Parkes Musical and Dramatic Society history - Part 34

2003: Warwick Tom, Kelly Casey and Neil Westcott in La Mysticalle in May 2003. Photo: Submitted

2003: Warwick Tom, Kelly Casey and Neil Westcott in La Mysticalle in May 2003. Photo: Submitted

In his annual report for 2002, President Barry Turner complimented the Society on having a very successful year with all the productions having excellent attendances.

However he did comment on a few problems that arose on the administration side, requiring delicate negotiations between the Society and outside organisations.

The AGM was held in March when Brian Schmalkuche was elected President with Lorna Helby Vice President, Lyn Townsend Secretary and Andrew Hunt remained Treasurer.

At the next two meetings discussion centred around the frequency of shows during the year and the number of performances.

It was moved there should be three main productions, autumn, winter and spring with six or seven performances over three weekends.

Other matters discussed were calling of tenders to clean the theatre and upgrading the computer, lighting systems and purchase of a new keyboard.

Advertising also was discussed with the arrival of a street banner ordered by Lyn and monthly news column in the local paper.

Besides the main shows for the year the Society liaised with the Council to have a visit from the Sydney Symphony Brass, the Arts Council floated the idea of film nights and the Society entered two plays in the One Act Play Festival in Bathurst in August.

Sara Hitchick received support to form a junior Group to meet on a regular basis offering basic theatre skills.

Lorna regrouped the cast of Flight 09 for a one off performance for the visiting Bonanza Flying Club.

Lyn Townsend, having written and directed her very successful one act play for the 2001 Festival "Reminiscing Our Rose", undertook to write and direct a musical "La Mysticalle", an inspirational tale of fantasy, fun and forbidden romance.

2003: Warwick Tom and policeman Neil Westcott in La Mysticalle in May 2003. Photo: Submitted

2003: Warwick Tom and policeman Neil Westcott in La Mysticalle in May 2003. Photo: Submitted

This was staged in May, the first major production for the year with the main leads Neil Westcott as Sam, Kelli Casey as Kara, Warwick Tom as Harry, Jennifer Willis as Elaine, Sarah Hitchick as Marcy, Belinda McGrath as Jane and Dave Robinson as Michael.

Thirty other members were in the cast with Andrew Hunt, Brian Schmalkuche and Mark Young helping behind the scenes.

One of the performances occurred on Mothers Day so patrons were treated to a delicious Devonshire Tea.

Bathurst hosted a weekend of One Act Plays in August with Parkes taking two, "Bombshells" directed by Lyn Townsend, with herself, Pam Tupper, Belinda McGrath, Tania Mill and Jenny Willis in the cast.

"Meat and Two Veg" directed by Brian Smhalkuche, had Aaron Kingham, Lyn and Rob Aitkens as his cast. While the plays didn't score any gongs, an enjoyable time was had by those participating.

Barry Lipman, having been involved in a previous production of "Arsenic and Old Lace" was keen to direct it once again in October.

Many regular members such as Kaye and Geoff Lindsay, Andrew and Noveta Hunt, Aaron Kingham, John Orgill, Keiran Ducan, Alex Abbey and Dave Robinson made up the majority of the cast.

This play is one of the drama classics, well performed to an appreciative audience as the Society's Spring production.

The end of year production was "Once a Knight", a bawdy Mel Brooks-Monty Python Medieval Review which included a sumptuous four-course banquet.

This romp was directed by Brad WIlson aided by a strong cast of regular members such as Brian Schmalkuche, Karen Morrison, Michael Lindsay, Rob Aitkens, Tania Mill, Felicity Otrupcek and the Tupper family. It was a case of all hand on deck with the cast also working backstage.

The last meeting of the year decided to support the Jack Scoble Scholarship Fund with an annual contribution, in recognition of his association with drama in Parkes.

This was the final business to finish off a very busy year.