Parkes Musical & Dramatic Society History (1995)

1995: The final show for the year in November was Alan Aychbourn's "A Chorus of Disapproval" with the usual Aychbourn mixed-up theme. Photo: Submitted
1995: The final show for the year in November was Alan Aychbourn's "A Chorus of Disapproval" with the usual Aychbourn mixed-up theme. Photo: Submitted

Continuing the ongoing series of the history of the Parkes Musical & Dramatic Society by Mr Warwick Tom

The year started with one of the Parkes Musical & Dramatic Society stalwarts, Stan Kingham, reciting the well known poem "Hanrahan" by John O'Brien, in Cooke Park for Australia Day.

Stan was well known for reciting poetry while he demonstrated shearing.

President, Toni Lam, informed the meeting that our publicity officer, Shellie Wilson was resigning and moving to Dubbo.

Appreciation of the work Shellie had done was carried unanimously.

Parkes Arts Council offered a grant of $400 to conduct a Youth Theatre Workshop, this was accepted and Greig Ball was the coordinator.

He got in touch with Iain Simpson, a professional director, to conduct a two-day workshop in June with preference given to Society junior members.

The first production for the year was a group of three one-act plays with the title "Lost, Found and Slightly Crazy".

"Natural Mother" was directed by Alan Wright, with Wanda Whitmill, Amy O'Donoghue and Beth Taylor filling the roles.

"A Farewell from the Hill" was a junior production with Helen O'Brien, Leah Kellet, Ben Horner and Katherine Bignell, and directed by Liz Hunt.

The third play was "Busy Bodies" directed by Jenny Hawke with actors Isabelle Powter, Bill Thomas, Paul Reid, Hilary Wright and Greig Ball.

Parkes was represented at the Stage West Festival of One Act Plays being held at Kelso, with the junior production of "Farewell from the Hill", where it was very well received.

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August saw the musical play "Toad of Toad Hall", directed by Andrew Hunt with music by Elizabeth Stokes, staged at the Little Theatre.

Toad was played by Kendal Achurch, with Mole - Rachel Prior, Rat - Aaron Kingham and Badger - Amy O'Donoghue, plus 28 other Society members filling in the numerous parts.

The production was a great success with the youngsters, even though it wasn't a huge financial result.

The final show for the year in November was Alan Aychbourn's "A Chorus of Disapproval" with the usual Aychbourn mixed-up theme.

The play was directed by Patrick Garvey who also did the set design.

Members of the cast numbered 14 with Bruce Whitmill taking the lead role.

A meeting of members to discuss the staging of the One Act Play Festival in Parkes during 1996 was held at Warwick Tom's home as the last business for another successful year.

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