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Kenton Kudos for our Festival Play

Our festival offering Roman Fever picked up one of the most prestigious prizes – that of best actress. This rather modest play, in comparison with some of the entries, certainly won the heart of the adjudicator for its acting, so much so that she felt she couldn’t separate the award between Liz McEwen and Jenny Haywood and therefore, and extremely unusually, nominated both of them to jointly share the award. So, we are doubly delighted. As director of the play I can’t tell you how proud I was on Saturday watching Liz and Jenny step up onto the stage to receive their prize. They had both worked their socks off in a very short space of time – just seven rehearsals. And let’s not forget Peter Dayton, whose lovely cameo appearance, also drew words of praise from the adjudicator for looking so smart and convincing as the head waiter.

Kate Lindsey, director.

Do come along and support this production at the Wallingford Corn Exchange, 13-17 June.

Festival Fever – Roman Fever!

Our festival entry, Roman Fever, by Hugh Leonard has been cast and rehearsals are proceeding apace. We have a very experienced cast as follows:

Mrs Slade – Liz McEwen
Mrs Ansley – Jenny Haywood
Head Waiter – Peter Dayton

This is a lovely short piece based on an Edith Wharton short story; it has a real twist that will really keep you guessing! Come along and support this production at The Kenton Drama Festival and the Wallingford Corn Exchange Drama Festival.

The 40th Kenton Drama Festival runs from 4-7 May 2011

The Wallingford Corn Exchange Drama Festival runs from 13-17 June

Good luck to all involved!

Pack of Lies

Two readings will be held for our autumn production of Hugh Whitemore’s Pack of Lies. The first will be held on our regular monthly club night at Zizzis on Monday 9th May, the second at Harpsden Hall on Thursday 26th May. Auditions to follow on Thursday 2nd June, also at Harpsden Hall. All meetings to start at 8 pm. For more information, please contact contact Kate Lindsey.

Also, if you’d like to get involved in helping out with this production in any non-acting way, we’d love to hear from you!

Pizza, Pasta, Pints, Playreadings, Poetry!

In order to involve members in regular social get-togethers, The Henley Players will hold Club Nights on the second Monday of each month excepting August and December. These will take place at Zizzi’s, in Hart Street, Henley, starting at 8 pm. Arrive from 7:30 pm to grab a drink or coffee (avoid the rush), or why not come at 6:30 pm to take advantage of a discounted meal before the events begin in the front room? Playreadings will form the back-bone of these evenings, but other activities are welcomed. See ‘Events’ page for details of individual Club Nights.

Dates for 2011 are as follows:

January 10th
February 14th
March 14th
April 11th
May 9th
June 13th
July 11th
September 12th
October 10th
November 14th

If you’d like to host one of these evenings, or have ideas for a play you wish to read, please contact contact Kate Lindsey. Suggestions for playreadings or similar activities are most welcome!

Spring 2011 production cast!

Our spring production (15-19 March) is Alan Ayckbourn’s riotous comedy Bedroom Farce. Director Darrel Poulos is delighted to have assembled an excellent cast for this production. There were some tough choices to be made as many people read very well for a number of the roles. It gave the casting committee pause for thought about how to choose the final members of the cast. Casting is as follows:

Earnest: Geoff Atkinson
Delia: Jan Beyts
Trevor: Ioan Harvard
Susannah: Grainne Harling
Malcolm: James Gwynne
Kate: Karen Du Plessis
Nick: Tim Harling
Jan: Jan Corby
Lighting: Derek Gilbert
Stage Manager: To be finalised

If you want to help out with this show in any non-acting capacity, please contact Darrel Poulos or Kate Lindsey, who would be delighted to hear from you.

Writers’ Group

After a long gestation period, The Henley Players Writers’ Group met for the first time on 28 July 2010, at the Hot Gossip cafe in Friday Street. A small but dedicated group enjoyed vigorous discussion about the nature of playwriting, and everyone read excerpts of their own work. The date of the next meeting is yet to be announced, so watch this space!

Contact Mike Rowbottom for more information, or read the article that appeared in the 18 January issue of The Henley Standard

Triumph at the Didcot Drama Festival!

Congratulations to Alex Rogers, Sue Baxter and cast and crew for doing so well at the Didcot Drama Festival in May. Alex Rogers’ ‘For Thine is the Kingdom’ won Best Play, Alice Evans won Best Actress, Jan Beyts won Best Supporting role, and Alex narrowly missed out on the Best Actor award. A wonderful result of which we are very proud.

We are also proud to acknowledge the kudos gained at the Wallingford Corn Exchange Festival in early June, where ‘Kingdom’ won the Punters’ (Audience) Prize for Best Play, and Alice Evans was awarded the Adjudicator’s Award.

As you may know, this year we entered a record four (!) theatre festivals: Maidenhead Drama Festival, Kenton Drama Festival, Didcot Drama Festival, and the Wallingford Corn Exchange Festival. ‘For Thine is the Kingdom’ was written by Alex Rogers, and is a savage black comedy about fear, prejudice and the dangers of playing God. Our guest director for this show was Sue Baxter, Head of Drama at St Gabriel’s, Newbury. Alex Rogers and Alison Evans played the challenging lead roles, ably supported by Jan Beyts and Dominic Walker. Thanks to various other members of THP for providing stage management and other support.