|Date||13th March 2015|
|Society||Alton Operatic & Dramatic Society|
|Venue||Assembly Rooms Alton|
|Type of Production||Musical Review|
|Director||Alison Crow and Eleanor Bradley|
|Musical Director||Chris Gardner|
Author: Mrs Betty Haslam
The production written by Eleanor Bradbury and co-produced with Alison Crow was about a small workforce performing songs from WW2 interspersed with Radio announcements of the action during the war years. The musical was set with just a few props to denote a works canteen serving teas to the employees. The songs of the war years were well sung by the cast and gave great continuity to the show and showcased the talents of Alton’s regular actors. Of particular note was ‘That Lovely Weekend’ sung by Bisi Eni-Ollotu.The actors went on and off the stage drinking endless amounts of tea and singing various songs of the period. I expected the clothes to befit a wartime canteen with working clothes for the factory, for example, ladies in wrapround pinnies and turbans, the men perhaps in boiler suites and flat caps with tin helmets for the air raid rather than dressed for the Palaise De Dance. Substituting a few small tables and chairs spread around rather than basing the action at the back of the stage behind a long table would I feel have worked better. A little audience participation may have helped to create more atmosphere.
Pianist Chris Gardner assisted the cast and complimented the singing.Stage Manager Robert Hudd, Lighting and Sound from Andrew Stickland and Sam Jones-Martin, Scenic Artists Peter Crow and Clare Mattey.