A SLICE OF SATURDAY NIGHT
by the Heather Brothers Kath Lunn discusses Kamamica's nostalgic production
Kamamica is a small amateur group performing otf-beat, small-cast, low budget shows; it wa~ formed in 1982 for a one-off performance of Godspel/ and has just completed its eighteenth annua l summer production . The group presented A Slice of Saturday Night in 1995 and I succumbed to popular demand (by the cast) to · revive it this year, playing at two seventy-seater venues, in Harrogate and Pateley Bridge.
experimcn drinking. popping.
The show h,:.., eight: tour _ boys and aged ma n. have to "in " n1ove " .
(The Trenru stage and th written tor k~ bass, guila drums. It difficult must be Kamamica do n auditions. The c ' is by invi tation
A Slice of Saturday Niglzt is a nostalgic account, by the Heather Brothers, of teenagers exper iencing life and love at the Club-A-Go-Go (in North London) during the early 1960s. It is awash with music that captures the sounds of the decade and has lyrics that are sharp, lively, often pOignant and sometimes slightly risque.
_iii II#;' The origi nal recording of th from thi s matches the sc re the cast was at>l. learn the har mon " and backing, at hl using their son hoc ',' to sing along with CD. We reh <lr" twice a week for E'I weeks, rarelv w ith full team (th almu holiday sea on \'. under wav), but everyone ' \\'orked conscientiousl y an we were well pr Fa by the dress rehear".. There were no a iu dance routines, ju t variety of Sixh , movement a la Ii I th e Pops performe<.; with typical dead, p expressions.
The plot tells of a new romance between a shy, innocent couple, the bringing-to-heel of the club's lusty Romeo by his long-suffering girlfriend and an attempt by a lovable braggart to involve "Frigid Bridget" in winning a bet he has set up with the other fell as. (No more will be revealed .) Eric "Rubber Legs" de Vene - an ex-rocker who owns the club sings hi s comments on the events, verbally chastising the youngsters but discreetly watching over them . The girls crave romance - the fellas all fancy their
The set, as describ in the script, is simple It was built with t two venues in mi nd which fortunate l were of a similar shape and si 70l Upstage we had sil\' r reflective flats with
were ha ppy occasions.
centre recess for the band and a rise of three steps leading out o f the club. At downstage right a small curved flat backed the girls' four chairs and made a passageway (to the bar) be twee n the two areas . Eric's counter was ups ta ge lett at the foot ot th steps, and downstage left a s mall truck had mirrored sides when it was part of the club and in re verse served as the Gents (with urinal) or the all ey (with dustbin s). Dominahng the set was a light box, hung over the band at centre stage, with a bright, flame-red Club足 We A-Go-Go sign. decorated the tla ts wi th bronze stars, covers of old 45 records and pictures of Elvis. There was also a notice board advertising future attractions and displaying the rules of the club.
During the interval of each perfo rmance the cast, in costume and still in character, joined the audience in the bar and conversed w ith them. Their conversation was based on their dialogue - fa vo urite cars, scooter speeds, Cliff Richard, the increasing price of Babycham. It was amazing how the audience also got in on the act, replyin g in North London accents, using expressions of the tim e and eve n taking s ides in th e lovers' quarrels. The second act commenced with the cast inviting several people to the stage to join in "Eric's Hokey Cokey".
If yo u haVE' eight multi足 talented perform ers, four good mu sicians, an intimate venue and an addiction to the Sixties, don ' t hesitate to try the A Slice af Sa tu rday Night experience. It is the perfect light-hearted piece of fun and n ostalgia for a summer p roduction. If it is being performed in your area, don' t miss it; better still, add it to your list of shows for the future.
UGH I We had pink and purple gels in all the lanterns upstage, two pale rose profiles front of hou se for lighting the smoochy love songs, and white lighting on Eric's counter and the girls' sitting area. The girl s' and boys' loos were Lit in blue and thi s lighting also covered the alley outs ide the club. The coloured lighting and the dance movements were retlecte d, very effectively, in the mirrored flats.
Michael Palin is quoted as saying, "A Slice of Saturday Night should be available on the National Health St' rv ice. It wi ll cure all known co nditions of grumpiness and malaise ... " Kamamica wholeheartedly agree! PS. If travelling in the Yorkshire Dales, try to visit the Pateley Bridge Playhou se - a perfect little th eatre and a great credit to Pateley Bridge Dramatic Society, who ow n it
Few props are required: old 贈1 and 10 / - notes, coins, Babycham and beer glasses, a rubber stamp for proof ot entrance pay ment and an old cash-box.
COST ME The girls' Mary Quant-type dresses were bought from second-hand charity shops. They also had false eyelashes, beehive and pony-tail fringed hair styles, mini s kirts, white tights, long boots and pale lips. The boys had a Beatie suit, leather jerkin and cap and striped suit. Eric wore a dinner jacket. The cast dug d eep into theiT friend s' wardrobes to find the boys' outfits and an Afghan coat for the Sonny and Cher type number. The time predates flow e r power and the style was still quite tormal and conse rvative for the me n, with shirts, ties and polished shoes or Chelsea boots.
SOU 0 In spite of playing at small theatres, I felt that each membe r of the cast have a radio clip should microphone. They were kept at a very low level during full-cast numbe rs, but with the solos and duets we were able to achieve authentic Sixties electronic sounds - a very necessary e ffect that justified the expense.
MARKETING People generally in our part ot the country do not know this show.
nos talgia for the Sixties, our own enthusiasm, and recommendation by the first足 nighters. Some people returned for a second viewing.
ALL SCRIPTS, SCORES AND LlBRETII FEATURED IN "THE PLAY PRODUCED" AND "THE MUSICAL PRODUCED" CAN BE OBTAINED FROM
SUMM"R~ Our audiences lov ed A Slice of Saturday Nigh t, particularly those who had experienced the Sixties themselves. So many commented on how it was a perfect recollection of their own teenage years. The cast re vell ed in it - the rehearsals, set-building and pe rforman ces
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