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The Week Ahead

Dermot Murphy writes:

Come to the Stockwell Playhouse to see my new play Room Service, which is in the 34th One Act Festival on Friday 1st June at 7:30pm.

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Bradley Crees writes:

This week I worked with Channel 4 director Barry Dyer on a commercial for Combat Stress, a charity helping veterans with PTSD. I star as an English soldier and it should appear online and potentially in cinemas.

And this is very very last minute, but I’m appearing in Theatre 503’s Rapid Write Response night in a play called Salvage directed by Rachel Tookey. It’s on this Sunday 7:30pm and Monday night too! It’s an amazing script!

27 May & 28 May

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Kate Glover’s new docudrama, Dear Chocolate Soldier, based on the letters (1916-1918) of Bombardier Edwin Hassall, receives its premiere performance at the Foxlowe Arts Centre, Leek, Staffordshire (Hassall’s home town), on 31st May. Kenneth Michaels directs and acts in an all-AWL cast, which also includes Simon Brandon & Frederick Appleby (pianist).

The first London performances will be at the CAA on 1st June, and at All Hallows by the Tower on 2nd June. Further performances will follow later in the year, including a one-week run at the OSO Arts Centre from 6th to 10th November. See the Historia Theatre Company website (link below) for full details and booking links.

It is June 1916. A six-year-old girl, Joan Burbridge, watches as her father wraps up a packet of chocolate for the brave soldiers at the front. A thought strikes her: ‘How will the soldier know the chocolate is from me?’ Her father obligingly writes on the packet: ‘From Little Joan, Whiterock, Wadebridge, Cornwall’. Six weeks letter, a green field envelope arrives, addressed to Little Joan. Inside is a letter, the first of many, from Bombardier Edwin Hassall, Royal Artillery, still in the midst of the fighting at the Battle of the Somme.

The story of the letters from The Chocolate Soldier to Little Joan and her father, from the Somme until the Armistice, is told movingly and amusingly, by three actors, in a cabaret style performance with poetry and popular songs from the period.

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Conor Montague writes:

“We’re looking for AWL actors to perform in a showcase of new drama from emerging playwrights on Saturday evening, 14 July at The Irish Centre, Blacks Road, Hammersmith. 6-8 pieces of 10-15 minutes each. Details of requirements for the first 3 below. We may double-up if you are interested in performing in more than one piece. More to follow. Expenses only.

Women: 1x character age 25, 1x character late 30s, 4x character age 40-48, 3x characters 60-65, 1x character early 70s

Men: 1x character in 20s, 1x character mid-30s, 3x character age 40-48, 3 x aged 50-60 (Brummie accent)

In the first of a three part series for BBC radio, exploring dialect poetry in different parts of England, Catherine Harvey returns to her roots in north west England to see if the dialect poetry of the cotton mills of 19th Century Lancashire is still alive today.

Broadcast on Sunday 13th May, and then available as a podcast on the BBC iPlayer.

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Celebrate the Bard’s birthday with this new Shakespeare inspired web-series.

Good King Richard, Part 1 stars Simon Brandon as Antic & Richard II, Martin Cort as John of Gaunt and Carolyn Pertwee as Duchess of York.

Please show your support by viewing the episode on YouTube (link below) and subscribing to the YouTube channel.

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In a new YouTube video, Peter Sutton performs excerpts from his modern verse translation of Piers Plowman, William Langland’s 14th-century commentary on corruption and greed.

Peter’s translation featured in his play William Langland: Poet and Dreamer, which was read at AWL in 2015 (starring Peter Sutton and Stephanie Connell.

This ten-minute recording includes background information about the work, and facsimile pages from the Peter’s translation, published by McFarland in 2015.

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Tony Diggle’s play about Shakespeare, A Kingdom for a Stage, which he produced at the Chelsea Theatre in 2016, directed by Andrew Loudon, with Richard Ward playing George Bernard Shaw, has now been published by Matador in both hard copy and as an e-book. Further details are available from the publisher’s website.

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Terry Perkins plays a Hunter in The Hunted Experience, based on the Channel 4 TV show The Hunted, at a secret location in East London from 19th May to 2nd September on Saturdays and Sundays.

Could you go on the run? Change your habits? Change your appearance? How would you evade capture? In a world in which your every move is tracked and your every decision monitored, could you avoid being caught?

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Further Events in the Month Ahead

North London Actors’ summer New Writing Showcase will be at Park Theatre on Tuesday 12th June at 7 pm.

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Simone Vause is directing a performance of Maydays, a poem about our times, started just two days before the Grenfell Tower fire, which then became its pivotal moment, at the new Playground Theatre (Latimer Road) at 6.00 on 16th June.

The performance uses five actors (including Shane Chester) to dramatise the “carefully crafted, and deeply felt verse” of this “magnificent long poem” (Counterfire).

Admission is free, but advance booking is essential.

Audience members will be invited to make a donation in favour of the victims of the fire.

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Nadia Ostacchini’s Tricolore Theatre Company presents the premiere production of Penny Culliford’s play for children and families: A Boy Named Porro (Un Bambino di Nome Porro). The bilingual (English-Italian) production is directed by Liz Felton. Cast includes Nadia Ostacchini and Sara Laratro.

Kids’ Club, Casa Italiana San Vincenzo Pallotti, London EC1R 5EN:

Saturdays 16th, 23rd & 30th June at 5 pm;

Sundays 17th & 24th June and 1st July at 5 pm.

£5 - £7

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Terry Perkins writes:

I am playing the Porter and also a waiter in A Servant to Two Masters at Harlow Playhouse for one night only Wednesday 13th June 2018 at 7:30pm we are then performing at the Minack Theatre in Cornwall Monday 23rd to Friday 27th July.

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Hayward B. Morse directs a semi-staged reading of George Bernard Shaw’s The Applecart for North London Actors at Courtyard Theatre on Monday June 25th at 7.30.

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Alice De-Warrenne plays Coco in the first stage adaptation of the CBeebies hit show Bing. Directed by Will Tuckett, Bing Live! will tour theatres across the UK and Ireland until April 2019.

Join Bing, Sula, Coco and Pando as they learn how to tell stories by pretending, dressing-up and singing songs. Flop and Amma are there to help, but in this magical world of make-believe things don’t always go according to plan…

The CBeebies favourites are brought to life in a brand new stage production full of fun, laughter, music and magical puppetry. Bing Live! is the perfect first theatre trip for pre-schoolers and their families.

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Future Plans

Living the Drama (Carolyn Lloyd-Davies and Stephanie Connell) are producing Beneath the Blue Rinse by Tom Glover. It has been accepted into Oxford’s Offbeat Festival in June and will be doing a short tour around Oxfordshire:

29 June at 8pm, Abingdon Unicorn Theatre

30 June at 3pm, Oxford Fringe Festival Offbeat, Old Fire Station

30 June at 8.00pm, Eynsham Village Hall

5 July at 8pm, Old Fire Station, Oxford

6-7 July at- 8pm, Cheltenham Everyman Studio

Beneath the Blue Rinse, a comedy, exposes how society views and treats the elderly, showing that old age is no barrier to living life fast and very furiously. Think Tarantino meets Last of the Summer Wine!

We are also doing our care home tour in September with Go For It, Girl by Pauline Massey, with Stephanie Connell in the cast.

Rosalind Adler’s stage play, Prince of Hearts, first read at AWL, has been chosen as one of five to be showcased (a reading) at Alan Ayckbour’s Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough on Friday July 6th, directed by the excellent Lotte Wakeham.


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Peter Bird’s one act play Stranger will be performed at The Little Theatre, Hebden Bridge on 20th and 21st July 2018 as part of the Play Write festival.

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Rosalind Adler writes...

My new two-hander, Damaged Goods, will have perforrmances at the King’s Head Theatre as part of Festival 48 on July 16th, 17th & 18th. It features me and Richard Heap and is directed by Kirsty Bennett. It was formerly called The Hub and has had showcases at Leicester Square Theatre and Soho Theatre. It’s now a 60-minute one-act play.

“Terrific. Subtle, funny, moving and truthful” Maria Friedman

“Wonderfully funny and deeply touching” Christopher Logan

“Funny, insightful and moving” Sally Sheringham

16 July to 18 July

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Sally Sheringham’s play about suffragettes, The Sound of Breaking Glass, which was first read at AWL, and then toured schools with an AWL cast and Kate Glover as director, will be performed by Harrogate Dramatic Society at Harrogate Theatre (Studio) in N. Yorks from Tuesday October 23 to Saturday October 27; includes a matinee on Saturday.

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Rosalind Adler writes...

Four-Play four of my short plays with four amazing actors (including me!) will have a three-week run at the Tristan Bates Theatre in December. More details nearer the time.

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Julia Haythorn writes:

I am doing a qualification to become an executive coach certified by the International Coaching Federation (ICF). As part of the training, I have to do a certain number of coaching hours and so I am looking for people to coach. As I’m keen to build up my hours, I am offering this to AWL members for free for a limited time. Coaching is for everyone (not just executives!) Coaching would certainly be useful for people who want to develop their careers, or are feeling there are areas of their professional or personal life that would benefit from change. The great thing about coaching, is that it can be done face to face, or over the phone or via Skype - so people don’t even have to be London based to take up the offer. It is also completely confidential.

In each meeting you choose the focus of conversation while I listen and contribute observations and questions. Coaching accelerates your progress by providing greater focus and awareness of choice. Coaching concentrates on where you are today and what you are willing to do to get to where you want to be tomorrow and what is holding you back from getting more of what you truly want.

Please get in touch if you would like some more information about what coaching involves or if you want to take up this offer which expires at the end of April 2018. I’d love to hear from you.

07710 124670

Keith Merrill has launched a new singing practice: Singing Lessons | UK | The Vocal GP. Keith studied at Guildhall School of Music and Drama and went on to complete the prestigious postgraduate Music Theatre course at The Royal Academy of Music in London.

“I will demonstrate everything for you, by example - proving the technique with real & tangible results. Total transparency; fully explained. I am dedicated to a school of singing that has been empowering singers for over a century. (The main influence for Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder and Rihanna’s teacher, Seth Riggs) Championed and perfected by the great singing teacher, E. Herbert-Caesari and his colleague, the legendary tenor Beniamino Gigli, this approach provides us a totally natural, healthy, vibrant, beautiful, flexible and utterly sustainable technique that will allow for many years of great singing and pure enjoyment.”

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Bronwyn Baud is a qualified teacher of the Alexander Technique and has been for almost 20 years.

Sessions are normally £35. Bronwyn is offering a 20% discount to AWL Members for 5 sessions, thereafter 10%.

People use the Technique for a wide range of reasons, including preventing injury in music, drama and sport, enhancing business and presentation skills, developing ease and elegance in movement, and supporting pregnancy and childbirth.

To book a lesson or just to find out more about the Technique, call Bronwyn Baud on 07531 447 887 or email her via her AWL page.

07531 447 887

Viv Lake has done quite a bit of research into theatrical and family history and accumulated a lot of information which might prove useful to other AWL members who have been looking into family or theatrical history.

She has lists of information such as stage names and aliases, biogs, obituaries, where they are buried, census returns which mention performers, old theatrical companies and theatres, actor-managers, and photocopies or pdfs of very old playbills, as well as text from theatrical journals and newspapers, most of which are from the Georgian and Victorian eras, and earlier, in Great Britain and America.

If you’re interested in Viv doing just a basic search for free through her files, please speak to her at an AWL meeting, or email her via her AWL page.

Hedley England a director/editor, is offering his services to provide a professional Showreel for AWL members for a reasonable price.

The AWL deal is that actors only pay for the hire of the camera, the price obviously to be agreed upon, and Hedley would give his time free to direct and edit the showreel professionally. He can provide a DVD with a menu, and also work with existing footage.

Click for examples of his work.

Contact Hedley on 07984 616 711

John Melainey has coached audition technique for the last 20 years. It is one of the areas that many actors push to one side and yet it is a vital skill. A good audition technique is the secret to many a successfull acting career. If you feel like you go into an audition and it never seems to go the way you planned or if you leave feeling like you just didn’t do enough, or didn’t have long enough to work on the script, then the chances are that it is your audition process, that is letting you down.

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Stephanie Connell is an award winning web designer who has been creating websites for the past seven years. Each website is handmade and specific to the client’s requirements and is therefore unique. She will guide you through the process and provide design and practical suggestions where necessary. She offers aftercare service which she feels is just as important as the creative process. A discount to AWL Members only.

AWL Members who have had their websites created recently: Carolyn Pertwee, David Hampshire, Julia Haythorn and Hedley England


Masterclass aims to offer young people between 17-30, exceptional creative opportunities and experiences with leaders of the theatre industry. A year-round programme of talks, workshops, special projects and career advice is intended to give people insight into all aspects of theatre from writing and directing to acting and producing. Masterclass strives to provide all the events for free, so that people of all abilities, status and background can be inspired by and learn from masters of the craft.

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