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
See What's on for a list of everything.
News and special events
Are you aged 9 and over? Can you sing? Can you dance? Would you like to be in the next Faringdon Dramatic Society Pantomime? The readthrough is on Tuesday 13th October and auditions, for children and adults, are on Tuesday 20th October. Performances are at the end of January.
On 30th and 31st October Resurrection Players present Residents Resurrected at The Phoenix Centre, Newtown Road, Newbury. To celebrate Halloween The Grim Reaper will be bringing forth ghosts of the Victorians buried in Newtown Road Cemetery. They will tell you stories of their lives. Some were in trouble with the law and some worked for Queen Victoria. There will be a publican, a brewer, a laundress, a draper, a chemist and two artists. One ended up as mayor and one died in the Berkshire Lunatic Asylum. Their stories may amaze you. They present a slice of life in the 19th and 20th centuries in a small market town. Tickets available from the Corn Exchange.
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.
|4 Oct||The Importance of Being Earnest, with David Suchet, is being broadcast live from the Donmar Warehouse on Thursday 8th October at Vue Newbury and other cinemas.|
|2 Oct||More reviews of The Ladykillers at the Watermill ("an absolute delight from start to finish: a sure-fire winner... this captivating and entertaining show is full of surprises and is a palpable hit" - British Theatre Guide; "one not to miss" - NWN; "ticks all the boxes" - The Stage (3 stars)).|
|29 Sep||Reviews of the Watermill's The Ladykillers ("great comedy... a wacky production with some hilarious moments" - Newbury Theatre; "sheer escapist pleasure, daft and dippy" - Slough Observer).|
|28 Sep||Auditions for adults and children over 9 for Faringdon Dramatic Society's January pantomime are on Tuesday 20th October.|
|28 Sep||On 30th and 31st October The Resurrection Players present Residents Resurrected at The Phoenix Centre, Newtown Road, Newbury.|
|21 Sep||Kingston Bagpuize Drama Group's next production from 26th to 28th November is The Emperor's New Clothes.|
|12 Sep||Return to the Forbidden Planet is Hartley Arts Group's next production in Hartley Wintney on 16th, 17th, 22nd, 23rd and 24th October.|
|11 Sep||BATS Next Generation are performing Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat at Queen Mary's College, Basingstoke from 29th to 31st October.|
|10 Sep||Lots of new productions added for autumn - check out the Calendar|
|9 Sep||Review of Creation's Alice ("inventive... stunnning... absurdity meets rationality brilliantly" - NWN).|
|8 Sep||Mortimer Dramatic Society's next production between 23rd and 31st October is Derek Benfield's Beyond a Joke.|
Nomads Musical Theatre's big production in Newbury from 7th to 10th October is Sunset Boulevard. Based on the classic black and white film about a faded silent movie star desperate to make a comeback, the musical adds another dimension with sweeping music and captivating songs such as With One Look and As If We Never Said Goodbye.
Russell Players' next production on 9th and 10th October is Macbeth by Geoff Bamber. There are three witches, although one has a few problems with her satellite navigation system. Much murder and wringing of hands ensues. Add to this a mad doctor, the devious antics of a power crazy wife and a collection of memorable characters.
Return to the Forbidden Planet, the fun musical play based on Shakespeare's The Tempest, with chart-topping songs from the fifties and sixties like Great Balls of Fire, The Young Ones and Monster Mash, is Hartley Arts Group's next production in Hartley Wintney on 16th, 17th, 22nd, 23rd and 24th October.
Boundary Players' next production from 21st to 24th October in Tadley is Molière’s comic masterpiece Tartuffe. Banned by Louis XIV after just one performance, Tartuffe is an uproarious comedy of seduction, scandal and religious hypocrisy. Lock up your silver, daughters and wives, con artist extraordinaire Tartuffe is in the house!
Derek Benfield's Beyond a Joke is Mortimer Dramatic Society's next production between 23rd and 31st October. Unfortunate accidents have happened during Andrew and Jane's tenancy of their house. Daughter Sally lives with them and when her boyfriend visits, he learns of some of the accidents and draws the wrong conclusions...
BATS Next Generation are performing the musical Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat at Queen Mary's College, Basingstoke from 29th to 31st October.
On 30th and 31st October Resurrection Players present Residents Resurrected at The Phoenix Centre, Newtown Road. To celebrate Halloween The Grim Reaper will be bringing forth ghosts of the Victorians buried in Newtown Road Cemetery. They will tell you stories of their lives which may amaze you, presenting a slice of life in the 19th and 20th centuries in a small market town.
T.A.D.S' family panto from 4th to 5th December in Tilehurst is The Frog Princess. Come and meet our lovely Frog who helps Bumpkin and Numbskull seek their fame and fortune. We have our Beautiful Princess who has a nasty Step Sister along with her mother, the Evil Queen. There’s Laces, who works at the Palace and of course there’s a Witch along with a Talking Mirror.
Faringdon Dramatic Society's production from 5th to 7th November is Alan Ayckbourn's Living Together. Reg and his wife Sarah have just arrived to take over nursing duties so that Annie can go away for the weekend. Sarah assumes this has been arranged with Tom, the local vet. In fact, the weekend has been arranged with Norman, an assistant librarian.
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