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It’s a Wonderful Life

Date

16th December 2017

Society

Chaddesley Amateur Theatrical Society

Venue

Chaddesley Corbett Village Hall

Type of Production

Play

Director

Rupert Boden

Report

Author: Andy Brown

Described as a live radio play I was intrigued as to what this production was going to be. What we saw was a play of a radio broadcast of the famous film of 1947 starring James Stewart.

On entering the hall, the set clearly resembled a radio studio. The play opened with the actors arriving ready to read the play. The stage manager gave us, the audience, instructions about the live broadcast we were about to witness including instructions on when to applaud.

Our five actors played a host of roles. Taking the lead as the actor Jake Laurents playing George Bailey was Rupert Boden who gave a powerful performance. Debbie Hill, who played the part of Sally Applewhite as Mary Hatch also gave a strong performance.

The other roles were played by Tony Newbould, Jim Preston and Lynne Tunnicliffe all of whom needed to transform from character to character at times at speed and having to have a conversation with themselves. Although all five had their lines available to them they nevertheless presented confident performances with good pace. 

When not ‘up at the microphone’ broadcasting our actors were either sat waiting for their next appearance or doing sound effects such as car horns. I did like the speaking into a tin can to make the sound of a telephone and the live sounds effects such as police car sirens and the wind.  

Prior to the interval our actors delivered a typical American 1940’s advert to the tune of Rudolph the Red -Nosed Reindeer to be later followed by one set to Santa Claus is Coming to Town. Both were extremely well done. 
Supporting the ‘actors’ were Jo Powick as the stage manager and Harry Grove on the piano and doing sound

The costumes were suitable to our actors, showing how well dressed most radio broadcasters were in the past 

Congratulations to Rupert Boden who not only played the lead but also directed this play which was a suitable way to commence Christmas. 

I look forward to future production performed by Chaddesley Amateur Theatrical Society next year.