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Here To Entertain You

Blog and News Letter

Blog and News Letter

Lets Get on with it!

Posted on October 11, 2014 at 1:35 PM

It seems so long ago now since we had auditions for the Principle parts for our Pantomime Jack And The Beanstalk. It was in fact only 2 months ago!

So after some very good auditions, the standard was very high and it was obvious that a lot of hard work had gone into the preparation by the candidates, the principle parts were cast. Unfortunately not everyone who auditioned could be cast in a Principle role, however saying that, it was by no mean feat to cast the parts as the standard was so high.

The advice to those who did not get a part is to keep trying, some decisions to cast is made, not only by the hard work put in but also by the pairing of characters, hence the reason if it’s not your day today maybe tomorrow will be. Don’t give up on trying. Many who have experience in treading the boards will tell you that they were turned down many a time before and after they got parts they auditioned for. One of the most important qualities to have for our society is ENTHUSIASM & COMMITMENT.

So the people cast for the principle roles are as follows:

Jack                                                                               Charlotte Wilson

Princess Primrose                                                         Sophie Golby

Dame Dotty Dimple                                                        Paul Wilkinson.

Simple Simon                                                                Tim Guest

Snatchet                                                                         Katie Golby

Scarper                                                                           Adam Lovell

King Hubert                                                                     Malcolm Whatcott

Queen Hyacinth                                                              Margaret Melvin

Piccalilli the Witch                                                           Joanne Burgess

Fairy Sugardust                                                              Jessica Young

Humphrey                                                                       Nick Wray

Rancid                                                                            Chris-littler Moore

Last but not least……….Buttermilk                                Surprise appearance by ……….and…………..

Well done everyone and a big thank you to those who have turned up for the Chorus. We are well and truly into rehearsals and I have to say the chorus sound fabulous. Again enthusiasm and commitment is evident, everyone is working very hard. 

I think it’s about time I mention the Production team. We have the privilege of having David Harthill as Director, believe me it’s going to be a very funny show. Our one and only Elaine Oakley as Musical Director and drum roll…………..Bernadette Cowley-Richardson as choreographer. Assistant, Jessica Beever.

Unfortunately our stage manager and set builder has left for this show which has been a major blow as they were such an asset for our productions, very talented and professional. The show must go on though! We have fortunately managed to procure the talents of another Stage manager whose reputation precedes them. As a committee we are very relieved and extremely thankful for them standing in at short notice. Disaster averted, thank goodness. I also need to say my other half, Stuart Wilson was railroaded......I mean volunteered to be set designer, something which is very new to him, but I have the utmost faith in his abilities....or else!!! ;)

So rehearsals have started and everyone is working hard, ok there are some hiccups but what show doesn’t. On the whole things are going well and the show is starting to take shape. There have been a few tears but overall there have been more laughter……………

However as we are on the subject of tears I feel it is appropriate to mention the floods of tears we have been having behind the scenes that could and will have major repercussions for our society continuing to produce live musical theatre to Normanton and surrounding areas. (Not to mention the repercussions for other local groups and societies).

We have for a few years now used the Alice Bacon Centre to stage our productions; however after we have finished this Pantomime the future of using this facility is doubtful, the reason being is that Wakefield council has made the decision to put up the hire charges for the centre. we expect some increases but we were not prepared for a 100% - 125% increase! The Wakefield council criteria for rental of the centre states because we charge for tickets we must be a business and therefore we must have enough to cover the extra charges. Believe me even before the increases we made a loss on our shows. Ok maybe we can put ticket prices up but then we don’t want to make it any more expensive than it is, as we feel it will be at detriment to some being able to afford to see our show, surely this is counterproductive as we would get less in our audiences. We would absolutely love to show our productions for free or at a minimal charge, however I don’t think people realise how much it costs to put on a show, I know I didn’t appreciate the costs before I got involved in the society! The bills soon add up, hire of the facility, production costs for example hire of the band, wardrobe costs for costumes, stage set costs, lighting, sound. Marketing……..etc., etc. the list goes on and on. At best we break even but that's a rarity, most of the times we make a loss, we have recently made up this loss by fundraising; I don’t think I need to say how difficult that can be. Thanks to the generosity of our members giving up their time and money and the generosity of the public, to whom we are very grateful, we have managed to just keep our heads above the water, however with this massive increase the council have implemented in hire cost, after this show (we had already started to plan for the Pantomime and continue to fight the substantial increases so therefore are committed to the Pantomime this year) the money in the pot will not cover another show at the Alice Bacon Centre. If you are aware there is very little in the way of other facilities in Normanton/Altofts area that can accommodate our productions and therefore we are going to have to think seriously about our future. We will continue to fight the increases but we would also like you to support us if you want live theatre to continue in this area.

So back on a happy note, rehearsals. Everyone is working very hard, I am always amazed by the commitment of the members coming to at least 2 if not 3 rehearsals a week. We started with singing and choreography and have progressed onto Lib. I don't think that a rehearsal has gone by without a good laugh and a giggle, not just with the jokes but also with the cast and their antics. We have the pleasure of 2 Crigglestone members treading the boards with us for this Panto and they both bounce off of each other with their humour. If you came to Normanton gala this year you probably seen and heard them as Dame Dotty Dimple and Simple Simon, Paul Wilkinson and Tim Guest, so funny. I've also been impressed with the 'clicking' of the funny characters Snatchet and Scarper, Katie Golby and Adam Lovell.

We have quite a small chorus this year for the Panto but when you hear them sing you'll be amazed by the power of their voices and this includes the youngsters. I know I'm probably bias but they are fantastic, come along and see for yourselves.

I don't think anyone in the chorus can deny that they won't be a lot fitter by the end of the show, what with Bernadette's warm ups for the choreography!!!!  :D

Well think that's enough for now, don't want to give too much away too be continued.

Have a look at our gallery for rehearsal photos.


NB Since writing this the council have delayed the increase charges until there has been a review. Let's sincerely hope they see how devastating a big increase will be, not only to our society but other community groups as well.


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