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Posts Tagged ‘plowright theatre scunthorpe’

Sorry, everyone, but Panto just happened in this neck of the woods and this year I volunteered to costume it. (My middle one was Principal Boy and is the tallest one in the middle of the shot (between the princess and Puss In Boots) with the dodgy medieval hat and my little one is the kitten closest to the camera on the left)

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Even though I’m lucky enough to belong to a club with its own premises and huge stock of costumes, it was still quite an undertaking. Back in November, shortly after casting, I was creating a costume plot, liaising with the director to come to a shared vision of what these characters would look like on the stage. In this scene, the dame is cleaning, so I wanted to make a costume that reflected that. She has a duster bow on her mob cap, washing up sponge/scourer buttons and rosettes of j-cloths with pan scourers centres around her skirt.

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Then there was hunting out and finding/sourcing and making. Luckily I didn’t have too many costumes to physically make, but the 17  children in the cast had 46 separate costumes alone (variously villagers, fairies, kittens, ghosts and skeletons) and they all needed hunting out of stock and fitting.

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Since Christmas it has been crazily busy, and last week I sewed solidly for 4 days,  making accessories and altering a whole load of costumes including this massive and very heavy dame’s dress (which had to have the pink modesty panel stitched into the front as well as a large insert in the back)

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and a boiler suit for the dame’s Ghostbusters costume.

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Unfortunately this is the best of several very poor shots of it – a friend of mine made the most amazing ‘screen-accurate’ proton pack complete with ‘gun’ to wear on the back and with heavy duty elbow pads, the Ghostbusters logos (which are on the tops of the sleeves) on full view, and marabou trimmed heavy gloves in the belt, it looked amazing.

Last Sunday was the get in – two trips from our Guildroom to the theatre to transport all the costumes and three plus hours steaming them (an alternative to ironing). Then I spent all week backstage mending and being the dame’s dresser until the get out last night.

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Normal service will be resumed very soon. Surprisingly enough I’m not sick of a needle yet!

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Scunthorpe Little Theatre Club Presents:

Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchett

at the Plowright Theatre, Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire 17th-20th October 2012

The once proud Ankh-Morpork City Night Watch has been reduced to just three men. Cautious, cowardly Fred Colon, the desk sergeant who communicates with his wife through notes left on the kitchen table and weasely Nobby Nobbs, who carries documents to prove he is actually human are led by drunken, cynical Captain Vimes, whose ideals of upholding the law in the city he loves have been slowly crushed.

 Two new arrivals upset their comfortable rut. The first, an enthusiastic new recruit: Carrot Ironfoundersson, human by birth but dwarf by upbringing. The second, a large, angry, fire-breathing dragon…

 With the city in chaos, and only an orang-utan hunting for a stolen book and dragon-loving Lady Sybil to help, it falls to this sorry band of misfits to save the day.

 A fabulous and very funny adaptation by Stephen Briggs of the first book in Terry Pratchett’s well-loved ‘Guards’ series.

Director’s note: Guards! Guards!

 I’ve admired Terry Pratchett’s wickedly satirical and very funny writing for years and it was the opportunity to act in SLTC’s adaptation of ‘Carpe Jugulum’ which led to me joining the club in 2009. Somehow, three years later I’m directing ‘Guards! Guards!’, the first title in the ‘Guards’ series of books dealing with the members of the Ankh-Morpork City Watch.

 (Captain Vimes, Corporal ‘Nobby’ Nobbs, Lance-Constable Carrot and Sergeant Colon in ‘The Shades’)

‘Guards! Guards!’ is a comedy, but like all great comedy it has its roots in pathos. These are real flawed people: small-minded individuals with dreams of power they’re too inept and lazy to achieve; spivs with an eye to making money from any opportunity; men who drink because they know they can’t fight a crooked system; women who throw their energy into caring for animals because they believe love is never coming their way and the masses who blindly accept the latest fashion like sheep.

(Captain Vimes looks on in amazement while the crowd cheer the king.)

Harold and Albert Steptoe, Hancock, Hyacinth Bucket, Compo, Foggy, Clegg and Nora Batty, Del Boy and Rodney – they’d all fit in here.

 It may be comedy but there is an edge. Underneath the humour Pratchett is deadly serious, holding up a mirror to the iniquities of our own world as surely as satirists like Waugh and Defoe. He explores Edmund Burke’s observation: “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” And like the Patrician, comes to the chilling conclusion that it’s true.

 (The Patrician.)

Fortunately, there are a few good men who are determined to do something. They may be dealing with dragons, stolen books of magic or orang-utan librarians, but their roots are in a world we recognise. A world where beef dripping on toast (with the little crunchy bits on top) is a meal fit for a king and the secret of a happy marriage is for one party to work days and the other nights.

Those of you who live locally, buy your tickets now – it’s going to be a real treat!

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