30/12/07

Today’s rehearsal was great. We went through everything that the Children and Middle Chorus are involved in first, and covered all their bits. Some of the dance numbers need a little more work, but it’s pretty much there. Then, we ran through as much as we could with the rest of the company. Again, we covered a lot, and the next couple of rehearsals (the last before we get into the theatre) really need to be about ‘tidying’ rather than learning…..

Several moments stood out for me at today’s rehearsal: Joanna’s actions as Tommy the cat during ‘Heartbeat’ were brilliant! Anna’s laugh when Dick asks for a job is a scene-stealer! And Gill quietly sitting there sewing costumes, which are looking fantastic!

Thanks everybody!

28/12/07

Went to see Snow White at Basildon this afternoon. Daniel Dibdin is MD on the panto, and he is our MD as well! It was a good show, and we enjoyed it tremendously. We also got to meet Tim Adnitt who is joining us as bass player for ‘Dick’.

27/12/07

Take That’s “Shine” seems to be immensely popular – Dave suggested using it, and we saw it in the Radlett “Aladdin” today, so will be using it in our gorilla scene!

Radlett “Aladdin” was really good. We all enjoyed the show.

24/12/07

Ticket sales are steady but could be better. I’m always impressed by how far people travel to see our pantomime : Portsmouth, Kent, Norwich, Wales, and from all over the rest of southern England! Our fans are very loyal and it’s always a delight to see so many familiar faces in the audience

Luton News & Dunstable Gazette contacted us today. They’ve asked for some pictures, so it will be good to see what they write about us.

The theatre is available for us to do band call which is great news, so just need to reorganise everyone for the new date!

21/12/07

Ordered the silver slash curtain for the finale today…….. plus finished working out at what point in the show the Chorus girls will wear wigs, have their hair down, or wear hats – all important stuff!

A few more press releases went out today too……

It’s all go on the panto front!

Latest Rehearsal Pictures

Andrew Garnett – Lighting Director

Andrew Garnett

Learning a routine

 Dance 2Dance 1

 

Backing Singers

 Singing

Dick and Sarah

Dick and Sarah

 Photoshoot with Billy Bloodrop

picture-026.jpg

 

16/12/07

Traffic meant many people were late arriving for rehearsal – but we did manage to get a lot done today all the same!

Stephen Ayres choreographed London is London, We Sail the Ocean Blue, and Miracle – and all are starting to look good. With all the dance numbers now, it’s just practise. I only wish I could remember the dance moves myself!!!

I was delighted Tina was able to spend most of today’s rehearsal with us – she really adds so very much when she is able to be there – direction, aiding with choreography, generally helping ‘style’ the show! Thanks Tina!!!

We were joined by Billy Blood Drop for a photo session which was great!

And a full run of Act 1 !

Home, exhausted, needing sleep now……………….!

13/12/07

Spoke with our Musical Director, Daniel Dibdin today. He’s currently MD for the Towngate Basildon’s Snow White, which finishes on 6th Jan. So, Daniel will be finishing one panto and starting another – with us! He tells me Sean Randle will be back with us on Drums again this year (which is really good news) – so we know we’ve got Daniel plus Sean and we have Mark Drapeau joining us on percussion. A great start for what will be a great panto band!

“Behind the scenes…..”

Choreography this year is in the hands of Stephen Ayres. Stephen runs the Foot-Light Dance School and has kindly given up time to help us with the panto. He is choreographing many of the numbers in the show – and those that he isn’t I am choreographing myself (with my limited skill and ability!). It’s good to have someone of Stephen’s talents involved. The two tap dance nunbers he has done are brilliant!

We’re delighted that we’ll have Nigel Taylor and Mike Bullen, along with Ray Chamberlain, on Stage Crew this year – our hard working crew always ensure the sets look just right, and have the unenviable task of keeping out of the way while others are in the limelight, yet doing the hardest work in scene changes!

After a break of must be well over 10 years, Robin Rhind is back to do our special effects! Robin is a great mate and is invaluable as his experience in terms of pyros, dry ice, and electronic effects is immense. He can always work out just how to achieve whatever effect is required. Robin, I’m delighted you’re able to work with us again!

Martin Broadfoot and Colin Prior will be back in charge of Sound for us again – they travel far to do the show (Martin from Cornwall (!) and Colin from Surrey) – and both are very experienced so know exactly how to get the ‘right sound’ for panto. Thanks for doing it again guys!

Andre Garnett is our Lighting Director and he’s already been along to many rehearsals so he can see how the show is working, and get the right feel for the show in terms of lighting. Andrew has also skillfully built our boat, the ‘Saucy Sal’, which this year will be sailing on a sea of dry ice during Act Two – can’t wait!

The fantastic Daniel Dibdin is back as Musical Director and he will be getting his panto band together soon. We don’t see them until the week before the show, but Daniel’s arrangements are always excellent. Daniel is a brilliant MD and we are thrilled to have him work with us again.

We won’t see our Front of House team until show week, but Angie Casey, Jacqui Bailie, Jill Cook, Grinda Willis, Zena Kirk, Steve Keogh, and Sandra and Terry Phillimore will be working hard to ensure the audience are ticketed, seated, programmed (not in that sense!), souvenired (is that a word?!), etc! They, like so many others involved in the panto, work incredibly hard but get none of the applause…… so, thank you all!

I must say a special word for Gill Vymeris, who spends rehearsals sewing, fitting and making costumes – she’s here to chaperone and along with Hilary Whicker notes the Children’s and Middle Chorus’ moves in their master script, but Gill has been a fantastic help with costumes this year. Katie Coxon is also great, she knows the theatre and the area, she’s got us contacts for publicity, helped us with rehearsal space, etc.

And then there’s our brilliant Graphic Designer Steve Rider. Steve has done our posters for 25 years – we are old school pals, and his unbelievable talent for design is shown on our posters and flyers. Steve moved to Boston (USA) a couple of years ago, where he now lives with his lovely wife Karen, but we are delighted that Steve is still happy to do our poster design – it really lifts the whole show to have such a great poster – thanks Steve!

Finally, thank you to all the parents who ferry our Children, Middle Chorus (and some others) to and from rehearsals – we couldn’t do it without you!