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Hosted by Hugh Bonneville

Slapstick’s Silent Comedy Gala

The Gold Rush (1925) with live orchestra

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a collage of black and white cutouts of Charlie Chaplin against a yellow background.

Immerse yourself in the comic genius of Charlie Chaplin, Laurel & Hardy and Buster Keaton at Slapstick’s screen comedy Gala.

For over 20 years, Slapstick have defined themselves as a celebrated Bristol Institution, loved for their programme of screen comedy. The 2024 Gala is no exception and will feature big screen outings of three laugh-out-loud silent comedy classics, all accompanied by live music. Introducing the films and hosting the event is the award-winning actor and star of the Downton Abbey and Paddington film series, Hugh Bonneville.

Topping the film bill will be Charlie Chaplin’s masterwork The Gold Rush (1925), accompanied by the 15-piece Bristol Ensemble playing Chaplin’s own score, conducted by musical maestro Günter A. Buchwald.

Before this finale, the hilarious Laurel & Hardy short Big Business (1929) and one of Buster Keaton’s most admired and innovative short comedies, Cops (1921).

To set the mood for the evening, the Shanghai Shuffle jazz band will be playing in Bridgehouse (the foyer space at Bristol Beacon) from 18:00, providing a speakeasy atmosphere that captures the essence of the 1920s.

Dress for the occasion! 1920s clothing and costumes are very welcome (but of course optional).

Presented by Slapstick Festival

U18s: £5.00 off all ticket prices

Format: Reserved seating

Ages: All films rated ‘PG’ for parental guidance suggested

  BSL interpreted performance


Performance times

Shanghai Shuffle jazz band: 18:00 in Bridgehouse
Start: 19.30
Interval: 20.30 (20 mins)
Restart: 20:50
Finish: 22.40

All timings are approximate. Performers and times and subject to change.

“A Bristol Institution.”

Bristol Post

VIP supporters tickets

Package includes:
• Exclusive souvenir laminate
• Access to dress rehearsal screening of The Gold Rush
• Access to post-gala drinks party
• Exclusive Slapstick souvenir Gift

Limited availability


About Beacon Hall

Our new flagship venue at Bristol Beacon

The venue

Beacon Hall

at Bristol Beacon

Getting to the venue

Location: Beacon Hall is located within Bristol Beacon. Head to Level 1 and follow signs to find the auditorium.

Address: Bristol Beacon, Trenchard Street, Bristol, BS1 5AR


Bicycle racks can be found in front of the main entrance on Trenchard Street, Colston Street, and on the city centre promenade. Find your nearest cycle routes using Cycle Planner.

Car parking

Trenchard Street multi-storey car park is 200m away, directly behind Bristol Beacon.

  Bristol Clean Air Zone

Bristol Beacon is inside the Bristol Clean Air Zone. Check if your vehicle will be charged and how much you’ll have to pay.


Most bus services stop in and around the city centre promenade, 250m from Bristol Beacon.

View detailed travel information



Spaces for wheelchair users are in:

  • row S in the centre of the rear Stalls (10 spaces)
  • row Z in the left and right wings at the back of Lower Tier (4 spaces, 2 on each side),
  • rows G/H on the left only at the back of Upper Tier (2 spaces)

Assistance Dogs

Assistance dogs and emotional support animals are allowed in the performance space. Seats in row F are most suitable. If you prefer, you can leave your animal with a member of staff during the performance.

Hearing Facility

A Sennheiser MobileConnect assistive listening system is installed in the venue. Download the free App and use your own mobile device and headphones to listen to the performance. (Devices are available on request.)

View detailed access information

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