Southwick & Fishersgate Community Association – Seventeenth Festival of Arts & Crafts
The Barn Theatre, Southwick Community Centre
April 3 & 4, 1970.
Adjudicator: Mr John Waite
Winning Group: Aquarius Theatre Group
Best Actor: David Radbourne – Horsham dramatic Society
Best Actress: Grace Wilmhurst – Aquarius Theatre Group
One-Act Drama Festival
Competitors – in order of appearance:
1. Aquarius Theatre Group
by David Campton
Produced by Dorothy Masen
2. Aquarius Theatre Group
by Peter Coke
Produced by Betty Midderigh
3. Horsham Dramatic Society
by Harold Pinter
Produced by Robert Denman
4. The Southwick Players
A Phoenix Too Frequent
by Christopher Fry
Produced by Robert Etteridge
5. Wick Theatre Company
Oh, What a Lovely War!
by Theatre Workshop & Charles Chilton
Produced by George Porter
Musical Director – Pat Johnson
Dance Routines – Miranda Bowen
Stage Staff – Sue Brown
Stage Staff – Terry Mase
Stage Staff – Margaret Perrett
Stage Staff – Ethel Barrs
6. Eskay Theatre Group (not competing)
The Tail of Fire
by T B Morris
Produced by Unknown
Publication: Shoreham Herald
Publication Data: April 10 1970 issue – page 2
Text Header: First festival win for Aquarius
AQUARIUS Theatre Group won the annual drama festival at Southwick Community centre on Friday and Saturday. The festival, organised by Southwick and Fishersgate Community Association, was run as first stage of the British Drama League Festival. It was the first success for Aquarius.
In his adjudication of the one-act plays, Mr John Waite said that Aquarius’s presentation of In Confidence by Peter Coke was neat entertaining comedy, well set, with good lighting. He also liked the background music. Barry Nelson, as the tout, was effective in too small a part; Barbara Ball, as Mrs Angela Fairbourne, spoke clearly and acted well; Stanley Burgess made a suave, debonair Colonel Edward Aplin and Roger Marler, as the waiter, Filippo, was excellent, especially in the dance with a broom, arranged by Glen Gordon. The play was directed by Betty Midderigh.
Best actress award went to Grace Wilmhurst in the part of Mrs Blake in Incident by David Campton, also presented by Aquarius Theatre Group. Others taking part in the play were Jenny Leworthy, Georgina Kennedy, Diane-Marie Pett and Marjorie Baker, all of who were good. Producer was Dorothy Masen.
Best actor award went to David Radbourne for his part as Mr Kidd in Horsham Dramatic Society’s presentation of The Room by Harold Pinter. Effective support came from Bernard Ware, Muriel Coles, Richard Johnson, Julia Banham and Peter Girling. Producer was Robert Denman.
The festival opened with Wick Theatre Company presenting excerpts from Oh What a Lovely War by Theatre Workshop and Charles Chilton, which won high commendation from Mr Waite. He said it was difficult to put such a marvellous piece of theatre into such a short period of time and therefore scenes were apt to be rushed. Also several fine performances were lost, as only names of those taking part appeared in the programme, without the characters they were portraying. Altogether it was a good try, he said, with beautiful singing of Roses of Picardy and fine acting from several of the players, with costumes and presentation impressive and refreshing.
Taking part were Sally Bacon, Valerie Bingham, Audrey Laye, Pat Moss, Jean Porter, Mary Shorland, Jack Bingham, Barry Bowen, Ralph Dawes, Tony Deasey, Mike Donkin, Ray Hopper, Neil Shephard, Douglas Tucker. It was directed by George Porter, with musical direction by Mr Johnson and dance routines by Miranda Bowen.
High praise was also given to Southwick Players presentation of A Phoenix Too Frequent by Christopher fry. Mr Waite said it was well lighted with excellent costumes and sensitive performances by Sue Geere, in the part of Dyamene, and Richard Nicholas as the soldier Tegeus. Elizabeth Flowers gave a good performance as Doto. Robert Etteridge was the producer.
Eskay Theatre Group, who were not competing presented The Tail of the Fire by T. B. Morris.
Mrs E. Penney, president of Southwick and Fishersgate Community Association, presented the awards to the winners.
Publication Data: unknown
There is small press clipping;
“Interesting news that following their presentation of an excerpt from Oh! What a Lovely War for the Southwick Drama Festival, the Wick Theatre Company are making a production of the whole thing their first event for next season.
The festival entry certainly suffered from being condensed to the required length, but even so, was first-class entertainment while at the same time being thought-provoking.
I can imagine that the whole, similarly imaginatively produced, will be very impressive indeed.”