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A WORD FROM THE CHAIR...

December 2023

As another year draws to a close, time to look back with pride and forward with excitement. 2023 brought challenges and triumphs in almost equal measure. Our production of The Final Kiss, directed by Sandra Barfield, garnered awards at the Southern Counties Drama Festival, including a Best Actor prize for Pierse Stevens. We surprised and delighted shoppers with our recitations at the Escape Arts Centre in Tonbridge and at Sevenoaks Bookshop.  

Rod Henderson’s ambitious summer production of Antony and Cleopatra, with a nod backwards to Julius Caesar, was well received at the White Rock Inn. We are grateful to Tony Jenner for stepping in to help when health issues intervened. I enjoyed collaborating with Rod in cutting back a very long play to make it suitable for outdoor performance. 

We also performed a short selection of Shakespearean monologues at the Sevenoaks District Arts Council event in Swanley which was, again, very well received by everyone in attendance.

Looking ahead, we will be back at the Southern Counties Drama Festival at the Barn Theatre in Oxted in February with Missing by Rosa de Wet; and break new ground in May by performing Midsummer, adapted from Shakespeare’s original by Rachel Carpman and Sara Holdren, directed by Charlotte Jacobs in the grounds of Otford’s ancient Archbishop’s Palace.

And in June/July 2024 we are back at the White Rock Inn with As You Like It, directed by Tony Jenner, with a further date at St Briavels Castle in Gloucestershire. 

 

It is good to see that Sevenoaks Summer Festival will be back in 2024 after a long break. We aim to be part of it. 

We bid farewell from the Committee to Pam Walshe, one of founder-members, and are looking for a date to celebrate and thank her, and Roger, for their long service, on and off the stage. 

John Turnbull

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