East - Committee
Don McKayRegional Councillor / COUNCILLOR
Catherine DixeyREGIONAL SECRETARY
Catherine has been involved with amateur theatre for more years than she cares to remember. She appeared in numerous pantos, musicals and plays, ( some of which were NODA award winners) with local Societies before hanging up her dancing shoes. She has also been involved with a variety of jobs on the production side of theatre, and has directed pantos for her local Society for several years.
She joined the NODA committee about 8 years ago as Membership Secretary and is currently their Minute Secretary.
She is married to Derek who was also a local amateur actor; has 2 grown up married children and 2 lovely grandchildren. When not busy with all her theatre work she loves walking and does wedding flowers for friends and family.
Julie ArmstrongREGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE (District E01)
I started out as a ballroom and latin dancer (think Strictly!), travelling the world to represent the UK in competitions and championships, so performing is in my blood! This eventually led to my involvement in the theatre, in the north-west, where I became an actor for many years, eventually teaching drama and dance. I was also involved, behind the scenes, in amateur theatre and NODA. My husband’s job brought us to Peterborough where I have now have four performing arts schools. My daughter is currently studying musical theatre in London and we can often (perhaps a little too often!) be found in a theatre there, watching all sorts of plays and musicals.
Richard FittREGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE (District E02)
Nova HorleyREGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE (District E03)
I started dancing classes at 2½ in Hastings, winning a scholarship to the Arts Educational School in Tring when I was 10. When I was 12 I was part of the junior chorus in a production of “Dick Whittington” at the Watford Palace Theatre, where Jimmy Perry was writer/director, I then worked professionally as a singer and dancer doing mainly summer seasons and pantomimes – including Butlins hotels for 2 summers in the revue company and pantomime at the New Theatre, Oxford. Later I did semi-pro cabaret work, whilst working as a dispenser’s assistant in a chemist. I met my husband John in 1968 when we both appeared in a production of “The New Moon” for High Wycombe Operatic Society, and we married in 1970. I worked for the same sales promotion company for 32 years until my retirement in 2015. I became a NODA Rep in 2002, and also review amateur shows for the Luton News. I have two children (both are married) and two granddaughters I love performing in shows either as a principal or in the chorus, and have also choreographed numerous pantomimes, revues and musicals. My main interests outside the theatre are my husband, family, home and books. I love seeing and reviewing shows, and never get tired of going to the theatre – both amateur and professional.
Stephen HayterREGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE (District E04N)
I started in amateur theatre at the age of 9 and have performed , written (3 pantomimes, 4 plays, 1 musical and about 100 sketches or stand ups) directed, and produced for two societies since 1972. I have also been Stage Manager and Chairman and served on two committees. I took over at Area 4 North Regional Rep when Jim Farr became Eastern Region Councillor and have been doing it for four years. I have also served on the Hunstanton Drama Festival adjudication team for the last two years. More recently it has been my great honour to be Master Of Ceremonies at The NODA Eastern Region Gala Awards Ceremony for three consecutive years.
Julie PetrucciREGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE / MEMBERSHIP SECRETARY (District E04S)
I became a Regional Rep in 2012. I have been involved in amateur theatre for over 40 years in every aspect of society, committee, chairman, secretary, front of house, props, stage management and directing shows from pantomime to Shakespeare. I have been secretary of Combined Actors a Cambridge production company for over 30 years, as well for my local society for almost 20 years. I also organise the annual Sawston one-act drama festival. Chris my partner has been a constant both personally and amdram-wise in my life for 32 years. I have a large extended family. Since 1982 I have edited a monthly drama magazine which covers amateur drama in and around Cambridgeshire and together with Chris support as many amateur societies as we can. Amateur theatre consumes a large percentage of my time.
Susan DupontREGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE (District E05)
Following a lack-lustre (tall and awkward) performance in back-row chorus in Bedfordshire, it was suggested ‘go backstage and try all disciplines to see where to fit in’, the best advice ever received: scenery, lighting, properties, some costume, the chance to work with other groups backstage, trips to Waterford. A move back to Norfolk with job as research scientist and looking for a group (temporarily in a make-up team) and found mid-sized company covering genres musical, play, pantomime. How fortunate that new director (professional theatre stage director and Anglia TV floor manager) was looking for an assistant to train as stage director (combo stage manager/ production secretary), what an opportunity. Also guesting with other Norfolk groups as needed backstage. Encouragement to attend NODA Operatic Summer School at Ripon with a chance to work with the 3 professional directors as Stage Manager Excerpts, a link with crew and classes for about ten years. As Regional Rep. District 5 (28 societies) cover a wide area mostly rural with centre at Norwich: ‘rooms’ or village halls through smaller theatres up to professional Theatre Royal; so many differing skills and disciplines, talents abounding in unlikely venues, and so many friends. With societies now frequently doing more than one production per year, continuing stage crew but timing means no longer stage management. Add 2 days a month as volunteer guide for Sainsbury Centre Arts at UEA. In 2014 received NODA President’s Cup as a Regional Rep, and 2016 saw NODA Gold (50 years) and the award Hon. NODA Member for 25 years as a Regional Rep.
Terry RymerREGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE (District E06)
Forty odd years have flown by...from Widow Twankey in 1977 for Lowestoft Players to President Roosevelt in 'Annie' last year. Too many roles to mention but favourite was as Captain Andy in 'Showboat' for HAODS (Henley Amateur Operatic Soc) for whom I was Chairman for ten years at the Kenton Theatre. Had been with Dockyard Review Players in Plymouth...have written directed and acted in many Pantos including Gorleston Pavilion Theatre. In the 1980s, as Sen Res Tutor at ' Marjon' College ran their new state of the art Theatre for students. Also Head of Student Advisory Services at Bucks Chilterns Universty for last ten working years. Now back in Lowestoft as Regional Rep and enjoying reviewing shows in the 'far East' Anglia Coastal and surrounding areas. Also Public Gov at James Paget Univ Hospital for last 8years. It's been quite a journey... Long may it continue! (but not too many lines please!!)
Decia RangerREGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE (District E07)
A life-long love of theatre eventually brought me to my local musical theatre company with the intention of just singing in the chorus. It wasn’t long before I was Membership Secretary and then Secretary. I have also been involved with publicity and marketing, programme and poster design, helping to run the box office, and was Production Secretary/Co-ordinator for several shows as well as being on stage.
I became an Assistant Rep in 2015 and took over from my predecessor as the Regional Rep at the beginning of 2016.
In a former life I was a Secretary for many years before taking time out to bring up my two children, one of whom now lives in Sydney. In more recent years I worked as a GP Receptionist. I am married to a very busy man and although his diary is always full to overflowing, he too is a theatre lover and enjoys accompanying me when I review shows.
My other hobby is gardening. I read all the books and then do it my way, which I find usually works!
Christine DavidsonREGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE (District E08)
Christine has been involved with NODA since starting Danbury Players over 20 years ago. She has performed on stage at many theatres including The Old Court, The Headgate and The Mercury. Christine has directed many NODA award winning productions and theatre is one of her great loves. She goes regularly to NODA Theatre Summer School and loved the new venue this year where she took the course Devising Drama with the fabulous tutor Sarah Osborne.
Katherine HempsteadREGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE (District E08)
Katherine Hempstead started acting in youth groups at the age of 10 and has been acting in various drama groups ever since. She has also written and directed four plays, two of which have been performed by Mad Apple Collective. She looks forward to being part of the NODA
Tessa DaviesREGIONAL TREASURER / REGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE (District E10)
Ann PlattenREGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE (District E11)
I was born into very musical families both on my Father and Mother’s sides.
I started Piano lessons at 12 years taking piano exams with the Royal School of Music. and after two years had at my tutor’s advice professional singing lessons. I did a lot of solo singing in Essex and I was fortunate to have singing lessons with the late Helga Mott who had been a Professional Opera singer. I also joined Colchester Silver Band and could play several brass instruments which involved competitions in London.
I was invited to join Colchester Operatic Society in 1960 and played many parts with the group over 25 years. I was on the Executive Committee for 17 years. At a start up meeting in Sudbury to form a local operatic Society, which is now Sudbury Musicals Society, I became involved after moving into Sudbury, the society started performing in 1985, and I have been with the group ever since. I am the only founder member left in the group and have been made a life member. I was also Chair of the society for many years.
I played many parts on stage with the society, and then became Musical Director, covering around 40 shows with the group up until the present time. I was awarded a 50 years long service medal in 2010 so have now completed 58 years as a member of NODA. I am also Musical Director for St John’s Methodist Church Choir in Sudbury and Musical Director for The Music Makers, a singing group mainly entertaining at Residential Care Homes in Suffolk.
Before retiring I was Manager at Lavenham and also Flatford Tourist Information Centres, a very interesting and demanding job with on busy days around 700 people a day coming into the office with many overseas visitors all needing a great deal of help.
Pamela WhiteREGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE (District E12)
Alexandra BerrimanYOUTH ADVISER
Even before Alex was on stage, she organised a talent show at her primary school called ‘Perform for Bosnia’ when she was 10! Alex did ballet dancing from the age of 3 to 20 and performed in lots of shows as part of the dance school. Alex has been involved in amateur dramatics since she was 13, and took the role of the boxing granny in Ernie’s Incredible Illucinations! From then on Alex was involved in many productions at school and in her free time, taking on both principal and ensemble roles. Alex started directing at a young age, when the youth group she started in was threatened with closure due to the lack of volunteers. In 2009, Alex founded KYDS Youth Drama Society, a group in Tiptree for 11-18 year olds. KYDS has grown year on year and recently became a registered charity. As well as producing 2 shows a year with KYDS, Alex spends a lot of her free time helping backstage with other shows. As well as amateur theatre, Alex has worked in professional theatre as a theatre manager, front of house and box office manager for a couple of years; Alex is currently the manager of a Creative Learning and Talent department. Alex also has a background in event management; producing events such as carnivals, charity concerts, wedding fayres etc. Alex is trained in technical theatre, business management and event management. Alex is Youth Adviser. Alex is also a member of the NODA Theatre Summer School committee; and attends as a student every year. She is a huge ambassador for the summer school and says she counts down to it every year! Recently, after being inspired at Summer School, Alex took a course in film making, and has since produced some promotional videos and is hoping to work on more in the future. In her spare time, Alex enjoys going to theatre (unsurprisingly!), baking, and dancing.
DeeDee DokeAWARDS SECRETARY / NODA Ltd
Tina DoyleYOUTH ADVISER
Tina first trained as a ballet teacher and then went on to study Drama. She paid for her training by singing in local bands so it naturally followed that a musical career would follow. Tina became a professional actress appearing in the West End and touring extensively throughout the UK and abroad playing lead roles such as Mary Magdalene in Jesus Christ Superstar, Roxie Hart in Chicago, Sally in Me & My Girl and Peter in Peter Pan. Straight plays followed and soon she took on directing. Tina has directed numerous productions and has also built an excellent reputation as a Speech and Drama teacher/examiner travelling throughout the country and abroad, running workshops for all ages. Tina has been involved with a number of community projects and worked with specialists in many different areas writing, choreographing and directing tailor made productions. She is a voice over artist and thoroughly enjoys working in recording studios. Tina has held a position of Director of Creative Arts for over 10 years. She has two children and is grandmother to one!
She is delighted to be a Youth Advisor and is looking forward to an exciting future.
Tina trained in dance and drama and qualified as a teacher 20 years ago. Her varied career has encompassed professional work as an actress, director, singer, choreographer, writer, teacher and voice-over artist. She has appeared in the West End, toured throughout the UK and abroad in many lead roles - Her teaching experience ranges from pre-school age to adults and she has been involved in many community-based projects that involve drama, music and dance.
June ForwayWEBSITE EDITOR
June became the Webmaster many moons ago when she attended the AGM which was held in Ely and her husband decided to propose her as web master without her knowledge. The web was in its very early days at that time and has gone on to become bigger and better social media.
She has been involved in amateur theatre for many years in every aspect of several societies, committee, chairman, secretary, front of house, prompt, stage management and directing many shows of all varieties
She has a large family, several of whom are following her into a theatrical background. Her husband is also always there waiting in the background to be told what his next job will be. (Just like a faithful dog!!)
Zelda RolfeYOUTH ADVISER