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SEPTEMBER 2011

September is Arbor Month in Cape Town …… also known as Heritage month. The City of Cape Town will celebrate this by planting 614 trees in various events which will be held throughout Cape Town this month. Among the various indigenous trees being planted will be the official tree of the year, the Fever tree (Acacia xanthophloea), and this year’s uncommon trees of the year, the Cape Garenia (Rothmania capensis), Bell gardenia (Rothmannia globosa), and Tonga-kerrie (Cladostemon kirkii).

BIRTHDAYS

October sees Angela Lee-Wright turning a year older on the 3rd; I do the same a day later and Brenda Commins’ birthday is on the 10th. Chelsea Van Coller, Peter Sharp and Gillian Charman are on the 12th, 13th and 14th respectively and ……….

DRUM ROLL PLEASE!!!
John Hitchcock turns 80 on the 15th!!!!!!!!
Richard Higgs celebrates on the 22nd with Karen Riley and Jenny Brandt rounding out the month’s birthdays on the 23rd. The birth flower for October is the Calendula (Marigold), the meaning of which is sorrow or sympathy. The hidden message of the Calendula is “my thoughts are with you”.

INTER-SOCIETY QUIZ

Constantiaberg will be hosting the Quiz this year on Sunday, 9th October, at the Masque Theatre. The charge at the door will be R20 which includes a free drink and light refreshments. Doors will open at 17:30 when there will be a Wall quiz for everyone to take part in individually with the prize being a bottle of sparkling wine. The quiz will begin at 18:30. We need to let Constantiaberg know by 30 September if we will be entering one team or two (4 per team) and how many supporters will be attending. All those who wish to be on a team (or just support) can contact birga Thomas on 021 7885272 or birgatom@iafrica.com. Remember, MVDS’ foots the bill for team members!!!

So to get you in the mood for a quiz, a coupla riddles:
How can you tell if a tree is a dogwood?
By its bark.

********

What do elephants and trees and in common?
They both have trunks.

CALENDAR

9 Sept – Fiddler on the Roof directed by Teddy Davies for the Cape Town G&S Society
1 Oct at the Artscape Opera House. This lavish production will be accompanied by the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra with well-known and highly respected designers Penny Simpson and Keith Anderson designing costumes and sets respectively. Rich in historical ethnic detail, Fiddler on the Roof has touched audiences around the world with its humour, warmth and honesty. Its universal theme of tradition cuts across barriers of race, class, nationality and religion, leaving audiences crying tears of laughter, joy and sadness. Based on stories by Sholem Aleichem, its celebrated score features songs loved the world over: Sunrise, Sunset, If I Were a Rich Man, Matchmaker and many others – it is simply Broadway at its very best! Info on production times and prices through Computicket and Dial-a-Seat 021 421 7695.

16 – 24 Steel Magnolias by Robert Harling at the Masque. Directed by Angela Lee-
Sept Wright for Constantiaberg Theatre Players. Set in a small town in Louisiana in the 1980s, the production takes place in a small hair salon which plays an important part in the lives of the clients. Based on a true story, this heart-warming play is guaranteed to make you laugh and cry!

7 – 15 Hayfever by Noel Coward at the Masque. Directed by Alastair Duff for Fish
Oct Hoek Dramatic Society. A deliciously wicked comedy of ill-manners! The Bliss family invites four wildly different guests down to their country house for the weekend … with hilarious results! Coward said that this delightful comedy is considered by many to be his best comedy… it is very clever, and an assured crowd pleaser. Loads of involvement by MVDS’ members here – starting with direction by our Vice-Chairman; featuring Kelly Kowalski, Richard Higgs, Jenny Brandt and myself; backstage is Jane Philbrick, Aubrey Hindle and Ronnie Carr. So make sure you see this one!

Please note days, times and prices for Masque Theatre productions
(unless otherwise stated) are Thurs & Fri performances at 20:00,
Saturday matinee at 14:30, Saturday evening at 18:30
Thurs eve and Sat Matinees R50 (Theatre Club members R40)
Other Nights R60 (Theatre Club members R50)
Bookings on 021-7881898

UPCOMING MVDS’ PRODUCTIONS

August: Osage County is our next production at the Masque in November and we have an appeal for the following items:
• A 2-seater sofa-bed (we have the offer of one, but the poor guy would sit with a sofa-empty sitting room for three weeks! So if there’s anyone else out there with one in a spare room …)
• A small bed (72 cm wide or thereabouts)
• A black dress, preferably sort-of “frilly” (but not necessarily). The dress will not be worn on stage, just “held up”.
• Several black suits (to save hiring costs!). We need different sizes (for four men).
The items do not have to be in good condition (in fact, we prefer them not to be), but if they are, the furniture items will be covered to look old/er and be protected.
Please let Wendy Morling know if you can help and what size suit you can offer – she’ll check with the different cast members. Contact her on 021 7150694 or 0834628242 or home@morling.co.za. And to continue our “arbor” theme: A tree called the Osage-orange led directly to the invention of barbed wire as it has the most wicked thorns! And here is a picture of its fruit! Weird hey?

Then, in February 2012 we will be staging an adaptation of John Hughes’ iconic 1985 “teen” movie, The Breakfast Club, and director Raymond Rudolph asks:

“Are you a Brain, an Athlete, a Basket Case, a Princess, a Criminal or a Teacher? Oh, throw in a janitor as well.”

He will be organising a movie screening/discussion/workshop for people who wish to participate in the project: specific details will be circulated later. Please send your bio/showreel links/etc, with full contact details to Raymond Rudolph on 021 794 5229 or 082 3122737 or raymrud@netactive.co.za. Enclose a current photograph of yourself, as the production proposes (unashamedly) to pay homage to Hughes and to the movie, and the performers selected will be required to have as close a resemblance to the original cast members as possible”. If you missed the movie, check out the official trailer on You Tube or imdb.com.

Ok, quickly now …….

Go out and plant a tree before September runs out!!

Eve

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A U D I T I O N N O T I C E

Sunday, 15 May 2011, 14:30

at the Masque Theatre, 37 Main Road, Muizenberg

Tracy Letts’

August: Osage County

A darkly comic drama

directed by birga Thomas

Rehearsals start during the first week of August (three times a week)

Production dates: 28 October to 05 November 2011 at the Masque Theatre

The play …

won its author the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 2008 as well as the Tony Award for Best Play of that year. It is full of “rich compelling characters and scintillating criticism of the modern American family”. The story takes place on the excruciatingly hot plains of Oklahoma in the dog days of 2007. Osage County, where the middle-class residence of the Westons is situated, lies entirely within a Native American (Indian) reservation, home of the Osage Nation. Memories of the dark days of colonisation creep up at occasions. There are several layers to the story, and audience members can “dig” as deep as they prefer.

The Weston family gathers in their home after their patriarch goes mysteriously missing. They are mostly intelligent and sensitive people, but each harbours one or other dark secret. They have come to support each other, but soon it seems that everybody is attacking everyone else. Not only the weather but also the tensions in the Weston household soon reach boiling point … and some pots indeed boil over. There are more twists and turns than in the average Christie thriller.

Tracy Letts has been compared to Tennessee Williams and Eugene O’Neill. The play (first performed by the Steppenwolf company to which Letts belongs) has been performed all over the world, to audience as well as critical acclaim. Our production will be the South African première.

Characters (ages given are approximate) (on stage: x pages out of 127)

Beverly Weston, 69
Patriarch of the family, father of three daughters, one-time world-class poet and now full-time alcoholic. Polite, soulful, melancholic … and ultimately suicidal. Although all the fuss is about him, he only appears on stage during the prologue (appr. 15 minutes).
very small role
(7)

Violet Weston, 65
Devious matriarch of the family. Addicted to painkillers and any other pill she can pop. Suffers from cancer of the mouth, but that does not stop her sharp tongue and shrewd awareness of the many family secrets which she does not hesitate to reveal.
very large role
(101)

Barbara Fordham, 46
Eldest of the three Weston daughters. Trying to control everything and everyone. Cynical college professor in Boulders/Colorado, separated from husband Bill
very large role
(99)

Bill Fordham, 49
Barbara’s estranged husband. College professor who sleeps with one of his young students, but wants to be there for the family.
medium to large role
(78)

Jean Fordham, 14
Barbara and Bill’s pot- and cigarette-smoking daughter, vegetarian, loves old movies and is bitter about parents’ split.
medium to large role
(79)

Ivy Weston, 44
The middle daughter, known as “Mom’s favourite”, though Violet constantly tells her that she is plain and needs a man. She teaches at the local college (the only daughter not to have moved away, so mother’s sharp tongue gave her many more lashings than the others). She, too, has a dark secret or two.
medium role
(64)

Karen Weston, 40
The youngest daughter “fled” to Florida where she plans to marry soon. She claims to have never been happy in her life, but is now happily engaged to businessman Steve, whom she considers the “perfect man”.
small to medium role
(54)

Mattie Fay Aiken, 57
As jaded as her sister Violet. She is naïve but also controlling and belittles her husband Charlie and especially the son Little Charles.
small-ish role
(42)

Charlie Aiken, 60
Mattie Fay’s husband of 40 years. A genial man who was a lifelong friend of Beverly’s. Struggles to get Mattie Fay to respect Little Charles. Hen-picked and timid … till he finally puts his foot down.
smalli-ish role
(41)

Little Charles Aiken, 37
Mattie Fay and Charlie’s son. His mother calls him a “screw-up” … but with a dark secret of his own.
small role
(38)

Johnna Monevata, 26
Native-American (Cheyenne Indian) woman, hired by Beverly as a live-in housekeeper shortly before his disappearance. Violet is prejudiced against her, but she wins over the others with her cooking skills, hard work and empathy. She may not have many lines, but is the most compassionate and morally grounded of all. Johnna claims to stay in the caustic household simply because she needs the job, yet there are times when she swoops in like a warrior-angel, saving characters from despair and destruction. Pivotal role.
large, pivotal role though relatively few lines
(86)

Steve Heidebrecht, 50
Karen Weston’s fiancé, businessman in Florida. He turns out to be the most loathsome, psychopathic character (not the “perfect man” at all).
small to medium role
(54)

Sheriff Deon Gilbeau, 47
High-school classmate and former boyfriend of Barbara’s, he investigates Beverly’s disappearance
very small role
(12)

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SEPTEMBER 2010

Yay!!!  September 24th is a public holiday!!  Yup, it’s Heritage Day: a day on which South Africans across the spectrum are encouraged to celebrate their cultural heritage and the diversity of their beliefs and traditions, in the wider context of a nation that belongs to all its people.  On a smaller scale, let’s see what’s happening in the AmDram world, shall we?

CALENDAR

10, 11      A Night on the Town presented by Wynberg Boys High School.   The Steel Band is

12 Sept   known as the “party band” due to its light-hearted, foot tapping repertoire which often inspires spontaneous dancing from the audience!  In addition to this outstanding band, our audiences will be treated to an amazing programme which features the award-winning Wynberg Boy’s Choir and the Vocal Ensemble.  As if this is not enough you will also experience the popular WBHS Concert and Jazz Bands.  The repertoire for this exciting programme includes such favourites as “Waka Waka”, “Seventy Six Trombones”, “Mona Lisa”, “Sha-boom”, “For the Longest Time”, “The Girl from Ipanema”, “All Shook Up”, “Stormy Weather”, “Paper Moon” and much much more.  Fri at 20:00, Sat at 18:30 and Sun at 15:00.    All shows R60 (R50).

17&18     Fish Hoek Dramatic Society present Natalia da Roche in Cabaret (Fri at 20:00 and

Sept        Sat at 18:30.  Natalia is a pioneer in the entertainment industry and will be sharing some of her memories of being in the entertainment industry for over 30 years and singing some of her favourite songs!  She runs the new Theatre in the Muze in Muizenberg with husband Kurt Egelhof.

1 – 9        What the Butler Saw by Joe Orton presented by Muizenberg Dramatic Society

Oct           and guest-directed by Ralph Yarrow, formerly Head of Drama at the University of East Anglia (UK).  Joe Orton despised what he saw as the hypocrisy of state and society in 1960s Britain and his fast, furious and raunchy farce, set in a mental home, challenges the limits of theatre censorship of the time and of conventional attitudes to sex.  Psychiatrist Dr Prentice’s attempt to seduce attractive prospective secretary Geraldine is interrupted by his wife’s return; his clinic is then subjected to a government inspection by Dr Rance and a police enquiry.  Cover-ups, revelations, cross-dressing and pursuits succeed each other at breakneck speed!  This unusual offering will have open-minded audiences laughing out loud as the action unfolds around the witty script.

11 & 12   Fish Hoek Dramatic Society is auditioning for “Music Hall” devised and to be

Sept        directed by Natalia Da Rocha at Theatre on the Muze from 17 to 23 December.  Auditions are open to all and talent is the only requirement. For further information contact Margi Blewett A/H 021 7884664.
10 -18     The Road to Mecca by Athol Fugard to be presented by Milernton Players. More

Sept        details can be found on www.milnertonplayers.com

15 – 25    Imagining Einsten, a 75 minute one-hander by David Muller, will be presented

Sept         at the Kalk Bay Theatre.  Details on www.kbt.co.za or call 0722205430.

COMING SOON …..

Two big productions coming up towards the end of this year are Annie,
a Gilbert & Sullivan production at Artscape,
and Gigi, a collaboration between Pinelands and Claremont at the Masque.
Both have large casts and MVDS’ members who are participating are:
In Gigi: Michele Belknap, Ron and myself, Anthony James,
and Gary Fargher working tirelessly in the background.

In Annie: Fiona Carling, Lee De Andrade, Patrick Jordi, Joshua Knott
and Coleen Van Staden.

MORE ABOUT THOSE IN A FUTURE NEWSLETTER!

Please note days, times and prices for Masque Theatre productions

(unless otherwise stated) are Thurs & Fri performances at 20:00,

Saturday matinee at 14:30, Saturday evening at 18:30

Thurs eve and Sat Matinees R50 (Theatre Club members R40)

Other Nights R60 (Theatre Club members R50)

Bookings on 021-7881898

PRESENT PRODUCTION

Our chairman, Andrew Blake, is prod sec and stage manager for “What the Butler Saw” which opens at the Masque on 1st October.  He shares progress thus far with us as follows;

Rehearsals thus far have been fun for all concerned, with the actors learning much from visiting director Ralph Yarrow, who calls upon his years of teaching drama at University level to help the actors discover their characters while learning their lines and keeping up with all of the bizarre business required in a farce.

There has been no formal blocking at all and rehearsals generally follow the pattern of a warm-up characterisation exercise, followed by repetition of some of the hectic business sections, in which the actors are fed their lines by the director so they have both hands free to actually do what is needed, followed by some individual dialogue coaching for pace, accentuation and characterisation.

As an actor himself, Ralph is often able to move into the role and demonstrate his thought behind the delivery of the line and how it relates to the characterisation.  Coupled with his lively sense of humour, this often has the cast and crew in fits of laughter.

Rehearsals now move to the next phase of running sections through completely to gain some understanding of the continuity of the play.  Most performers nearly have their lines under their belts and the focus is now on making sure that the correct performer has the correct item of someone else’s clothes on at the right time.

Well, that certainly sounds like everyone is having a very INTERSTING time!  This production showcases some well-known faces and some that have never been on stage before and should be a real treat.  Andrew is still looking for some assistance with set-building, painting, backstage, etc, so if you want to become involved with this zany production, contact him on 021 7810114 or 0824933330 or ablake@mweb.co.za

THE BAD NEWS!!

Our AGM is of course scheduled for January next year and, yes, I KNOW that’s MONTHS away BUT …… All of you who were awarded trophies at the 2010 AGM must please make a plan to get them back to us!!  A number of them need a little TLC before they continue their journey to the next lucky recipient so PLEASE contact any member of the committee and make arrangements.

MEMBERS’ NEWS

Wendy Morling is to undergo a hip replacement op during this month and we wish her well.  The majority of the committee were, like “isn’t she much too YOUNG for one of those?”!?!

#######

Alastair Duff shares his Dhow Sailing Adventure in Nosy Bé, Madagascar, with us:

Warm sea, hot days, wonderful scenery, delicious food, exotic nature, friendly people – Nosy Bé offers all of this and more.  Actually, I sort of ended up there by default really as my original plan to safari in Kenya fell through.  I certainly did not regret it for a moment.  For a holiday of carefree, relaxing, sun-filled days, you really couldn’t ask for more.  Perched on the Northern tip of Madagascar (which is enormous when seen from the air and shouldn’t really be called an island), Nosy Bé is made up of a myriad of tiny islands, coral-reefs, verdant jungle and blazing white sands.  Little inlets, isolated bays and remote anchorages abound, and it’s not difficult to understand why this was a favourite haunt of pirates in the 17th and 18th Centuries.

A small party of us sailed in the care of five crew (especially Honoré our expert guide) who waited on us hand and foot, plied us with drinks and delicious Malagassy food and expertly sailed and navigated the waterways.  With our own chef (the diminutive Sophie) on board, every meal was a culinary delight and fresh fish, caught either by the crew or fellow passengers, was on the menu every day.  Marinaded suchi, Malagassy style, was the first course every evening.   We stayed overnight at a variety of camp sites, my favourite being Russian Bay – so named after a group of Russian sailors who just didn’t return home after WWII and set up a small settlement there, the ruins of which may still be seen.  Who can blame them?  It must have seemed like Paradise to their frozen Northern senses!  The sea is warm and inviting (and safe – no sharks at all strangely enough).  To say I spent the majority of the day in the sea is not exaggerating and despite the odd jellyfish sting, I didn’t want to get out.  Reminded me of the Mombassa of my childhood.  Nosy Bé has something for everyone and if you don’t want to rough it quite as much as we did, there are some luxurious resorts and up-to-date catamarans.  Shoals of dolphins swam alongside our dhow and we saw whales (very close up), exotic brilliantly-coloured fish, lemurs, tortoises, enormous chameleons and even snakes (non-poisonous which makes jungle-bashing quite safe).  I’d go back again any day – those sleek catamarans look very tempting!

EXCITING NEWS!!!

As mentioned last month Constantiaberg Theatre Players is hosting a Barn Dance on Saturday, 6 November 2010, at 19:30, at the Bergvliet Primary School, Children’s Way, Bergvliet, as a fundraiser for the Masque Theatre.  Tickets will cost R80 per person and yummy food will be available for sale and, of course, we will have a cash bar.  The evening will be run by Caroline Blundell, who has many years’ experience in hosting Barn Dancing events – her father was the renowned entertainer Keith Blundell. For information on Caroline, check out her Internet site on www.barndance.co.za.  So dust off your Stetsons, pull on your Long Johns, grab all your friends and family, and come dance – let’s make this a celebration and raise as much as we can for the theatre we all love.  Tickets and are available at the theatre or through myself (021 7977286, 0827892281, everon@absamail.co.za or Sue Hallinan (021 7809223, 0846217833, suecater@telkomsa.net).

BIRTHDAYS

Quite a number of birthdays next month!

######

Belinda Batt and myself are both turning 50 years young (me on the 4th and Belinda on the 6th) and I thought we would take a look at some significant happenings in the month and year of our birth:  tons of actors and actresses born on those specific dates – on the 4th, Buster Keaton (1895), Charlton Heston (1923) and Susan Sarandon (1946) and on the 6th, Janet Gaynor (1906), Carole Lombard (1908) and Britt Ekland (1942).  White South Africans voted to make this country a republic; Dr. Michael Woodruff carried out the first successful kidney transplant at the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary AND the plastic garbage bag was invented!!

######

Angela Lee-Wright was born on the third as were Thomas Wolfe (novelist, 1900) and Chubby Checker (“The Twist”, 1941).  The 10th sees Brenda Commins turning a year older together with Helen Hayes (actress, 1900) and Sean Lennon (son of Yoko Ono and John Lennon, 1975).  Peter Sharp was born on the 13th and shares with Margaret Thatcher (UK Prime Minister, 1925) and Paul Simon (Simon and Garfunkel, 1942).  Gillian Charman shares the 14th with Dwight David (Ike) Eisenhower (34th US President, 1890), Lillian Gish (actress, 1896) and Roger Moore (actor, 1928).  John Hitchcock is on the 15th as are P.G. Wodehouse (writer, 1881), Richard Carpenter (The Carpenters, 1946) and Chris de Burgh (“Lady in Red”, 1948).  Karen Riley on the 23rd: Johnny Carson (Tonight Show, 1925) and “Weird Al” Yankovic (1959) – sorry, but who the devil is that???.  The 30th sees Joline Blignaut, Ezra Pound (poet and critic, 1885) and Henry Winkler (actor, 1934).

######

1931 saw the invention of Scrabble, 1958 was the year of cling wrap/film

& pizza delivery and 1982 saw the Post-it note come into being!

I will leave you to match the birth years to the people!!

Closing with a little more on Heritage Day: on 24 September 2009

a 507 carat white diamond was recovered at the illustrious Cullinan mine,

which has produced the majority of the world’s most famous and important diamonds, and was aptly named The Cullinan Heritage.

And that’s it for this month, guys!

Eve


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AUGUST 2010

Hmmmmm……… significant August events???  In 1870, the opening of the first part of the London Underground;  In 1934 Adolph Hitler became Fuhrer of Germany; And in 1945 the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.  Bit pushed for space this month (but THANK YOU to all those who contributed!) so here we go:

MEMBERS’ EVENING

Wednesday, 11 August, saw a good gathering at the Rendezvous for our members’ evening.  We kicked off with apologies – our chair and vice-chair were both involved in “Butler” rehearsals (more details follow!) and our president and vice-president were both involved in rehearsals for a Constantia production, so committee members were somewhat “thin on the ground”.  To balance this, we had at least 7 guests brought along by members.  News of a champagne raffle was imparted – the tickets FLEW off the bar counter!!  Wendy Morling then supervised the serving of soup and breads which, judging by the very empty pots, went down very well.  I love our s(o)uper-duper funky new soup mugs, Wendy!!  All then took their seats and were greatly entertained by “The Little Heir”, a melodrama directed by Barbara Basel and featuring (in ABC order) Chris Bingham, Janice Budd, Gill Charman, June Edwards, Sandy Gee and Angela Lee Wright.  Great job, guys – it was fab!!  We ended off having Barbara draw the first champagne draw ticket.  She read out the number and …..  no-one yelled!!  What?  No-one’s gone home yet!!  Barbara then said in a very small voice “I’d better check MY ticket”.  Yeah, you guessed it, she drew her own!!  The five other lucky winners were drawn and the “official” part of the evening was declared over.  It was good to see a number of people lingering on over another drink or two (although Jane De Sousa did accuse me of trying to poison her with “off” red wine!!).

BIRTHDAYS

We have a very small crop of birthdays in September so I thought I would try something a little different:

Starting off with Patrick Jordi on the 16th – A guy called Shawn Mullins apparently has a song

named “Patrick’s Song” – it doesn’t actually feature the name in the song tho’!

Moving on to Aubrey Hindle on the 20th – I’m sure he remembers “Aubrey” by Bread

Sorry, Aubs, wrong sex I know!

The next two are slightly “out there” – sorry, ladies!  And both by Simon and Garfunkel!

“Kathy’s Song” for Kathryn Luyt on the 26th and “Cecelia” for Celia Musikaknth on the 29th.

And lastly for Norman Murray on the 30th – a song called “My name is Norman Bates”

by a crowd called Landscape!

Hope you all have a wonderful day and an equally wonderful year!

WELCOME!

A big “HI” to new members Jacqui Bloomer, Kelly Kowalski, Kathryn Luyt and Jane Rosenberg.

Hope to see a lot of you all both on and off stage!!

PAST HAPPENINGS

The Voice Power workshop was held on Sunday, 18 July, in the Masque Theatre.  Thanks so much to Lynsey Milewski (nee Hochfelden) for teaching us to breathe properly and working on our projection.  A real learning experience and a lot of fun too!

xxxxxxxx

What a very different audition we had on Saturday, 7 August!!  Professor Ralph Yarrow had his 16 auditionees jumping, winking (yes, I said WINKING!), playing with fake fruit and loo rolls!!  And not one line from “What the Butler Saw” was read!!  THIS JUST IN – the cast of “Butler” is……. (Drum Roll Please)

Dr Prentice   –      Alastair Duff Mrs Prentice   –    Carin Bester Dr Rance   –    Alan Jacobs

Nick              –      Gavin Gomes Geraldine        –    Kelly Kowalski Sgt Match   –    Philip Earle

Congrats guys – can’t wait to see this in rehearsal!

xxxxxxx

birga Thomas went to the Grahamstown festival, purely as a “spectator” rather than taking a show

herself this time, and she shares her insights with us as at the end of this newsletter.


MEMBERS’ NEWS

As promised last month Val Stephens shares highlights of her holiday with us:

My daughter and I recently returned from the Canadian Rockies.  As well as spending extra days in both Vancouver and Calgary on either end of the trip, we also travelled for two days on the Rocky Mountaineer train from Vancouver to Banff and then spent another 5 days staying in the area before finishing in Calgary and flying home from there.

What can I say about that part of the world that hasn’t already been said!  Perhaps if I tell you that for the first time ever I felt no need to purchase postcards, you will get some idea of the beauty of the region.  Everywhere you looked and photographed was like a postcard. The lakes are really that blue, the trees really are that green, the mountains are really that magnificent.  A fabulous landscape inhabited with wonderfully friendly people.  To mention everyone and everything we saw and experienced would take more space than Eve has allowed me.  In a nutshell then (in no particular order): our first glimpse of the Rockies, the quiet slow train ride, Lake Louise, black bears alongside the freeways and railway tracks eating their spring delicacy (dandelions), Emerald Lake, two helicopter flights over the Rockies, visiting an Ice Field, eating lunch at a ranch, Vancouver (beautiful city), elk, spending three nights at the Fairmont Hotel at Lake Louise (height of luxury),  great beer, gondola rides, suspension bridges, reflections on the water, glaciers, raging rivers, mountains, trees, Calgary and the cab driver who bought us an ice cream on the way to the airport on our last day.   A holiday I will never forget.

Thanks Val!  Saw some of her photos which are terrific!!

xxxxxxxx

Bruce Edwards shares an hilarious anecdote with us which he entitled: “Don’t get screwed by the trolley”!!

The Lady Windermere’s Fan set was up in all its glory, painted, decorated and very fine. The last thing – the stage floor had to be painted – it was almost three o’ clock and the floor needed to dry before the evening rehearsal at seven.  Clear the decks! Oh sh…oot! The screws trolley cupboard was still on the stage. We, Wendy Goddard, Vivienne, Brenda Gray and I, looked around us … Oh my … No exit big enough for it.  It was trapped! Time was tight and after a quick brainstorm, the decision was that the only way was to tip it and lift it over the rostra. Weighing in at about 50kg when empty and probably 500kg when full, this rather bulky and unwieldy item would take at least two people and a lot of effort to lift it over the two steps tall rostra. As we well know it houses many canisters and containers of screws, brackets and all sorts of metal fixtures. Tip, up, over, down and right it again – yes, definitely do-able.   Action stations! Nope, it ain’t goin’ nowhere, too heavy. By then Wendy’s wrist watch was burning a hole in her arm so we very hurriedly started taking out some of the heavier items. So it went, sessions with Wendy and I trying to lift it and unpacking more and more to make it lighter. Eventually, with some of the canisters still in it, we could lift it. Ready, steady, go, with Wendy positioned on the one side of the rostra and I on the other. One of the many comments were, “There should not be glass jars in this cupboard, plastic won’t break and shatter should it fall”. One, two, three, heave ho and bump – up one step it went. Catch a breath and one, two, three, heave ho and bump – up another step it went. Then for the over, hah! – that was not too difficult. One, two, three, heave ho and bump – down a step it went. Another one, two, three, heave ho and bump – down a step it went and CRASH. A bad landing on one of the castors and there went the chipboard base, broken. The bottom had dropped out her world! Not to be tilted upright and pushed through to the green room. (Luckily the last of the contents was still in tact.)  With due respect the old lady was carried into green room, laid down on her back on the floor, to await restoration to her former glory the next day. The tools trolley now sports a brand new, proper robust wooden base, although you might not find some things in quite the same place as they were before.  Let this be a lesson to all inexperienced set builders AND EVEN old hands!


FUTURE HAPPENINGS

A taste of what’s to come a little later in the year……………

Constantiaberg Theatre Players is keen to get all the Masque Societies involved in a Barn Dance as a fundraiser for our Theatre!!  This is tentatively planned for some time in November and we may have to forgo our planned Members’ Evening for that month – ‘cos this would give everybody the chance to catch up with all those people you only see once in a blue moon!!  More details to follow next month ………………..

CALENDAR

13 – 21     Lady Windermere’s Fan by Oscar Wilde.  Directed by Brenda Gray for Claremont Dramatic Soc-

August     iety at the Masque Theatre.  Lady Windemere, about to celebrate her 21st birthday, hears a piece of gossip that has a ripple effect on her life.  Her hasty decisions and actions lead to unexpected twists and turns in the plot.  Written by one of the finest exponents of social comedy in the English language.

26, 27       Dance Diverse-It-Is presented by Lourenza Pereira at the Masque Theatre. Promises

28 Aug     entertainment from beginning to end for everyone with a passion for theatre.  All shows R60 (R50 Theatre Club).  Bookings and times – telephone 021 7010795.

29 Aug     From Frank and Elvis with Love at the Masque for one show only, starting 15:00.  Our very own Aubrey Hindle is joined by Charlie Human (singing Elvis and playing guitar) and Lorraine Rothenberg on piano.  Tickets R60 (R50 Theatre Club).

2,3, 4        A double bill from Blue Sky Productions: The Human  Voice (Jean Cocteau, translated by

Sept         Anthony Wood) and Women Alone (Daria Fo and Franca Rame/translated by Gillian Hanna/SA adaptation James Cairns).  Both directed by Ingrid Wylde and starring Nina Lucy Wylde, a mother and daughter collaboration.  The Human Voice runs the gamut of female emotions. A woman is speaking to her long time lover, invisible, inaudible, due to be married the next day. It is an act of love, and farewell. This deeply moving play speaks to anyone who has ever loved.  In complete contrast, A Woman Alone, written in 1991, is a colourful black comedy about a housewife held prisoner in her own home, driven to attempt suicide by her abusive relationship with a possessive husband, the drudgery of household chores, a passionate affair with a young boy, and constant harassment from her wheelchair bound brother-in-law.  Please note an age restriction of 16.  Thurs and Fri at 20:00, Sat 14:30 and 18:30.  All shows R60 (R50 Theatre Club).

10, 11       A Night on the Town presented by Wynberg Boys High School.   The Steel Band is known as the

12 Sept    “party band” due to its light-hearted, foot tapping repertoire which often inspires spontaneous dancing from the audience!  In addition to this outstanding band, our audiences will be treated to an amazing programme which features the award-winning Wynberg Boy’s Choir and the Vocal Ensemble  As if this is not enough you will also experience the popular WBHS Concert and Jazz Bands.  The repertoire for this exciting programme includes such favourites as “Waka Waka”, “Seventy Six Trombones”, “Mona Lisa”, “Sha-boom”, “For the Longest Time”, “The Girl from Ipanema”, “All Shook Up”, “Stormy Weather”, “Paper Moon” and much much more.  Fri at 20:00, Sat at 18:30 and Sun at 15:00.    All shows R60 (R50).

17&18      Fish Hoek Dramatic Society present Natalia da Roche in Cabaret (Fri at 20:00 and Sat at 18:30)

Sept         Natalia is a pioneer in the entertainment industry and will be sharing some of her memories of being in the entertainment industry for over 30 years and singing some of her favourite songs!  She runs the new Theatre in the Muze in Muizenberg with husband Kurt Egelhof.

Please note days, times and prices for Masque Theatre productions

(unless otherwise stated) are Thurs & Fri performances at 20:00,

Saturday matinee at 14:30, Saturday evening at 18:30

Thurs eve and Sat Matinees R50 (Theatre Club members R40)

Other Nights R60 (Theatre Club members R50)

Bookings on 021-7881898

Oh, and another thing about the month of August –

it is the birthday of all horses in Australia!!

This is Eve – signing off!!

Our Committee:

Chair: Andrew Blake 021 7810114/0824933330  Vice-Chair: Alastair Duff 021 7884984/0787801994

Secretary: birga Thomas 021 7885272  Treasurer: Raymond Rudolph 0217945229/0823122737

President & Masque Trustee: Celia Musikanth 021 7887911/0833588415  Vice-President: John McConnell 021 7822743

Other Members: Eve Carr 0217977286/0827892281 (Newsletter)  Ron Carr 0217977286/0727847236 (Bar, Backstage)

Wendy Morling 021 7150694/0834628242 (Members’Evenings)

Grahamstown 2010

(written by birga Thomas)

Wolfgang and I went to Grahamstown again this year – but not taking a play there as well [although, admittedly, we missed “my” team some times … especially when we attended productions at “our” venue, PJ’s].

The other big difference to last year was the extended festival: 15 days this year, because the organisers thought (mistakenly, of course!) they could catch some of the “soccer folk”! And hardly anybody was staying for the 15 days.

But the festival organisers are not the ones who suffered, they got (as usual) their rental from the venues and for table space from the crafters who were (again) unhappy about the “new” Village Green. As one couple told us, they had to spend R10 000 (in rental, accommodation and transport) before selling a single item … and sales on the whole were quite poor (as the “visual” artists, who had good sales last year, also felt). On the upside: There was, naturally, lots of parking available, usually right in front of the venue, the traffic was more than manageable, and for most productions you got good seats even when you were not in front of the queue. Mind you, there were still sold out performances …

As usual, we booked some shows (esp. on the main) beforehand and then added more as we listened to other people and their experiences. We arrived late in the afternoon and immediately took in an unbooked evening show. Peter Hayes’ I am here (which birga rated as 12/10, thinking it couldn’t get better – but, of course, I was wrong!), a very moving, honest, autobiographical play – it should be prescribed viewing for young people.

We both saw more than 20 shows (Wolfgang a few more, because I was knocked out by medication and/or migraine a couple of times). Here follow some of the other highlights.

  • Karoo Moose which we were unable to see in Cape Town over the last two years (9/10). Go and see this wonderful story if it comes back to the Baxter, something quite unusual.
  • MaKwacha HipOpera, a Malawian production. We saw the opening, when the cast/crew had just arrived after thirty-something hours on the road! There were just a handful of people in the audience – such a pity, it deserved full houses. A brilliant adaptation/re-interpretation of Brecht/Weill’s Three-Penny Opera (which I would love to do one day in its original format!). Choreography needed a few more rehearsals, but I put that down to “jetlag”.
  • Mbeki and other Nitemares, a wonderful Wits student production, with “snapshots” of Mbeki’s personal and political life, actually all the way up to and including Malema (hilarious in places). You didn’t have to like Mbeki to enjoy this political satire. 10/10
  • Tin Drum Bucket, which I didn’t catch in the past either. (And “politics” again: Zuma’s second actress daughter – who looks just like dad, unfortunately – was the new performer. And she was wonderful.) We loved the innovations (set, acting, music/sound) and adored the drummer/sound person (only one). The only drawback, I felt, was the predictability of the story line. (7,5/10)
  • The Timekeepers, the absolute highlight for us (and many other people), no grading since it was “off the Richter scale/10”. An Israeli production which has toured the world. Would have liked to see it a second time, but there wasn’t a single ticket available … The story evolves between three inmates of a concentration camp in the early 1940s, each fulfilling a different role (and having different reasons for being there). Every performance ended with a question-and-answer session; and really good discussions we had [I was most interested in how they had been perceived in Germany, and they told us that there the discussions lasted 2 ½ hours or more … which made me happy!]
  • Ingrid Wylde (no, the “other one” is Oscar Wilde) directed her daughter in two one-acts: Jean Cocteau’s The human Voice and Dariel Fo’s A Woman alone. Don’t miss it when it comes to the Masque later this year!
  • Andrew Buckland was a guest actor with a wonderful team of young people of all races in a very African story (and Africa seemed to be a dominant theme this year) Breed, including all the meanings of the word. 10/10 – See it, if it comes near you …
  • Also 10/10 were Bach’s Goldberg Variations (no, not harpsichord, but violin, viola and cello – world-class!). And the Rhodes Chapel being the most divine venue for this.
  • The festival closed (over two evenings) with Angeli e Demon – an unrate-able (there’s nothing to compare it with) spectacle of fire and fireworks, enormous stilt-puppets and a big cast. Out in the open and free, no tickets.
  • But, “as usual” I’m tempted to say, the absolute top spot took (once again) Dada Masilo with her version of Swan Lake. You don’t have to like ballet or modern dance to enjoy her productions. I liked very much last year’s Carmen because it was not the often seen “romantic love” story, but did bring out the brutality of the story, with the rape portrayed just as what it is. Swan Lake on the other hand was very, very funny! I will never be able to see a conventional S. L. again, I think. The initial narration about “The Ballet” was extremely humorous, “explaining” among other things certain “ballet moves” to “ballet idiots”, demonstrated by the company. When the swans come on in tutus as it is supposed to be, you first swallow for a split second and then … yes, of course, in nature there are male and female swans, and they all look alike. It felt just right! And there were many more surprises to come … And Siegfried not wanting to marry at all, his parents (esp. father) constantly running after him and getting him back on stage! You had to be there … writing this I have laughing tears in my eyes again!

And, of course, there were low-lights too, as every year. The worst for us (and we seem to be alone with our opinion, because the reviews in G’town and here in the Cape were mostly raving) was a Stellenbosch student production Woza Andries. It’s not that we didn’t understand it – we both know the Afrikaner history of our country. But I sum it up as “Crude, rude – and symbolism overload”. Avoid it.

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JULY 2010

During the World Cup, Ron ended up doing his “tour guide” thing (which he loves!) for some American visitors and they arrived on 4 July which, as I am sure you are all aware, is American Independence Day.  It got me to thinking what else is celebrated in July and apparently in the United States, July is the official month for a number of national month-long events.  Here are a couple of the more unusual ones: UV Safety Month; Smart Irrigation Month; Women’s Motorcycle Month; Cell Phone Courtesy Month; Sandwich Generation Month and International Zine Month (huh? wot’s dat?).  Ja, leave it to the Yanks!

MEMBERS’ EVENING

Our next members’ evening will be on Wednesday, 11 August, at the Rendezvous, at 19:30.  MVDS’ member Barbara Basel will be directing a short “piece” (probably a melodrama) and is looking for volunteers as it will need a few (very) rehearsals before the night.  Please contact her on 021 7890070, 0792118929 or barbas@telkomsa.net or contact Wendy Morling on 021 7150694, 0834628242 or home@morling.co.za if you are interested in taking part.  Please also RSVP to Wendy by no later than 6 August if you wish to attend, for catering purposes.  We will be having yummy soups and breads as this always goes down well on a cold winter’s night!  Remember, entrance is FREE, GRATIS, and FOR NIKS, for members and, should you wish to bring a guest, they pay a measly 10 bucks.  So, don’t leave it to the last minute – contact Wendy now!

AUDITION

Remember our audition for ‘What The Butler Saw’ by Joe Orton to be directed by guest director and professor of drama from England, Professor Ralph Yarrow.  14:00, Saturday 7TH August 2010 at The Rendezvous (Old Lakeside Bowling Club), Promenade Road, Lakeside.  Callbacks on Monday 9 August 2010.  There are no prescribed readings but enquiries can be directed to Andrew Blake on 021 7810114 or 0824933330 or ablake@mweb.co.za.  Dates of run: 1 to 9 October 2010 at the Masque Theatre, Muizenberg.  Rehearsals start 11 August 2010 on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays.  The play is classic farce with fast, furious and bizarre dialogue and stage directions.  Many of the characters are at various times forced to remove large amounts of clothing!

Synopsis: The play consists of two acts, and revolves around a Dr. Prentice, a psychiatrist attempting to seduce his attractive prospective secretary, Geraldine Barclay. The play opens with the doctor examining Geraldine Barclay in a job interview. As part of the interview, he convinces her to undress. The situation becomes more intense during Dr. Prentice’s supposed “interview” with Geraldine Barclay when Mrs Prentice enters. When his wife enters, he attempts to cover up his activity by hiding the girl behind a curtain. His wife, however, is also being seduced and blackmailed by a Nicholas Beckett. She therefore promises Nicholas the post as secretary, which adds further confusion, including Nicholas and Geraldine dressing as the opposite sex. Dr. Prentice’s clinic is then faced by a government inspection. The inspection, led by Dr. Rance, reveals the chaos in the clinic.

The Cast:  Comprises one male and female in their early twenties and three males and one female aged between 40 and 60.  Props, set, stage, lighting, sound, costume people are also needed.


SAD NEWS

Keith Galloway, much loved director of the Waterfront Theatre School and Company, passed away on Monday, 5 July 2010.  The Waterfront Theatre Company has become almost synonymous with the Masque Theatre as they have often produced two shows in any given year.  Our thoughts are with his wife, Delia, his daughters and all at the School.

CALENDAR

16 -24     The Collector by Mark Healy directed by Yvonne Copley for Milnerton Players at the Masque.

July          This psychological thriller stars MVDS’ members Jane de Sousa (Miranda) and James Skilton (Frederick) and is described as “a chilling portrayal of one man’s darkest fantasy made real”.

18 July     Freeing the Voice Power workshop.  Compiled by Lynsey Milewski, who has a Licentiate Trinity College of London Diploma, worked for ‘The Voice Clinic’ for 8 Years and ran her own Drama Company for three years.  She has done a number of amateur plays including ‘Twelfth Night’ and ‘Butterflies are free’ (Best actress of the year for Fish Hoek players).  It has been identified that there is a need to enhance the skill of projecting one’s voice when on stage.  Lynsey is therefore presenting a workshop at the Masque theatre from 15.00 to 18.00. The workshop will cover: Background to projection and resonance; Breathing processes; Relaxation techniques; Shoulder, jaw and neck exercises; Body language; Warm up exercises for the stage; Tongue twisters; and much more.  There will be a special price of R25.00 for Amateur Dramatic Society members, which includes tea or coffee.  Book with Celia Musikanth on masquetheatre@mweb.co.zaI have just been advised that Lynsey Milewski was Lynsey Hochfelden who has of course appeared in many MVDS productions!!!

22-31      Preeoudly Seeouff Affriken directed by David Bolton for Pinelands Players at the Pinelands

July          Community Hall.  19:00 for 19:30.  Tickets R90, which includes Hot Beef Potjie and Dessert.  Bookings on bgough@telkomsa.net or phone Tina on 0729231035.

29 -31     Dance me a Song presented by the Waterfront Theatre Company at the Masque.  An excellent,

July          diverse and eclectic mix of song an dance featuring over 300 costumes and promising to deliver entertainment for everyone with Broadway, Classical Ballet, Contemporary Dance, Hip Hop, Disney and Cabaret.  Tickets all shows R60/R50.

13 -21     Lady Windermere’s Fan by Oscar Wilde.  Directed by Brenda Gray for Claremont Dramatic Soc-

August     iety.  Lady Windemere, about to celebrate her 21st birthday, hears a piece of gossip that has a ripple effect on her life.  Her hasty decisions and actions lead to unexpected twists and turns in the plot.  Written by one of the finest exponents of social comedy in the English language.

Please note days, times and prices for Masque Theatre productions

(unless otherwise stated) are Thurs & Fri performances at 20:00,

Saturday matinee at 14:30, Saturday evening at 18:30

Thurs eve and Sat Matinees R50 (Theatre Club members R40)

Other Nights R60 (Theatre Club members R50)

Bookings on 021-7881898

MEMBERS’ VIEWS

Both Val Stephens and Alastair Duff took advantage of the long school holidays (both work at

Plumstead High) and escaped “football fever” to visit Canada and Madagascar respectively.

Hopefully they will share highpoints of their holidays with us next month.

A member who SUCCUMBED to “football fever” was June Edwards who shares her experience

with us (she stresses that any reference to black and white is merely to reflect

how the “gees” does not see in colour for a change):

On Saturday 3 July we did what goes against the very core of my  being. But what an experience!  We had been avoiding the soccer congestion and everything that goes with it up to then. Just enthusiastically following the games on TV. But decided that we have to at least do the fan  walk once. Everybody who’s done it raves about it.  Dense shuffling  crowds has never been my scene. So I prepared myself for the worst.   Normally and of sound mind I would never consider taking a packed train  and then walk from Cape Town station to the stadium just for fun. Walking, to  fetch my illegally parked, towed away car from the pound across town once was  more than enough for me!
According to Cape Talk Radio, 150,000 plus  people walked the fan walk that day. Of which approx 35,000 actually entered  the stadium. So we were part of the ticketless rest.  We took a train  from Plumstead station to Cape Town station. Jam packed train carriages. We  were about 200 people in a carriage made for 60. Across the colour spectrum, from tiny tots to elderly. The “gees” was  something to behold. Painted faces, wigs, fan gear, flags, you name it. The  banter was delightful. Not to mention the vuvuzelas. They were mostly  considerately blown poking out the open windows of the train. No need to find  a hand rail to hang on to. We were packed so tightly that when the train  swerved it was like mexican wave of bodies. We were like one, never mind where  your loyalty lay. A young black man got up and offered his seat to a little  old white lady, upon which a loud cheer went up and comments about chivalry  not being dead, well done, etc. poured from all around, with many people  patting him on the back. He made his way towards the doors and said, “I’m  getting off at the next station”.  A moan and many boos went up and a  small voice from the corner said, “Alas she is dead.”  At every station,  when the train doors opened a particular Argentinean fan, a young coloured  man, shouted, “all the Germans get off now!” He was wearing a soccer shirt  with “Messi” printed on the back. As we were pulling in to Cape Town station,  a German fan, an elderly white man, said loudly, “This train is getting messy  you must get off now!  “Mr Messi” just laughed over his shoulder.  Apparently it was like that for hours, a sandwiched train pulling into Cape  Town station every 15 minutes.
The walk was unbelievable.  Every  street block had different musicians, from tenors, rock and roll to our very  own minstrels. And of course music of all sorts pumping out of every other  building. Many fun parades, young agile men in costumes of all kinds, not just  walking, dancing on tall stilts. Also on Waterkant Street, a giant vuvuzela  gas canon blowing flames up into the air every few minutes. It was more of a  fan shuffle than a walk. Wall to wall people. Even the old and disabled being  pushed in wheelchairs, part of the whole thing. Many babies and toddlers  carried on shoulders and baby carriers. We  even saw police on horseback, just like in London. Yes, even MOI proudly  displayed a painted German flag on my face!  A young black man on the  street, with brushes and all the colours in paint pots, was painting flags on  faces for R30! Speak of entrepreneurial. When paying our R30 Bruce needed  change and for lack of two hands the guy pulled a fist full of notes out of  his pocket, held it out to Bruce and said ,”Take what you need”. Carpe Diem!   There was a group of people advertising free hugs and in the spirit of  it I hugged a total stranger. The whole experience was too big to even begin  describing it to any one who wasn’t there.   At least we can say WE DID IT!  And I will certainly always remember it as my 2010 highlight.
June (and Bruce)

Thanks, June, we actually did it as well that day and, yes, it was spectacular!

BIRTHDAYS

Well, it appears you like having the birthdays “in advance” so here goes for August.  Thanks again to Bruce who provided me with lots more than the ones listed (including those I mentioned LAST year) so, being mindful of space, I just picked and chose the ones I fancied!  Please contact Bruce or myself if you are dying to see the whole list.  We actually have three “0” birthdays this month:  John McConnell turns 70 and Jonathan Duguid and Jabu Hallinan both turn 20!

Starting with John on the 10th:
Norma Shearer (1900-Scottish ballet dancer and actress); Leo Fender (1909-inventor of the Fender guitar); Jimmy Dean (1928-singer, one hit wonder “Big Bad John”), James Dean (1931-American actor died in a car accident 1955), Ian Anderson (1947-flautist and band leader of “Jethro Tull”).

Then Tobie Beele on the 15th:
Napoleon Bonaparte (1769); T. E. Lawrence (1888-“Lawrence of Arabia”); Julia Child (1912).

Sandy Gee & Ralph Lawson share the 20th with:
Benjamin Harrison (1833-23rd president of the US); Jim Reeves (1924-American crooner).
The 24th sees Jonathan Duguid and:
Jorge Luis Borges (1899-Argentinian poet, short story writer); Jean Desailly (1920-French actress).
Joan Hitchcock’s 25th also belongs to:
Clara Bow (1905-American actress, one of the most popular stars and sex symbols of the 1920s);
Ruby Keeler (1910-Actress of the 1930s); Van Johnson (1916-Actor “Brigadoon” 1954); Monty Hall (1923).

Jabu on the 20th:
Lyndon Baines Johnson (1908-36th president of the US); Mother Theresa (1910); Martha Raye (1916-film actress); B. J. Thomas (1942-American vocalist, well-known for “Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head”).
Last but not least Lynwen Roman on the 29th:
Ingrid Bergman (1915-Actress); Charlie Parker (1920-jazz saxophonist); Richard Gere (1949).

Hope you all have a wonderful day and an equally wonderful year!

FEEDBACK

The Presentation & Discussion session of the budget and finances of the Masque Theatre was held on 21 June 2010 and was attended by some 25 people, a number of which belong to our society.  A chance to share views on the future of our theatre resulted in some lively discussion and the eventual appointment of a “task team”, to be facilitated by Yvonne Finch (Copley).  This will comprise of members of each of the four Masque Societies who will “brainstorm” ideas and present them to Mancom.

Go on – have a hotdog!

‘Cos July is also National Hotdog month in America!!

Eve

Our Committee:

Chair: Andrew Blake 021 7810114/0824933330  Vice-Chair: Alastair Duff 021 7884984/0787801994

Secretary: birga Thomas 021 7885272  Treasurer: Raymond Rudolph 0217945229/0823122737

President & Masque Trustee: Celia Musikanth 021 7887911/0833588415  Vice-President: John McConnell 021 7822743

Other Members: Eve Carr 0217977286/0827892281 (Newsletter)  Ron Carr 0217977286/0727847236 (Bar, Backstage)

Wendy Morling 021 7150694/0834628242 (Members’Evenings)

yes’>�9 �sa����ns with Peter Jennings, born in 1938 and American actor William Horatio Powel (1892) who studied at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts.  His stage career, however, was interrupted by World War I.  His early film roles were as heavies in Westerns.  His break came when he was cast in Sherlock Holmes (1922) as Holmes, opposite John Barrymore. When talking movies came along, Powell’s stage-trained voice made him a valuable commodity. One of his other major roles was Nick Charles in The Thin Man (1934).

Let’s hope that the World Cup continues smoothly,

brings in LOTS of bucks,

and unites our wonderful country!

Eve

Our Committee:

Chair: Andrew Blake 021 7810114/0824933330  Vice-Chair: Alastair Duff 021 7884984/0787801994

Secretary: birga Thomas 021 7885272  Treasurer: Raymond Rudolph 0217945229/0823122737

President & Masque Trustee: Celia Musikanth 021 7887911/0833588415  Vice-President: John McConnell 021 7822743

Other Members: Eve Carr 0217977286/0827892281 (Newsletter)  Ron Carr 0217977286/0727847236 (Bar, Backstage)

Wendy Morling 021 7150694/0834628242 (Members’Evenings)

MUIZENBERG DRAMATIC SOCIETY

AUDITION NOTICE

‘WHAT THE BUTLER SAW’

BY JOE ORTON

To be directed by Professor Ralph Yarrow

MVDS’ is delighted to announce that this busy Professor of Drama, who currently resides in England and who has acted in and directed numerous productions both in the UK and in

India, has agreed to take time out to guest-direct for our society

DATE                 :   SATURDAY 7 AUGUST 2010

TIME                   :   14:00

PLACE               : RENDEZVOUS (OLD ZANDVLEI BOWLING CLUB), 57 PROMENADE ROAD, MUIZENBERG

ENQUIRIES      :   ANDREW BLAKE TEL 021 7810114/0824933330 EMAIL ablake@mweb.co.za

RUN                   :   1 TO 9 OCTOBER 2010, MASQUE THEATRE, MUIZENBERG

CALLBACKS   ;   MONDAY 9 AUGUST 2010

REHEARSALS     :  START WED 11 AUGUST.  MONDAYS, WEDNESDAYS AND SATURDAYS

SYNOPSIS: The play consists of two acts, and revolves around a Dr. Prentice, a psychiatrist attempting to seduce his attractive prospective secretary, Geraldine Barclay. The play opens with the doctor examining Geraldine Barclay in a job interview. As part of the interview, he convinces her to undress. The situation becomes more intense during Dr. Prentice’s supposed “interview” with Geraldine Barclay when Mrs Prentice enters. When his wife enters, he attempts to cover up his activity by hiding the girl behind a curtain. His wife, however, is also being seduced and blackmailed by a Nicholas Beckett. She therefore promises Nicholas the post as secretary, which adds further confusion, including Nicholas and Geraldine dressing as the opposite sex. Dr. Prentice’s clinic is then faced by a government inspection. The inspection, led by Dr. Rance, reveals the chaos in the clinic.

Characters

Dr Prentice

Geraldine Barclay

Mrs Prentice

Nicholas Beckett

Dr Rance

Sergeant Match

Nick and Geraldine are early 20s; the others anywhere between 40 and late 50s.

The play involves much fast and furious ‘business’ typical of classic farce.  Dialogue is also fast, furious and bizarre.  For examples of both stage directions and dialogue, and a more detailed account of the play, contact the production secretary via email above.  So you need to have physical and verbal agility if you intend to audition!  Please note also that, although there is no actual nudity (the play was written in1967, the year before censorship was ended on the British stage), Geraldine, Mrs Prentice, Nick and Sgt. Match are at various times (and, in the case of Geraldine, for considerable periods) forced to remove large amounts of clothing.

Props, set, stage, lighting, sound, costume people are also needed.

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JUNE 2010

OK, I am going to succumb to soccer (sorry, my English husband and friends keep telling me to say FOOTBALL) madness this month and see what interesting tidbits I can find.  I work in the city centre and I must say the atmosphere from Wednesday 9th has been marvellous.  Friday 10th was just a blaze of yellow Bafana Bafana and South African shirts, scarves, hats, etc.  But those vuvuzelas are driving me wild!!  Thankfully we are on the 5th floor so the noise is at least muted.

(JUST) PAST PRODUCTION

Pride and Prejudice finished its run on Saturday, 12 June, having played to consistently full houses (except for World Cup Friday opening!) and it was wonderful to see all those young, new faces gracing our stage.  It was not without its ups and downs however, what with all the “furniture moving” on stage and a number of cast members suffering from colds and flu.  Allison Blair, who played the aunt, Mrs Gardiner, was hit by a really dreadful headachy-SOMETHING on Thursday and was told in no uncertain terms by doctor and husband that she was NOT performing that night!  So yours truly, on two hours notice, squeezed her way into the dress, popped on the bonnet, and read in the part!  Many thanks to Alastair, cast and crew for helping me through it!  Fortunately Allison was able to do the last three shows.

********

As mentioned in a previous newsletter Cape Town City Ballet urgently requires financial assistance and YOUR society stepped in to help by giving them the chance to raise funds with a gala performance of Pride and Prejudice.  Celia received an email from Elizabeth Triegaardt of CTCB after the event, excerpts of which read::

“Many, many thanks for allowing us the opportunity to use Pride and Prejudice as a fundraiser – we raised over R6 000 in that evening.  Please would you also convey our thanks to MADS (whom I forgot to thank from the stage) for their co-operation.  Our dancers were so enthusiastic about the evening that they wanted to do it all over again!  I hope your challenge is taken up, as we would love to be seen in as many venues as possible.”

OTHER “THEATRE-Y” NEWS

The “challenge” mentioned above took the form of the following Media Release recently:
“On Wednesday 09 June 2010 the Masque Theatre, Muizenberg and MADS (Muizenberg Dramatic Society) donated a gala performance of Alastair Duff’s production of Jon Jory’s “Pride and Prejudice” to the Cape Town City Ballet for fundraising. For the past 10 years Cape Town City Ballet has brought their excellent repertoire to the Masque Theatre for a short season and a wonderful relationship has developed between the Masque and the CTCB “families”.  As a gesture of support and gratitude to CTCB this gala enabled much needed funds to be raised to help CTCB in their plight for finance. After 75 years of superb ballet in Cape Town no-one wants to see this wonderful Ballet Company closing.  The Masque Theatre would like to challenge other theatres, thespians, community theatres and places of entertainment to lend a helping hand to Cape Town City Ballet. For further information please contact Megan on 021 650 2400”.

Melanie Horn, a past MVDS’ member who is still very much in touch is running ACT-ART workshops, for children in Grades 4 to 7, in Somerset West and Observatory during the school holidays.  The daily programme is built around a drama workshop and a visual-art workshop with plenty of loud and quiet games in-between.  The multi-disciplinary workshops promote visual art and performance skills. Activities also develop confidence in communication and encourage social interaction.  For more details contact her on blesbokartsco@gmail.com or 0846294904.

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Celia Musikanth, directing for Constantiaberg Theatre Players, will be holding an audition on Saturday, 10 July at 14:30 at the False Bay Rendezvous, 57 Promenade Road, Muizenberg.  Two plays will be auditioned viz. “God’s Favorite” by Neil Simon and “Crossing Delancey” by Susan Sandler.  Both are comedies and need strong actors.  Ages range from 20ish to 75ish. New York accents imperative (Cockney or Deep South accents for two smaller roles).  Enquiries Celia on 021 7887911 (w) or 0833588415.

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Last month I advised that a Presentation & Discussion session of the budget and finances of the Masque Theatre would be held on 14 June 2010 at The Rendezvous.  Hopefully you all received the “correction” email stating that it will now be held on Monday, 21 June 2010, 19:30 in the foyer of the Masque Theatre.  All our members are WELCOME and ENCOURAGED to attend.

FUTURE PRODUCTION

The audition notice for our third and last production of the year, What the Butler Saw, a comedy/farce by Joe Orton, is again attached.

CALENDAR

15 -19     Cape Dance Company showcases a progamme of new works by well known South African and

June        international choreographers, whose eclectic style is accessible to all audiences.  Incorporates the dances “AllesVerloren … Alles Niet Verloren”,  “Gladius” (Sword), “Like Water…” and Kitty Phetla’s quirky “Soukora” (At Night).  Masque Theatre, Tues 15th at 19:30 Tickets R60 (R45 Masque Theatre Club Members), Wed 16th & Thurs 17th at 19.30, Fri 18:00 and Sat 15:00 (all R70/R50).

18 & 19   Crazy little Thing (Cape Academy of Performing Arts), directed by Anton Luitingh and Duane

June        Alexander at the Masque.  This piece explores the joys, hardships, exhilaration and rejection of teen romance.  Shows 20:15 both days.  Tickets R80/R60.  Age restriction 12 years

28 June-  Hansel and Gretel (presented by Children’s Theatre).  A special production at the Masque for

3 July       chidren and those young at heart.  Tickets R30 throughout.  Shows at 14:30 on Mon; 11:30 & 14:30 on Tues to Sat.

2 & 3       Rock ‘n Rouge presented by Rock ‘n Rouge Entertainment at the Masque Theatre, Fri at 20:00,

July          Sat at 18:30.  Both R70/R60.  Cape Town’s hottest new comedy cabaret group invites you to an evening of music, laughter and entertainment, covering a variety of famous and not so famous hits from musicals.  A show filled with comedy, glamour, song, dance and a little bit of naughty!

16 -24     The Collector by Mark Healy directed by Yvonne Copley for Milnerton Players at the Masque.

July          This psychological thriller stars MVDS’ members Jane de Sousa (Miranda) and James Skilton (Frederick) and is described as “a chilling portrayal of one man’s darkest fantasy made real”.  Matinees and Thursdays R50/R60, other evenings R60/R50.  An evening to remember!


THEATRE ABROAD

As I said last month, Ron and I saw two wonderfully different shows while in the UK.  The first was at a Playhouse in Perth, Scotland, and was called Mum’s the Word. To give you an idea of its content I quote a snippet from the programme:

“It was the Spring of 1993 in Vancouver, Canada.  Six women who had once been exciting, glamorous and professional actors were now exhausted, bedraggled amateur mothers with ten children under six between them.  They decided to get together to write a show about motherhood.”  These six then acted in the original production but since then there have been many companies of Mums:  Canadian, Australian, American and European.  What they have in common is that they are all mums in real life.  The show we saw (on opening night) was meant to star Bernie Nolan but she was unable to perform due to breast cancer.  This did not however detract from the show at all – poignant, hilarious, and distinctly naughty in places, it played to a full house (with only about 6 men in the audience!).  The theatre was very elegant with two public balconies, incorporating smaller private booths.  Lovely gold filigree abounded.

********

Our second theatre experience was at the Prince Edward Theatre in London and is the story of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons – who can forget such hits as Sherry, Big Girls Don’t Cry, Walk Like a Man and Rag Doll, to name but a few?  We were extremely fortunate to get tickets very last minute – they cost us £20 each (normal price £60!!) and were literally right at the very, very top and side of the theatre!  We also had to contend with looking through stair balustrades but it was well worth it as the show was superb.  The programme featured an interview with Frankie Valli himself, who still performs regularly in concert around the world, and he had this to say “All of the kids who are playing these parts are spectacular!  It is quite difficult for them – they have to be a triple threat, who not only know how to dance and act but also have to sing.”

THE “NOT-SO-MUCH-TO-DO-WITH-DRAMA” BIT

Right, I consulted my wonderful Encyclopedia of Useless Information which has the following interesting things to say under “Soccer” (no football as it is American!):

There are only two mentions of soccer in Shakespeare, both rather derogatory.  In The Comedy of Errors, Dromio accuses Adriana: “Am I so round with you, as you with me, that like a soccer you do spurn me thus?”  While in King Lear, Kent calls Oswald a “base soccer player” before tripping him up.

********

John Rutherford Gordon (1890 – 1974), newspaper editor, was the first reporter to take carrier pigeons to soccer matches to ensure that his paper received the results quickly

*******

In 1994 a Colombian soccer player, Andres Escobar, was shot dead by fans for scoring the “own goal” that led to their elimination from the World Cup.  (A side-bar from me: hopefully that doesn’t happen here!)

&&&&&&&&&

I then googled “Vuvuzela and, from among the zillions of listings, picked out the following snippets:

There’s uncertainty on the origin of the word “vuvuzela”. Some say it comes from the isiZulu for – wait for it – “making noise”. Others say it’s from township slang related to the word “shower”, because it “showers people with music” – or, more prosaically, looks a little like a shower head.

******

The world’s largest vuvuzela is 114 feet long, perched atop that unfinished flyover near the Victoria & Albert Waterfront.

BIRTHDAYS

Once again Bruce Edwards has stepped in and provided me with some “matching” birthdays – he has elaborated on the ones which he knows are acting related.  Bear in mind these are July birthdays, guys!  I would appreciate some input here – should I continue to do the month ahead or rather the current month – bearing in mind that the newsletter usually goes out after the middle of the month?

MVDS’ member James Pape born on the 9th shares with Barbara Cartland (1901), Lee Hazelwood (1929), Mark Almond (1957), Jim Kerr (1959) and Fred Savage (1976).  Also Anjelica Huston, born 1951, American Actress who won an Academy Award for Prizzi’s Honor, and appeared in The Dead, Crimes and Misdemeanours and The Addams Family. She won the National Critics Association Awards for The Drifters and The Witches.  On that day in 1956 Tom Hanks, American movie actor was born.  He starred in Splash, Big, Sleepless in Seattle, Philadelphia, Forrest Gump, Apollo and many others and won Best Actor Oscar for Forrest Gump. He made his directorial debut for That Thing You Do.

MVDS’ members Di Thom & Nick Lee were both born on the 11th as were John Quincy Adams (1767), E.B. White (1899), Richie Sambora (1959) and Suzanne Vega (1959).

Tom Byrne’s birthday on the 18th is quite crowded!  Our very own Nelson Mandela was born on that day in 1918.  John Glenn (1921), Astronaut Hunter Thompson & Brian Anger (1939), Martha Reeves (1941) and Screamin’ Jay Hawkins (1929).  Red Skelton, who had a cameo role in Around the World in 80 days in 1956 with David Niven and Shirley McClaine, was born in 1913.  Jean Yanne, French actor, was born in 1933 and Elizabeth McGovern, American actress who starred in Ordinary People and Ragtime, both in 1981, entered the world twenty years earlier.

Fiona Carling was born on the 21st, as were Ernest Hemingway (1899), Janet Reno (1938), Cat Stevens (1947) and Robin Williams (1952), the latter having starred in Popeye, Good Morning Vietnam (1987), Dead Poets Society (1989), The Fisher King (1991), Mrs Doubtfire (1993)  and many others.  He was the genie’s voice in Disney’s Aladdin in1992.
Our last birthday of the month is Lee de Andrade on the 29th.  She twins with Peter Jennings, born in 1938 and American actor William Horatio Powel (1892) who studied at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts.  His stage career, however, was interrupted by World War I.  His early film roles were as heavies in Westerns.  His break came when he was cast in Sherlock Holmes (1922) as Holmes, opposite John Barrymore. When talking movies came along, Powell’s stage-trained voice made him a valuable commodity. One of his other major roles was Nick Charles in The Thin Man (1934).

Let’s hope that the World Cup continues smoothly,

brings in LOTS of bucks,

and unites our wonderful country!

Eve

Our Committee:

Chair: Andrew Blake 021 7810114/0824933330  Vice-Chair: Alastair Duff 021 7884984/0787801994

Secretary: birga Thomas 021 7885272  Treasurer: Raymond Rudolph 0217945229/0823122737

President & Masque Trustee: Celia Musikanth 021 7887911/0833588415  Vice-President: John McConnell 021 7822743

Other Members: Eve Carr 0217977286/0827892281 (Newsletter)  Ron Carr 0217977286/0727847236 (Bar, Backstage)

Wendy Morling 021 7150694/0834628242 (Members’Evenings)

MUIZENBERG DRAMATIC SOCIETY

AUDITION NOTICE

‘WHAT THE BUTLER SAW’

BY JOE ORTON

To be directed by Professor Ralph Yarrow

MVDS’ is delighted to announce that this busy Professor of Drama, who currently resides in England and who has acted in and directed numerous productions both in the UK and in

India, has agreed to take time out to guest-direct for our society

DATE                 :   SATURDAY 7 AUGUST 2010

TIME                   :   14:00

PLACE               : RENDEZVOUS (OLD ZANDVLEI BOWLING CLUB), 57 PROMENADE ROAD, MUIZENBERG

ENQUIRIES      :   ANDREW BLAKE TEL 021 7810114/0824933330 EMAIL ablake@mweb.co.za

RUN                   :   1 TO 9 OCTOBER 2010, MASQUE THEATRE, MUIZENBERG

CALLBACKS   ;   MONDAY 9 AUGUST 2010

REHEARSALS     :  START WED 11 AUGUST.  MONDAYS, WEDNESDAYS AND SATURDAYS

SYNOPSIS: The play consists of two acts, and revolves around a Dr. Prentice, a psychiatrist attempting to seduce his attractive prospective secretary, Geraldine Barclay. The play opens with the doctor examining Geraldine Barclay in a job interview. As part of the interview, he convinces her to undress. The situation becomes more intense during Dr. Prentice’s supposed “interview” with Geraldine Barclay when Mrs Prentice enters. When his wife enters, he attempts to cover up his activity by hiding the girl behind a curtain. His wife, however, is also being seduced and blackmailed by a Nicholas Beckett. She therefore promises Nicholas the post as secretary, which adds further confusion, including Nicholas and Geraldine dressing as the opposite sex. Dr. Prentice’s clinic is then faced by a government inspection. The inspection, led by Dr. Rance, reveals the chaos in the clinic.

Characters

Dr Prentice

Geraldine Barclay

Mrs Prentice

Nicholas Beckett

Dr Rance

Sergeant Match

Nick and Geraldine are early 20s; the others anywhere between 40 and late 50s.

The play involves much fast and furious ‘business’ typical of classic farce.  Dialogue is also fast, furious and bizarre.  For examples of both stage directions and dialogue, and a more detailed account of the play, contact the production secretary via email above.  So you need to have physical and verbal agility if you intend to audition!  Please note also that, although there is no actual nudity (the play was written in1967, the year before censorship was ended on the British stage), Geraldine, Mrs Prentice, Nick and Sgt. Match are at various times (and, in the case of Geraldine, for considerable periods) forced to remove large amounts of clothing.

Props, set, stage, lighting, sound, costume people are also needed.

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JANUARY 2010

Welcome to the start of a new decade!!  Let’s have a little look at what happened on the first of January in years gone by:  2002 saw most of Europe adopt the Euro as currency, and of course in the year 2000, after years of preparation for Y2K, only minor computer-related problems were reported (a problem with Hotmail, with a nuclear power plant in Japan and with apartment heating in Korea).  In 1995 “Glass Menagerie” closed at the Criterion Theatre in New York City after 57 performances.  1994 saw Microsoft CEO Bill Gates (38) marry Melinda French (29) and in 1968 Evel Knievel failed in his attempt to jump Caesar’s Palace Fountain!!

CONGRATULATIONS!

Hello and Goodbye received THREE nominations for CATA awards – well done all concerned!!  And to Scott Cooper who received a nomination for best actor for his role in Appointment with Death.  We will be holding thumbs, guys!  And well done to all the MVDS’ members who received nominations for other societies’ productions.  A full list of the nominees is attached.

SHOWS TO DIARISE

A Night at the Theatre presented by the Wynberg Girs High School at the Masque Theatre from 21 to 23 January 2010. A variety show directed by Shelley Robertson and Sarah Thackwray, including popular numbers from Broadway shows such as “All that Jazz”,“Chicago”, “Mama Mia” and “Porgy and Bess”. The cast of over 20 will also be showing their skills in a variety of dance mediums.  A show for the whole family. Thu. 21, Fri. 22, Sat. 23 weeknights 19:30, Sat. 14:30 and 18:30 All eves R60 (R50); Mat R50 (R40).

Improbable Fiction by Alan Ayckbourn directed by Coleen Van Staden for MVDS at the Masque Theatre from 5 to 13 February 2010.  6 aspiring authors meet at their last monthly “Writers Circle” meeting of the year in the home of their host, Arnold.  It is Ayckbourn’s usual bunch of misfits!  Each is pursuing their own particular “style” of writing, but few are succeeding in even putting pen to paper! In an attempt to encourage and motivate them, Arnold suggests that they collaborate and write something together.  The suggestion is not at all popular as they cannot agree on subject matter or style! The meeting breaks up in rather desultory fashion and it is at this point that Ayckbourn “throws down the gauntlet” and the challenge is met with a great deal of hilarity and fun!  Fri. 05, Sat. 06, Thu. 11, Fri. 12, Sat. 13 February.

 

Valentine’s Day: A Gilbert & Sullivan Celebration: at the Masque Theatre on Sunday 14 Feb at 15:00.  The programme includes several well-known songs from the G&S canon, as well as some longer extracts from the operas, all appropriately related to some aspect of love.  It will be conducted by Mike Nixon, who has been associated with the Society for many years. The accompanist is Helen Broekmann, and narration is by Lorna Hansen. Cost R60 (R50).

The Firebird and Les Sylphides presented by the Cape Town City Ballet at the Masque Theatre from 18 to 20 February 2010.  The former tells the story of the exotic Firebird who is captured by Prince Ivan but wins her freedom by giving him one of her magic feathers. The ballet includes the evil Kostchei and ends with the spectacular crowning and wedding scene of Prince Ivan and the Tsarevna. Choreographed by David Poole with music by Igor Stravinsky. The second is the romantic ballet Les Sylphides which takes place in a moonlit glade.  This is one of the most poetical ballets, performed purely as a romantic evocation of the music of Chopin. – The programme is directed by Elizabeth Triegaardt and the season features all the stars of the Cape Town City Ballet.  Thu. 18, Fri. 19, Sat. 20 February.  Matinées: R50 (R40 Theatre Club members), all evenings: R60 (R50 Theatre Club members)

Please note days, times and prices for Masque Theatre productions

(unless otherwise stated) are Thurs & Fri performances at 20:00,

Saturday matinee at 14:30, Saturday evening at 18:30

Thurs eve and Sat Matinees R50 (Theatre Club members R40)

Other Nights R60 (Theatre Club members R50)

Bookings on 021-7881898

OTHER EVENTS TO DIARISE

Already it looks like we are going to have a year packed full of AmDram activity!!

24 Jan            Claremont Dramatic Society will hold an audition for Neil Simon’s “Rumours” at 14:30 at The Hok clubhouse.  Further details, contact Wendy Goddard at ph. 021 6712888, cell 0834147003 or e-mail wendygoddard@xsinet.co.za.

27 Jan            MVDS AGM – full details elsewhere in this newsletter.

08 Feb            Masque Volunteers Party to be held in the Masque Foyer at 19:00.  This is not only to thank all the people who have assisted during the past year but is also to reach out to  those members who might be interested in helping with Front of House, backstage, refreshments, bar, box office, etc, in the future.  And since there seems to be a bit of confusion about the role and duties of the foyer managers (or hosts), the evening will include a short orientation about this.  RSVP to birga (by Sunday, 31 January 2010) at birgatom@iafrica.com or leave a message at 021–788 5272.  REMEMBER, if you assist with a show you get to see that particular show, Free, Gratis and For Nix!

20 Feb            MVDS Audition for Pride and Prejudice (details to follow).

21 Feb            Constantiaberg Theatre Players will hold an audition for Romantic Comedy by Bernard Slade at 14:30 at the Guide Hall, Off Children’s Way, Bergvliet.  Further details, contact the director, Wendy Goddard at ph. 021 6712888, cell 0834147003 or e-mail wendygoddard@xsinet.co.za 

17 Mar            Our first members’ evening of the year!!  Diarise NOW – details to follow next month.

22 Mar            CATA Awards Evening at the Masque Theatre.  Bookings through Hayley Fargher on 021 788699 Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10:00 to 13:00. There is no cost but space is limited.  Please advise if you are a nominee when booking.  Start is 19:30 for 20:00, dress is smart not formal, champagne will be served upon arrival, finger supper will follow proceedings, prizes will be presented by Paul Griffiths, well known professional actor and director.

27 Mar            MVDS’ Directors’ Forum for 2011 productions.  14:00 at the Madhouse, 57 Promenade Road, Lakeside.  If you would like to apply for one of our 2011 slots, please prepare a short presentation of the production you have in mind (it would be ideal if the committee could get a copy of the script in advance in order to have read it by the time of the forum), including pros and cons, estimated costs (as best you can!) and any information you might think useful for the committee.  Non-members and members of other societies are also welcome to make a presentation.  Newcomers (i.e. people who have not yet directed) will be very much appreciated. Why not make a presentation for a one-act play to be presented at one of the 2011 (or even 2010) members’ evenings?  Please contact birga Thomas (by Monday 1 March) at birgatom@iafrica.com or leave a message at 021–788 5272  You can also discuss delivery or collection of a script with her.

25 Apr                        Masque AGM at the Theatre.  Details to follow in a further newsletter.

PRESENT PRODUCTION

Ron and I had the privilege of attending a rehearsal for Improbable Fiction last week – well, it had me in stitches!  Considering they had just returned from their Christmas break I was sincerely impressed by how well the cast are doing with lines.  Keep it up, guys!

FUTURE PRODUCTIONS

Our next production will be Pride and Prejudice, to be directed by our Vice-Chair, Alastair Duff.  Auditions for this will be held on 20 February 2009 and a separate notice will follow shortly.  However, we do already know that a “Pianoforte” is required for this production – either a real one if you are lucky enough to own one (!) or a mock-up made by some talented person out there.  For details contact Alastair at aliduf@phs.co.za or 021 7884984.

*******

The exciting news hinted at in the November edition of this newsletter is that our third slot for 2010 will be directed by Professor Ralph Yarrow, who currently resides in England and who has acted in and directed numerous productions both in the UK and in India.  We are delighted that this busy Professor of Drama has agreed to take time out to guest-direct for our society.  He has provided the committee with a number of choices of plays which are currently being read by them.  Hopefully a decision will be reached in the next month or so.

WELCOME

We welcome Anthony James into the MVDS fold!  And Marc Jaquest, who Lee De Andrade has finally persuaded to join although he has been as asset to the society for quite a while already!


BIRTHDAYS

We have an enormous crop of birthdays for February!!  What happened nine months before??  Hmmmmmmm!!  We start with James Skilton on the 1st, then Lynda Jennings on the 5th, Andrea Boettger the day after and Bronwyn Garlick on the 17th.  The 18th is shared by David Muller and Anthony James with birga Thomas on the 20th.  Roland Perold is on the 22nd as is Erika Mitchell who will be 96 this year – congratulations, Erika! – surely our oldest member?  Sue Hallinan follows on the 23rd, with Saadiqah Hartnick on the 25th and Joanne Darby on the 28th.

AGM

As you are by now very much aware, our Annual General Meeting will be held on Wednesday, 27 January 2010, 19:30 for 20:00, at the Rendezvous (Old Zandvlei Bowling Club), 57 Promenade Road, Muizenberg.  Snacks and the usual small cash bar will be provided.  Please RSVP to birga Thomas on 021 7885272  (just be patient and you will get a message tone) or email birgatom@iafrica.com before 20 January.  Please refer to the Agenda sent to you recently which contains the names of the folk eligible for the members’ choice awards.  One of the most important functions of the AGM is to elect a committee for this year – some of the current committee are prepared to stand again but it would be wonderful to have a broader representation of our membership so those who haven’t been on the committee for a “while” and those who think they would like to try it – volunteer on the night!!  Or contact any of the committee members to find out what is involved (really, it is not as onerous as you think!)

SUBS

Ideally these should be paid at the AGM or you may pay any member of the committee at any time.  Payment may also be made by cheque or by electronic transfer/deposit to Muizenberg Dramatic Society, Standard Bank, Blue Route Tokai (code 025 609), Current account 270 044 949 (using your surname as reference) or leave your payment in the Masque office, clearly marked “birga Thomas, MVDS subs”.  Our subs remain the same as last year (and the year before, and the year before, and …), namely Single R40; Couple R60; Pensioner/Student R25.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the 2009 committee for their support and input for this newsletter over the past year.  And my sincere thanks to all the members who took the time to comment on it: including Brenda Commins, Lynda Jennings, Janice Budd and Sandy Alexander.   Let’s make 2010 the year of members’ contributions to the newsletter – anytime you see a production, AmDram or not, why not tell our members what you thought?  Got a funny theatrical moment? – share it!!! 

Yours-in-AmDram

Eve

Cata Nominations 2009

Best Play/Musical, Most Adventurous Production, Best Director of a Play/ Musical

birga Thomas – Hello and Goodbye (Mvds)

Marlisa Doubell – Private Lives (Milnerton)

Barrie Howard – Time of my Life (Constantiaberg)

Sue Bolton – Breath of Life (Claremont)

Graham Boxall – Isn’t it romantic (Claremont)

Teddy Davies – HMS Pinafore (G & S)

Kyla Thorburn – A Christmas Carol (Pinelands)

Best Choreographer of a Musical

Kyla Thorburn – HMS Pinafore (G & S)

Kim Harris-Dalla – A Christmas Carol (Pinelands)

Best Actor in a Play or Musical

Wesley Figaji – Hello and Goodbye (Mvds)

Trevor Joubert – Private Lives (Milnerton)

Dennis Benneyworth – Time of my Life (Constantia)

Riaan Hunter – HMS Pinafore (G & S)

Shaun Browne – A Christmas Carol (Pinelands)

Best Actress in a Play or Musical

Yvonne Copley – Breath of Life (Claremont)

Suzi Gehr – Hello and Goodbye (Mvds)

Tamryn Spiers – Private Lives (Milnerton)

Jane Cohen – Time of my Life (Constantiaberg)

Carey Wallace – Haunting of Hill House (FHDS)

Jo Darby – Abigail’s Party (Constantiaberg)

Sian Atterbury-le Roux – HMS Pinafore (G & S)

Julie Harris – HMS Pinafore (G & S)

Best Supporting Actor in a Play or Musical

Theo Swartz – A lesson from Aloes (HHDS)

Alastair Duff – No Sex please, we’re British (FHDS)

Gordon Molloy – Trap for a lonely Man (Milnerton)

Scott Cooper – Appointment with Death (Mvds)

David Bolton – HMS Pinafore (G & S)

John Carne – HMS Pinafore (G & S)

Michael Harris – A Christmas Carol (Pinelands)


Best Supporting Actress in a Play or Musical

Denise Dubber – Time of my Life (Constantiaberg)

Trish Sutton – Time of my Life (Constantiaberg)

Michelle Belknap – Isn’t it romantic (CDS)

Victoria Harris – Return from Oz (CDS)

Laura Bosman – A Christmas Carol (Pinelands)

Jennifer Moss – A Christmas Carol (Pinelands)

Best Cameo Performance

Lynn Moss – HMS Pinafore (G & S)

Jane Philbrick – Haunting of Hill House (Fish Hoek)

Most Promising Newcomer

Kevin Smith – Play Misty for Me (HHDS)

Angela Lee-Wright – Haunting of Hill House (FHDS)

Thomas Agates – Spring and Port Wine (HHDS)

Curtis Dunn – Abigail’s Party (Constantiaberg)

Best Set

Jane Philbrick and Margi Blewett – No Sex please, we’re British (Fish Hoek)

Anne Coetzee – Play Misty for Me (HHDS)

Debbie Bentley-Buckle and Barrie Howard – Time of my Life (Constantiaberg)

Finn McCormick – Trap for a lonely Man (Milnerton)

Debbie Bentley-Buckle and Barrie Howard – Abigail’s Party (Constantiaberg)

Richard Whittaker – A Christmas Carol (Pinelands)

Technical Excellence

Roland Sweet – Special Occasions (Milnerton)

John Blewett – Time of my Life (Constantiaberg)

Gary Fargher – Isn’t it romantic (Claremont)

Andrew Ward-Cox – Trap for a lonely Man (Milnerton)

Gary Fargher – Haunting of Hill House (Fish Hoek)

Dylan Ford – Haunting of Hill House (Fish Hoek)

Grant Faiers – A Christmas Carol (Pinelands)

Kyla Thorburn – A Christmas Carol (Pinelands)

Artistic Contribution

Margaret Mortelmans – Private Lives (Milnerton)

Heather Earp-Jones – HMS Pinafore (G & S)

Gary Kok – HMS Pinafore (G & S)

Riaan Hunter – HMS Pinafore (G & S)

Sian Atterbury-le Roux and Fredi Oosterhuizen – HMS Pinafore (G & S)

Kim Harris-Dalla, Victoria Harris, Jennifer Moss, Christine Thonissen – HMS Pinafore(G&S)

Phoebe Snayer – Rodgers and Hart: A celebration (Milnerton)

Glenda Carmichael – A Christmas Carol (Pinelands)

Jennifer Moss – A Christmas Carol (Pinelands)

Laura Bosman and Graham Stabler – A Christmas Carol (Pinelands)

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