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Newsletter of the raise Leicester Drama Society Please help LeicesterThe Drama Society funds for the ongoing development of The Little Theatre by joining their new 200 CLUB. October 2019chance It's your

What's on in October?

to win one of three cash prizes each month! Question. What’s the strapline line of the Eskimo Lottery? Anyone? Someone at the back perhaps? No one? Then I’ll tell you. “You have to be Inuit to win it” I’m here all week, matinees Wednesday & Saturday. Whilst the Little Theatre doesn’t have a lottery it does have a fabulous new 200 Club, where for just £60 a year you can win one of three cash prizes in the monthly draw. Our first monthly draw is to be made at the Trustees' meeting on Sunday 24 November. And how nice would that be? A lovely cash prize that enables you to pimp the Christmas Turkey, treat a loved one, or, the best present of all – spend it on yourself. If you’re an LDS member or friend of the theatre, a leaflet with further information and an application form will be winging its way to you soon, if you haven’t had it already. Joining is easy. Complete the form and return it to the Theatre Manager, then sit back with your fingers crossed, knowing that you are supporting the development of the theatre and in with a chance of winning a cash prize each month. A winwin. And as it’s the festive season soon and you may be stuck for a present for someone, why not buy them a share? It’s a year round present that makes them think of you each time there’s a draw. What could be nicer? Inside Theatre Weekend 2 The theatre has exciting development plans in the next few years which will The Importance of provide a fit-for-purpose venue for our Being Earnest 3 second century of LDS productions. Your Members' Gala Evening 4-5 generosity can make those plans Bracken Moor cast 6 become a reality so please join our 200 Job Vacancy - Foyer Supervisor Club. Earnest Review 7 Tim Hogarth-Jones And please join today! Cat on a Hot Tin Roof cast 8

Theatre Weekend September 2019 The Little Theatre Dover Street. Leicester. LE1 6PW. Theatre Manager Phillip Royley t: 0116 254 2266 e: Box Office t: 0116 255 1302 w: Leicester Drama Society Limited Board of Trustees (elected unless otherwise stated) Chairman & Trustee for Productions John Ghent Technical Trustee Andy Crooks Treasurer elect & Trustee without specific responsibility Charles Moss Trustee for Membership Tim Hogarth Jones Trustee for Facilities James Simpson

May I say a very big, sincere thank you to all the members who gave their time and talents to the success of the recent Theatre Weekend. The Saturday Open Day was a huge success with hordes of people coming through the theatre doors, and we have had many messages of congratulation from those who marvelled at the dedication and expertise of the voluntary membership. Not content with one successful event, we pushed the boat out and went for the double whammy with the Sunday Gala Performance. The terrific talent of those taking part was much to be admired and the expertise with which they were supported by both backstage and FOH, showed that when we work together there is no limit to what can be achieved. Mary Jones, Tim Hogarth Jones and I were immensely proud of our theatre and its membership. Here's to the next time! THANK YOU!

Marketing Trustee David Kimmins Chairman Honorary Secretary Mary Jones Trustees without specific responsibility Dennis Cooper • Simon Dickens Phil Wintle (Co-opted) Russell Hughes (Co-opted) Other Board Attendees Company Secretary Rob Thirlby (Appointed) Development Programme Director Jenny Harding (Co-opted)

Contributions to Scene are invited and welcome. Articles, images & ideas for stories are most welcome and if you are a nervous writer Editors Emma & Colin can write it for you. Our deadline is a week before the end of each month - but if you have a story then let us know before then to guarantee that we reserve space for you! Contact us via email at All photos in each edition of Scene are by the fabulous Sally Evans, unless otherwise stated.


The Importance of Being Earnest An LDS Production • 9-14 September 2019 Oscar Wilde's masterpiece "The Importance of Being Earnest" launched our new season in early September. Joseph Dickinson played the lead role and we caught up with him for a Q&A after the final curtain. So, no holidays for Joe this summer as being first up in a new season meant rehearsals all summer? Yes, it was pretty intense! I had recently come back from Australia so I had no holiday left to take, besides it was such an incredible process, though being involved in every rehearsal I got to see everyone building the show and the characters from the beginning and see John’s vision come to life. The weeks leading up to the show, it was brilliant to see all the costumes, the set, the space, everyone worked so hard to put this together. I couldn’t speak more highly of everyone involved, from the cast and director, to everyone working behind the scenes, it was a pleasure to work on this show. The past few weeks have been intense and exhausting but undeniably one of the best productions I have worked on. What drew you to the play and the role of Ernest/Jack? The Importance of Being Earnest is a play that I have always wanted to be in, the opportunity to be a part of this was one I couldn’t pass up. I think Ernest is a brilliant role to take on, it has been played by so many wonderful actors and is one of the central characters of the play so when I was cast I threw everything in to it. A good role for you? I believe so, yes. The character has a lot of depth and to explore that was fantastic. I also think with John’s vision of how he wanted Jack and all the other cast to interact, being that there are so many ways that it can be interpreted, I fit in that vision rather well. It’s a classic play that’s been performed thousands of times. There is a huge amount of analysis of each of the roles on the internet and what each & every nuance means, including the food! Do you read any of this? If so, does it help? Or do you rely on the Director for interpretation? Yes, its been performed everywhere by everyone and sometimes that can make it difficult to make a part your own. I think naturally one has to take inspiration from what other actors have produced before, understanding that you can bring your own personality to the role. There was a lot of analysis, I was reading someone’s dissertation on the play at one point. It was also great to have everyone in the cast so invested in extrapolating as • Continued on Page 6


Members' Gala Evening review

Debbie Longley •

Co-editor Colin settled into his seat but was a little unsure as to what to expect from the first Members' Gala. Still there was always the buffet and a glass of Bucks Fizz at the interval if time dragged! O ye, of little faith, O ye, of little faith. What a perfect night of theatre! Indeed, I’m struggling to think of a time that I have enjoyed myself more in an audience in recent months and that is in no way being disrespectful to the fabulous shows that I saw last season. Marion Morley & Aileen Orme •

Whoever had the idea of inviting members and friends of the theatre to perform in a Members’ Gala take a bow. The idea was an inspired one. It was the perfect “feel good” evening to launch our new season and a winning mix of songs from the shows, monologues, puppetry and from our very own Chairman, poetry. Any more rehearsed and it would have lost its organic beauty – sometimes the spur of the moment things are simply the most enjoyable. It was all masterly held together by the compere for the evening, David Lovell. Coupled with a glass of Bucks Fizz and a buffet in the interval (that could catch on!) all I needed was a fireside and slippers and I would have been right at home. It would be unfair to select any of the acts as a standout as that was not the point of the evening. It really was pure entertainment – and hugely enjoyable. Our thanks to all of them for their time and talent! Strangely, it also gave a flavour of our season’s work. One minute you are in Leicester, then a few bars into a backing track you have crossed the Atlantic and are hearing of the infatuation a young woman has with the coffee boy at Starbucks. The theatre was two thirds full for the show and if you missed it, you missed a real treat. It will “sell out” next year. You heard that here first. This event, coupled with the very successful Open Day held the previous day, made for a very successful weekend for the Society and the theatre.

Sienna Acoustic with Debbie & Nic Morse •

• 3 of Clubs - Rob Rayner, Sally Oakland & Justine Brain


Bryan & Brookes with Laura Brookes & Stuart Bryan •

David Lovell •

Siobhan Moore • • Penny Kimmins

Raffle Time with John Ghent & David Lovell •

Samantha Engler Hobson • All Members' Gala night photograhs are by Dave Morris


• Continued from Page 3

much as they could from each character, it really helps build a strong play. I like the way John directs in that he has a vision and an interpretation of each character, but as we built the show he was very open to listening to our interpretations and allowing us to experiment with the “what, why and how” of our roles. How did you start on the stage and what makes you continue to act? I started acting at school as it was mandatory, but it wasn’t until later when I first picked it as a voluntary subject that I really fell in love with it. I think one year I was a bit part as a crow and then the next I was playing Scrooge in A Christmas Carol. From there I never looked back, I’ve been involved in other groups in & around Leicestershire, Swansea University, Toronto and now finally back in Leicester I got involved with the Little Theatre. For me I don’t think there is any aspect of the stage that I don’t enjoy, from the first rehearsal, building a show all the way through to the last performance, every show is special and unique and the people you meet along the way are fantastic. I’ve no prejudice on how I’m involved either, I’ve worked as a Director, Actor, Stage Hand, Set Building, as long as I’m involved in a show then I’m happy. The reviews of the play and audience comments were great - do you take much notice of Bracken Moor by Alexi Kaye Campbell - Company List them? Many thanks to all those who auditioned for the play. I think its difficult not to take notice of It was good to have such a large turnout of members - Mary Jones them. One of the greatest feelings is finishing a show, going to the theatre bar and speaking to all the people that have Harold Pritchard • Bill Hinds come to watch it. It’s so lovely to hear Elizabeth Pritchard • Elizabeth Spendlove their comments and who knows? Terence Avery • Simon Butler Sometimes you might here a nugget of Vanessa Avery • Karen Gordon wisdom that may help in your next Geoffrey Avery • Adam Jones show/play. Naturally hearing those words Eileen Hannaway • Carla Lawes gives all the actors a big boost. John Bailey • Martin Bell Dr. Gibbons • Laurence Jackson What’s next for you? Immediately next for me is a bit of a rest! Director • Mary Jones It’ll be nice to take some time to relax Scenic Design • Kevin Jenkins and see friends. Following that the Panto. Costume Design • John Bale I grew up in Leicester watching the Panto Lighting • Jenny Harding & Martin Scott when my nan used to take me, my sister Sound • Stewart Wale & Tim Neville and cousin. When we got older, we then started going with our younger cousins. Stage Manager • Sian Williams Now having the chance to be in one of Deputy Stage Manager • Victoria Kirk the Little Theatre Pantos is kind of like Props • Lisa Thirlby coming full circle for me. After that there Prompter • Sandra Brown are a few shows I’ve got my eye on, but I Production Photographs • Sally Evans guess we’ll see where life takes me.


The Importance of Being Earnest Review Lynette Watson, an LDS member, reviewed "Earnest" in an article that first appeared in the Leicester Mercury. We re-produce it here for members who may have missed it. The Importance of Being Earnest was arguably Oscar Wilde’s most popular play and sadly, his last, having been performed in 1895 just a few years before his death. It is a satirical comedy ridiculing the hypocrisy of Victorian society, a zany mix of mistaken identities, melodramatic characters and a chaotic convoluted plot, relying on Wilde’s witty, finely written language for laughs, brimful of his most suitable epigrams and is less about class, love and deception and more his declarations on life. The play opens the new season at The Little Theatre and centres around two upper crust society gents, Algernon Moncrieff and John Worthing, both with alter egos, in love with two girls and having to suffer the lengthy interrogation of the haughty Lady Bracknell questioning their suitability as prospective husbands. Whilst remaining true to the traditional style of performance, there were moments when the play could have veered into the realms of farcical melodrama, but experienced director John Bale just managed to take the action to the wire without actually tripping over it! His strong cast did him proud, Keiran Whelan-Newby and Joseph Dickinson as Algernon and John respectively, equally matched each other in the verbal sparring duologues, inventing some ridiculous lies about their alter egos as the imaginary character Earnest. Job Vacancy - Foyer Supervisor Both Katherine Ardley and Katie Proctor provided the love interests of both men, as Gwendolen Fairfax and Cecily Cardew, bouncing off each other with Katherine’s highly clipped voice soaring up and down the vocal scale in wild abandon, in contrast to the more cheeky, but subtle delivery of Katie, a delightful pairing. Taking on the role of snobbish Lady Bracknell, Jo Jones was both commanding and intimidating, perceptively playing down the iconic lines which made her character more believable and surprisingly it worked. Some light relief was injected into this extremely ‘wordy’ play by Jane Towers as Miss Prism, Cecily’s hip flask swigging governess, breathlessly flirting with the vicar, Rev Canon Chasuble, played in caricature style by Charles Moss, a great comedic double act. Alec Davis’ simple but effective set together with, as always, John Bale’s stunning costume design and the unexpected twist at the end of the play ensured the production was a certain audience pleaser. The message Wilde quoted after completing the play is as relevant today as it was then and I quote ‘ The truth is rarely pure and never simple’, wise words indeed.


We are seeking to recruit a suitable individual to supervise the foyer area of The Little Theatre when the premises are open to the public. This is a parttime position and we would like the successful applicant to start in as soon as possible. The role is subject to some other responsibilities. Further particulars and an application form can be downloaded from the website. For enquiries please contact Philip Royley:e: t: 0116 2542266

Tim HogarthJones

Emma Bamford, Editor at Large, chats to Tim Hogarth-Jones, Trustee for Membership. What was it that sparked your interest in hairdressing and wigmaking? I had been involved with am-dram since school, so when I started to train as a hairdresser, it was part of the course to qualify as a wig maker as well, so that was the initial spark. How did you get started at The Little? I moved to Leicester in 1973 and joined The Little to meet people and get involved in the work of the theatre. I had been a member of the PEOPLES theatre in Newcastle and had enjoyed being part of an amateur theatre. I still have friends I met then to this day.

What has been your favourite show to do wigs or hairdressing for? I think my favourite show I have worked on was ‘A Little Night Music’ at the old Haymarket theatre. And, ‘One Man, Two Guvnors’ at The Little. You’ve created wigs and designed hairstyles for shows from various decades and eras. What’s your favourite era to work with, and why? I enjoy all eras but working on 18th and 19th century styles are the most challenging and enjoyable. I enjoy doing things that are complex and are interesting. Best thing - in your opinion - about working at The Little? The Little Theatre is a great place to get involved in many activities and meet new people who you can learn from and work as a team with. It also has the advantage of having a good bar that is open to members to use, even when there is no show on!

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof - Cast List Director John Ghent is delighted to announce the cast of his forthcoming play by Tennessee Williams Margaret (the Cat) Waterfield Brick Big Daddy Big Mama Mae (Sister Woman) Gooper (Brother Man) Buster Sunny Trixie Dixie Reverend Tooker Doctor Baugh Sookey Daisy

• • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Katie Waterfield Jonathan Barnes Joff Brown Jane Durant Samantha Engler Hobson David Jones William Langham Izzy Cudby Lois Esposito Elodie Dakin Robin Turner Paul Large Mira Hemsley Chloe Drury

Director Set Design Costume Design Lighting Sound

• • • • •

John Ghent Al Davis John Bale Jeremy Thompson Andrew Northcote assisted by Dave Morris

Stage Manager Deputy Stage Manager Props

• • •

Prompter Production Photographs

• •

Russell Hughes Victoria Kirk Jane Towers assisted by Raegan Oates Jenny Page Sally Evans


LDS Noticeboard - October Audition Notice • Beyond Reasonable Doubt In the Central Criminal Court of the Old Bailey Sir David Metcalfe, distinguished QC and Chairman of the Bar Council, is conducting the most important defence of his career – his own. Accused of the wilful murder of his terminally ill wife, Sir David finds himself locked in legal combat with his old rival, Anthony Blair-Booth QC, prosecuting council. A play by Jeffrey Archer, Directed by Russell Hughes. Audition dates Audition dates Tuesday 26 and Wednesday 27 November 2019. Rehearsals start tba Performance dates Mon 24 February - Sat 29 February 2020 Cast Member Court Usher Clerk of the Court Mr(s) Justice Treadwell Anthony Blair-Booth QC Det. Chief Inspector Travers Sir David Metcalfe QC Prison Officer Mrs Rogers Dr Weeden Lionel Hamilton Mr/Miss Cole Robert Pierson Stenographer Lady Metcalfe

Sex M/F M/F M/F M M/F M M/F F M/F M M/F M F F

Age Any Any Mid 60’s+ Late 40’s-mid 50’s 30+ Late 40’s-mid 50’s Any late 50’s+ 40+ ate 40’s-mid 50’s 30’s 30’s (non speaking, may be able to double as Lady M in Act 2) Late 40’s

Unless I have specified a gender or age range the casting will be flexible. The majority of cast are only in Act 1 as either court staff or witnesses. Only Sir David, Lady Metcalfe, Mrs Rogers, Lionel Hamilton & Robert Pierson are needed for Act 2. Scripts are available to borrow from the box office. If you are interested in auditioning please contact me on t: 07922 979801 or e: and let me know which audition you will be coming to. If you would like to audition but cannot make these dates then please let me know and I will arrange to see you another time.

Theft from a car in the Dover Street Car Park A member reports that the catalytic converter from her car was stolen recently whilst it was parked in the Dover Street Car Park and she was in No 52.

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Leicester Drama Society Newsletter October 2019  

Leicester Drama Society Newsletter October 2019  

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