Thursday 23 January 2020

Introducing Members #1 : Mori

Creativity with ATG cards

 As part of a new bit of the blog - we're going to interview a random member of our group so that you can get an incite into our group and who we are. To kick it off, we introduce you to Mori. 

Now a little bit about Mori, who has been with the group for


 Wait, wait, wait... I can’t write this whole post in third person - *changing to first person!* 

 Hi! I’m Mori and I am the one who has been writing for the blog so far - or at least trying to! :) (Part of me thought I should just write this post in third person, but that would be weird, don’t you think?)

Friends that act together, stay together :) 
 So I’ve been a part of ATG for seven years in Summer and I don’t think I’d be the person I am today with the group. ATG has given me confidence, some unbreakable friendships and impressive skills that you just don’t get anywhere- who would have thought that an amateur dramatics group would be the one to teach me how to wallpaper a set? Little did seventeen year old me know how big a part ATG would play in my life- it instantly became one of those things I say when someone asks the dreaded “tell me five facts about yourself...”

How would you describe ATG to someone who knew nothing about it?
Antics of ATG at Blanchman's
 Where to begin?! ATG is a theatre group that is not only friendly and heaps of fun, but also incredibly inclusive and has been continually growing over the last 50 years. It’s where you will meet lots of new people that perhaps you wouldn't ordinarily talk to in another environment. What's brilliant about ATG is that there is always a place for you at the table, even if you don't want to be up on the stage! We are always on the lookout for any help backstage or social members, so everyone is welcome.

Playing the murderous Drusilla Tomb
What has been your favourite part to play?
 Like a lot of people will probably say, I couldn't pick just one as there are aspects of various characters that I like! And that’s true for me, but if I had to pick one (which I do!), it would have to be last year’s performance of "Prepare to Meet Thy Tomb" in which I played Drusilla Tomb, the youngest member of the murderous Tombs who had quite a rude and fiesty nature. Whilst it was quite challenging at first, Drusilla was an amazing character that I loved to sink my teeth in as previously I was used to playing slightly smaller parts. Ultimately, in the last year of so, I've been loving the parts I've had. I seem to be venturing into different accents which is all part of the challenge! 

How have you found being social secretary on the committee?
Handmade selfie props
 I realise that the blog hasn't mentioned any of our wonderful committee. The committee 
are a group of our members that help to keep the organism that is ATG alive! Each of these wonderful people are in charge of one vital organ of ATG and I'm sure you’ll get to know the man or woman behind each role of the committee in due course :) 
The wands during production :D
As for me, I am the social secretary which means every now and again, I organise little outings or parties for the group. Being social secretary has been an enjoyable experience and I am so happy that I get to give back to a group that has given me so much. Some years are ram packed in terms of social events, as some years have birthdays, awards night and Christmas parties

Personally, what I love most about being social secretary (aside from the partying!) is that it is perfect outlet for my creativity as I had so much fun putting together all of the decorations for the Christmas parties. For the Alice in Wonderland theme, I produced a rabbit hole photo opportunity and a tea pot spouting playing cards. A Harry Potter party was the most fun to prepare props for - imagine twenty plus handcrafted wizarding wands and wax sealed letters for each attending member. The most recent Christmas party also had secret projects and decorations - of which I'll probably write about soon :) 
Hermione Granger and her wand shop :D

 So I hope you have enjoyed hearing a little bit more about me and ATG!

 Mori x

Friday 17 January 2020

Cluedo is a game ~ November 2019


Nice to see you again - now it has been a while since our last post, but you've missed out on a performance. 'Murder is a Game' (just to clarify, Cluedo is a game, Murder is not!) We started auditions back in September after a gloriously sunny BBQ, with many members both young and old coming to have a stab at the roles on offer. 

Great turnout at the play reading in August
'Murder is a Game' centres around two mystery novel authors called Sloan and Toby Bigelow that have been invited to an old mansion that was previously used for a movie set. Their publicist has arranged for a couple of unusual characters to be present to serve as inspiration for the writers' next story - each one has been presented with an index card containing their character biography and notes. Ultimately, the question is, will the Bigelows be able to find inspiration for their next story?

The cast saw a lovely range of old and returning members - with Kelly returning fresh off the bat of Pirate Radio to take on the role of the resident ingenue and Jake coming back to the group after a six year hiatus (his last performance having been in a Jack and the Beanstalk style pantomime back in 2013!) 

Rehearsals were fully underway!
The rehearsal were off to a flying start and the cast bonded incredibly well over them. It's safe to say that there wasn't a single rehearsal that didn't start, have or end in laughter, which goes to show just how much fun we had. 

Knowing that we would be performing over five nights, we were keen to start Set-Build-Saturdays in order to produce the dream set. With lots of brick work being painted onto the flats, the earlier we started, the better. It's safe to say that it's very tricky to produce a unified wall when there are multiple members contributing over the weeks leading up to the construction day. Fortunately, it was decided that the fireplace would be wallpaper (nothing to do with saving on paint...!) ;) The set construction day was super helpful with the added new members that we met from Blanchman's fair and returning newbies being on hand to help. Take a lot at the photo of the finished set below!
The finished set, complete with actors onstage

'Murder is a Game' also produced some wannabe American accents - and like every amateur accent, there is always a word or phrase that they always struggled with. (One accent might have potentially slipped into an Australia during a performance!) Mori said it even felt like 'Pirate Radio' was accent practice for the American, BB Mink. 

Like every ATG performance, our social secretary Mori was prepared with the traditional afterplay activities. In her words; "Thursday Night, Pub Night. Friday Night, Panahar. Saturday Night, Party Night!" and to have a show running over two separate weeks meant double trouble! And let's just say that the first party continued the on-stage charades (much debate from the cast on the pronunciation- which wasn't helped by Jake and Mori joking about every potential way of saying the word to throw Kelly off!) The final party saw us singing and dancing into the early hours of Sunday morning which means it was a very successful party for ATG. :) 

The cast and director ~ Murder is a Game 2019
With 'Murder is a Game' acting as the book end of plays in 2019, it goes without saying that Christine deserves huge thanks due to her directing both Pirate Radio AND Murder is a Game. We hope to see her back on stage for 2020. 

The play finished in the first week of December, with a couple of weeks before the annual ATG Christmas Party of which the theme for this year is Silver Screen - which loosely translates into film characters - hopefully there will be a future post to follow in due course all about that!