Our Meet the Committee series continues this week with our very own Chairman/Woman and so much more Mrs Pam Robinson.
How long have you been a member of Encore Theatre Company?
40 years in September 2015.
When and why did you join ETC?
Joined in 1975 when I was very, very young!
My mum knew people who were involved with the then Featherstone Amateur Musical & Dramatic Society and she used to organise party bookings to see the shows. I went to a few shows with her from being about 10 years old and after every show said to her that I wanted to join. Being very timid and shy (which you probably find hard to believe!), I don’t think she believed me, but I did eventually join with my friend Karen when we were 13 years old.
When we went to our first rehearsal at what is now Featherstone Academy / High School, there was no one else our age there and we were told that we probably wouldn’t be able to go on stage until we were a bit older, but we could come along and watch!
So we kept enthusiastically turning up at all the rehearsals and eventually they gave us the roles of maids on stage in our first show, “Me and My Girl”, which was staged at St Wilfrid’s High School.
Do you have and favourite show/s performed in?
Lots of favourite shows and lovely memories, but top of the list perhaps: Hello Dolly; Sweet Charity; Jesus Christ Superstar; Seven Brides for Seven Brothers; Half A Sixpence
Tell us your favourite role/s? (past roles and dream ones)
Irene Molloy in Hello Dolly – special because it was my first major role in a show and I have played the same role twice; Charity in Sweet Charity; Viv Nicholson in Spend Spend Spend.
Roles I would have liked to have played, but now too old!
Maria Von Trapp in Sound of Music
Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady
However, a dream role I might still be in with a chance – Dolly Levi in Hello Dolly
How long have you served on the committee?
Since 1979 as Secretary and then Chairman
What was your reason for joining the committee?
They needed someone who could type letters and take minutes at meetings, which is what I did as a job, so I volunteered. The committee at the time was very much comprised of the ‘older generation’ and I think they thought I was a bit young to be joining them, but in the absence of anyone else …
I worked for quite a few Chair-people in my years as Secretary, but always remember how much I admired the organisation and efficiency of Jeni Fieldhouse; she encouraged me and I guess she was my role model to become more involved.
Your role and responsibilities?
I am now the proud Chair of Encore and can’t quite remember how many years I’ve been doing the job!
My role as I see it is to co-ordinate the Company’s activities by liaising with members, committee and production team to ensure that everything which needs doing is covered. I also like to be ‘hands-on’ and get involved / do things myself; delegation is not my strong point, but I’m working on it!
Describe a task you have completed for this year’s committee?
I think one of the most difficult tasks in the last 12 months for me personally, was coordinating and communicating with everyone involved in “Annie”, as there were lots of new children / parents who understandably had lots of questions and I responded to queries on a daily basis – it was like having a second job!
But I don’t mind really as I hope most of the time everyone knew what they were doing and people were very complimentary about our organisation so there was some job satisfaction at the end.
What are the main challenges facing the committee?
It’s always disappointing to receive criticism as a committee, but I guess it’s part and parcel of the job. So an ongoing challenge is to try and make the right decisions for the Company as a whole, learn from our mistakes (yes, I admit we do make some from time to time!) and continually improve on the way we do things.
Our biggest challenge for 2016 is “Bad Girls” and getting everyone on board, whether on stage or not, to help promote the production. I hope members not involved on stage will still keep in touch, come along to rehearsals and help out in the lead up to the production and during show week. We need everyone’s support and it’s in everyone’s interest to make it a success so we can move forward to future successful productions they will probably be involved in.
I’m proud to be involved with a great group of people and the fact we’re still thriving is testimony to everyone’s efforts – let’s keep up the hard work!
Thank you for taking part and answering our questions Pam.
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