STAGEwrite 10













Our special 70th pantomime was a huge success by any measure. The large cast pulled out all the stops; both choruses were the very tops. The contribution of our younger members, both onstage and backstage, was brilliant. Everyone involved deserves many congratulations on a show to remember! And to enhance those memories Mikey Beard has very kindly extracted nearly 100 stills from his magnificent video which you can find on the HR Dramatic Society’s Facebook Group page.
But now it’s time to prepare for the Spring productions! Plural because we are presenting two one act plays (see Auditions poster attached). The Tom Stoppard play has 5 male and 3 female parts(though this could be adjusted to 4 & 4). The Arthur Lovegrove is ‘a comedy for women’ with ten females required! So please do come along to the auditions and tell all your friends – we always need NEW members as well as current colleagues who are willing to expand their repertoires and take on new thespian challenges! So see you there on February 11th and/or 16th at 8 pm.

BTW for the Stoppard we are CHASING A CHAISE LONGUE! The condition is not critical so long as it can stand a couple of bodies falling on it (ooops, giving the plot away!!) Also we need an old style radio set and two ancient tennis rackets.

Next Committee meeting is Tuesday September 19th at 8.00 pm.




The Committee has received a report by Robin Hepburn on the subject of organising props and general storage.There are detailed proposals focussing on each of the main storage areas including the above stage loft area, reorganisation of the under stage space, the area off and above the lounge bar for wardrobe resources and the reorganisation of the cupboards in the offstage room. The issues of access, storage, security and management of these areas all need to be addressed Once the proposals are agreed expenditure on tools, racking, hardware consumables etc. will be necessary. Finally to make effective progress a working party(minimum 12 members) will have to be organised to spend a whole day carrying out the re-organisation. Further discussion and a date, probably in the New Year, will be needed. Watch this space!



Alan Ayckbourn said “It’s a comedy though it’s called a farce….a study of the British in bed, with everything except sex!” Asking friends about their bedroom pastimes he learnt that some played board games, read all night and, in one case, passed the time making furniture. There was plenty of the latter required from our stage crew with a large set including dressing tables, doors and three beds to construct.The result was a triumph of ingenuity, design and hard graft. Of course it was a mixed blessing when one bed collapsed during rehearsal and we had our angle for a press story!
Sir Peter Hall called the play itself ‘a masterpiece’.
Three couples have their bedrooms invaded by Susannah and Trevor who can only find peace when they have totally discomfited everyone else. Though it offers visual comedy, humorous one liners and delightful silliness, it is the insensitivity of this neurotic pair, wrote critic Michael Billington, which allows them to ‘exacerbate the crises in other people’s marriages.’ The conclusion provides a poignant message about how, despite differences of perception and priorities, such couples can achieve harmony and muddle through contentedly.
Our directors, Denise Robertson and Kath Watts, guided the cast effectively throughout their preparations and rehearsal.
Debbie Kragnes accurately conveyed Susannah’s insecurity while her extrovert hubby Trevor (Paul Shaw) created a trail of chaos. But all the ladies seem to fancy him! This naturally upset DIY fanatic Malcolm (Richard Bradshaw) whose Casanova like aspirations left new wife Kate (Cate Titterton) singularly unimpressed. Trevor’s ex, Jan (Marian Bateson) was a beacon of sanity, for the most part, and managed her bedridden husband Nick’s bad back with vigour and alacrity. The latter (Simon Bateson) cleverly avoided playing the sympathy card and his convincing anguish provoked much hilarity throughout the hall! Finally elderly Delia (Alison Titterton) and Ernest (Barry Holley) demonstrated their inclinations to be out of touch with both the times and each other while still relishing culinary treats and expressing exasperation over sleep deprivation. Our Technical director John Wallis, ably assisted by Diane Ogleby, rose to the lighting and audio challenges while all the backstage and front of house teams ensured the three performances ran very smoothly. Visually it was lively and attractive thanks to excellent costumes and colourful set. Once again the excellent photography of Jonathan Wyllie and superb design skills of Mikey Beard added significantly to the quality of publicity.