The Southsea Shakespeare Actors have revealed they are to perform 'As You Like It' this Autumn in Hayling Island's Station Theatre.
The Shakesperean comedy, rich with some of his most hilarious characters, is on from November 9th - 12th 2016. It will be directed by Paula Bartlett and Ellen Giddey.
The company are also putting on a unique production of 'Murder at the Cathedral' by T.S.Eliot, which is to be performed at Portsmouth Cathedral and directed by Lauren Farnhill. The performances, dedicated to Archbishop Thomas Becket, are on Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd October 2016.
The award winning company are currently in full preparation for their next show, 'The Winter's Tale', which is playing next week from the 6th April to the 9th.
Over two thirds of the tickets have already gone for this production, with interest increasing as the dates roll closer. The Thursday night is now sold out, with limited availability on the Saturday. You can ensure you are there by booking a ticket online. We've included a handy link below.
Theatre company CCADS have received a tweet from Andrew Lloyd Webber (or the team behind him) following their successful run of 'Cats' at The Kings Theatre last week.
The tweet came as a reply to Ashley, who wrote:
And #TeamALW replied:
With CCADS sending Andrew Lloyd Webber their cast photo from the final night in reply.
It is believed 'Cats' was seen by over three and a half thousand people over the three days it was on, and received positive critical and audience reception.
CCADS are to present Stephen Sondheim's 'Into The Woods' as their next production; to be performed at Ferneham Hall from 16th - 18th June 2016.
Tickets are available now.
The Southsea Shakespeare Actors have sold over half the tickets for 'The Winter's Tale', with box office sales continuing into the Easter Weekend.
The performance is to take place every evening in The Square Tower, Southsea, from April 6th - 9th 2016. Its cast features Sarah Parnell, Patrick Howe, Andy Thomas, Rob Bartlett and Susie Coutts, amongst others.
Director Nick Downes strongly advises booking to avoid disappointment. "Book now if you want to see this astonishing, beautiful play in an equally beautiful venue. A fantastic cast and careful staging put across this fantastic story in a masterful fashion. It's dramatic. And very funny!
"My sound operator saw the full run for the first time yesterday and wrote me: 'Just wanted to echo your sentiments about the quality of the show. Viewing it for the first time last night, I think you have a fantastic production that has everything: humour, tragedy, drama and romance. With costumes in the beautiful Square Tower, I think this is going to be one hell of a production!'."
Tickets are available online via TicketSource (link below) or alternatively by telephoning 07581577651 (leave a message if need be - the company will get back to you). All performances begin at 7:30pm.
Break a Leg Company are seeking a make up artist on the 14th May to assist them with their show 'Name in Lights'.
The company, based in Gosport and performing at Thorngate Hall Theatre, would like anyone interested to contact them.
Alternatively, aspiring candidates can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit our Facebook page, and we'll contact the company on your behalf.
Tickets for the show are on sale now. The concept is of one girl's determination to get her name in lights, featuring lots of songs from various musicals.
There is a matinee and evening performance of the show, all on 14th May 2016. Tickets currently available on their website: www.breakalegcompany.co.uk.
Theatre company CCADS have always been a credit to their prolific ambition, offering some of the most memorable shows on the Portsmouth theatre scene.
Tonight, they open at the Kings Theatre with their unique production of the hit musical 'Cats'.
To mark this special production, we go behind the scenes and look at some of the incredible creative talent that has gone into this spellbinding show.
Andrew Lloyd-Webber's musical 'Cats' is a success story. It ran professionally on the West End for twenty-one years and is the fourth longest running musical on the West End of all time.
Based on 'Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats' by T. S. Elliot, the production is staged with cast members playing the role of a cats, in both character and appearance.
By its very nature then, staging the musical is bound to present its challenges for an amateur company. But it looks like CCADS have mastered it beautifully. This is not only due to the strong casting, but also down to the creative team, responsible for ensuring over forty actors are transformed into convincing feline characters.
Two weeks ago we were kindly invited along to the make-up rehearsal for the show. Led by Ross Cobbald, who also stars in the show, the cast were taught about the make-up application process required. It's a big and time consuming task to complete before each performance.
The actors keenly watched the demonstration before applying the make up to each other, with Ross offering guidance and advice. Voluntary make up assistants, supporting the process for the actors on show nights, were also on hand to help out and learn.
It's clear from this rehearsal and its outcome Cobbald is a master of his craft. Each character is clearly defined and distinctive. Each one meticulously designed with a detailed hand drawn concept, giving the artists a guide to follow. Care has been taken to consider, in all cases, character age and personality in the appearance.
When the process was completed, we were surrounded by a room full of expertly made-up actors, and could easily have been in the green room of a professionally made up show. Surreal though it may have been, it was a compelling transformation to observe. The photos in the gallery above show the brilliance of the artistry.
When it all comes together with costume and lighting this week, the audience are certainly in for a visual treat.
Of course, there's more to playing the role of a cat than just looking the part. 'Cats' is notable for having significant amounts of dancing and movement based performance. We caught up with the show's choreographer, Lydia Thorne, who also features in the show, for a brief chat:
How difficult is it to encompass the cat like elements into the routines?
"We've left a lot of encompassing the cat elements down to the cast. We did workshops to begin with. Then we've taught them the choreography and left it to them to incorporate their characters into it. It's a hand picked cast, so we were always confident they would do it to a high level. And they have done, they've done really, really well. Some bits I've gone away with and changed slightly; hands, arms, things like that. Just to make it a bit more catty! But generally they've all worked on their characters."
Is it hard to get out of the mind-set of the West-End 'Cats' routines?
"Our production is different. This is a completely different staging of it because we had to have it unique and new and fresh. John Paul McCrohon [Artistic Director of CCADS and Director of 'Cats'] has developed a whole new concept, which I'm not going to ruin for you, but it's excellent. It's really, really good. I actually prefer it."
Are you pleased with it?
"Yes. I've worked with John Paul for six years, he tells me what his vision is and I go away and bring it to life. Sometimes we do numbers together, sometimes we do it differently. We've developed it to showcase the strengths of the cast too. The Jellicle Ball is really impressive. It has almost all of the cats on stage together - it's one of my favourite sections, and we utilised the things we workshopped right at the start."
What would you tell me if I didn't yet have my ticket?
"I think 'Cats' gives you an all round show for entertainment. We've said as long as we give the audience an evening with great acting, great singing and great dancing they'll go away happy. And I think that is exactly what we've done."
'Cats' runs at The Kings Theatre, Southsea, from Thursday 24th March - Saturday 26th March 2016 with a matinee on Saturday afternoon. Booking available online, or by calling the box office on 02392 828282.
Photographs courtesy of Sue Rourke and published with kind permission.
Today marked Andrew Lloyd Webber's 68th birthday, and CCADS have released a video of the cast of 'Cats' singing him Happy Birthday on their Facebook page.
This is one of the first opportunities to see the cast in full costume on the stage, and although the video is brief, it gives a fantastic idea of how wonderful the cast look in their costumes under the technical lighting.
The show launches this Thursday, and runs until Saturday, at The Kings Theatre in Southsea. Limited tickets are still available and audience members are encouraged to get them before they sell out.
The CCADS Facebook page, dedicated to the company who are celebrating their 25th anniversary this year, also showcases rehearsal photographs for the show. The company additionally released a great video of the rehearsal run of the show, filmed by Tony Neal, late last week.
Tonight, the company ran their technical rehearsal with a dress rehearsal to follow tomorrow. The show is highly recommended, particularly as it offers a fresh insight into Birthday Boy Lloyd Webber's smash hit musical.
Tickets are available from the Kings Theatre box office. Our feature on their make up rehearsal and the make up of 'Cats' is due for release this week as we celebrate the show.
Links to the CCADS Facebook page and the online box office can be found below.
Tonight The Young Creatives perform their showcase of talent, 'In The Spotlight' at Buckland Community Theatre.
The show is on for one night only and the curtain rises at 7pm. Tickets are reasonably priced at £6 for adults, £4 for children and OAPs.
The Young Creatives had their final dress rehearsal on Monday, and regularly meet for classes every Thursday. Anyone interested should visit their website, where online booking is also available.
We we hope the cast break a leg for their performance this evening.
The Southsea Shakespeare Actors are to take part in an interview on BBC Radio Solent this morning at 7:50am.
Patrick Howe and Lauren Farnhill will be inteviewed on the station's breakfast show as part of the 400th year since Shakespeare's passing.
They will be talking about the record breaking company's work, as well as promoting and discussing the SSA's forthcoming production: 'The Winter's Tale'.
'The Winter's Tale' is one of Shakespeare's most interesting pieces, crossing the line between tragedy and comedy with a fantastical and magical story.
Today the company pieced together the whole show following months of rehearsing individual scenes to positive effect.
The performance is to take place at The Square Tower from April 6th - 9th each evening at 7:30pm. Ticket sales have started strongly so advanced booking is advised.
If you miss the radio interview in the morning, it will be available on BBC iPlayer following the broadcast.
Fareham Musical Society have revealed their shows for the summer, following their run of 'Anything Goes' at Ferneham Hall last week.
The company are to stage 'No Sex Please, We're British', the comedy farce written by Alistair Foot and Anthony Marriott.
Following this, Fareham Musical Society are to put on 'Reflections', a compilation show featuring the music of Johnny Cash; Judy Garland; Eva Cassidy and Karen Carpenter.
'No Sex Please, We're British' runs from 9th June until the 11th at Ferneham Hall. 'Reflections' is set to follow, on Thursday 21st July, at the same venue.
Tickets are available online now for both productions. Links below.
A promotional rehearsal video has been released on YouTube of the CCADS cast in rehearsal for 'Cats'.
The video, filmed and edited by Tony Neal, shows the performers rehearsing for their production of the smash Andrew Lloyd-Webber musical, which opens next week.
It's looking and sounding fantastic, and one can only imagine watching this how great it will be when it reaches the Kings Theatre on Thursday, with costume, set, make up and orchestration.
We were fortunate enough to be invited to the make-up rehearsal recently - PortsmouthTheatre.com will be releasing a feature article and photographs next week as we focus on the production in its opening week.
Rehearsal photographs by Gilly Williams have also been added to the company's Facebook page.
Tickets are selling fast for the show so it is recommended audience members purchase them before opening night.
CCADS' fresh rendering of 'Cats' opens on Thursday 24th - Saturday 26th March at The Kings Theatre, Portsmouth. Tickets are available from the theatre box office.