Tag Archive: Staffordshire


It’s pantomime time and Aldridge Musical Comedy Society (AMCS) are staging Sleeping Beauty at Great Wyrley. AMCS have a reputation for great shows and Sleeping Beauty is no exception. Fantastic voices and dance, plus an original script by local writer Antony N Britt (Yes … me). Being an author and loving amateur dramatics, it was only a matter of time before the two worlds collided. And this is it!

Sleeping Beauty - The Pantomime  (Coming to Great Wyrley – 22 to 24 November 2018)

The show is full of great numbers which will have you clapping and tapping your feet until the end. Songs include: Tragedy, Colour My World, These Boots Are Made for Walking, Dear Future Husband, Electricity, Walking on Sunshine, Once Upon a Dream, Girls Just Want to Have Fun, Hot Stuff, Electricity and … the list goes on.

AMCS have produced exceptional pantomimes in the past and I’m overjoyed at the opportunity to continue that tradition. Writing Sleeping Beauty took five months. One to concoct a matter of fact plot, then four more to complete the script. It’s a mammoth workload, also being in the show, but the temptation was too hard to resist. And what a joy to be not only directing but appearing alongside my fellow members whom I’m proud of every single one.

Assisting me with direction is Julie Lamb while I’m also thankful to be working alongside the exceptional Sarah Beckett (Choreography) and Mark Bayliss (Musical Direction)

The show is at Great Wyrley High School Theatre from 22 to 24 November (1930 evenings with an additional 1420 matinee on Saturday 24 November).

Tickets are available by phoning 0798446400. Alternatively, you can go online to Stagestubs at this link.

Prices are £13/Adult, £10/Concessions and £7/Under 16s. We also offer a family ticket (2 adults/2 children) for £35.

Great entertainment for all the family.

 Sleeping Beauty - The Pantomime  (Coming to Great Wyrley – 22 to 24 November 2018)

Cheers.

 

Antony N Britt

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First time seeing Sutton Coldfield Theatre Company and a first watching All Shook Up.

All Shook Up is loosely based on Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night and supported with music by various songwriters, made famous by Elvis Presley. A simple plot by Joe DiPietro is funny and well-written, but it’s the familiar tunes which get the audience going.

Launching full company with the massive Jailhouse Rock, we were treated to excellent voice and dance, full of energy. And then the hits kept coming: Heartbreak Hotel, One Night with You, Teddy Bear/Hound Dog, Blue Suede Shoes, Don’t Be Cruel, A Little Less Conversation, Fools Fall in Love and of course, All Shook Up. I normally only list half a dozen in my reviews but this show is an exception. And that’s before I reach my own personal favourite – Can’t Help Falling in Love which I like for my own reasons. Another good number was Let Yourself Go which included a great scene in the museum where the statues come to life. The show ends with Burning Love where the cast have their moment and are allowed, quite rightly, to go wild. And much deserved an ovation they got.

Leading the line with a strong voice was Adam Gregory, playing Chad, while opposite we had Lucy Surtees, also in great form in the role of Natalie/Ed. Supporting well in their principal roles were Tony Orbell (Dennis), Kerrie Davies (Sylvia), Ben Green (Jim), Chloe Child – who had one of the loveliest smiles I’ve ever seen (Lorraine), Ed Mears (Dean), Louise Grifferty (Matilda), Vanessa Morgan (Sandra) and Ben Adams (Earl).

All Shook Up was directed by Elisa Millward with musical direction from Sheila Pearson and choreography, Maggie Jackson.

This show is a period piece with a modern feel and the traditions of an old-time farce. Something for everybody, even if you’re not an Elvis fan. And then you have the wonderful job Sutton Coldfield Musical Theatre Company did in bringing it to an audience. I always say I enjoy watching an amateur company as much as professional productions, but there was nothing amateur about this. Right up with the best. All Shook Up is a show which must be real fun to perform, and this transfers well onto the audience.

Great theatre company, great show.

Cheers.

Antony N Britt

I love Me and My Girl, and I’ve had good experiences of youth theatre in the past. Therefore, when I saw the show was being performed by Brewood’s Lollipop Theatre Arts, I had no hesitation in giving them a try. Particularly so because my society, Aldridge Musical Comedy Society, are doing the show next year.

Me and My Girl – Prince of Wales Theatre, Cannock – 26 March 2018

Lollipop cater for kids 6 to 18, and the full range were on show on the first of two nights.

Me and My Girl tells the story of Bill Snibson, the long-lost heir to the Hareford fortune. However, when the family discover Bill is a cockney of no standing, sparks begin to fly.

The score is from Noel Gay and book originally by L. Arthur Rose and Douglas Furber (although it has been updated by Stephen Fry and Mike Ockrent). A funny and entertaining show filled with well-known songs throughout, there isn’t a dull moment.

First impressions of Lollipop … My God, they’re so young! Yes, I know it’s a youth company, but the opening chorus of A Weekend at Hareford was delivered with such a professional sound, you might have thought otherwise.

In the lead role was Tom Horton who totally captured the character of Bill Snibson with superb comic timing. Most impressive in a demanding role was Tom’s ability to carry on, ad-libbing on a couple of occasions when lines slipped the mind. The improvisation added to the enjoyment.

Also on the opening night we had a shining star for the future in Florie Miles. Playing Sally Smith, so good were Florie’s vocals, I did think it was an older actress to begin with. Then I saw the cast photo and realised her years and saw a maturity which went way beyond them. Once You Lose Your Heart was equal to the version on The London Cast Recording. Florie would be at home in an adult company.

Additionaly excellent were Abbey Laycock (Duchess of Dene), Alex Jeffrey’s (Sir John Tremayne), Katie Hayes (Lady Jaqueline), Emily Smith (Gerald), Jake Watkins (Parchester), Sam Green (Charles), Isaac Brant (Sir Jasper Tring), James Shaw (Lord Battersby) and Amy Horton (Lady Battersby). I must also acknowledge, on 27 March, Sally Smith was to be played by Millie Cooper.

Me and My Girl has so many great numbers: Thinking of No One But Me, The Family Solicitor, Me and My Girl, Leaning on a Lamp, to name but a few. And that’s before you get to The Lambeth Walk and The Sun Has Got His Hat On.

Direction was from Lucy-Ellen Parker and Grace Bradshaw with choreography by Helen Stone and Isobel Burgess. In charge of musical direction was Matthew Davis with lighting – Dan Bywater.

Watching a youth show, it’s always good to witness the next generation of musical theatre in the making, but more important, seeing the kids enjoy themselves. A thoroughly entertaining night from a company I would strongly recommend for future productions.

Me and My Girl – Prince of Wales Theatre, Cannock – 26 March 2018

Cheers.

Antony N Britt

Heroes & Sweethearts - Aldridge Musical Comedy Society. Cannock 22-23 May 2015

Pack Up Your Troubles and return to 1940s wartime Britain with a concert of song and dance to celebrate the 70th anniversary of VE Day.

Heroes and Sweethearts is the latest offering from the marvelous Aldridge Musical Comedy Society (AMCS) and will be on at the Prince of Wales Theatre, Cannock, 22-23 May 2015. For almost 50 years, AMCS have been delivering quality productions and Heroes and Sweethearts is no exception.

Numbers include: In the Mood, White Cliffs of Dover, We’ll Meet Again, Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy, It Don’t Mean a Thing and Chattanooga Choo Choo, all which will have the audience singing and tapping in their seats.

Heroes & Sweethearts is the brainchild of producer Julie Lamb and will be supported by a full band with musical direction from Mark Baylis and choreography by Sarah Hemming.

The show is being staged in partnership with the Royal British Legion, an association which came about through negotiation between AMCS costume designer, Sarah Carter and Alison Bates of the Legion. The hope is not only to honour the events of World War II, but also raise money for a fantastic charity which continues to support our armed forces past and present.

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Left to Right: Julie Lamb, Sgt Dan O’Sullivan, Alison Bates, Sarah Carter.

One such recipient of Legion support is Sgt Dan O’Sullivan who in 2011 was assaulted and left with serious head injuries. After a lengthy spell in hospital, Dan spent time at the Portland College, Mansfield, a stay partly funded by the Legion. At the college, Dan learned to walk, talk, eat and drive again and has since had further assistance to adapt his home in order to allow independent living. Dan is a keen supporter of local fund raising activities and is looking forward to seeing the show.

Performances Friday 22 to Saturday 23 May 2015 at 7.30 pm (with additional Saturday Matinee – 2.30 pm). Tickets can be obtained from the box office on 01543 578762 or by going online to www.aldridgemcs.co.uk with options to book direct from AMCS.

Don’t miss out on this magnificent experience.

£12/adult.

£10/Concessions.

£6/Child (U16).

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What’s the buzz? Let me tell you what’s happening. Classic rock opera, Jesus Christ Superstar is in the region for three nights only. The groundbreaking musical by Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber which has delighted audiences for decades is on at the Prince of Wales Theatre, Cannock from the 20th to 22nd November 2014.

Originally produced as a concept album, the musical arrangements on Jesus Christ Superstar mix rock with the classical in multi-layered dynamics which are as fresh today as 40 years ago. The score features well known numbers including: Heaven on Their Minds, I Don’t Know How to Love Him, the semi-comical, Herod’s Song, and of course, Superstar.

Performed by a magnificent cast with excellent musical direction and choreography, Jesus Christ Superstar tells the story of the final days of Christ and his ultimate betrayal by Judas Iscariot. Beginning with uplifting exuberance, events quickly turn with the arrest and trial of Christ, leading to its poignant conclusion. The production contains a passionate portrayal of characters, triumph, struggle and subsequent tragedy.

This current show is the latest offering from the excellent Aldridge Musical Comedy Society (AMCS). For almost 50 years, AMCS have been delivering quality productions and Jesus Christ Superstar is no exception.

Staged from Thursday 20 to Saturday 22 November 2014, tickets can be obtained from the box office on 01543 578762 or by going to www.aldridgemcs.co.uk with options to book direct from AMCS or online.

Don’t miss out on a rare chance to share in this magnificent experience.

£12/adult, £10/Concessions and £6/Child.

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Cheers.

Nick

Hollywood comes to the region during May in the form of Singin’ in the Rain at the Prince of Wales Theatre, Cannock.

Singin' in the Rain. Prince of Wales Theatre Cannock. 8th – 10th May 2014.

Based on the MGM musical of the same name, the plot adheres closely to the movie telling the story of how the silver screen found its voice and left silent pictures behind. It focuses on romantic lead, Don Lockwood, sidekick Cosmo Brown, aspiring actress Kathy Selden and Lockwood’s leading lady, Lina Lamont whose high-pitched voice makes her an unlikely candidate for talking pictures. The show features all the numbers from the MGM score including: Good Morning, Make ’em Laugh, You Stepped Out of a Dream and of course, the classic Singin’ in the Rain.

Full of charm, comedy and romance, Singin’ in the Rain is the latest offering from the excellent Aldridge Musical Comedy Society (AMCS). For almost 50 years, AMCS have been delivering quality productions and this is no exception. Staged from Thurs 8th to Sat 10th May (including additional Saturday matinee), tickets can be obtained from the box office on 01543 578762 or by going to www.aldridgemcs.co.uk with the option to book direct from AMCS or online. £12/adult, £10/Concessions and £6/Under 16s.

Singin' in the Rain Cast - 2014

Nick

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