Role play Do you want starring part with theatre company?

A POPULAR theatre company has launched a new initiative to make ‘stars’ of its community.

If the thought of acting gives you stage fright though then don’t immediately exit stage right.

Ian Holland-Boulton and Mark Greenhalgh from Lees and District Branch

Saddleworth Players, based at Millgate Arts Centre in Delph, want to recruit more actors and directors.

The group is also looking to sign up volunteers for a myriad of backstage roles.

The second of three open evenings takes place on Saturday, March 28 prior to the first night of the next production, Deathtrap.

There will be chance to meet the team for an informal chat and tour the theatre, including the recently refurbished auditorium. A final open night is scheduled for Saturday, May 23.

A Players spokesperson said: “There are many roles available such as PA, stage manager or prompt, set design, set building and props, costume and makeup, sound and lighting.

“We are also looking for people to help run the theatre in box office, as an usher and selling programmes, or having an evening on the bar or selling coffee.”

Siobhan Ebden joined the Players in 2017 and now combines backstage tasks with supporting roles in a variety of plays.

“It takes quite a team to put on a production,” explained Springhead-based Siobhan.

“For me, props are a really interesting part of the production team.

They help actors get into character and helps the audience believe what it is we are trying to portray.

“I started at the beginning of 2017,” explained Siobhan, Head of Oldham Children’s Services.
“My family had grown up and it was an opportunity to get involved.

“My first play was the Graduate. I had to make the bed four times a night for the run! But as a nurse that is not something you are unfamiliar with.

“We are a welcoming group and I am sure we can find a suitable role for anyone interested in joining,” added Siobhan, who plays a psychic in Deathtrap.

The last Players’ production, Le Grand Return, finished a successful run on Saturday, February 8 and was also a hit with the Royal British Legion.

Throughout the week members held collections before and after performances, raising £275 for the Saddleworth and Lees and District Branches.

It was a memorable play also for a Saddleworth pensioner. Aged 97, Wilfred Buckley hadn’t attended a theatre for more than 70 years until he was invited by a neighbour.

Playwright Alan Stockdill tweeted: “He prefers the snooker but he absolutely loved it. I hope he doesn’t leave it as long till his next visit.”

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