“We have all, at one time or another, been performers.”
Sir Laurence Olivier
Watch director Katie Webster introduce this production at our 2022/23 Live Season Launch.
Production synopsis Private Tommo Peaceful, an ordinary boy from rural Devon, prepares for the Battle of the Somme.
On a night that could be his last, Tommo looks back over his life – almost eighteen years of it. He remembers the adventures with his hero, his big brother Charlie; the accident in the forest that killed their father; the halcyon days spent with the love of his life, Molly; and the injustices of war that have seen his short life torn apart. We see the senselessness of war and the bravery of those “ordinary” boys in the lower ranks, who deserved – and didn’t get – to live long and happy lives. As Tommo counts the hours down to dawn, he invites us into a story of love, loss and, somehow, hope.
Production Style and Physical Requirements
This will be a stylistic production requiring a high energy cast. The majority of you will be multi-roling, so physical and vocal diversity will be key.
The set will be multi level and actors will need to navigate this quickly and easily. There will also be plenty of physical scenes within the school yard, the battlefield, crowd scenes etc., so please be prepared to throw yourself about a bit!
Whilst I do not have any concrete plans for live music, please do let me know if you are able to play any musical instruments, particularly stringed instruments.
This is a true ensemble production and I will be setting an early “books down” date to ensure we can pin down the moves. You need to move as a well-oiled machine and this will only come if you know exactly what you’re doing – and what everyone else is doing too! It will also be vital that you avoid conflicting commitments/holidays, so please declare them ahead of the auditions to see if we can work around them.
I will be following the standard Monday, Wednesday, Friday rehearsal schedule with some Sundays (incl. Single and Double Run). Rehearsals “proper” will be starting on Monday 12th September. I will be arranging a read through in late August/ early September prior to the rehearsal period “proper” starting.
Mr Munnings – Tommo and Charlie's bad tempered head teacher. "Soft" Devonshire accent required. Will double as Sergeant "Horrible" Hanley, the Pilot and Ensemble. Lots of contrast needed from this actor. Playing age 40s.
The Pilot – The good-natured Pilot that Tommo, Charlie and Molly meet as children. RP accent. Will double as Sergeant "Horrible" Hanley, Mr Munnings and Ensemble. Lots of contrast needed from this actor. Playing age 40s.
Sergeant "Horrible" Hanley – The horrible sergeant in charge of Tommo and Charlie in army training and then France. After Charlie disobeys his orders to protect Tommo, Hanley sends Charlie to be court marshalled. Will double as Mr Munnings, the Pilot and Ensemble. Lots of contrast needed from this actor.
James Peaceful – Tommo, Charlie and Big Joe's father. Dies in an accident in front of Tommo. Appears in a fleeting memory. "Soft" Devonshire accent required. Will double as Captain Wilkes and Ensemble. Playing age 30s/40s.
Please note that not all parts are shown above; there are plenty of orderlies, guards, soldiers, school children, crowds, customers, estaminet staff, movement and prop/furniture moving to keep everyone very busy…!
Watch director Melinda Hunt introduce this production at our 2022/23 Live Season Launch.
Production synopsis Howard Katz, aggressive Jewish showbiz agent of C-list celebrities, has hit a major mid-life crisis.
The play veers between comedy and near tragedy as we follow Katz on the journey to find himself again. Traced through darkly comic and almost dream-like flashbacks, Patrick Marber’s play comprises the dizzying fall of its eponymous hero from successful showbiz agent and family man, as scene by scene, with a near-ridiculous pileup of disasters: he loses a major client, learns that his father is heartbroken because his mistress dumped him, argues hurtfully with his father about the past, copes with his father’s death, splits with his wife, loses his job, gets mugged, wastes his remaining money, fights with his brother, suffers sexual dysfunction with a prostitute, contemplates suicide and begs an unanswering God for answers.
Linda – Aged 60.
Jo – Father, age 70+. Also plays Mr Lord (B&B owner), Hospital Orderly, Lou age 60
Male 40+ – Plays Norman, (Barber60s) Waiter, Security Guard, Casino Inspector.
Male 25+ – Plays Robin(homeless) Ricky (soap star), Bell Boy, Felix (1 line!), Waiter.
Production synopsis Based on William Golding’s classic novel which won the Nobel Prize for literature in 1983 and is listed as one of the 100 most inspiring novels the play was hailed by The Guardian as having “a genuinely disturbing power” and by The Telegraph as “guaranteed to grip older children and adults alike”.
The thrilling story follows a group of schoolchildren who find themselves stranded on a desert island after their plane crashes. What begins as an exciting adventure in the wild soon descends into savage violence as superstition and immorality sees the community they’ve made slide into a darkly sinister world.
Our production will reveal the darker parts of human nature with a powerful ensemble of fierce children driving rhythm, movement and emotion that will guarantee to grip from start to finish!
Auditions are open to members of the youth group and will follow a couple of intro weeks at the beginning of September. If you’re interested in joining our youth group’s waiting list please apply via our website. You can find more information and the online application form here.
Watch director Susanna Hook introduce this production at our 2022/23 Live Season Launch.
Watch Drama Chairman Mike Higginson introduce this production on behalf of director Mark Slaughter at our 2022/23 Live Season Launch.
Production synopsis The line between good and evil blurs in this gripping fable of the infamous serial killer.
Sweeney Todd follows the journey of an honest working man, broken by a corrupt ruling class and exiled, torn from his family. Years later and back in London, Todd the barber wreaks his terrible revenge, along the way forming a deadly alliance with an enterprising pie-shop owner – the widow, Mrs Lovatt. And if cutting the throats of his customers were not enough, things get even bloodier when she persuades him that the human remains would make the perfect filling for her pies…
As London’s poor crave meat, the murderous pair feed quite literally upon them.
An ensemble of 12 actors will play a range of roles. There are fantastic parts both large and small and there will be doubling and use of the ensemble, ensuring that everyone will have lots to do and bags of on-stage time.
Laced with dark humour and choral singing, fused with vivid storytelling we will transport this story to the early 1950’s and re-create London’s underbelly, post-World War Two; a time when rationing was still in play, Londoners were craving meat and the city’s gangland Barons were on the rise.
Don’t be intimidated by the mention of singing! It’s enough that you can hold a tune. Our MD will coach the group singing and any solo singing will be given only to those who are comfortable taking it on. I will ask you about your singing experience (if any) at auditions but won’t ask you to sing for me (unless you really want to!)
I would be very interested in any musicians or actor musicians out there and would ask you to let me know if you can play anything (no need to play at auditions).
We will have a (very) few initial sessions in early autumn to read the play, note bash some of the choral singing, and I will give all script edits and cuts at that time. We will then break and I will have brief individual character / back-story sessions with each actor to explore ideas before we begin rehearsals, following the usual GWT model in 2023.
Cast will be required to be off book (or close to being off book) at start of rehearsals (Schedule TBC).
Any questions – just ask and please don’t hesitate. Oh and finally – the squeamish need not apply!
Four Gentlemen* – One (and possibly both) gets a VERY close ‘shave’…
Confidence to sing solo useful but not essential.
ALL cast will play roles as ensemble - lunatics in asylum scenes, parishioners in church etc.
* Will also double as a constant haunting and sinister presence as Turpin’s ‘henchmen’ (Think : The Krays).
Watch Drama Committee Member Gaynor Griffin introduce this production on behalf of director Danny Waters at our 2022/23 Live Season Launch.
Production synopsis We have the exciting opportunity to present this new play by Lucy Kirkwood – The Welkin.
It is rural Suffolk, 1759. As the country waits for Halley’s Comet, Sally Poppy is sentenced to hang for a heinous murder. When she claims to be pregnant, a jury of twelve matrons are taken from their housework to decide whether she’s telling the truth, or simply trying to escape the noose.
With only midwife Lizzy Luke prepared to defend the girl, and a mob baying for blood outside, the matrons wrestle with their new authority, and the devil in their midst. The Welkin premièred at The National Theatre in 2020.
This play is beautifully written and is peppered with historic dialogue throughout, but every now and then the writer drops in a few modern phrases which create some very funny one liners. We expect the play to be dark and horrific, much like The Crucible,
which indeed it is at the end, but Kirkwood takes us by surprise and keeps the dialogue very funny in places.
We need thirteen strong character actresses of varying ages to share the stage for nearly the whole duration of the play. Two of these actresses, Elizabeth and Sally take the lead roles with the remaining eleven women sharing the rich dialogue throughout. There is one man that stylistically takes on the role of all four male characters. Some of the women will need to sing Kate Bush – ‘Running Up that Hill’ in a folk type of arrangement
The matrons can be of any ethnic background, indeed it is crucial the group reflects the present-day population and not that of rural East Anglia in 1759.
Dr Willis – 30-45. Educated, experienced, matter of fact.
Frederick Poppy – Sally’s husband. A labourer, uneducated.
Watch director Lawrence Watling introduce this production at our 2022/23 Live Season Launch.
Production synopsis NOTE- If you expressed interest before (when Twelfth Night was part of the 2021 season) and are still keen to be a part of this production, please re-register your interest.
Twelfth Night is a classic comedy centering around twins, Viola and Sebastian, who are separated after a stormy shipwreck off the coast of Illyria. To seek her fortune, Viola disguises herself as the young male page Cesario, and gains a position in Duke Orsino’s service. Viola instantly falls for the lovesick Orsino who in turn is coveting the grand Lady Olivia. Orsino sends Viola as Cesario to woo Olivia on his behalf…but of course Olivia falls in love with Cesario! When Viola’s twin Sebastian finds his way to Illyria’s shores, everyone believes him to be Cesario – and comedy ensues! Alongside this plot are many other hapless and hilarious characters; unlikely duo Toby Belch and Andrew Auguecheek wreak havoc with their drunken merriment. Their plot, hatched with Olivia’s bodacious handmaid Maria against Olivia’s snobbish steward Malvolio is sure to have the audience laughing their stockings off. And of course it all ends happily with a good old-fashioned Shakespearean jig! Huzzah!
‘Twelfth Night is Shakespeare’s most perfect comedy. It requires a blend of dream and reality, a balance between laughter and pain and a strong, all-round ensemble.’ (The Guardian).
This is your chance to be part of one of Shakespeare’s greatest plays! Forget the boring classroom renditions. Forget the scary language. Shakespeare is FUN! On this production I want you to experience and enjoy Shakespeare. In my opinion, if you DON’T enjoy doing Shakespeare then you have been doing it wrong.
We will work together on the language at your own pace, so please don’t let this put you off!
With full Elizabethan dress, amazing characters and a live band, what better way to close the GWT’s 75th season?
Valentine – (Male - any age)- Orsino’s attendant. Even though he doe not have a lot to say I want to work with the actor to make this a fun, visually comical part.