Monday, November 21, 2016

in December

an unexpected hybrid show just for laughs over the Christmas/New Year break.
Co-written by Grant Bailey ... Don your Boas and Spats and be prepared to be a participative radio audience!

Monday, September 26, 2016

The last word

"I laughed and I cried"  JJ , RM
"We loved the show, so much undercurrent of real life stories, gentle opening but then a nice pace as the stories unfolded. We had a tear in our eye in the closing scene, was very poignant " S&J
"Loved this show - thank you for writing such an eye-opening, heart-warming story"  KN
"Loved it from start to finish ....never saw that ending coming!"SG
"...the characters were so real.....loved the songs ... " RR
"...I think this is your best work to date - so very different from the last 2 productions....can't wait to see what you come up with next" JB

At the end of the Season, Table Manners received wonderful audience response - these are just a few of the written comments.
Huge thanks to a highly dedicated and committed Cast and hard working crew.  I've loved working with this team.
The Set worked surprisingly well in this venue - it made for a very intimate audience experience which everyone loved.
In typical theatre tradition, we toasted the end of the show with a celebration at the local pub - along with the expected 'show awards' .....and a witty ditty from Marise! [a tradition of her own!]

And for those who couldn't make it to a performance, the
Table Manners CD  is now available for purchase.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Just a few weeks away from opening night for the new production Table Manners and we're excited!  
After a couple of BIG productions - in pure farce - it feels good to be getting back to an intimate and meatier project.  
A great Cast is doing a grand job, an album of new songs has been recorded and the discs are on their way, and our first Tech/Dress session is coming up this week.
Here's a potted summary of the show:
It's all happening at the Jazz Piano Bar and Restaurant where Jane is haranguing Cyril, Sydney is waiting yet again for another no-show, Flick is skulking with greedy intentions, Arthur can't figure out what day it is, and Jasmine is daydreaming over a charming Dane as she keeps the orders coming.  There's travel plans, and wedding plans, and secret development plans ....and many a slip twixt the cup 'n the lip!  There's daydreams, 'n sweet dreams, 'n fond recollections, and a nightmare or two for some! 
.....There's plenty of laughs to go around, some great songs to enjoy, and lots of food for thought.
Opening September 16 for a 2 weekend season - just 5 performances.  The Dungeon, Adamstown.
Tickets are available online at a generous discount: 

 Cast:  Karen Hall; Marise Wilson; Harold Von Finster; Grant Bailey; 
Cherie McKinnon

Friday, July 8, 2016

Soup's up

As I'm head down-tail up getting ready for this year's SOUP! event, I'm reflecting on the fact that this is the tenth year of the annual winter event.
Where the heck did that decade go?!?!?
And I'm thinking of all the people that have participated in SOUP! over the years .... some have gone on to bigger and better, some have plateau'd, and some have faded into obscurity.  Bit like the rest of life really.
And how adventurous we were with SOUP! in some years - especially when we moved from the Teralba hall into the quaint and charming ReX theatre in Bolton Street.  How tiny is that stage?!  Yet we managed to get dance troupe's, circus performers, theatre sets, and full bands accommodated for some zany nights. 
The city logistics have forced a move to The Dungeon this year and who knows what the next 10 years [if there IS another decade of life left in SOUP!] will bring to the event.  But omigosh.... 'the
little event that could' has certainly grown legs!  And it's walking through it's community - as a true community music event should.

{check the SOUP! page on this blog for details}

Thursday, March 24, 2016

It Takes a TEAM!

I'm in reflective mode this week as I bask in the success - and recover from the weight - of Thunderbelly: The Musical.
With a team of 25 Cast, Crew, and Musicians to manage, the project has been an enormous workload - for everyone.  And with a series of hurdles to overcome along the way, there were times when I wondered if we were ever gonna get to the end! If you've ever been involved in Community Theatre, you'll know exactly what I mean.  If you've ever Produced and Directed Community Theatre, you'll have your own 'war stories' to tell.
But now - at the end of the project - here's what I reckon is worth sharing;
  • to each one of you who was there for the final presentations after last performance - this was undoubtedly the best team I've ever worked with on a show. The way this final group bonded together was incredible.
  • A good team relies on each other....every single person has a job to do.....each member of the team supports and encourages the others....each person does the job they've been called to do.
  • Every member of the team brings their own unique skills and talents to the project ....each member has their strengths and their weaknesses.  The mark of an excellent team is that all contribute what they can - between us, the strengths and weaknesses are balanced out.
  • This team had incredible focus and commitment.  Combined with their generosity of spirit and their care for each other,  it's no wonder that it was an unbeatable TEAM.
The results are evident and speak for themselves.  You only had to be there to see it in action.
And that's WHY it's addictive and why we all go back for more.
It's called Community.

Onstage and On Form

Monday, February 1, 2016

Why ~ Community?

So often I'm asked by friends with puzzled looks on their face/s ..."WHY do you put all this effort in when you get so little or nothing out of it?"  And it's not easy to articulate an answer when we live in a world where there is an expectation of what's in it for me?
Yup!  I'm back in the middle of a big theatre production where surplus profits are being donated to a local NFP - the Merewether Community Kitchen.   And that means, as writer/director/producer I'm overwhelmed with rehearsals, costumes, props, sets, sound, lights, promotion, - those myriad details that go in to putting on a production.
And I do that willingly because
a)  this is one of my creative 'voices'
b) I get to mentor, challenge, and develop others in their craft (with the satisfaction involved in seeing them achieve)
c) I get to bring laughter and happiness to so many people, participants/audience/recipients
d) I get to make a difference in individuals lives and in my community
e) ...and a dozen other reasons including the sheer joy and fun of seeing it all come together.
....BUT don't give me too many accolades .....
do you have any idea of how MANY members of the community get involved?
Let's hear a big round of applause for;
  • the performers who give up their Sunday afternoons for @ 3 months plus an evening through the week to get to rehearsals.....not to mention the hours they put in learning lines, moves, choreography, lyrics ..... for no tangible reward
  • the technical crew ...a Set Director who spends hours of time creating and building a set to fit each production ....a Sound Director who comes to every rehearsal to plan his strategy and technical requirements for the show.....a Lighting Director who utilises extensive skills to create the atmosphere to fit the show 
  • the musicians who give up their Sunday's too for rehearsals and an occasional mid-week evening as well
  • the volunteers ...ladies who manage the door, help distribute promotional material, the helping hands who assist with moving, building, making, the various bits to showcase the production.... and the helpers who lend a hand to set up and pack up the chairs .....these folks don't even get a round of applause to say thanks !
.....all of these people - and me - must be nuts!  But we are part of our community.  And so are YOU

.....So next time you're sitting at home alone with your telly and tech gadgets, wondering if life is going by at a probably is.   Engage with your community ..... get along to a local performance of something, celebrate the members of your community doing SOMETHING in, and for, your community.  That's the stuff that connects and builds a community  
You never know, you just might enjoy being an active part of that community.