The team that brought Andover ‘And Now We Tell Our Tale’ are returning to the Lights. Roy Chatfield’s new play ‘It Happened In Hampshire’ will be staged there with a professional cast on Tuesday 5 February 2019. It will also be visiting local schools.
It Happened In Hampshire’ is an irreverent romp through Hampshire’s past, incorporating music, rap and audience participation. Highlights include
- Alfred defeating the Danes in The Great Wessex Bake Off
- The Story of Edgar and Elfrida, as told by Jane Austen
- A very civil Civil War.
- Supernurse V the grime army
- A starring role for an Iceberg
- The secret of Spitfire modification XXX
The show is family friendly and you can book at The Lights.
How are you? Doing okay, FAB! I have got my first ever comedy show at The Art House on Saturday the 4th at 7.30. We are saying a donation of £5.00 which is going to The Art House. It’s The colourful Adventures of Merciful Grace, part pantomime, part dad jokes, and some poetry honest. If you’d like to come along book here https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/the-colourful-adventures-of-merciful-grace-art-house-fundraiser-4th-august-tickets-48273563528
This is my go at a steampunk pantomime AND it even has a pirate. We’re going to hold a competition so you can win yourself a steampunk parrot, called Albert Ross. Yes not really a parrot, but you did smile for a moment didn’t you.
For more detail check out my Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/CatRandle/
Let’s look after The Art House the way its been looking after us.
Hugs Cat Randle (aka Merciful Grace the Mechanical Maid)
Andover Playwright Roy Chatfield is one of the seventeen writers shortlisted for the inaugural Terrence Rattigan Society award. His play Going Back is an updating of Ulysses return to modern-day Central Africa.
The judges – writer Julian Fellowes, actor David Suchet, director Thea Sharrock and academic Dan Rebellato – are now reading the shortlisted entries and will announce their decision at an awards ceremony at Harrow School on 26 September 2017.
The winner receives a cash prize and a guaranteed production of at least six nights at the Sara Thorne Theatre, Broadstairs, with a rehearsed reading on offer to the runner-up.
Roy said ‘I’m delighted to be shortlisted. As the closing date for entries was last August, I’d assumed I hadn’t made it. They obviously read all the scripts thoroughly.’
The competition received 197 entries, of which seven were ineligible – always read the rules! Competitions such as this are a good way of promoting your work as they aim to discover unknown writers.
POP UP PLAYWRITING with Angela Street
Angela Street contacted Big Up Words with an idea to help writers in rural areas. This is a pilot scheme and could be a feature if there is enough uptake. Anglea runs many successful playwriting groups in Salisbury and her pupils are having plays produced in London and closer to home. Her new venture brings the writing closer to your home.
POP UP PLAYWRITING
Popping up anywhere in the South West. Providing affordable writing workshops. The workshop comes to you, saving you travel costs and time.
Days available from 5 May: Mondays, Tuesdays, some Saturdays, Sundays
Half days: 10:00 – 1:00 Whole days: 10:00 – 4:00 Evenings: any 3 hours.
If you’d like to host a workshop in your house or on your premises, and you have space suitable for at least 7 writers, maximum 15 writers, please contact me to arrange a time and date.
As the host, you will get the workshop free and can choose the topic or general theme most suitable for your group if you wish. You must agree on this with the tutor 6 weeks before the date of the workshop so that the tutor can prepare relevant material and advertising copy.
Topics may include: creating characters, dialogue, structure, conflict, stage directions, subtext, unblocking, comedy, voice, the absurd. Writing monologues, writing for radio, writing comedy sketches, generating new ideas
Workshops can cover basic techniques for writers new to playwriting through to advanced editing skills, or take the form of a tutored writing retreat.
The tutor will advertise the workshop locally in consultation with the host and will provide flyers for the host to hand out or distribute locally.
The host is asked to provide teas/coffees and in the case of full days either an undramatic lunch or advise participants to bring their own packed lunch.
The host must inform the tutor if they have dogs, cats or other livestock on the premises and agree with appropriate health and safety measures with the tutor.
All workshops are smoke-free, including vapes, and mobile free zones. There will be scheduled breaks.
Access and Parking: the host will be asked to provide information, for example, whether there is wheelchair access or steps into the premises.
Workshops require a minimum of 7 writers to run. If fewer than 7 people have signed up and paid, the workshop will be cancelled.
Costs: Half day/Evening £25 (15 concs) Full day £40 (£25 concs)
Please let me know any reasons people have for not attending, such as cost, travel, childcare, access, time, topics covered.
This is a pilot scheme to find out if there is an appetite for affordable writing workshops in rural areas. If successful, I will apply to the Arts Council for funding to assist writers needing financial help with fees or childcare, to provide rural workshops in wheelchair accessible venues, such as village halls, and also for smaller group sizes, with only 4 or 5 writers.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org 01722 322143
If you’d like to know more go over to her website https://angelastreetwriter.wordpress.com/
Best one yet…
I love community theatre. Done well it’s a pleasure for audience and actors. Tonight the audience got to see an ensemble community theatre show at its best. They loved it.
From the start of the show, the theatregoers heard toe tapping popular, sing-a-long songs, well sung. I was curious to see how the change of musical director effected the group, however the cast is confident in its delivery and we heard 4 part harmony clearly. There was one wobble at the opening song of the second act however the audience knew the song so well, we sang along in harmony with gusto so I doubt anyone actually noticed.
I am biased because I staged managed for two of Unity’s shows, to introduce my son to live theatre. Thinking about what could be improved I realised the whole show was excellent and any improvements are just little picky things that most audience members wouldn’t bother with because they had a great time.
The show was well written for family entertainment with the right balance of slapstick, tap dance, song and dance routines, jokes for the kids and jokes for the mums and dads. It was English pantomime at its best with a big hearted dame, a comedy side kick, a zoo load of things to do for all the actors and lots and lots and lots of puns.
Special mention to John Seculina, as Noah, who is a humble actor who can hold an audience enthralled. When John scolded God because Noah thought it was a cold call the audience were in stitches. We enjoyed Noah’s family mopping the arc and Yvonne West as the Raven.
What we loved most of all was the children. Unity’s strength is the cast’s ability to let anyone have a go. Two of my special needs actors from The Brilliant Drama group are regular members. Unity have a strong children’s section and this year the children enchanted the audience.
There is an element of “Oh they are so adorable,” and “Look that’s my son/daughter,”. It’s that wonderful pride you feel at the school play. However this year the children scenes were competing with the adult’s scenes for professionalism and polish. The doves modern dance scene took our breath away, the children’s singing was fab and the dialogue made us laugh.
I just wish The Lights surround sound and hand help mic’s had a better range. We strained to hear the softer spoken children at the back. It was a shame because they were fantastic actors and special mention to the chickens. My other picky point was mid point there was a long dance number where the foxes chased the chickens. The stage was very full and there was so much to look at, a lot of people missed the foxes stage action with the chickens, which was a pity because it was very funny.
It helped the script was balanced and clipped along at a rate. The audience felt so at home, the children in the audience became funny hecklers. Sharon O’Leary worked hard in her slapstick scenes with Jez Jameson. I could hear the children giggling away, just waiting to see what mischief the actors would get up to next.
It was a pleasure to watch a cross section of Andover’s community enjoying their friends and family having fun on stage. This year Unity’s Oh Noah you don’t was the best pantomime show they’ve done. They will have to work very hard to top this one next year.
Come along to The Lights 10 February 2016 to see five professional actors bring alive Andover in the
1960’s, a decade that changed the town for ever.
Based on the memories of local people, And Now We Tell Our Tale was originally written by Roy
Chatfield as a youth theatre piece for fifty-four children and young adults successfully staged last
February. Roy has now rewritten it for five professional actors, and includes additional stories from
The five actors selected are
Director John Baxter is looking forward to working with this enthusiastic and experienced team of
actors. ‘It is an event in itself that we’re bringing professional actors into local schools. That it’s a piece
of theatre about Andover and created wholly in Andover makes it unique.’
In addition to the public performance, the cast will be giving performances and workshops in local
The Performance begins at 7.30pm. Tickets cost £5 (concessions £3), obtainable from The Lights.
There will also be a Q & A session with the cast and team after the performance.
The project is supported by HCC, TVBC, Test Valley Arts Foundation and The Lights.