from 11:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. every Faire day.
SERAPHIM ARABESQUE ENSEMBLE (Sept. 3, 4 & 5)
From across the ocean of fire, the Silk Road carried them, like the desert D’jinn they were born of the sand. Blending music and dance from throughout the Middle East, these performers will take to you on a journey to exotic and ancient lands. The rhythm of the drums is infectious, the melody of the Oud will enchant you, and the dancers will make your heart race.
Sit back and enjoy as they invite you behind the veil of the harem.
Ship Shape (July 9-17, 30, 31, Aug 6-28)
Ahoy there! We are Ship Shape, a music and comedy group newly ashore and looking to entertain any landlubber looking for a laugh! We specialize in sea shanties, tight harmonies, and nautical humor. Join Mack, Frankie, and Swiss for a shipload of fun!
Sturdy Beggars Mud Show® – The Mud Pit™ (Rated PG-13) (all season)
The original Mud Show
All we know for sure is that in 1979 The Sturdy Beggars™ first “fell” into their special “field” of “entertainment” somewhere in the rich and tasty topsoil of the Midwest. Since then the first, the only, the original Mud Show® (Reg No. 1,985,845 with the United States Patent & Trademark Office) has toured to over 22 Renaissance Faires across the continental United States. With their adage “the whole world’s a stage, just add water,” this “greatest show in earth” has left nothing but laughter and mayhem in its sullied wake.
NEW! Supernova the Strongwoman (July 9 – Aug 14)
Pushing her muscles to the limit, Supernova the Strongwoman amazes audiences with insane feats of strength, daredevil acrobatics, and the wanton destruction of perfectly good steel! The whole family can join this cyclone of comedy and demolition!
Table Setting Ceremony (all season)
The nobility may not be present, but the household staff is hard at work preparing the feast! Learn why putting a plate down in the wrong order could be a grievous insult, and which traditions continue into the modern fine-dining experience.
Tortuga Twins (July 9 – Aug 14)
Playful, bawdy, and unabashed, the Tortuga Twins (all three of them) will return for six fun-filled weekends! Their special blend of stage comedy and audience participation has been labeled “Asthma-Attack Inducingly Funny.” Be warned. Rated PG-13.
NEW! Two Bard Party (Aug 13 – 21)
Randal Piper is joined by his best friend and fellow bard, Rowan Thorne to bring you many original songs of fantasy, comedy, and adventure ranging from the inspirational to the ridiculous and unfortunate. Prepare yourself for Full-Frontal Nerdity!
Washing Well Wenches (all season)
The Washing Well Wenches take up residence in Bristol to earn a living by cleaning laundry… or by marrying a wealthy man. This naughty and tempestuous twosome will win your hearts with a rollicking, laugh-filled, one-of-a-kind show!
Weapons of War (all season)
Your Bristol Trayn’d Bande is ready to take on any foe! We’ll show you how to do it too, if only our Captain and Lieutenant can agree on the best soldier for the job. Comedy and violence erupt as the battle between Pike, Shotte, and Cavalry takes place!
Wiggins Faerie Lore Magician (all season)
Magician, storyteller, and human ambassador to the faerie realm. While Wiggins seems to be a human fantasy jukebox, his true agenda is educating folk in the needs of the little people and getting himself elected again. He is recognizable by his very large mushroom, the smallest stage in the shire. If you don’t believe in faeries before you have met Wiggins, you most likely will after!
Willy Nilly’s One Man Romeo & Juliet (Aug 27 – Sept. 5)
This isn’t your great, great, great, great, grandfather’s Shakespeare. This wild, hilarious show will sweep you up in the action, romance, and laughter of Shakespeare’s classic love story. Willy Nilly plays all the characters in this fast, comic version with sword fights and sock puppets. Fun for the whole family!