ON STAGE: David Harper is hitting the road with a 24-date national tour with his one-man show
ON STAGE: David Harper is hitting the road with a 24-date national tour with his one-man show

DALE antiques expert David Harper is hitting the road later this year with a 24-date tour of his one-man theatre show.

It follows the success of his first foray into stage work.

Mr Harper, a familiar face from BBC shows such as Bargain Hunt and Antiques Road Trip, launched his stage show at The Witham, in Barnard Castle, last December and followed up with three more performances at venues across the region in January and February.

He has tweaked the “live and unscripted” format slightly for the new tour, while promising more tales from behind the TV cameras.

Unlike his first shows, he will not be inviting audiences to bring along items of interest.

“It’s a different show this time. I am concentrating more on the stories, and different stories to last time.

“There is still an element of live and unscripted and the audience can still ask questions, so each show will be slightly different to the last.

“I don’t really like the show to be too scripted. It’s more exciting if you don’t know what’s going to happen.

“But there is more structure so if no-one asks a question then I will still have a topic to talk about.”

Mr Harper said it was the behind-the-scenes stories from his TV shows that had gone down particularly well with audiences at his first shows.

“People were interested in how things were put together, how things could go wrong and the celebrities I had met.

“It’s almost like trade secrets of making a TV programme.”

Mr Harper's venture into the celebrity Masterchef kitchen has also earned comment from audiences.

“People like to hear disaster stories,” he joked.

Many of the venues lined up for his new tour – which starts at Bishop Auckland Town Hall on Saturday, August 17 – were suggested by fans after he tweeted a message asking for suggestions.

“I was inundated with places,” added Mr Harper.

Although there is no Barnard Castle date, he will also appear at Hullaballoo, in Darlington, on Friday, September 20.

Mr Harper has worked with dale promoter Peter Dixon – well known as the man behind the Funny Way To Be Comedy shows – to draw up the itinerary, which runs through to next year and will see him travel from Settle to Somerset.

In the meantime, he is currently filming for the next series of the BBC’s Celebrity Antiques Road Trip.

He has completed one episode during which he was paired with Penny Lancaster – wife of music legend Rod Stewart. This is due to be broadcast later this year.