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gabbs

The Memory of Water by Shelagh Stephenson

The realistic, well observed and detailed set prepared us for an equally forensic examination of the lives and attitudes of the three daughters. Teresa, the oldest (Moyra Brookes) quickly established the character of the dutiful daughter relied upon by the two others to take on the responsibilities of caring for the ageing and latterly, hospitalised mum.  Her obsession with all things natural and organic is quickly established as is her irritation with and scorn for her siblings.

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Moyra Brookes played with great consistency, the very set of her head declared her supremacy among the sisters.  The head gradually lowered as she lost her composure completely when finally tempted by both a spliff and a quantity of whisky.  Her acid turn of phrase reached its most bitter as she revealed her “clever’ sister’s teenage pregnancy. The performance was sustained and developed throughout.  It was a well observed and entirely credible characterisation.  Although the butt of some of the comic moments she conveyed the frustration of many a sister who finds herself “in charge” of the older parents. Her portrayal of the woman unused to much liquor becoming slowly more and more drunk was excellent and totally convincing. This is very difficult to achieve on stage but she was entirely convincing and funny and tragic at the same time. The crumbling of the family cornerstone, as she saw herself, was very poignant.

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In the opening moments of the play we also met Mary.  She is revealed as an overcommitted and exhausted doctor trying to sleep off the last shift. Played by Sarah Mullins, this character was perhaps the most sober, unsmiling of all. Her obsession with one patient’s welfare impinged even upon her personal life, but there was a darker side to Mary as we learnt later.  Her sharp reposts and unsmiling expression carried through most of the play, but the revelation of the real tragedy came much later. Its announcement by Teresa was cruel and unvarnished.  Later, however, Teresa revealed the caring and more tender side of her nature as she told Mary of the hidden tragedy.  An explanation perhaps, for her taking on the responsibility of her mother’s wellbeing.

The third sister was the whirlwind of a character, Catherine, played by Helen Dixon.  She was the peripheral figure of the family as far as she was concerned and slightly written off by the other two sisters.  The role was played with huge energy and variety which was well sustained throughout. Her mercurial change of mood, her inventions of half truths were both the tragedy and the comedy of her life.  Her plea to be understood and loved was a  real crie de coeur, but laughed at by us probably because there is a bit of Catherine in us all

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The three sisters vie with varying degrees of vehemence for the “starring role” in all the half remembered family sagas of childhood.  The one thing they seem to agree on is that Mary was the favoured child, the one whose cleverness had to be protected and cosseted and who ultimately became a doctor.

The one thing that the daughters share is a disappointment in their relationships with men.  Theresa  has the most stable partnership with Frank.  He is the one she depends on for everything. He is her second husband and she chose him via a dating agency.  Frank (Murray Stephen) portrayed the tolerant and long suffering Frank with commitment and consistency.  He physically dominated the stage which was fortuitous given the character he played. His head was hung a little low so we rarely got a full face which was a shame.  He did however, play the comic moments with great success and prompted lots of laughter.  Even when finally standing up for himself he inspired laughter that rocked the studio.

Mike (Mike Ayres) made a hugely comic entry through the window.  A doctor having a long term affair with Mary, he came across as an affable and easy going even affectionate partner. He contributed well to the comedy, but ultimately he too made a considerable contribution to Mary’s sense of hopelessness. Essentially the most privileged of the sisters, she suffers the greatest sense of disappointment with life at the hands of the easygoing Mike.

Off stage as it were, there is Xavier, commonly referred to as Pepe much to the annoyance of Catherine.  Xavier is Catherine’s Spanish “boyfriend” but he too finally fails the ultimate test and abandons Catherine, in a brief telephone conversion.

I have left consideration of the character of the ghost of mother Vi (Elaine Burns) until last,  because in many ways she is the most important character in the play.  She visits Mary because as she says ‘I look at you and I see myself’ and gives the mother’s point of view. It was played with great clarity and sympathy and was the “glue” that held the story and indeed the production together.   The playing was very engaging and totally convincing.  The fact that we could “see the ghost” didn’t in any way upset one’s suspension of disbelief. Her interpretation gave stability and credence to the comedy.

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The interplay and ensemble playing was of a very high standard indeed. there were no weak moments and the comedy flowed almost until the end. There was a momentary touch of farce as Mike’s bright cerise bath towel towel slipped almost revealing all.  It was well timed whether it was deliberate or not, we shall never know.  However it added to the momentary revelations of flesh that were an integral part of the “family” at ease.  There were many moments of high comedy.  Too many to identify in detail, but Catherine seeking comfort from Frank as he lay exhausted on the bed and the sisters trying on their mother’s old clothes will remain in the memory for some time. Both scenes were highly comic and served to enhance the poignancy off the situation.

The costuming and set were, as always with Nomad productions, absolutely perfect.  Sound and lighting, suitably discreet, gave a delicate touch of icing on the cake. There is nothing “Am Dram” about this team.

 

Polly  6 July 2017

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The post The Memory of Water – Polly reviews appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

Local theatre reviewer, Lola, reviews Oklahoma! 

“Bookham Light Opera Society chose wisely in offering Rodgers and Hammerstein’s first musical collaboration for their Nomad theatre production this year. With plenty of well known songs and opportunity for lively dances they were surely on to a winner.

The well organised set, together with the effective lighting and well designed costumes effectively established the scene of 1906 Oklahoma. The musicians led by James ‘Mr Music’ Marr underpinned the action perfectly and must take their share of the credit for an engaging production.

oklahoma review BLOS curly laurey

The casting was spot on, Melanie Kemp portrayed Laurey as both strong minded and vulnerable when the characterisation required it. Her singing raised the quality of the production. Michael Ayres‘ Curly was an interesting mixture of introspection and confidence in particular at the social where he shows his determination to win Laurey’s affections.

 

oklahoma review BLOS curly jud

I was much taken by John Beavis’ Jud. Slow and menacing, he is in contrast to the the more romantic things going on around him. John carried off the role wonderfully well. Joanne Silcox as Aunt Eller and Vykki Mash as Gertie both looked to be enjoying their roles as did Julian Warner-Edney (Will), and Colin Barnard (the ranch owner), and added to the gaiety of the show by the exuberance of their singing and dancing. A word for the ‘dream’ ballet sequence, Matt Gardner and Laura Thomson showed dancing ability and poise not always seen at the Nomad theatre.

oklahoma review BLOS laurey curley dream ballet

Richard Peachey again showed his gift for comedy in his portrayal of Ali Hakim whilst Sophie Johnstone almost stole the show with the consistentcy of energy and vigour in her scenes.

 

oklahoma review BLOS laurey ado annie

There are several set pieces in Oklahoma! that drive the story along: the principals have their songs, the dances are important to the entertainment and the plot must of course be made clear to the audience. Yet the running time of over two and a half hours was a tad long, maybe some judicious cutting might have been made without diminishing the enjoyment of the story.

Overall a competent production with fine singing and movement. I cannot finish this review without a word for Sid Dolbear‘s magnificent ‘tache which almost acted his eyebrows off the stage!”

Lola

Oklahoma! by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II

In association with Bookham Light Operatic Society Facebook Link
Directed by Jackie Shearer

oklahoma review BLOS ali hakim

 See more reviews here: Review pages

The post Oklahoma – Lola reviews appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

 

Close Quarter Productions, John B Hobbs and Theatre Reviva! in association with The Nomads present:

When Love Grows Old

The hit comedy double-bill direct from the Brighton Festival Fringe.
The event is a short double-bill, directed by Theatre Reviva! Artistic Director, Graham Pountney with Highly Recommended and 4-Star reviews.

‘The Romance of the Century’
features the most glamorous couple in the world, whose love story caused a national crisis.
‘The Weatherman’
– two old friends reflect on love and friendship, and try to remember someone’s name…

Buy tickets online now!

It’s direct from the Brighton Fringe Festival for 2 performances only on Friday June 9th and Saturday June 10th.
There’s also a Question and Answer session with the Author and the Director right after each show, included in the ticket price!

theatre reviva when love grows old

The post When Love Grows Old appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs
The play is set over three summer days in July and is bookended by a funeral and a wedding. Or is it? Will the wedding take place? Over the course of two hours the central character Philippa Farnsworth goes through several emotions as she reflects on what will bring her the best chance of future happiness. Suzanna Walters as Philippa played her role with adroitness and expertly moved through a range of difficult emotions as her character struggled to understand and accept that her future might be happier with Simon than with Christopher.
As her fiance Christopher, Matthew Weaver convincingly showed us a brittle character who had concerns of his own which possibly prevented him from being able to provide the happiness which Philippa wanted. Kenny Menet-Hawkins was perhaps a little young for the portrayal of Simon but nonetheless played his part in showing us–and Philippa–that he was the better bet for a happier marriage than the self obsessed Christopher.
The play is a mixture of serious moments mixed with elements of farce (including the staple of a middle aged man losing his trousers !), and the cast, under the capable direction of Tracey Gillard, handled the switches from comedy back to seriousness with some alacrity. As Florence Merry, a woman with her own regrets, Moyra Brookes excelled and acted with the panache and style Nomads have come to expect from her. Hayley Clines as Martha played the part with enthusiasm and clearly thoroughly enjoyed playing the role of the faithful research assistant. Light relief came in the form of Iain MacFarlane’s uncle Brian. Blustering and overly jovial the underlying warmth came through his (at times), Aussie larrikin tactlessness. Emily Ingold was a delight as Christopher’s sister Louise, playing the would-be maneater with great relish.
The Nomads put the show on in the intimate space of The Studio. There is great scope for interesting theatre here that might not attract large audiences in the main house. It is to be hoped we see more shows here in the future.
Lola

The post Happiness by Paul Matthews appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

Friday 2 June at 7.30

Tickets: £10

An evening of humour with Charles Garland and Alfie.  This is a fundraising event for the new Greenroom building.

Recorded cameo music by Rick Wakeman, with occasional extracts from the book “My Labrador Eats Poo”.

Directed by Sam Snape

Charles Garland is a writer and composer, television producer and director. His performing career began at Birmingham Repertory Theatre as a dancer in a musical, and ended at The Old Vic Theatre as actor / musician in a production of Dickens’ Great Expectations.cg-150x150.jpg

Soon after, Charles joined the BBC, as assistant to Sir Jonathan Miller for a new production of Cosi Fan Tutte. Following that, he worked on shows such as Blue Peter; three Royal Variety shows; sketch and variety shows, including The Paul Daniels Magic Show as well as dramas and a stint as director of Top Of The Pops.

Sitcom became a major part of his working life, with Terry and June; Joint Account; and Last Of The Summer Wine as assistant producer, and assisting David Croft OBE, on Hi-De-Hi!; ‘Allo ‘Allo! ;You Rang, M’Lord? and Oh, Dr Beeching! as producer.

Next, over a three year period, Charles re-edited most of the classic comedy archive for the BBC, including Dad’s Army; Are You Being Served?; Steptoe and Son; Porridge; The Good Life and more.

alfie-150x150.jpgHaving left the BBC, Charles is now freelance, and going back to his roots with his book of ‘whimsical verse’ entitled ‘My Labrador Eats Poo’ (not quite as disgusting as it sounds) illustrated by Harry Venning, and this stage show, which features Charles, and his Labrador Alfie.Alfie-tour-mini-Nomad-300x300.png

Follow Alfie on Facebook and Twitter!

The post Once Upon a Labrador appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

Audition dates coming soon!

Dick Whittington – By Peter Denyer

December 12 – 16 including a Saturday matinee

We need dancers / singers / actors – small parts and principals, as well as a Musical Director and Choreographer.
Get in touch with Artistic Director, Andrew Hamel-Cooke now to express your interest – and2hc@gmail.com
Cast list
Principals
  • King Rat
  • Dick Whittington – principal boy
  • Idle Jack
  • Sarah the Cook – Dame
  • Alice Fitzwarren – principal girl
  • Fairy Bow Bells
  • Tommy the cat – non speaking
  • Alderman Fitzwarren
  • Captain Cuttle
  • The Sultan of Morocco

Smaller roles

  • King Neptune – optional
  • Gnawbone – a rat lieutenant
  • Gnashfang – another rat lieutenant
  • Sailor 1
  • Sailor 2

The post Dick Whittington Auditions appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

Directed by Andrew Hamel-Cooke

Wednesday 15 to Saturday 18 November at 7.45, matinee on Saturday at 2.30

Auditions for males, 20-30 playing age are still open!

Contact Andrew by email: and2hc@gmail.com 

A comedy by Brandon Thomas set in Oxford in 1882, this English farce follows the hilarious events that arise when two students, Jack and Charles, use the excuse of the imminent visit of Charley’s aunt Donna Lucia to invite their young ladies to their rooms.

The post Charley’s Aunt Auditions appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

Ember Big Band

Saturday 9th September at 8pm

Tickets: £15

Come and hear the big band sound

The Ember Big Band is a not-for-profit line-up of 23 talented musicians that made its debut in March 2015. It performs at major events throughout Elmbridge (and often way beyond – the Eastbourne Air Show is on the cards for August). Past gigs have included sell-out Christmas concerts, regattas, Thames Heritage days, a Rat Pack dinner dance at Whiteley Village and a special `command performance` for the Mayor of Elmbridge`s nominated charities for 2017.

Our line-up of 23 musicians (plus talented singers) perform numbers in styles and tempos ranging from the Great American Songbook to swing, Latin, funk and rock. The band is conducted by Bill Geldard, one of the UK`s best known trombonists and arrangers. Since turning professional at the age of fifteen he has played with some of Britain`s most famous orchestras and musicians including The Squadronaires, Geraldo, Ted Heath, John Dankworth and Jack Parnell. Ask him about the high spots of his career and there is a modest pause (probably because there are too many to mention). Then he recalls touring with Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Liza Minelli and Sammy Davis Jnr; having a solo specially written for him by Sinatra`s arranger, Nelson Riddle; performing with Henry Mancini at “The Pink Panther” premiere in Switzerland; playing on the sound track of the first Bond film, “Dr. No” – and on the signature tune of ITVs hit 70s TV series “Minder”. Bill says: “Ember is an amateur band – but we take a professional approach to everything we do. There`s a difference between being `amateur` and `amateurish`. We`ve got a cracking programme lined up for the Nomad Theatre – and are confident of a great audience.”

Ember Big Band Publicity Officer is Nick Handel 020-8398-2789. 07742-139004.

 

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The post Ember Big Band appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

Presented by Andrew Brewis, starring Giles Shenton

Directed by Simon Dowling

Saturday 22 April at 3pm and 7.30

Tickets: £12

This one-man comedy play ‘My Dog’s Got No Nose’, by Ron Aldridge, takes us on a journey through the events surrounding a stand-up comedian’s first ever public performance.  Stand-up comedy, unrequited love, animal lovers, facts of life, sibling rivalries and mercy-killing are just some of the elements covered in this very funny and bitter-sweet story, as we discover that both the man and the ‘performance’ are not quite what they seem.
This ‘debut’ is the fulfilment of a lifelong dream and illustrates perfectly the old adage, “be careful what you wish for!”
  • “Bitter-sweet, very funny, sometimes poignant, often hilarious!”
  • “This evening will leave you laughing and crying at the same time!
  • “It was so good my husband didn’t fall asleep!”
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The post My Dog’s Got No Nose by Ron Aldridge appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

The music of Richard Rodgers presented by Andrew Brewis

Saturday 6 May at 3pm and 7.30

Tickets: £14

A celebration of some of the greatest songs ever written.
Featuring Chris Read and Jess Radcliffe, supported by a live band!
Come and hear songs from Carousel, The King and I, The Sound Of Music, My Favourite Things, Pal Joey and more … ‘Something Good’, ‘The Lady Is  A Tramp’, ‘Have You Met Miss Jones’… the list goes on.

Richard Rodgers was an American composer of music for more than 900 songs and for 43 Broadway musicals. He also composed music for films and television. He is best known for his songwriting partnerships with the lyricists Lorenz Hart and Oscar Hammerstein II. His compositions have had a significant impact on popular music up to the present day, and have an enduring broad appeal.

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The post The Sound of His Music appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

Directed by Graham Botterill

Wednesday 5 July to Saturday 8 July at 7.45

Tickets: adults £12, children/students £10

In this often hilarious tragi-comedy, three sisters come together before their mother’s funeral, each haunted by their own demons.  The three each have different memories of the same events, causing constant bickering about whose memories are true.

 

The post Memory of Water by Shelagh Stephenson appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

Play in a Week

Play in a Week directed by Brandon McGuire

Monday 24 to Sunday 30 July
performances 29 July at 7.30, 30 July at 2.30
tickets: £13
An original play, specially commissioned for PIAW.  This annual week-long fully inclusive project enables actors with learning and/or physical disabilities to enjoy the magic and benefits of participating in a theatre show and putting on public performances.  “Always a treat!” 

 

The post Play in a Week appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

directed by Jeff Wightwick
Wednesday 4 October to Saturday 7 October at 7.45, matinee at 2.30 on Sat 7th
Tickets: adults £14, children/students £10, £12 for all adults on 4th

This wonderful farce is set in a top floor London flat, belonging to Philip and Joanna Markham. The flat has been renovated, and so has been largely empty. Philip is a publisher of children’s books, and he shares an office with his partner, Henry Lodge, on the ground floor. Philip agrees to let Henry borrow his apartment for the evening to “entertain” his latest girlfriend. At the same time, Joanna Markham is persuaded by Linda Lodge to let her borrow the apartment, so she can entertain her lover. What nobody knows is that the interior designer who had been decorating the apartment for the past three months has decided that this was the night he and the au pair girl would try out the new round bed! When all three sets of people converge on the apartment, expecting to find it empty, chaos and confusion ensue.

The post Move Over Mrs Markham by Ray Cooney and John Chapman appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

Tuesday 12 to Saturday 16 December
Evenings 7.30, matinee at 2.30 Saturday
Tickets: adults £16, children/students £10, £12 adults on 12th

A traditional pantomime which follows the story of Dick Whittington, his cat and his rise to fame in London. This show has got it all – from shipwrecks to streets paved with gold!

With barrels of laughs, slapstick, great musical numbers and plenty of audience participation there will be something for everyone to enjoy.

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The post Dick Whittington by Peter Denyer appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

It is with regret that we have had to cancel the production of Charley’s Aunt that was going to start on 1st March.  The play will be performed later in the year from 14-18 November.  In its place Andrew Hamel-Cooke and his cast will present another more modern comedy.

 

Struggling sculptor Brindsley Miller and his fiance, Carol, are having a party with the aim of impressing Carol’s bombastic father, Colonel Melkett, and millionaire Georg Bamberger. They hope the two men might purchase some of Brindsley’s sculptures. Without permission, they have borrowed the furniture and effects of their fussy neighbour, Harold, to make their own flat more presentable. Just before the guests arrive, the main fuse blows, plunging the flat into darkness. What follows is a frantic romp with unexpected visitors, mistaken identities, and surprises lurking in every dark corner! Only we, the audience, can see the action that ensues in the dark. As you might expect, the results are chaotic, disastrous “ and very funny, indeed!

The post Black Comedy by Peter Shaffer appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

NODA representative, Jon Fox, reviews the recent production of  The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe by The Nomads at The Nomad Theatre in Surrey (find us).

The NOMADS – “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”

Nomad Theatre – 14th December, 2016

“This fascinating novel from the mighty pen of C S Lewis is the best known of the Chronicles of Narnia and is a good choice for a company such as Nomads, who have several talented children as players.   Set in wartime 1940, when the four Pevensie siblings, Peter, Edmund, Susan and Lucy were evacuated to the Dorset countryside to live with the Professor – unnamed in this production, but  Digory Kirke in the novel – and a scary housekeeper,  Mrs Macready, the story revolved around the adventures of the four children in Narnia, reached via a prominently placed wardrobe.

An opening set of the children’s bedroom contained four single beds (with bedding) and a wooden chair and table with sewing machine (for Mrs Beaver to use later) set downstage left. A prominent and effective looking street lamp stood downstage right. The winter Narnia scene was beautifully set out with snowy landscapes and icicles up left.  Tinkling winter music enhanced the magical effect.

The four leading players were three children and a very young adult.  They were, in age order, Hazel Eve as Peter (late teens), Poppy Finnigan as Susan aged 12, Ethan Tang as Edmund aged 10 and Eleanor Cain as Lucy, also aged 10.   Hazel as Peter, the oldest sibling was a most accomplished actor, dressed in boy’s garb (shorts and pullover), and had the natural authority of an oldest child.   This was a performance that will long remain in Hazel’s memory in years to come though she is already an experienced performer for her age, it must be said.    Ethan  as wilful, naughty Edmund, had amazingly good body language, which I noticed straight away.    He had wonderful diction too, as did all the siblings – Eleanor as Lucy, the object of Edmund’s lies,  had real actor’s truth in her protestation of having previously been in Narnia. later proven as the truth.    The brother / sisterly teasing and protesting was so well done.    If we did not know that all drama playing children were practically perfect in every way, at home, etc. I could have sworn that they had sometimes actually been naughty in real life, so natural was their playing.   Forgive the teasing, it really is a compliment!   Poppy as Susan, the second eldest child, initially disbelieving Lucy, but believing that Lucy was merely game playing, rather than lying, was a key force for good in the plot.   Her tenderness towards Aslan and courage in defying the Witch, showing her steely character.    Another extremely mature performance for a mere 12 year old.

Lion-Witch-Wardrobe-Dec-2016-6714-300x21Helen Dixon as the White Witch was evil personified.    She has enormous stage presence, with superb timing and diction and clearly relished playing this evil character as much as I certainly did watching and admiring.    As the Witch’s “alter ego”, Mrs Macready, her bossiness and disdain for young children was made, rather marvellously, richly evident. Her demise (as the Witch) was wonderfully portrayed!

In stark contrast, Owain Williams, who was also the kindly yet mysterious Professor, endowed Aslan the Lion with a calm stoicism and timeless force for good.   To my mind there were definite similarities to the story of Christ sacrificing his mortal life to save others.    C S Lewis surely intended this thought.    Owain had the aura both as Professor and Aslan, so vital in these, giving a titanic performance. There were distinct Biblical parallels!

Michael Ayres as the scary Maugrim, in magnificent costume and facial make up (including coloured contact lenses and wolf’s teeth), was marvellously horrible.     Much heavy breathing (think Donald Trump with asthma), plus a horrifying howl …… lovely!    Voraciously evil and eventually slain by Peter.

Matt Weaver,  new to acting as his programme CV stated (though one would not have realised) was an athletic and kindly Mr Tumnus, the fawn greeting Lucy, whilst carrying an umbrella and two parcels and inviting her home for tea, but with a view to betraying her to the witch.   Stick with the acting Matt, it suits you!

Iain Watson and Elaine Burns as Mr and Mrs Beaver, protecting the children  in their home where Mrs Beaver sat sewing and welcoming.     Warm and skilled portrayals were given by both players, their vast acting experience being obvious.Lion-Witch-Wardrobe-Dec-2016-6672-300x21

Colin Barnard was an affable and well played Father Christmas.    No trainsets or playstations here, but rather a sword, dagger and magic potion.    But he was accompanied by an elf, three (girly) reindeer and, glory be, Jingle Bells with dancing,  A most effective scene.

Several keen and agile young folk played various creatures.   The dance of the tiny animals was carried out charmingly by Izzy Teasdale (Rabbit / Leopard 1), Jenny Bridges (Deer / Leopard 2) and Amelia Potten (Deer / Leopard 3).   All these young players did themselves proud in this production.    Another young performer who did well was Emily Ingold, just a little older and a fairly recent school leaver, playing Santa’s Elf and the Wolf, later slain by Peter and carried off by Maurgrim.   Amelia Tang was a sinister dwarf.

It is immensely healthy that NOMADS have these young folk coming up, hard on the heels of the older generation.

I was impressed by the scenery in this production;  the winter scenes were spectacular and made me shiver, merely watching.   The statues and  stone table were excellent too.     The Witch’s sledge was also realistic.    The in-house set construction team of Tony and Dee Bowdery, Justin Cobb, Ben Egan, Andrew Hamel-Cooke, Iain Macfarlane, David Martin, Anne Thomas, and Clive Vinall deserve a special mention for the superb creations they all made.Lion-Witch-Wardrobe-Dec-2016-7121-300x21

Props – I loved the Witch’s whip, by the way – were by Jennie Hamel-Cooke and Tilly Winford, which is good news for the company.

Costumes – again of top quality and effect – were in the capable hands of Sharren Bridges, Elizabeth Cross, Jenny Hasted, Jennie Hamel-Cooke and Caroline Tang.

I would also like to mention the outstanding make up by Anna, Naomi and Becky, all Guildford College students.   Absolutely superb work girls!

Spectacular lighting was provided by Tony and Dee and sound by the assured Tim Williams.

Without the expertise of dedicated,  capable and unassuming people of this calibre, shows of this top standard are not possible, as all who are true theatre people are fully aware.

Choreography was by Sophie Johnstone and the young people will have learned much from working under her tuition. Much  of the dancing was quite charming.

Anthony Kemp was the mighty Director working with Andrew Hamel- Cooke as Artistic director. The work and imagination that both these gentlemen provided in this vibrant production will stay long in the memory, not only of those fortunate enough to be cast on stage but also with the privileged audience.”

Jon Fox

NODA District 19

The Nomads are members of NODA, which has a membership of 2500 amateur theatre groups and 3000 individual enthusiasts throughout the UK, staging musicals, operas, plays, concerts and pantomimes in a wide variety of performing venues, ranging from the country’s leading professional theatres to tiny village halls.

The post NODA review: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

June-December

TBC

in association with Showdown Theatre Arts

week of 30 May to 3 June

 

Nomes Youth Theatre present
Musical Mayhem
directed by Rachel Scott and Francesca Peplow
Friday 30 June at 7.30, Saturday 1 July at 2.30 and 7.30,

Sunday 2 July at 2.30
tickets adults £10, children £7

All the Nomes groups join together to present a selection of drama and singing from a variety of popular musicals.

 

In the studio

Memory of Water  by Shelagh Stephenson

Directed by Graham Botterill

Wednesday 5 July to Saturday 8 July at 7.45

Tickets: adults £12, children/students £10

In this often hilarious tragi-comedy, three sisters come together before their mother’s funeral, each haunted by their own demons.  The three each have different memories of the same events, causing constant bickering about whose memories are true.

 

Play in a Week
directed by Brandon McGuire
Monday 24 to Sunday 30 July
performances 29 July at 7.30, 30 July at 2.30
tickets: £13
An original play, specially commissioned for PIAW.  This annual week-long fully inclusive project enables actors with learning and/or physical disabilities to enjoy the magic and benefits of participating in a theatre show and putting on public performances.  “Always a treat!” 

 

Nomes Youth Theatre Summer School

Directed by Rachel Scott and Francesca Peplow
Monday 31 July to Friday 4 August

open to all under 16s

 

play TBC
directed by Jeff Wightwick
Tuesday 3 October to Saturday 7 October at 7.45
adults £14, children/students £10, £12 for all adults on 3rd
Main House Show TBA

Tuesday 14 to 18 November at 7.45

 

Dick Whittington by Peter Denyer

Director TBC
Tuesday 12 to Saturday 16 December
evenings 7.30, matinee at 2.30 Saturday
Tickets: adults £16, children/students £10, £12 adults on 12th
A traditional pantomime which follows the story of Dick Whittington, his cat and his rise to fame in London.  With barrels of laughs, slapstick, great musical numbers and plenty of audience participation there will be something for everyone to enjoy.

 

 

The post June-December appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

Local theatre reviewer, Polly, reviews the December production of The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe.

“I saw the Thursday performance of this children’s favourite and what a charming affair it was.  The very first thing to say is how exciting it was to be in the Nomad Theatre and find it buzzing with life and the auditorium full to capacity.  Wonderful!!

This is a lovely story and a favourite with children since it was written.  The Nomads’ performance retained and enhanced all its magic with beautiful and simple sets, hugely effective makeup and wonderful costuming.  The entry of each character was a delight.  As one would hope, the entry of the White Witch in her sleigh was stunning and there was an audible intake of breath as she glided onto the stage.

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Of course, although these are very important factors in a performance, the main responsibility for delivering the plot is down to the actors.  We were not disappointed.  The children in particular were excellent.  Eleanor Cain as Lucy gave a very clear and committed performance throughout, Susan, played by Poppy Finnigan was equally positive and focussed, Ethan Tang though sometimes a little under projected, was physically convincing and remained absolutely in character.  The principal children’s role was taken by Hazel Eve playing Peter.  She remained “in charge” throughout and clearly enjoyed the fighting scenes and was generally very credible.

Supporting the children were the adult roles.  Mrs Macready (Helen Dixon) with her withering looks, stern voice and cutting Scots accent was enough to frighten anyone, she was equally scary as the White Witch.  Both roles were very well developed and her projection and general movement around the stage, excellent.  Mr Tumnus (Matt Weaver), the fawn, was very carefully considered and the facial expression, movement and the very clear voice made for a character we could immediately relate to. So sweet when he shared his inability to be cruel and then to discover that he had been captured by the White Witch!!!!! It was quite a relief when he reappeared later.

Lion-Witch-Wardrobe-Dec-2016-6672-300x21Mr and Mrs Beaver (Iain Watson and Elaine Burns respectively) were wonderful.  Their movements and especially their  “paws” were especially endearing. Michael Ayres as Maugrim was terrifying and his makeup was particularly good.  I think we ought to have hissed a bit when he came on but I think, as an audience, we were a little shy of throwing in panto conventions!  His companion, the dwarf played by Amelia Tang sustained her movements and character very well as she shadowed her mentor, Maugrim.

Emily Ingold’s wolf and Santa’s elf were nicely contrasted, while the leopards (Izzy Teasdale who also played the lovely rabbit, Jenny Bridges also an adorable deer and Amelia Potten the baby deer and the acrobatic little leopard) were a little gentler than we might have expected, but then Aslan, the lion (Owain Williams) wasn’t the most fierce of Kings of the jungle!

Owain played the dual roles of the Professor and Aslan.  Of the two, the physicalisation of the professor was the more successful.  Aslan, the loveable lion was sometimes a little hesitant, but his physical presence was very effective and I loved his roar.Lion-Witch-Wardrobe-Dec-2016-7121-300x21

Added to all this excellence were the impressive and quite unexpected pyrotechnics enhanced by some exciting lighting.  The almost inevitable appearance of dry ice just added to the whole sense of magic. “Voices off” were very well handled  and the music was the finishing touch.
You had a full house on the evening on which I attended and I believe you are sold out for some of the remaining performances so, well done and thank you again for a most enjoyable evening at the theatre!

I have deliberately not mentioned Father Christmas till the end. Colin Barnard’s  appearance was the archetypal reminder of the kindly chap who epitomises Christmas for children and Colin did not let us down.  It also gives me and excuse to end my review by wishing everyone a  fabulous Christmas and a very Happy New Year.

Polly”

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The battle – the White Witch

The post The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe review by ‘Polly’ appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

Oklahoma

Oklahoma  by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II

 In association with Bookham Light Operatic Society
directed by Jackie Shearer
Wednesday 17 to Saturday 20 May 7.30 and Saturday matinee 2.30
Tickets: adults £16, children/students £12,

The rivalry between farmers and cowboys provides the backdrop to the love story of cowboy Curly and farmer’s daughter Lauren and the road to statehood for Oklahoma.  Truly one of the greatest musicals of the 40s and 50s era and since.

The post Oklahoma appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


gabbs

Happiness

In the studio

Happiness by Paul Mathews

directed by Tracey Gillard

Tuesday 4 to Saturday 8 April at 7.45

Adults £12, children/students £10

The countdown to Philippa’s marriage to Christopher is almost up, but they’re just coming back from a funeral.  The death of her beloved aunt Susan is just the first event of many that makes Philippa reconsider her future happiness.

The post Happiness appeared first on Nomad Theatre.


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