All posts by Steve H

Based in the UK in glorious Yorkshire, retired from the food industry and spending more time with computers, photography and amateur dramatics and often combinations of all three.

review: passing strangers

A while ago we joined NODA, the National Operatic & Dramatic Association, and our first play of the season was the first to be attended by their northern representative Geoff Haywood.

He attended on the last night and his post play discussion with the cast and producer was both entertaining and rewarding – his first visit to our group had impressed him and he told us he was “overwhelmed by the very high standard of your production and the professional approach to staging”. Praise indeed.

Below you can read his review posted on the NODA website.


REVIEW: PASSING STRANGERS

OCTOBER 2019

A deserted bar at the Royal Hotel gives the setting, whilst off to the right is the ballroom, a hive of activity as it is “Singles Night”.

Clive, played by Gary Vann, comes into the bar in a very distressed condition. He has just been left by his wife and cannot cope with the situation, tears flow and he immediately has the sympathy of the audience. So why is he here? His friend Malcolm (Steve Howland) is trying to get him to forget but. at the same time he is pursuing yet another one night stand !

Malcolm, a market trader who attempts to pass himself off as someone in the import world, is obviously a man about town, full of his own importance, always looking for his prime objective and behaving like a predatory animal. He claims to know everyone, has met everyone at some time, but it is mostly make believe as it follows that he has an inferiority complex in spite of his continual bravado. An excellent performance from Steve, showing good understanding of the character, clever use of the stage and keeping the action moving along.

Into the scenario come two ladies, Liz (Gill Collins) and Julie (Nic Johnson), both recent divorcees, the first angry and cynical, the other almost game for anything and eager to make a conquest. Malcolm sets his eyes on Liz and tries to persuade Clive to take on Julie. The ensuing chaos, comic situations and diverse moments give us a well rehearsed play with completely believable characters.

Gill and Nic give two outstanding performances as the divorcees, being for the main in contrast to the other yet both helping each other and disagreeing. Their roles were played at such a high level that they absolutely superb.

The fourth character in this comedy, Clive was equally at home showing his depression at losing his wife but also displaying an about turn when he thinks he has become attached to Julie. Here was the showing of a confused mind with some glimpses of rationale.

Complications arise throughout the play, leading the audience wondering about the next situation and the whole thing concludes with a double twist.

The four players had much script to learn and they put it together so well that I can but admire them for the level which they achieved.

Jayne Hewson along with Tom Fryer are to be congratulated with their meticulous direction, not an easy job with this play!

The set was simple and effective, the open door to stage right leading to the ball room was used very effectively with the continual changing of light from the disco.

Excellent play, excellent cast. Well done everybody.

Geoff Haywood – NODA (NATIONAL OPERATIC & DRAMATIC ASSOCIATION)

https://www.noda.org.uk/show-reports/passing-strangers-1573039478

Link to original report on the NODA website

Back to work

Say It With Flowers. With Janet Drewery producing, blocking and early rehearsals are under way.

Our last production seems a long time ago because we are already well into early rehearsals for our play at the end of January – Jane Thornton’s ‘Say It With Flowers‘.


Say It With Flowers by Jane Thornton will be showing 30th & 31st January & 1st February. Booking is open.

We will be posting more about this production shortly and update you on progress. But before we do our next post will feature the photo gallery we promised from ‘Passing Strangers’ before it disappears into history.

Meanwhile we are pleased to say that all the work we carried out on in-house repairs plus drainage work has meant that for the first time ever we survived the recent deluges and the Forum is still – say it quietly – dry.

Moving on…..

PASSING STRANGERS was a great success. we had great feedback and we certainly enjoyed performing it. Seamlessly, we now move onto rehearsals for our next production – SAY IT WITH FLOWERS.

This site will take a break for a few days but when we return we will be able to share photos from the last play along with news and updates about the next. And talking of the next.. it’s never too early to book so make sure you reserve your seats now – see our Booking page.

January 30th, 31st, Feb 1st 2020 7.30pm
Elloughton-Brough Village Hall

SAY IT WITH FLOWERS  a comedy by Jane Thornton

Fresh off the back of their latest amateur dramatics production, the Parish Players learn that circumstances beyond their control are forcing them to abandon the Parish Hall.  Without anywhere to stage their plays, they decide to pull on their gardening gloves and enter the regional ‘Village in Bloom’ competition in order to express their artistic flair.  But not everyone is keen on the idea, and the seeds are quickly sown for an hilarious yet touching exploration of a village’s competitive streak, when opposing forces collide and relationships suddenly sit on opposite sides of the fence in a world where not everything is coming up roses.

Meanwhile one or two shots from Passing Strangers

10 DAYS to Passing Strangers

Have you got your tickets yet?

Suddenly we are in our last week of rehearsals before we transfer our latest production to the stage. Exciting times! This Friday we will commence building the set and converting the Village Hall into a theatre with a lot of effort, sweat, time, laughs and, on Saturday, our traditional fish and chips lunch.

So as we put our final tweaks to rehearsals it is time to check if you have tickets booked. Read more about this play by clicking here or apply for tickets here.

The cast of Passing Strangers back at the initial reading