Meet The Committee Part 4

It’s time to get back to our Meet the Committee series and this week we meet…me – the one behind the blog, Mrs Sarah Clarkson.

How long have you been a member of Encore Theatre Company?
13 years

When and why did you join ETC?

I joined Encore in 2002. I had just finished a dance and performing arts course at Wakefield College and felt like something was missing after starting work full time.
My mum found an advert for auditions in the Pontefract and Castleford Express for the show Annie…a show I had previously been involved in at school and said to go for it. I did, loved it, made a lot of great friends doing it and now I couldn’t see my life without it…so I guess the rest is history!

Do you have any favourite show/s you have performed in?

There are probably too many to have a favourite as I have loved being part of them all but

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Sarah as Bud in ‘The Good, the Bad and the Panto’

if I had to choose, Guys and Dolls has to be up there. I played one of the hot box dancers and don’t think I have laughed as much and any chance to dance is like a dream. Being cast in Little Shop of Horrors is also a highlight…an all-time favourite show of mine where I played Chiffon which was vocally one of the best parts I’ve played. I can’t answer
this question without mentioning performing in Pantomime as it is hilarious making up many of the silly comedy characters I have played but I think Bud was the best by far…I loved that idiot and hope he can come back soon!


Tell us your favourite role/s? (Past roles and dream ones)

My favourite roles have to be Nancy in Oliver and Chiffon in Little Shop of Horrors.
There are so many dream roles to choose from but it has to be Mr’s Lovett from Sweeney Todd!

Sarah as Nancy in ‘Oliver’

How long have you served on the committee?

I have been a member of the committee for almost 3 years now, practically a baby!

What was your reason for joining the committee?

I joined the committee and wanted to look more into the on-line roles that were missing. We already had a website but I wanted to find my feet and branch out to social media. Most recently I have started an ETC blog to help with promotion of the shows and find a wider audience.

What are your roles and responsibilities?

I was voted onto the committee as Members Representative in April 2013, and my role involves being the link between the committee and the membership. I am officially the person members speak to if they need to pass something onto the committee. I am also there to help other committee members and their roles. I have also taken on the role of social media pest and spend a lot of time posting on-line and writing and coordinating blogs to help us branch out further.

Describe a task you have completed for this year’s committee?

This year I have created the official Encore Theatre Company Blog. I spend a lot of my spare time reading and watching lifestyle and beauty blogs and after searching for hours for theatre blogs and thinking there was something missing I wondered if I could come up with something myself to show people a little bit more of what is involved with Encore. I wanted to show more from back stage and what it’s like being part of the Encore family…it seems to be going well so far and people are actually reading it so that’s a bonus!

Sarah as Louise in ‘Carousel’

What are the main challenges facing the committee?

Main challenges have to be financial ones, and choosing a show, it becomes a struggle when money is concerned. This year’s show was difficult to choose as it is not a very well-known show so all of our efforts have to be towards promotion. The alternative would have been a costly one to produce so the pro’s and con’s had to be weighed up before a choice could be made. It is easy to let the money control decisions but all of the committee come to these decisions based on what is best for the company and we always create something amazing in the end.

Don’t forget to comment on social media if you like our blog posts and I am still looking for any old photographs and memories you can share with us.
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Don’t be so anti-social!

Be social with Encore…Encore members work very hard on producing two shows a year, we also know how to party!

The committee organises regular social events for its members to not only raise funds to keep the company going, but to also give everyone a chance to have fun and get to know each other. There is often very little time in our twice weekly rehearsals for members to chat so our social events are a great way to team build and make new friends!

There are a full range events in our social calendar including a formal evening once a year, such as a Summer Ball or Dinner Dance which gives us the chance to present any awards that have been earned for years of service to amateur theatre from NODA. These usually start at 10 year service awards and then for every 5 years following this a new badge to commemorate their service is presented. NODA also award the Long Service Medal, signifying 25 years of active and unpaid service, on stage or off.12186396_493509404161005_9148922395105310338_o

Less formal events recently have included a summer barbecue, as well as Body Shop and candle parties where members have bought items with any commission going to Encore so we can buy gifts for raffles throughout the year.

We also arranged a
Halloween party last year where everyone went all out on the costumes and joined in with games, karaoke and dancing.
We have run a car 10517470_292667104245237_9063021685043038408_nrally/treasure hunt in each of the last two summers. These are really fun events, following a set of directions around the local area answering questions, picking up named items and carrying out instructions. Last year’s rally had to include a photograph of each team sliding down a slide! The winners of the rally and quiz are awarded a trophy and the honour of writing the following year’s rally!

Thursday night rehearsals come to an end each week and a group of us pile into the local for a couple of drinks and chew the cud over the week’s rehearsals and to have a catch up with friends.
This has been the case for as long as I can remember ever since I joined Encore and half the members didn’t think I was old enough to drink!?!
After show parties have always been a great success and many have gone down in the Encore history books. The one that springs to mind involves the newly named Trev’s Ledge and a great game of Trevaroo!

Christmas is also a great time for socialising especially after the panto. We try and get a carol singing event booked which always does well so close to Christmas – everyone loves a winter carol or two! Clare Heins tends to plan a great night out for the Encore ladies. Last year we went to the Kings Croft Hotel for a meal and a disco with a Robbie Williams tribute that had us dancing away into the night.12376726_508464689332143_3560583741097431584_n

This year we have a few ideas in the pipeline for social events and one is already in place as a fundraiser with a few final details to be arranged but it looks promising as a great night as usual.

Check out our website for updates on our social calendar.
We hope you have enjoyed reading about our social events, if you have any ideas for a future social event you would like to attend let us know via Facebook or Twitter!

Meet The Committee Part 3

This week we have our third instalment of Meet the Committee blog posts.
This week we meet our Treasurer Mrs Sue Sheppard

How long have you been a member of Encore Theatre Company?

 I have been a member of Encore Theatre Company for 33 years.

When and why did you join ETC?

I joined the Society in January 1983, but it wasn’t called Encore Theatre Company then it was called Featherstone and District Musical and Dramatic  Society for their production of Oliver.   My interest started when I was quite young about 5 years old I was a “Sunbeam” in St Giles Pantomime Society where my Auntie was always a principle, and I always wanted to be like her! I stayed with the society for a number of years, then left but never lost interest of once again being on stage.  Years later I saw an advert in the Pontefract and Castleford Express looking for men (it’s always men isn’t it) for their forthcoming production of Oliver, so I rang asking if they needed any ladies as well and as you can say the rest is history.  We changed our name to ETC in the early nineties.

Do you have any favourite show/s performed in? (give a few if any)

There are a number of shows I have loved being in.  Half a Sixpence, Billy, Oklahoma, Spend, Spend, Spend and Calendar Girls

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Sue as Chris in ‘Calendar Girls’

Tell us your favourite role/s? (past roles and dream ones)

Aunt Ella in Oklahoma and Chris in Calendar Girls.  My dream role would be Madame Thenardier in Les Mis.

How long have you served on the committee?

I have served on Committee for over 25 years in various roles, Members Representative, Booking Secretary and in my present role as Treasurer since 2005.

What was your reason for joining the committee?

The reason behind joining the Committee was I wanted to find out how the Society functioned, what their individual roles entailed because as an ordinary member of the Society I was unaware of all the work they all did and wanted to become part of these people who in my mind did a brilliant job and who were so dedicated to the Society.

Your role and responsibilities

My role as Treasurer covers many aspects including collection of annual subscriptions, any monies raised by fund raising, programmes, raffle, ticket monies anything that has a monetary value which needs banking and accounting for.

Promotional photograph of Sue in ‘Spend, Spend, Spend’

Also accounting for all monies paid out eg, invoices for any production, production fees, rehearsal room fees, if it needs paying then I’m your girl!

My responsibilities are to ensure that all financial matters are dealt with and the Committee are kept appraised of the Society’s financial situation and to organise our Annual Audit.

Describe a task you have completed for this year’s committee?

As with any Committee even though you have a specific title you take on various things not related to your role so I think it’s a bit difficult to select just one task as I think we work as a team and if someone cannot do something then others step in.

Saying that there was something which I did undertake is every year we choose a charity which we support a year and this year’s charity was for Bluebell Wood’s Children’s Hospice.  Carole whom I worked with at Pontefract Racecourse had sadly lost her daughter Faye there recently so I asked Committee if we could make Bluebell Wood this year’s charity and I said I would liaise with Carole and the Hospice which I did and I thought that if possible a short interview with Carole and myself  about the Hospice and what it did for Carole and Faye could be shown at the theatre prior to our pantomime.  With grateful thanks to Carl Backhouse for filming we managed to do a short interview and it was shown and at the moment we have raised £750 and another bucket collection in June.

 What are the main challenges facing the committee?

In my opinion the Committee do a fantastic job for our wonderful society and members, keeping the society moving forward and hopefully leave a legacy for the future.

The main challenges, as I see them facing the Committee,  are to ensure the continuity and longevity of the Society whilst also looking to keep all members of the Society happy.

The choice of Shows are a challenge, what are available for Amateur Theatre,  financial cost, the Society members, the production team and venues.

Fund raising and what we can do to put things on that are different and hopefully interesting for members to come along to.

We are also thankful for everyone who does support the Committee and does go the extra mile to support and help, this includes those people who help through being associated with someone who is in our Society and if we can all do our best we can ensure Encore Theatre Company’s still rocking for years to come.  Thank you

Thank you Sue for adding to the blog this week and we all promise to pay our subscriptions on time…Honest! 😉

Don’t forget to comment below if you like our blog posts and i am still looking for any old photographs and memories you can share with us.
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We have a cast!

Encore Theatre Company are proud to present our cast list for Bad Girls The Musical 2016

Thank you to everyone who auditioned last week and here is the full cast list to date:

Nikki Wade – Becci CalvertBad Girls A5 Flyer

Denny Blood – Sarah Clarkson

Shell Dockley – Bev Maher

Yvonne Atkins – Pam Robinson

Noreen Biggs – Carole Whelpton

Crystal Gordon – Rebecca Atha

Rachel Hicks – Hannah Goodall

Julie Saunders – Clare Heins

Julie Johnson – Alex Bush

Helen Stewart – Eleanor Aldous

Jim Fenner – Phil Clarkson

Sylvia ‘Bodybag’ Hollamby -Sue Sheppard

Arrangements for auditioning the remaining roles of Justin Mattison and Governing Governor have still to be confirmed.

A full cast rehearsal has been called for Tuesday 9th and Thursday 11th February to set the opening number ‘I Shouldn’t Be Here’

Well done to all our members who took part in auditions this week, it was of very high standard and the casting committee had a lot of tough decisions to make!

Tickets for Bad Girls will be available to buy tomorrow, so what are you waiting for?
Book your tickets at Castleford Phoenix Theatre

We still want to hear all about your experience with Encore, weather you have seen a show you loved or appeared in one.
Email us here with your shared pictures and memories!

Thank you for reading see you all next week!
Don’t forget to comment below if you like our blog posts.
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