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  1. NODA representative, Mark Allen, reviews the recent production of Dick Whittingon and his cat by The Nomads at The Nomad Theatre in Surrey (find us). The NOMADS – “Dick Whittington and his cat” Nomad Theatre – 13th December, 2017 Author – Peter Denyer Director – Andrew Hamel-Cooke Choreography – Samantha Potten Musical Director – Gareth Alber Warmly welcomed by the front of house I was ushered into the bar and awaited meeting with Andrew, the director who extended his good wishes and requested we remain to meet the cast later. A refurbished and (purpose) rebuilt theatre, it was gratifying to see it almost full. Greeted with a relatively simple set which worked very well, the changes as they were, were slick and without much fuss. Well lit and with good sound too, the diction was clear and could be heard well above the three-piece band offset stage left. In true fashion the pantomime started and we were introduced to a motley cast of characters ably led by Sophie Johnstone as Dick, Daniel Shepherd, very boo worthy as King Rat and the sweet and innocent Hayley Clines as [Fairy] Bow Bells, all three confident and audible. Michael Ayres played the dame Sarah the Cook, and seemed to be enjoying the role too, as was fairly evident. I liked the enthusiasm, it rubs off well! The cast and chorus were well drilled by Andrew Hamel-Cooke and the choreography (Samantha Potten) was well performed, and in the main all in time too! Again like Sarah the Cook, the chorus and associated cast (too many to mention) (Ed: see below for our comments!) were really enthusiastic and this came across well, helping the audience to a very good evenings entertainment. Overall a really enjoyable evening, and well worth the drive to see it. Well done Andrew and well done Nomads. Mark Allen December 2017 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. Editors comments Unfortunately, the large cast meant that not everyone got a mention by name, but we wanted to add a few notes on their amazing performance! Millie Jane Franks as Idle Jack was punchy, energetic and had fabulous stage presence! Iain Watson (Alderman Fitzwarren) and Jeff Wightwick (Captain Cuttle) both embodied their characters with sincerity and humour. As The Sultan of Morocco, Richard Peachey‘s accent work and nimble movement made for very lively scenes! Sasha Plaché brought grace and wonderful singing to the part of Alice Fitzwarren. King Neptune and his mermaid (Ricky Powell and Tilly Winford – not to be mixed up) were ethereal and deserving of the audience “oohs” and “aahs” under the sea. Our not-very-dynamic duo of baddies, Gnashfang (Lisa Arnold) and Gnawbone (Johnny Diamond) were suitably nasty, horrible and comedic in equal measures. Tommy The Cat played by Karolina Sepiak presented an amazing solo self-choreographed dance piece as well as plenty of laughs and cheers! All the adults and children in the ensemble clearly worked very hard to present coordinated and energetic group songs and dances which the audience loved. All of the production team should have a huge pat on the back too – costumes were fantastic as always,… make-up was striking and a great display of what Guildford College students can do,… props convincing and consistently well placed,… lighting enhanced the audience understanding of the story locations and sentiment,… sound kept the pace and humour of the scenes,… staging, flying and scene changes were slick,… and the chaperones kept all of us in check… not just the children! Millie Jane Franks as Idle Jack Sophie Johnstone and Karolina Sepiak as Dick and Tommy Daniel Shepherd, Lisa Arnold and Johnny Diamond as the baddie rat pack The band (L-R) – Vito, Ryszard and Gareth Richard Peachey as The Sultan of Morocco Ricky Powell and Tilly Winford under the sea The post NODA review: Dick Whittington & his cat appeared first on Nomad Theatre.
  2. A Christmas Carol By Charles Dickens Adapted and Directed by Graham Botterill Tuesday 11th to Saturday 15th December at 7.30pm, matinee on Saturday at 2.30pm Tickets: adults £16, children/students £10 (£12 for adults on the 12th) A brand new adaptation of this classic, popular story. The post A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens appeared first on Nomad Theatre.
  3. The Chalk Garden By Enid Bagnold Directed by Murray Stephens Tuesday 13th to Saturday 17th November at 7.45pm in the studio Tickets: adults £12, children/students £10 A grandmother seeks a governess for her 16 year old granddaughter, while Laurel herself manages to drive them away by exposing their past. The post The Chalk Garden by Enid Bagnold appeared first on Nomad Theatre.
  4. Much Ado About Nothing By William Shakespeare Directed by Andrew Hamel-Cooke Tuesday 9th to Saturday 13th October at 7.45pm Tickets: adults £14, children/students £10 (£12 for adults on the 9th) A sharply witty romantic comedy – a battle of the sexes. As soldiers memories of conflict give way to a life of parties and masked balls, two fall madly, deeply in love, while another two reignite their own altogether more combative courtship. The post Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare appeared first on Nomad Theatre.
  5. Trivial Pursuits

    Trivial Pursuits By Frank Vickery Directed by Michael Ayres Wednesday 12 to Saturday 15 September at 7.45pm Tickets: adults £12, children/students £10 At the summer meeting of the Trealaw and District Operatic Society, next season’s play is to be announced. The society’s business manager, Nick, runs into trouble, having promised a different show and the plum roles to four different people. A comedic look at the world of amateur dramatics! The post Trivial Pursuits appeared first on Nomad Theatre.
  6. Play In A Week 2018

    Play In A Week celebrates 20 years in 2018! Directed by Brandon McGuire Performances 28 July at 7.30 and 29 July at 2.30 Tickets: £13 The Nomads annual week-long project for people with a range of physical and/or learning disabilities. A special play is commissioned each year with a unique part to suit every individual wanting to participate. Not to be missed! The post Play In A Week 2018 appeared first on Nomad Theatre.
  7. Love Me Slender By Vanessa Brooks Directed by Clive Bowden Tuesday 10th to Saturday 14th July at 7.30pm Tickets: adults £14, students £10 Siobhan, the ‘Achiever of the Year’ inspires her hopeful new recruits in the Slim For Life dieting club. Siobhan has lost seven stone, found a new self, a fulfilling job and a wonderful husband. Now, she encourages others to achieve the same. A perceptive and humorous look at modern issue. The post Love Me Slender by Vanessa Brooks appeared first on Nomad Theatre.
  8. Charlotte’s Web

    Nomes Youth Theatre presents Charlotte’s Web By EB White Friday 29th June at 7pm, Saturday 30th June at 2pm and 7pm, Sunday 1st July at 2pm Tickets: adults £14, children/students £10 We meet Charlotte, the spider, who is utterly determined to save her friend Wilbur, the pig. Box office: 01483 284747 The post Charlotte’s Web appeared first on Nomad Theatre.
  9. In association with Bookham Light Operatic Society Annie Get Your Gun By Irving Berlin, Dorothy & Herbert Fields Directed by Andrew Hamel-Cooke Musical Director, Selena Hegarty Wednesday 16 to Saturday 19 May at 7.30, matinee on Saturday at 2.30 Tickets: adults £16, children/students £12 Annie Oakley and Frank Butler meet when she beats him in a sharpshooting contest at Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show and the two have to negotiate between their competitive sides and their blossoming love for each other. Aimed straight at the heart, Berlin’s sensational musical from the Golden Age of Broadway includes such classics as “There’s No Business Like Show Business”, “Anything You Can Do” and “I Got The Sun In The Morning And The Moon At Night”. Take a look at the review of the 2017 musical, Oklahoma – click here! Box office: 01483 284747 The post Annie Get Your Gun in association with BLOS appeared first on Nomad Theatre.
  10. Show to be announced! Friday 23rd March at 7.30pm Saturday 24th March at 3.30pm Tickets: adults £8, children/students £6 Nomes Youth Theatre is a fun and exciting youth theatre group based at the Nomad Theatre in East Horsley, Surrey. We run classes for children and young people aged 4-18. Find out more The post Show by The Young Company (Nomes Youth Theatre) appeared first on Nomad Theatre.
  11. Auditions – Shakers

    Auditions – Shakers This 90 minute play is presented by four waitresses, Adele, Mel, Carol and Nicky, each under pressure in different ways, and describes a typical night at a bar called Shakers. The play is set in 1985, and has plenty of quick-fire humour as well as monologues by each character. The actresses play all the characters in the bar, including the clientele the four waitresses have to deal with. Director: Michael Ayres Performance dates: 13-17 February at 7:45pm Rehearsals: Sunday / Wednesday / Friday Audition dates: Tuesday 9th January at 7.30pm Friday 12th January at 7.30pm Auditions will be held at The Nomad Theatre, Bishopsmead Parade, East Horsley, Leatherhead, Surrey KT24 6RT (click here) If you are interested in auditioning and/or would like further information, please contact the Director on info@nomadtheatre.com Characters Shakers is an ensemble piece, with each actor playing equally featured roles. The playing age is 20s to 30s, but rapport between the actors is as important. Adele is a single Mum, aching for a better life, but needs to make ends meet. She and Mel do not see eye to eye. Carol is a graduate with aspirations which haven’t panned out – yet! Mel is possibly a little older, worked in a pub before Shakers, quite likes working in a cocktail bar, and could be a little larger than average. Mel also plays a Scottish chef during the play. Nicky – maybe a bit of peacemaker amongst the girls, she has aspirations to be a performer. The post Auditions – Shakers appeared first on Nomad Theatre.
  12. Auditions – Annie Get Your Gun Bookham Light Operatic Society‘s summer show will be ‘Annie Get Your Gun’, performed at The Nomad Theatre w/c 14th May 2018. Featuring classic show tunes such as ‘Anything You Can Do’ and ‘There’s No Business Like Show Business’, this musical is one of the greats! Director: Andrew Hamel-Cooke Musical Director: Selena Hegarty Audition dates: Friday 12th January at 7.30pm – Eastwick Road Church (URC), Eastwick Road, Great Bookham, Surrey KT23 4BE Sunday 14th January at 3.30pm – The Nomad Theatre, Bishopsmead Parade, East Horsley, Leatherhead, Surrey KT24 6RT (Click here) If you are interested in auditioning and/or would like further information, please contact the Director on 07747 527180 , or email and2hc@gmail.com Audition pieces can be found at: http://www.bookhamlightoperatic.co.uk/blosauditions.htm Synopsis Rough-and-tumble Annie Oakley is the best shot around. A backwoods gal, Annie uses her skill to support her family by selling the game she hunts. When she’s discovered by Buffalo Bill and persuaded to join his Wild West Show, Annie is plucked from obscurity and becomes the toast of Europe. Annie meets her match in Frank Butler, Buffalo Bill’s leading man and star marksman. She falls head over heels for Frank, but soon eclipses him as the main attraction in the show. Her success with a gun makes trouble for Annie’s chance at romance. Annie Get Your Gun follows the journey of Annie and Frank, revealing their competitive natures as they vie for best shot – and each other’s hearts. This fictionalized version of the life of real-life sharpshooter Annie Oakley and her romance with Frank Butler boasts a score of Irving Berlin gems including “There’s No Business Like Show Business”, “I Got Lost in His Arms”, “I Got the Sun in the Mornin’”, “Anything You Can Do,” and “They Say It’s Wonderful.” Characters – adults (with playing ages) Frank Butler – Male 25-35 – Lead – Baritone. A suave sharpshooter in Buffolo Bill’s show – he enjoys his status as a heartbreaker and star. Annie Oakley – Female 18-25 – Lead – Mezzo-Soprano. Strong singer-comedian who carries the show, she immediately falls head over heels for Frank, who prefers a more dainty type of woman. Tommy Keeler – Male 18-30 – Supporting – Tenor. A dashing young knife-thrower with the Wild West Show, part Native American. Winnie Tate – Female 18-25 – Supporting – Mezzo-Soprano. Dolly’s 17-year-old sister. Tommy throws knives at her and hopes to marry her as soon as she turns 18. Dolly Tate – Female 18-40 – Supporting – Alto. Frank Butler’s “lovely” assistant, an ambitious and mean-spirited, but funny, woman. Buffalo Bill Cody – Male 35-50 – Supporting – Baritone. Middle-aged soldier/Indian scout turned showman, runs the “Wild West Show”. Chief Sitting Bull – Male 35-55 – Featured – Spoken. leader of the Sioux Nation, adopts Annie as his daughter and puts his money into show business with the Wild West Show. Charlie Davenport – Male 35-50 – Featured – Baritone. Middle-aged manager of the Wild West Show, always setting the scene for this show-within-a-show. Foster Wilson – Male 40-60 – Featured – Spoken. Hotel Manager, strong personality with dry wit. Pawnee Bill – Male 35-55 – Featured – Spoken. Owner of the Far East Show; Buffalo Bill’s former partner and current rival. Characters – youngsters Little Jake – Male 11-14 – Featured – Alto. Annie’s 8-to-10-year-old brother, her “bird dog” who flushes out game for her to shoot. Mary/Jessie/Nellie – Female 11-16 – Featured – Alto. Annie’s 10-to-14-year-old sisters, also part of the family hunting business. Songs Colonel Buffalo Bill — Charlie Davenport, Dolly Tate, and ensemble I’m a Bad, Bad Man — Frank Butler Doin’ What Comes Natur’lly — Annie Oakley and her siblings The Girl That I Marry — Frank and Annie You Can’t Get a Man with a Gun — Annie There’s No Business Like Show Business — Frank, Buffalo Bill, Charlie, Annie, and ensemble They Say It’s Wonderful — Annie and Frank Moonshine Lullaby — Annie and siblings I’ll Share It All With You — Winnie Tate and Tommy Keeler Ballyhoo — Riding Mistress and Show People There’s No Business Like Show Business (Reprise) — Annie My Defenses Are Down — Frank and ensemble Wild Horse Ceremonial Dance — Wild Horse, Indian Braves and Maidens I’m an Indian, Too — Annie and ensemble Adoption Dance — Annie, Wild Horse and Braves I Got Lost In His Arms — Annie Who Do You Love, I Hope — Winnie and Tommy I Got the Sun in the Morning — Annie and ensemble They Say It’s Wonderful (Reprise) — Annie and Frank The Girl That I Marry (Reprise) — Frank Anything You Can Do — Annie and Frank There’s No Business Like Show Business (Reprise) — Ensemble The post Auditions – Annie Get Your Gun (with BLOS) appeared first on Nomad Theatre.
  13. Theatre reviewer, Polly, provides this review of The Nomads 2017 pantomime, Dick Whittington & his cat “Think Christmas and at some point you will think panto. It is about as much part of our British Christmas as Carols from King’s College and the Queen’s Speech. This kind of iconic position brings with it a certain expectation, of course. It is an uniquely British form of theatre and we have a formula which must be adhered to or it’s not a panto! The story is usually a fairy or traditional tale, there is always a baddie, there is always a goodie, there is always a lot of singing and dancing, there is some very obvious, groaningly obvious humour, a lot of double entendres to keep the parents awake, pyrotechnics if you can and huge spectacle especially in the last scene. I have not mentioned, of course, the audience participation. This is as formulaic as are the plots. The phrases such as “He’s/it’s behind you!” or a particular phrase given us by one of the “helpful” characters; the panto dame always played by a man and the Principal Boy is always played by a woman. You have to be British to understand any of it. Perhaps something like cricket? So the expectation is high, but in the Nomad’s production of Dick Whittinton and his cat, they didn’t miss a trick. The programme itself promised a very high standard of things to come. Starting from the bottom, at least in height, I have to say that the young ratlets (Patrick Anderson, Ori Carr-Stein, Eden Garland, Amelia Tang and Ethan Tang) were terrific and the very youngest dancers were a delight. The choreographer, Samantha Potten did sterling work preparing her chorus of dancers (Alice Burgess, Caitlin Byrne, Ciara Byrne, Abigail Darke, Emily Davey, Amelia Potten, Katherine Warr, Sienna Wayland, Charlotte Weller and Francesca Woof.) I especially loved the more taxing and very difficult point work shown us by the older dancers. To top off the dancing, we had a panto dame, Sarah the Cook, played by Michael Ayres, who joined in the tap routine. Wonderful. Tap dancing wasn’t the only thing that the Dame was good at. ‘She’ spoke with great clarity, though some of the jokes might have benefitted from a little more exaggeration, but his/her make-up was wonderful. “Her” son Idle Jack played by Millie Jane Franks was a wonderfully drawn character, with hugely exaggerated facial expression and physical movement. It was “he” (another girl playing a chap!) who led the audience participation. She put huge energy into getting us to respond standing up and repeating a little routine each time she came on. We were not a very good audience as we were a bit lazy about getting up and speaking the lines we had been given. Speaking for myself, I was heavy with cold and recovering from ‘flu so getting up every two minutes did not get my vote, but that was just me. I’m sure with a slightly younger audience especially, there would have been no difficulty and Jack really did deserve more help than we gave her! Dick Whittington (Sophie Johnstone) spoke with great confidence and commitment and was a suitably glamorous and character. Dick and Alice had some very enjoyable duet and solo moments and between them kept the central story theme on track. They were an engaging couple. Alice Fitzwarren (Sasha Plaché) was a very lovely young leading lady and she obviously enjoyed her role which communicated itself well to the audience. She obviously had her father, Alderman Fitzwarren (Iain Watson) in the palm of her hand as he quickly agreed to allow Dick to join the crew of his last surviving ship. The Alderman came across as an affable chap, who took his bad luck in his stride. He was kindly too to his officer in charge, Captain Cuttle played by Jeffrey Wightwick. Cuttle made good use of the silliness when trying to call the crew to some order and made a significant contribution over all. Bit parts are the real fun of panto. You get to be there almost all the time but don’t have to worry too much about lines and Colin Barnard and Joshua Locke made full use of their moments as the Arabs, the Sailors and in the general ensemble. King Neptune (Ricky Powell) in the beautiful underwater kingdom scene where we also met a delightful mermaid, played by Tilly Winford, was also a bit part well developed and delivered. Another high spot was the scene in the harem. Fabulous colours and sinuous choreography. The Sultan of Morocco (Richard Peachey) was every inch the part and gave us a lovely bit of singing although we could have done with a facemike at some moments. Nevertheless the scene was visually splendid and we enjoyed the sultan’s contribution . The “baddies” are what really make a panto and gives us the excuse to boo and hiss to our hearts content at their every entry. Gnashfang (Lisa Arnold) and Gnawbone (Johnny Diamond) were wonderfully evil and their immediate boss, King Rat (Daniel Shepherd) was truly superb. His performance was suitably horrible and very well sustained. In contrast to his nastiness, another must of panto is the Good Fairy Bow Bells (Hayley Clines) whose fluency and well pointed and delivered lines had us all enthralled. A lovely performance. There is one supremely obvious omission in all this comment, and that is of Tommy, Dick’s faithful and hugely intelligent and clever cat which is pivotal to the progress of the story. Tommy was played by Karolina Sepiak and what a great job she made of it. There was total engagement throughout and her catlike movements were sustained at all times, but her real moment of glory came during Dick’s solo when she used the stage to its fullest extent and gave a terrific dance/gymnastic display, moments of which were absolutely jaw dropingly supple and a joy to watch. The scenes and costumes, always spectacularly good at the Nomads, were glorious. This was, over all, excellent ensemble playing, each player supporting the others and matching each other’s commitment to the success of the evening. I had one or two issues with the general pace of the piece, but in the following performances I’m sure the actors will have bedded in to their performances as general confidence grows. The other slight grouse I should mention is that one has grown to expect that when there is an obvious joke in panto, one expects a “boom tish!” from percussion. That wasn’t quite as obvious, to my mind, as it might have been. The band, directed by Gareth Alber, however, were otherwise a great asset to the performance and provided sympathetic support to the singing. One further niggle is that perhaps the flys could have been just a shade faster. I am not usually a huge fan of pantos, but I really did enjoy this performance. The director, Andrew Hamel-Cooke and his army of back stage “beavers” such as lighting, props, stage manager to name but a few, are to be congratulated in bringing together so many players to produce such a great evening. We must remind ourselves that these are all people who give freely of their time to present us with high quality, local entertainment throughout the year. Thank you all. Your efforts are much appreciated.” Polly The post Dick Whittington – Polly reviews appeared first on Nomad Theatre.
  14. Showtime Singalong – with The Duffers & Gruffers Choir Saturday 24th March 2018 at 7:30pm In aid of Play In A Week 2018 Presenting songs from their favourite shows, the D&G Choir and their Musical Director, Martin Hall invite you to join them in a “Showtime Singalong” featuring songs from Oliver, My Fair Lady, The Sound of Music, Oklahoma, Carousel and many more. You’ll have the words so you can join in a much or as little as you like. There will also be a selection pf special performances for you to sit back and enjoy! This evening is open to everyone and will be raising funds for Play In A Week’s 20th anniversary production in 2018. Tickets £12 via the box office on 01483 284747 or www.ticketsource.co.uk/nomadtheatre About Play In A Week Play In A Week is the Nomads annual week-long project for people with a range of physical and/or learning disabilities. It enables actors with learning and/or physical disability to enjoy the magic and benefits of participating in a show and putting on 2 public performances every summer in our fully equipped and accessible modern theatre. To achieve this, a cast of around 50 performers are backed by over 60 volunteers and specialist professionals. A special play is commissioned each year with a unique part to suit every individual wanting to participate. New songs and music are composed, and dances choreographed to fit the script. Personal achievements since 1999 are both inspiring and humbling. Accessing performing arts and being part of this very special company has amazing benefits for our participants and volunteers, as well as providing great entertainment for our audiences! Funding for this project comes primarily from donations and fundraising events which run throughout the year. The post Showtime Singalong – with The Duffers & Gruffers Choir appeared first on Nomad Theatre.
  15. Shakers By John Godber & Jane Thornton Directed by Michael Ayres Tuesday 13th – Saturday 17th 2018 (in the studio) at 7:30pm In a not-so-chic London bar called Shakers, we meet Carol, Adele, Nicky and Mel, four friends who have taken to waitressing in desperation but who also have wit and resilience enough to never let any of the colorful characters they come across shake them up! Box office 01483 284747 The post Shakers by John Godber & Jane Thornton appeared first on Nomad Theatre.

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