Newbury theatre guide
Find out about theatre events coming up in and around Newbury and West Berkshire, reaching out to Oxford, Basingstoke and Reading. This site is updated very frequently - see What's new below.
In the spotlight
Open air theatre 2016
As usual, there's lots of open air theatre this year and, as usual, most of it is Shakespeare. There's Love's Labour's Lost, Much Ado (2 productions), Midsummer Night's Dream (3 productions), Hamlet, Tempest, Twelfth Night, Two Gentlemen and Macbeth. Also Danny the Champion of the World. All the details are here.
See What's on for a list of everything.
News and special events
Compton Players' production last November of Seal Cove, written and directed by Dave Hawkins, has been awarded the Maurice Spillett Trophy for Best New Show in the NODA South East Region 2016 awards. Chris Horton, of NODA, said: "the award takes into consideration all aspects of the show". Dave Hawkins said: "the fact that it's for the show rather than the play means that the part every single one of the cast and crew played in the production counted towards this unexpectedly gobsmacking award!"
Berzerk Productions have started drama classes at Compton Village Hall every Tuesday evening for young people between 6 and 18 years.
Is pretending to like Beckett an example of The Emperor's New Clothes? See why Daniel Finkelstein of The Times described Happy Days as an "incomprehensible load of old gibberish" here.
Feeling guilty because you don't like (or can't understand) Antigone or Medea? Don't be - read Catherine Nixey's article.
The Oxfordshire Drama Wardrobe has a stock of over 5,000 costume and prop items available for hire to drama groups, schools and colleges. They have costumes from almost every period, from Ancient Rome, through Elizabethan to Georgian. They also have a good range for the Victorian/Edwardian eras, and for the 1920s-1950s, with a large choice of WW2 allied uniforms. They're happy to discuss your needs with you and to see how they can help you to stage a visually striking play without having to break your budget. www.oxondramawardrobe.co.uk
There's an interesting article by the Watermill's Tei Williams about the process in staging a Watermill production, from choosing the play through to the opening night. It's here.
If you're under 25, you can get Watermill tickets for £10 from the box office. This is for performances from Monday to Thursday. You can also get Student Standby tickets on the day for £3.
You can get the latest updates via RSS or Twitter (@NewburyTheatre). If you don't know what RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is, this may not be for you (find out more here), but if you're using an RSS reader already, this is a good way to keep up to date with the changes to this site.
|27 Jul||Compton Players' production last November of Seal Cove, written and directed by Dave Hawkins, has been awarded the Maurice Spillett Trophy for Best New Show in the NODA South East Region 2016 awards.|
|27 Jul||Review of The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde at the Croft Hall ("the audience was completely silent, totally immersed in the brilliance of this man's performance" - NWN).|
|27 Jul||Studio Theatre Club's next production is The Government Inspector in Abingdon from 21st to 24th September.|
|27 Jul||Silchester Players' next production is The Ghost Train by Arnold Ridley between 30th September and 8th October.|
|27 Jul||Shinfield Players' next production is The King and I by Rogers and Hammerstein between 7th and 16th October.|
|27 Jul||The Sainsbury Singers' next production is Showtune in Woodley from 26th to 29th October.|
|27 Jul||New Era's next productions are The Importance Of Being Earnest in September and Collaborators at the end of November.|
|27 Jul||Newbury Musical Theatre Society's next production is Return to the Forbidden Planet from 27th to 29th October.|
|27 Jul||Faringdon Dramatic Society's next production is Abigail's Party by Mike Leigh from 10th to 12th November.|
|26 Jul||Compton Players's next production is Bracken Moor by Alexi Kaye Campbell from 9th to 12th November.|
|26 Jul||Abingdon Operatic Society's autumn production is the musical Barnum from 25th to 29th October.|
|26 Jul||Abingdon Drama Club's next production is A Man for All Seasons from 16th to 19th November.|
|26 Jul||H.A.O.D.S's next production at the Kenton Theatre, Henley is Spamalot from 16th to 19th November.|
|26 Jul||AmEgos are joining with Look Theatre of Wantage in Legally Blonde The Musical from 25th to 27th August.|
|21 Jul||Review of The Hollow at The Mill at Sonning ("a good old-fashioned thriller where everything is stylised and made personal" - NWN).|
|21 Jul||Review of The Fossil Lady of Lyme at the Croft Hall, Hungerford ("an extraordinary woman brought to life in a fascinating evening" - NWN).|
|16 Jul||Review of Newbury Dramatic Society's Just So Kipling ("absorbing, instructive and entertaining, finely performed by five very good actors" - Newbury Theatre).|
|13 Jul||Review of New Era's Pride and Prejudice ("played with verve and enthusiasm by all, this was a colourful, enjoyable production" - NWN).|
|13 Jul||Creation Theatre Company's A Midsummer Night's Dream in Oxford is a bit different - some walking involved!|
|8 Jul||TADS are hosting a Murder Mystery Supper Evening on 9th and 10th September in Tilehurst.|
|7 Jul||New Season at the Old Fire Station in Oxford.|
|7 Jul||New Season at The Lights in Andover.|
|7 Jul||New Season at Oxford Playhouse.|
|7 Jul||Sinodun Players' next production in Wallingford is The Tempest from 19th to 22nd October.|
|6 Jul||Newbury Dramatic Society are taking their production Just So Kipling to local halls at Hungerford, Kingsclere and Lambourn between 13th and 15th July.|
|5 Jul||Kingsclere Players are holding auditions on Wednesday 13th July for their November panto Cinderella.|
|4 Jul||Reading Operatic Society are performing the musical Sister Act at the Hexagon, Reading, from 28th September to 1st October.|
|4 Jul||Kennet Opera's big production in November is Rossini's La Cenerentola at Arlington Arts.|
|1 Jul||Nomads Musical Theatre's big production this autumn is Oklahoma! at the Corn Exchange, Newbury.|
|1 Jul||New season at the Corn Exchange and New Greenham Arts, Newbury.|
|29 Jun||More reviews of the Watermill's Watership Down ("this gentle digest is well worth the stop-off" - Telegraph (3 stars); "both charming and disturbing... there is much to enjoy as the fur starts to fly" - Guardian (3 stars); "superb... tremendous fun and compelling to watch... a thoroughly enjoyable family show... a must-see production" - British Theatre Guide).|
|29 Jun||Review of New Era's God of Carnage ("splendidly performed... a highly-enjoyable, fast-paced production" - NWN).|
KATS' next production is Alarms and Excursions from 4th to 6th August in Upper Bucklebury. Nine short plays by Michael Frayn, performed on one evening which examine, with hilarity, the difficulties modern technology has added to life when four old friends sit down for a quiet evening together.
AmEgos are involved with Look Theatre's production of Legally Blonde The Musical from 25th to 27th August in Wantage.
TADS are hosting a Murder Mystery Supper Evening on 9th and 10th September in Tilehurst. Someone is about to die, but who will it be? Be part of cantakerous Clarissa's suprise birthday party and try and guess the murderer and motive. The evening includes a Fish and Chips supper and sweet, which will form part of the surprise party for Clarissa.
Sinodun Players' The Tempest, Shakespeare’s play of enchantment, love, magic and political intrigue has been given a radical overhaul that promises to enhance the supernatural quality of the Bard’s final and, arguably, greatest masterpiece with original and outstanding staging, soundscape, lighting, costume and haunting music. It's at Wallingford Corn Exchange from 19th to 22nd October.
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